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How does he do this?

I have been trying to figure out how this guy achieves his look but am not totally sure. He doesn't tell his secrets so I am wondering if anyone here has a clue. I think he uses a blurred layer with a mask to paint in the sharp areas. What do you think?

Check out the Red Light Rippers stuff specifically...


To mee they seemed like you said, gaussian blur and then masked out for sharp areas.
Desaturation and color shifts seems very random.

Live hard, die hard

When your images aren't very good to start with then doctoring them up in PS is about the only way to go ... and if that's all you can do then you can get moderately good at it. I'm not impressed with anything I see on his website, but his style could appeal to some folks.

Dwight McCann

Definitely a lot of PS effects and layer masking.

Founder, MusicPhotographers.net
Columbia, Maryland - USA

Whatever happened to "let the image speak for itself?"

He has a few good shots, but the "trickery" seems to be his trademark.

Jamie Taylor
Photojournalist Extraordinaire &
Grumpy Old Man in Training
"How about you come back to my place and I'll show you my man-size manicotti?" -- Grampa Gustafson, "Grumpier Old Men"

Jamie "Shooter" Taylor
TailWind Imaging
"Away you will go sailin/In a race among the ruins/If you plan to face tomorrow/Do it soon." -- Gordon Lightfoot


You find that most photographers develop a certain style. At the moment the trendy style is HDR photography. Don't do it. Picture editors hate it.

In the 80's Anton Corbijn developed his beautiful Lith print style using it on bands like Depeche Mode and of course U2. Other photographers tried to copy his style but always failed.

In the 80's it cross processing that appeared. (Shooting slide film and processing as C41 neg) It gave an instant feel. Then Picture editors decided to put an end to it.

I spent two years pre flashing paper in the dark room for a certain look.

Wow. Then computers came along......and then digital cameras!

I personally think BABAK's captured a real energy in his shots. The post production is not to my personal taste but the post production is a style that he is  trying to develop. If picture editors are accepting the work then BABAK will continue the style.

I think if you saw BABAK's work in chronological order you will find the style has been tamed down a little and they can always return to the original image and re process it.

You should always listen to what a picture editor has to say. They see thousands of images everyday and can spot a new photo shop filter from miles away.

It's always about the content and energy. Not the photo shop filter.


I hope this advice was helpful









Good to see you participating. Regarding post processing, photoshop filters, etc. Are editors becoming more tolerant of photographer added "artistry" to live performance images or are you strictly talking about studio/location production work for promos, albums, etc? Are photo editors sticking to strict "editorial" requirements of untouched images for live performance photographs or are they accepting mildly, or even heavily, post-processed work with a photographer's interpretation applied?


Founder, MusicPhotographers.net
Columbia, Maryland - USA

Hi Walter,

As mentioned above,  'Added artistry' looks amazing if you are a pioneer like  Anton Corbijn.

You have to remember that Picture editors are looking at images every single day and the 'new filter effect' an amateur photographer thinks they have just discovered has been seen a thousand times over by the picture editor. Many of these filters stand out like a sore thumb.

Give the picture editor respect. The photographers I work with all have a good relationship with a picture editor.

Don't get me wrong. It is important to have a recognisable style, but that style shouldn't be a filter effect in photo-shop. If you are starting out as a music photographer and want to be published my advice to all would be to simply look at the type of images that are printed in certain magazines.

I hope this insight was helpful.





'Added artistry' looks amazing if you are a pioneer like Anton Corbijn.

And then, only if it adds to the image. ;)