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Thread: C & C On Image

  1. #1
    Boatman's Avatar
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    C & C On Image

    My wife and I were walking around Exeter NH Sunday and I took a number of photographs. None of the photographs was stunning but they served to keep my skills fresh with the GH2 (it's pretty complicated) and I wanted some shots to practice my post processing skills on.

    This image I rather like. It is a hand held 1-stop bracketed exposure (braced against the wall). After opening the three shots in ACR I photo merged them and used masks balance the lighting. After flattening the image I selected the steps changing their contrast and desaturating them nearly to B&W.

    The rich coloration came from changing the gamma and exposure in the flattened layer.

    For practice I tried all this again using smart objects, but wasn't able to achieve quite the same look or the same exposure of the building across the street at the top.

    I'd grade the image a B-, mostly on technical merit. It needs an old lady or a sleeping drunk to give it real character. (No drunks in Exeter, though!)

    Comments welcomed.
    C & C On Image

    Note the color of this does not look right on the web image. In Photoshop the bricks are much more red.

  2. #2
    kdoc856's Avatar
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    Re: C & C On Image

    Homer,

    I very much like the contrast between the lighting,color and texture of the steps and the walls (have had the same experience with being surprised by the color after posting). Those steps pulled me right up to.... aching to see something at the top- you couldnt get your wife to stand up there? Soo close to bein a really good shot.

    Regards,

    Kevin

  3. #3
    Boatman's Avatar
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    Re: C & C On Image

    You callin' my wife an old lady?

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: C & C On Image

    For me (given that we don't have a drunk or an old lady to add atmosphere!), this takes on an abstract-like quality in terms of it being a study about line and shape. And the most fascinating 'bit' of that is that wall on the right hand side. Look at closely and intently - it becomes like a spiders web.

    I'm trying to see how I'd want to re-crop that to focus attention more onto that wall. Can't quite see it yet.

  5. #5

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    Re: C & C On Image

    For me, the problem is that those steps don't appear to lead anywhere interesting; just a rather plain building.

    I suspect it might look better if there was, for example, a nice blue sky at the end of the steps. Possibly even over exposing that final building might work. Steps going into the light sort of idea.

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    Re: C & C On Image

    I like the idea of this shot, and certainly an old bag lady or drunk coming or going in the distance would be a bonus, I usually am drawn to places like this to shoot, too. What bothers me is the first dozen or so steps lean and it makes me want to pull them right....top 1/3, they don't lean...I know what you mean. I upload to Photobucket, and that takes some of the colors out, too. They never look like what I see on my screen!

  7. #7
    Boatman's Avatar
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    Coloration of Uploaded Images and Picasa

    Thanks for the comments.

    This image does bring up a different topic that I'm not clear on - coloration. In Picasa, which I use as my organizer, the .jpg, which I uploaded has a very vibrant brick red coloration. Color-wise it looks much better than as posted here. The .psd version in Picasa, however, looks just about the same as the image you see here. If you open both images in Photoshop the are identical and both have the nice brick red coloration.

    The latest version of Picasa (3.9.0) does have settings for display mode and color management. I believe this is new to this version. Changing these settings makes noticeable changes but the two images never match in color.

    To explore this further, I posted several pairs of identical images to a Picasa web folder: https://picasaweb.google.com/1087441.../201201Exeter# . The first of each pair is a .jpg. The second is a .psd. In Photoshop, all the images look like the .jpg files. When you enlarge the Picasaweb images they all look like the muted .psd files. The thumbnail files are different in .jpg and .psd.

    I have no clue as to what is happening here as I have never noticed this before, either posting to this site or posting to Picasweb. Comments welcomed, because now I'm thoroughly confused!
    Last edited by Boatman; 1st February 2012 at 01:50 AM.

  8. #8

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    Re: Coloration of Uploaded Images and Picasa

    Just a thought, Homer, but which colour system are you using?

    Are the psd files looking weak when you are looking at them with software which isn't their native format? For example psd is a Photoshop format so may not be reproduced perfectly by another system.

    If colour problems occur, setting everything to sRGB colour may help. This has been discussed in detail with a few recent questions in the processing forum. For instance Color settings for camera and Photoshop CS5

    I was previously using a Serif Photo Plus programme but after trying CS5 I immediately noticed an improvement in colour and sharpness. In each case I shot Raw and ended up with a Tiff.

    And one other slight thought, do you have any layers or other adjustments which might not be transferring correctly between software?

  9. #9
    Boatman's Avatar
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    Re: Coloration of Uploaded Images and Picasa

    Geoff:

    Thank you for your input. I've had some time to cruise around the web and educate myself on color space managment - a subject I've largely ignored. I can see that my issue is that I'm sending Photopro RGB to the web and to a software package (Picasa) that can't deal with it. It looks like a simple conversion to aRGB or sRGB and save-as should solve my problems.

    There are some other details I'll need to work out, but I think I'm on the right track now.

    Man, the branches of technology that you have bone up on just to take a picture these days are amazing. And, I guess that's the beauty of it!

  10. #10
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Coloration of Uploaded Images and Picasa

    Hi Homer,

    Keep it simple and just use sRGB everywhere, then you can't go wrong.

    One other thought - what pixel size image are you uploading to photobucket?
    I ask because if you're uploading a big size, but only linking here to one of their smaller size auto-generated jpgs (e.g. 800px) those may well be saved with a lower jpg quality than we would choose ourselves (I'd choose 9 of 12, or 75%).

    Cheers,

  11. #11
    Boatman's Avatar
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    Re: Coloration of Uploaded Images and Picasa

    Dave:

    I've been down-sizing my images to around 900 x 700 pixels and re-sharpening before uploading, so I don't think that is the issue. I'm certain now that my issue is the Photopro color space. I only started using this recently and had no issues with Adobe RGB.

    The upshot of all this is that I am learning another important area in post-processsing. This weekend I'll fix a number of the shots and see how they look posted here and to Picasaweb. I haven't checked it out fully, but one suggestion is that there is a feature in Photoshop that will downsize and correct the color space in one step. Sounds like a good tool - I'll be checking it out.

    Thanks for your help.

  12. #12
    Boatman's Avatar
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    Re: C & C On Image

    So I read up on color space and discovered why my image is posting rather brown. I converted it to Adobe RGB and here is how is should look. Still needs a drunk but I've gained a better understanding of color space and how to manage it. Fair enough!

    C & C On Image

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