To every photo-editing, image-manipulating, red-eye-reducing software developer on the planet: Sharpening photographs by default is NOT a good idea! If images aren’t sharp directly from the camera, there was something wrong with them to begin with. Most camera’s nowadays make fine pictures which don’t need sharpening.
Reason for this post is that just a few minutes ago, I was wondering why my new (and expensive) Canon 350D still showed noise in blue skies, even at 100 ISO. It turned out not to be noise. It was Lightroom (the public Beta application for OSX) tries to “Sharpen” and “Smooth” the images by default, and not by a small amount, I might add. So the little dust particles which were perfectly captured by my excelent camera with that excelent lens, were (cough) “enhanced”, after which the very nice flat-blue sky turned in to a freckle disaster. I also heard that Rawshooter does the exact same thing. It’s really a shame, because a good lens, a good camera, some experience and a little effort should produce sharp photo’s to begin with.
Sure I like the “digital darkroom” idea of being able to do some post-processing of photographs, but I am convinced of the fact that you should have quality material to begin with (meaning a good photo). I think that for every minute you spend trying to make a great shot with the camera in your hand, you save 15 minutes trying to correct mistakes with a mouse in your hand.
No, I am not a star photographer. Yes, I need to tweak some photo’s to get the effect I was looking for with the camera. Yes, I am trying to learn to do it directly with aperture and shutter speed, and yes, that takes a lot of time and effort because no, I’m not a natural 🙂 . Just venting some furstrations here. Sorry.