Support Ken

Click here to support Ken Steinhoff through your Amazon purchases.

Purchases made at Amazon.com from that link put 6% of the total transaction price in Dad's pocket at no additional cost to you. You're going to shop online anyway, right? Do it through Amazon.com to support this web site.

Or, if you'd rather just send him a random amount of money, you can do that too...







Cape Central High Photos

Ken Steinhoff, Cape Girardeau Central High School Class of 1965, was a photographer for The Tiger and The Girardot, and was on the staff of The Capaha Arrow and The Sagamore at Southeast Missouri State University. He worked as a photographer / reporter (among other things) at The Jackson Pioneer and The Southeast Missourian.

Come here to see photos and read stories (mostly true) about coming of age in Southeast Missouri in the 1960s.

Please comment on the articles when you see I have left out a bit of history, forgotten a name or when your memory of a circumstance conflicts with mine. (My mother says her stories have improved now that more and more of the folks who could contradict her have died off.) Your information helps to make this a wonderful archive and may end up in book form.


“Reality” Is Just a Level Adjustment

BNSF Tracks in Cape Girardeau 04-11-2014I’m pretty much a photo purist. I don’t set up photos and I try to manipulate the image only enough that the finished product matches what my eye and mind saw when I pushed the button. On one of my walks from the river at dusk, I saw the light reflecting off the BSNF train tracks between the floodwall and Water Street.

It’s pretty similar to a shot I took in 2009, but that didn’t stop me from shooting it again.

That’s pretty much what my eye recorded, except that my eye saw the reflections on the rails as more red.

So, is THIS real?

BNSF Tracks in Cape Girardeau 04-11-2014One of the first things I do when I open a frame in Photoshop is decide if it needs cropping. The second step is to adjust the levels of the highlights, shadows and midtones. The program has a feature so you can adjust it by a graph rather than with your eye. You just keep moving a slider until the highlights or shadows block up, then you look at the picture and see if you want to tweak it. Generally you do.

In this case, I blindly moved the highlight slider to what should have been the “optimal” point and let go of the button. As you can see, the photo is radically different: the red reflections are gone, the sky has turned a brighter blue and the mural on the floodwall has become more prominent.

Neither iteration of the photo captures exactly what I was looking for, but it goes to show how a few twitches of your finger on a mouse can serve up two radically different views of the same subject.

2 comments to “Reality” Is Just a Level Adjustment

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>