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First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

View Poll Results: I used Hue and Saturation and Solid Colour, was this the right way to go?
Other ways of colouring? please advise 0 0%
Do you think the colours are accurate for the period? 1 100.00%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 1. You may not vote on this poll

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  #11  
Old 09-14-2007, 01:38 PM
Gary Richardson's Avatar
Gary Richardson Gary Richardson is offline
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Re: First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

Interesting technique Michael, never tried working in LAB, must give it a try.

Hilda, your second attempt with the Wedding Photo is a distinct improvement on your earlier attempt.

For skin tones I use the Bruce's Skin Tones chart. We used to have it as a download, don't know where it is now, so I've posted the charts below, one for skin tones one for hair.

Just save them to your computer somewhere where you can find them, then open them in Photoshop (or any other image editor) and you can sample colours off them.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Bruce's skintones.jpg (165.7 KB, 20 views)
File Type: jpg Bruce's haircolor.jpg (169.8 KB, 20 views)
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  #12  
Old 09-15-2007, 01:42 AM
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HILDA WOOD HILDA WOOD is offline
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Re: First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

Thanks everyone. Theres much to learn! I shall go away and try all the techniques recommended here. Ive printed out your posts and downloaded your work to use as reference points.
Then I'll be back......!
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  #13  
Old 09-16-2007, 05:35 AM
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HILDA WOOD HILDA WOOD is offline
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Re: First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

Michael thanks. Ive tried your pic and the face is great. The beard has come out a bit multi coloured . Otherwise great technique, so realistic.
Perhaps this is a daft question, but could you open up a solid colour layer of blue, one of green, yellow and red with blend mode set to colour and paint in the same way, or is there something special about working the image in Lab mode?

Last edited by HILDA WOOD; 09-17-2007 at 06:55 AM.
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  #14  
Old 09-17-2007, 05:03 AM
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Re: First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

wow i think you did a great job =]
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  #15  
Old 09-17-2007, 06:48 AM
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HILDA WOOD HILDA WOOD is offline
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Re: First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

Well thank you. You have put a smile on my face. Its nice to have positive feedback, it was my first go after all!
Ali W
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  #16  
Old 09-17-2007, 06:59 PM
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omytfineo1 omytfineo1 is offline
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Re: First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

Michael,
I tried your method on coloring B&W photos and was amazed at the results! Very good...
Ali W, I think you did a great job on coloring your picture. After seeing the 1st one I was amazed at how well the colors you picked worked out. Your second try at coloring the whole photo is even better.
I know you said you kept the colors dull, but why not just try to make them pop out more with richer and brighter skin tones?
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  #17  
Old 09-18-2007, 08:23 AM
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Graphics23 Graphics23 is offline
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Re: First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

Quote:
Originally Posted by HILDA WOOD View Post
Michael thanks. Ive tried your pic and the face is great. The beard has come out a bit multi coloured . Otherwise great technique, so realistic.
Perhaps this is a daft question, but could you open up a solid colour layer of blue, one of green, yellow and red with blend mode set to colour and paint in the same way, or is there something special about working the image in Lab mode?
In the case of colorizing a B&W, there are many advantages to working in LAB.

The A&B channels can stand a LOT of manipulation that other color modes simply can't handle. For example, one can use just about any filter on the A&B channels and never harm detail. One practical application is to soften transitions, a moderate amount of Gaussian Blur to the A&B is all it takes.

Another advantage is dealing with blown out highlights or plugged up shadows. In RGB, a color can't be both as white as possible and have color. White in RGB is 255r, 255g, 255b. As soon as you add color, the pixels get darker. This means that when colorizing in RGB, when a layer is set to the Color Blend Mode, you can't add color to white areas. This is not the case in LAB where you can ask Photoshop to give you a pixel that's as white as you can get (100L) and have color.

There are other advantages as well; channel blending, sharpening, and increasing color variation to name just a few.

I have a few more LAB colorizing tricks up my sleeve, but I'm going on vacation soon and won't be back until the beginning of October. I'll check back then and if you still have any questions I'll follow-up with some more tips.

Regards,

Michael
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  #18  
Old 09-18-2007, 08:39 AM
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HILDA WOOD HILDA WOOD is offline
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Re: First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

Thanks Michael, have a good holiday. Love to hear about your other tips when you are back.
Rgds
Ali W
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  #19  
Old 09-18-2007, 10:53 AM
pixelzombie pixelzombie is offline
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Re: First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

Quote:
Originally Posted by Graphics23 View Post
In the case of colorizing a B&W, there are many advantages to working in LAB.

Another advantage is dealing with blown out highlights or plugged up shadows. In RGB, a color can't be both as white as possible and have color. White in RGB is 255r, 255g, 255b. As soon as you add color, the pixels get darker. This means that when colorizing in RGB, when a layer is set to the Color Blend Mode, you can't add color to white areas. This is not the case in LAB where you can ask Photoshop to give you a pixel that's as white as you can get (100L) and have color.


Regards,

Michael
being able to add color to an area with no detail is likely to lead to some very bright areas which will look very unrealistic...
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  #20  
Old 09-18-2007, 12:14 PM
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HILDA WOOD HILDA WOOD is offline
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Re: First Try at Colouring an Old Sepia

I took your picture Michael, and coloured it in both LAB and using solid colours at low opacity and mixing red blue green yellow. Although the same overall effect was the same, the whites were very dull, whilst the picture in LAB seemed almost 3D by comparison.
Is it really possible though to colour a very complex pic, say like my wedding group, via the LAB method, it would take for ever wouldnt it? And what about when I want white or black, or is the theory that I shouldnt need it?
I realise your on vacation, but one or two others are following this thread and they may have the answers I need.
In case some of you out there think my questions are a bit basic, my experience is in Illustrator and InDesign, and Im fairly new to Photoshop.
Ali W

Last edited by HILDA WOOD; 09-18-2007 at 12:31 PM. Reason: additions
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