Aaron: Hello, and welcome to another episode of “Crashbang’s Workshop,” a podcast that gives photography advice with a World of Warcraft twist. We’re your hosts. I’m Aaron, and -
Crashbang: DEFCON 2! Seal all the exits! Deploy the milkbone decoys!
Aaron: And that’s Crashbang, who as you may have noticed did NOT calm down during our hiatus.
Crashbang: He’s coming, Aaron! The destroyer of helms has a fix on our location! Nothing water soluble will be safe from the drool! No black clothing will be safe from the shed fur!
Aaron: Right. Apparently after our last episode we had a question sent in by Drethan himself, and even though a nasty sinus infection and end-of-school-year activities delayed our show for weeks, Crash here is STILL a little worked up by the whole thing.
Crashbang: Here, I’ve made these mock-ups of myself out of various explosives. Help me put skulls on top of them so the enemy will instinctively attack them.
Aaron: No way, Crash. I’m not going near anything that you actually WANT to explode.
Crashbang: Really? But you’ve been using my workbench for several days now.
Aaron: Um … why do I keep visiting your workshop?
Crashbang: I posed a similar question during our first episode, if you recall.
Aaron: Nevermind. I’ll let you finish off your, uh, defensive perimeter. I’ll read this week’s question. Drethan writes:
Hi there Aaron and a very nasty little gnome named Crashbang
As you have probably have noticed I haven’t been in WoW for a little while and there is a very good reason for that. He’s about 4 foot nothing, has a handlebar mustache, and is also known as mud when I get home. Here is what happened: It was late one night after the raid in Dragon Soul. I was getting ready to go home and snuggle next to Namastia when I remembered I needed to go to Dalaran to drop off some pictures I took during to the raid. No one was on except, yeah you guessed it, Crash. He reassured me that he wouldn’t partake in any funny business and offered to send me to Dalaran via teleport pad. Well long story short there was a flash of light then everything went dark though I heard a little cackle of a gnome before the light went out. I awoke to these strange people standing over top of me letting me know that I was no longer in Azeroth, I was now in the lands of Atria. The first words I spoke to these people was I am going to kill that gnome. I’ll tell more about my adventures with the really nice people know as the Asmo’s . I have 3 question for you about the pics I took during my little vacation.
1. The Asmo people live in a kinda perpetual darkness with some light however their eyes are always red. Is there a way I can tone down the redness in their eyes.
2. I went flying with my new friends and took some pictures however on some of them are blurry which is good with some of them are really bad. How can I fix the really bad ones
3. And lastly every picture that I’m in I’m not there what has Crash done to me?
I am enclosing a picture of Raven and I there is a problem where am I. Please tell Nam that I will be home soon. as for Crash I have one thing to say to you “RUN AWAY LITTLE GNOME RUN AWAY”
Aaron: So Crash … is there a reason you teleported Drethan into another game entirely?
Crashbang: I didn’t!
Crashbang: Well, not intentionally. I really was planning on porting Drethan to Dalaran, for one very specific reason.
Aaron: And that was…
Crashbang: He was willing to travel to an entirely different continent, while I remained behind and relatively unchewed. I wasn’t about to say no to that.
Aaron: And the evil cackle Dre heard?
Crashbang: You know I always laugh maniacally whenever I teleport anything.
Aaron: Fair enough. Then what happened?
Crashbang: Well, as you know, my superior skill in gnomish tinkering has a below average failure rate of 12.131444 (repeating of course). Unfortunately 12.131444 (repeating) is still higher than zero, and wormhole manipulation is still not an exact science. I mean, heck, a few months back I got replaced by my evil twin after a port to the Storm Peaks went horribly wrong. Fortunately, no one noticed.
Aaron: That would explain why half my lesson plans were replaced with surprisingly detailed manifestos concerning world domination.
Crashbang: Well that was something your students would have to learn sooner or later.
Aaron: No, it’s not. *Ahem* OK, Dre, let’s answer your questions before we go off topic again.
Crashbang: We were on topic?
Aaron: Shush, you! First off, Red eye reduction is a very common request that’s fairly easy to accomplish. If you don’t have it enabled on your camera, just open the photo in almost any image editor. Some of them will have a built in “Red Eye Reduction” tool or filter, but if they don’t all you need to do is use an oval selection tool to select each pupil and use a tool or filter to desaturate it. The exact steps for this will vary by program. It’s best to browse through your tool options and filters to find anything that mentions desaturation. You could actually use a color correction filter to give the eye a different color, but in my experience this leaves the eyes looking just as unnatural as they did with red pupils.
Crashbang: Dre said their eyes were naturally red, though. Should he be color correcting them at all?
Aaron: Good point, Crash. I usually don’t like to alter my photos to the point that they don’t resemble reality, but in this case I imagine the eyes appeared even more reddish due to the low light conditions in which the photos were taken. Taking even a little of the red out might make Dre’s photos appear to be a little more like what he remembers. As for your next question, Dre, motion blurs are notoriously difficult to remove in post-production. Until recently the only things that could be done were sharpening tools – which didn’t work very well – or making the images smaller – which removes a lot of the good details along with the blurring. Adobe has been working on specialized algorithms that have done an impressive job of removing motion blur from an image, but sadly you likely won’t have access to that unless you’re willing to fork over the cash for Adobe Photoshop. Whenever I find a photo with an unintentional motion blur I usually write it off as a lost cause.
Crashbang: As for your last question, I think I’m best qualified to answer it. You weren’t just ported to another world, but to an entirely different reality. Each reality has its own laws of physics, There’s a lot that remains similar – like gravity usually pulling you down, for example, but there can be subtle differences as well. In this new reality you discovered, it seems light acted in a subtly different way. As we all know, we see things because light bounces off of them. Some wavelengths are absorbed while others are not, and that’s how we sense various colors. It’s possible that light physics were sufficiently different from what you’re used to, enough so that the camera could not compensate for how the light bounced off of you. You very likely did not appear to your new friends the same way you appear to myself or any of your guild mates, but since they had no idea what you looked like on Azeroth they had no reference point to determine that there was anything different.
Aaron: That’s a pretty good theory, but it still doesn’t explain why he wouldn’t show up at all. And if things from Azeroth reacted differently to light, wouldn’t his camera have just malfunctioned the whole time?
Crashbang: Um … A wizard did it.
Aaron: But what about-
Crashbang: Wizard disguised as a robot.
Aaron: Right, I think it’s time to wrap up the show. If YOU have a question for Crashbang, you can send it to his Twitter account: @Crashbang_G. Of course you can also go to this show’s website, aaronbsmith.com/crashbang. In addition to submitting questions there, you’ll find links to subscribe to the show, previous episodes, and links to our various projects. Until next time, this is Aaron and Crashbang reminding you to keep your camera at the ready, and always ask if the workbench is rigged to explode.
This show is released under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial License. Share and remix it all you like, but be sure to give credit and don’t make money off of it, or a raid group full of gnomish lawyers will track you down – and no one wants that.