Cozumel Mexico, November 2013, Thanksgiving

cozumel head

COZ - the day the ocean was closed

Thirty two of our best friends traveled to Cozumel for a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner. Along the way there were a couple days of diving, a couple days of walking around town, and a couple days being inside reading a book or editing photographs. You see, the local port authority had closed the ocean mid-way through our week long Thanksgiving dinner. Apparently the bumps in the water were too much for a small boat to see all of the drifting divers, and you always want to dock back on shore with an equal or greater number of passengers than when you started.

So, pool closed.

There was of course the last dive of the trip - The Zeus Night Dive

The pool had been closed for a day or so, but this night the waves calmed, the clouds parted, and it looked like we had a chance, a small chance, to get to the night dive site and watch the nighttime critters come out to play. When we arrived at the site, we were met with a couple of other boats - also attempting one last ditch dunk in the tank - when it began to rain a tad and a foul weather system coming right for us, a foul weather system driven by Zeus, the God of Thunder and Lightning. Deciding it was eminently safer for the divers far under the water than being lightning rods (you there - stand up straight mister!) on the boat, in we went. The boat crew were left to their own devices, with a small reward of 3x tip pay at the end of our trip. We settle at the bottom, approximately 40-feet, and in comes the furry. The ocean lighting up, thunder right on top of us. A thousand camera flashes going off at the same time, revealing the entirety of the ocean floor, producing amazing shadows and details not otherwise to be seen. The storm passed, the groups of divers found their clans, all boarded their respective boats and went home. The dive crew was no worse for the wear, though a bit wet. Maybe a little shaken, but not stirred.

All was not lost, however, as we had plenty to entertain us - be it towel origami, reading a book, or honing our skills at editing photographs. This last being a topic of great passion.

Except for the beers…
On the beer front, we were lucky enough to have arrived in Cozumel at the time of the Great Grupo Modelo Art Series “Arte para tus Sentidos”.

Elizabeth Loreley: Touch
Reflects the experience of touch when drinking this cold beer with a soft and rounded texture and a liquid with body and strength that is felt as it hits the palate.

Belinda Garen: Sight
Reflects the elegance of Negra Modelo; the amber highlights in its interior and the white froth that make it so attractive and mysterious.

Emiliano Gironella: Taste
Reflection of the bittersweet taste, as well as the freshness and warmth of a Negra Modelo.

German Flores: Hearing
Reflects the jingle of the crystal, the sound of opening a Negra Modelo, and the sound of the liquid sliding when it is poured.

Antonio de Jesus: Smell
Reflects the experience of smelling the barley and cereal with toasted tones that emerge from a Negra Modelo.

Antonio Griton: The sixth sense
Reflects the ritual that accompanies the tasting of a Negra Modelo from start to finish ad infinitum.

Editing Photographs
Developing for the Three C’s: Color, Clarity, and Contrast

Now on to the image editing portion of our tour. At another time, on another link, I’ll post details of how to get the most from your images - developing your images for the Three C’s: Color, Clarity, Contrast. Every image you create will benefit, and with a small amount of practice the time it takes develop an image will be less than the time it takes to decide if the image is worth keeping in the first place.

For starters, lets go with this:
A panorama created on an iPhone of one of our wonderful sunsets, watching from the shore since the pool was closed

Unedited from the camera. It is in need of leveling and cropping for starters


Second: Cropped and leveled and some minor C's. The image is now in need of developing for the Three C’s


Third and Fourth: Various amounts of drama developed into the image, providing insight into what is possible in a minute’s time of effort


Fifth: Final image with an oil paint texture and lightened for print, developed on a Mac from the second image. This final image was printed on canvas at 35" x 8", mounted on 3/4" stretcher bars, and presented to Frank & Ginny for their 30th trip anniversary.


Developing your image
Color, Clarity, Contrast - Open the window
First, a homework assignment:

  • Take a close look out of a window onto a garden, a city street, a landscape
  • A car window or a sliding glass window is perfect for this exercise
  • What colors do you see? How bright and vibrant? How clear? How detailed?
  • Open the window and look again
  • How do the colors, vibrance, and details compare?
  • Close the window. Study the difference

As you would expect, the open natural world looks brighter, clearer, and more detailed. The goal is to learn how to open the window on your photographic images.

The Three C’s: Color, Clarity, Contrast
Adjustments for color, clarity, and contrast work in concert to advance the plot of a fully developed image. Too much of one will drown out elements of the others. The available developing tools are very effective at helping you advance the plot to your developed image. A carefully crafted Three C's trifecta will yield an image that has the same impact as if viewing from an open window.

A great tutorial on image development:
Go Ask Erin - White Balance and Color - Lightroom Tutorial

GoAskErin, is a feature brought to you by Backscatter - Underwater Photo and Video. Erin Quigley, our Lightroom and Photoshop guru, reveals her favorite tips and techniques in our bi-monthly series of online video tutorials, using images chosen from viewer submissions.

Copyright © 1988-2014, Eric Anderson Photography - Images may not be reproduced without prior written permission