March 2018 NAPfS Meeting Recap

Hey, it’s our 3rd 2018 meeting with about 40 members and 8 guests attending at United Christian Church at 3500 West Parmer Lane, Austin, TX. 78727.

Welcome to our newest club members: Casey Holder and Lauren Vega. All it takes is a $24 check at a meeting or PayPal at our web site  Thank you to the 61 members who have paid your 2018 dues.

Club President Andrew Fritz invited everyone to our very first “3rd Thursday” meeting on March 15th, also at 7 pm and at the United Christian Church. Andrew will talk about printing your own work using professional quality ink jet printers. He will talk about how to select a printer, types of printing systems, choosing paper and how to use color profiles to achieve the best results. He will print several images to demonstrate the process. In preparation for the launch of a NAPfS print competition, Andrew will follow his printing demo by demonstrating how to easily mount prints for framing and for competition. He also reminded everyone to go see the NAPfS photo show at Precision Camera, which is closing soon on March 25, 2018.

Stacy Wells exhibited her large selection of “square” prints made from her Instagram images.

Photo Critique

The March competition on the theme “Red Dazzle” was judged by Mark Heaps, our guest speaker. There were 29 Class 1 entries and 25 Class 2 submissions. In Class 1, there were 3 awards and 4 honorable mentions. In Class 2, there were 3 awards and 4 honorable mention. To see the winning photos, see the separate posts on our Facebook page or our web site

To begin, Mark said he first looked up different meanings for “dazzle” and found several including bright, to amaze, to impress, and to blind. As a graphic artist, he responded to several images that showed commercial potential because of their “grid” composition. He said, “I’m a junkie for good composition.”  He considered “printability” viewing all the images with Lightroom to judge tonal and color ranges. In some cases, he noted “toy camera” reds were too saturated and objects lost their details. He marveled at the wildlife images saying how much he respected the patience it took, especially his #1 choice Alan Irby’s “Pretty Lady” that captured the bird’s feathers and perch in fascinating, razor-sharp detail. Mark complimented many submissions for capturing patterns with good cropping for eye movement flow and different color choices to compliment red like yellow and blue not only green.

The April, 2018 photo competition is an OPEN theme month. Submissions may be made NOW and will be accepted until midnight Saturday, March 31st at

Post Processing Techniques in Lightroom and Photoshop

Mark Heaps is an Adobe Max conference instructor, studio owner, professional storyteller, image maker, author, instructor, and dad. You can read about Mark’s creative career in the earlier March meeting announcement.

To begin his presentation, Mark shared his setup tips and shortcuts for Lightroom and Photoshop to improve workflow efficiency. For example, to increase rendering speed, check the setup box to allow optimized proxies rather than full resolution and also set a large memory cache. Its also possible to use short-cut keys to keep the image property panel closed, cycle through sliders for properties like contrast and change the values with + or – keys. This allows you to increase the image panel size and keep your eyes on the image while the values change. He demonstrated powerful new features called “range mask slider” and “smart objects” in Adobe Lightroom CC 2018. Checking the “range mask slider” lets you select image portions to mask with a large brush then “tighten” your selection with the slider to a range of color frequencies. This way is faster than hand drawing a mask around areas with ragged edges. He recommended “smart objects” as a new work flow to move between Lightroom and Photoshop because if saves layers and allows further edits. This was a NAPfS presentation that everyone could learn from it was so full of good stuff. Thanks, Mark, for your post processing tool tips.

Meeting candid photos taken by Clay Leben. More will be posted on the NAPfs Facebook page and Instagram at

About Clay Leben

I've always loved photography and cameras. Started in high school with darkroom and school newspaper; continued with college yearbook photos. I just keep going; taking photos of events around me for personal pleasure. I love capturing the moment and saving memories as "citizen journalism" storytelling. Like Cronkite used to end the newscast by saying, "And, that's the way it was!"