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Thread: Love Bugs

  1. #1
    teokf's Avatar
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    Love Bugs

    Hi

    This is my first post here and I hope everything goes accordingly.

    This pair of cotton stainer was shot hand held in NL. The female being under the flower has a shadow cast over it. Should the shadow be cleared or leave it as it is? If cleared, how could it be done? I use Lightroom for the basic sharpening, saturation and cropping.

    Thanks for viewing and replying.

    Love Bugs
    love bugs by teokf, on Flickr

  2. #2

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    Re: Love Bugs

    I don't see any real problem with this shot as it is, Steven.

    I use a different editing programme so this may not work for you.

    As an experiment, you could try selectively lightening the shadows over that insect's head. I would use an Adjustment Layer (I usually prefer Curves but Levels would also work) to make the adjustment; ignore the overall effect and just concentrate on getting the problem area correct.

    Then use a Hide All mask, which will hide the adjustment. Gently painting over the problem area with a soft edged low opacity 'white' brush will gradually make the alteration appear where required.

    However, although I'm not certain because I have a cheap monitor here, I think I would be more concerned about over exposure on top of the flower.

  3. #3
    Goldcoastgolfer's Avatar
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    Re: Love Bugs

    It might be nice to see the... uh... expression on the other bug's face. If you're using Lightroom you won't be able to use Layers until you have a plug in. There's an Adjust Brush though where you can selectively highlight areas to increase or decrease exposure in Lightroom.

    Just had a look a the histogram and it doesn't look like there's a blow out but the top of the flower does look very bright.

  4. #4
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Love Bugs

    Hello Steven, and well done for putting up your first post. Which I must say is very impressive.

    I think it could have been more powerful if the female had not been in shadow underneath the flower. But, given that she is, I would leave it.

    It would be possible to lighten that area , but you would have to take care a not overdo it. It would then look unnatural. As to how you would do that - I think we need to know how you assess your post-processing skills to be :Very Good, Beginner, or somewhere in between?

    I would do this by using dodging techniques borrowed from old darkroom days of holding back light.

    EDIT - I have just read the posts made by Geoff & Mal who posted as I was writing my response. As you can see already, there are different ways of addressing the problem of lightening the shadow area.

  5. #5
    teokf's Avatar
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    Re: Love Bugs

    Firstly, thanks for the responses and the willingness to help.

    I would assess myself as only a beginner in my post-processing (PP) skills with LR 3.5 which is the only software that I use. I have tried moving the curves but totally no idea what's happening. My workflow in LR is as below;

    1. Presence
    2. Tone
    3. Noise Reduction (only adjusting Luminance)
    4. Sharpening (only adjusting Amount and Detail)
    5. Crop

    Hope the above would give you a better understanding to offer me a better helping hand. Thanks for the help.

  6. #6
    Goldcoastgolfer's Avatar
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    Re: Love Bugs

    Steven - if you've got a spare ten minutes have a look at this video on the adobe website on Selective Colour Adjustment. It focuses on adjusting the colour but there's a section using the adjustment brush which is what I was referring to. You can use the adjustment brush to selectively adjust exposure, brightness, contrast, etc etc as well. I think this is probably what you need for what you're attempting.

    In case you're interested, The Perfect Picture help video gives some demonstrations on the impact of adjusting tone curves etc.

    The videos actually show you what happens as you do something in Lightroom which is probably easier than me trying to fumble an explanation.

    Hope this helps!

  7. #7
    teokf's Avatar
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    Re: Love Bugs

    Hi Mal - Appreciate that you took the time to link the web pages. Not only did I view those videos, but some others too.

    Thanks again.

  8. #8
    Goldcoastgolfer's Avatar
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    Re: Love Bugs

    Glad you found them useful

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