Fort Langley was a lively place this weekend but it didn’t last long. The streets were filled with a wandering group of zombies who silently made their way through the shopping area, danced a little, and then disappeared into their graves. Organized by the Fort Langley Studio, the event included a make-up tent, popcorn, a master pumpkin carver and a dance group.  The zombies all seemed to enjoy their brief visit with the friendly Fort Langley folks, including a surprise visit from a bride and groom who posed for pictures, before evaporating into the autumn shadows.

Zombies walk in Fort Langley


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For Photographers: Notes on the Post Processing

This was a really fun event to photograph for a number of reasons. When people are in costume, they are much more welcoming of a photographer. Even though I didn’t know any of the zombies, they were all more than agreeable to having a photo taken.

But the real fun began after importing the photos into my computer. I have a number of plugins installed with Lightroom, and many of them don’t see much action. Much of my workflow involves family portraits or images where a realistic look is the goal. Not this time! One suite of plugins that was really useful here comes from Alien Skin software and includes Snap Art, Exposure 6 and Bokeh.  Another is Nik, which includes Color Efex Pro, Silver Efex Pro and more. While I use the Nik programs almost daily, I was able to experiment with them in very different ways with these photos, mostly by pushing the contrast and colours to an extreme level.  Below is one before and after, showing how one program helped me create an effect that I really like.

After doing the basic edits in Lightroom of this girl leering at me while she passed by the cemetery, I wondered what else I could do to enhance the great expression she offered. Opening the image in Bokeh 2 from Alien Skin software, which is intended for softening or defocusing the background, I selected the girl with an oval shaped tool. Then I worked with two sliders to create the effect. One was the zoom tool, which created an effect similar to pulling the zoom of the lens while the shutter is open. The second was the swirl tool. After a few minutes of adjusting the various sliders, I decided that the swirl effect seemed quite appropriate for a zombie, kind of lost in a vortex.

zombie post processing

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