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Help me find this picture's problem areas?

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  #1  
Old 03-23-2007, 01:31 PM
TallulahJean's Avatar
TallulahJean TallulahJean is offline
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Need to learn to identify picture's problem areas

I have this awesome little picture of a friend of a friend's dog--it's a dachshund named Francis, politely wearing a fez. (And while I usually hate dressing-up-animals photos, Francis just seems to have style.)

While there are many things to like about the subject, the quality is pretty bad. I know that when you have a picture to fix the first thing you have to do is identify the problem areas, but half the time I can't tell specifically what they are. So I decided to practice on my little Francis picture, and see if people here would mind helping me identify the problem areas and/or see if the problem areas I have identified were accurate.

On the right of my uploaded image you'll see the changes I've made thus far: the picture was grainy and noisy, so I applied Despeckle. Adjusting the levels made this weird halo of color around Francis stand out even more, so I erased it as best I could with the Clone Stamp tool. I then tried to sharpen the image back up using a copied layer with High Pass applied, at a setting of 1 px, then set to Overlay.

And now...it's better, but it still doesn't really pop. The dog's face doesn't have a lot of contrast, but that may be unavoidable, due to its coloring. Speaking of coloring, the red floor seems to be working against the dog, too, and I realize my changes took that light flare on the floor and blew it out more. I really like the red floor, but...well, you see what I mean.

What are the problem areas you see, oh Gurus of Retouching, and what would you do to change them?
Attached Images
File Type: jpg francis_sample.jpg (91.0 KB, 92 views)

Last edited by TallulahJean; 03-23-2007 at 03:00 PM. Reason: made title more specific
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  #2  
Old 03-23-2007, 07:22 PM
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WayDen WayDen is offline
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Re: Help me find this picture's problem areas?

You did a pretty good job of getting the red coloring off of the dog, which was the first thing I would've done.

My biggest suggestion would be to alter the color of the floor, or the color of the dog's hat. The colors are too similar, and it keeps the hat from standing out. Personally, I would change the color of the floor to a blueish gray color to also help make the dog stand out.

Also, if you have time, you might want to clone out the electrical wire on the right side...
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Old 03-23-2007, 08:08 PM
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TallulahJean TallulahJean is offline
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Re: Help me find this picture's problem areas?

Thanks a lot WayDen. I had thought about changing the color of either the floor or the hat, but wasn't sure what to change it to. I'll try your suggestions.
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Old 03-23-2007, 08:25 PM
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mistermonday mistermonday is offline
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Re: Help me find this picture's problem areas?

Welcome to RP!
I wouldn't waste time on the background. You can extract the dog in about 1 minute using the Extract Filter in PS and then place the pooch on a completely new background.
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File Type: jpg Tallulahjean Dog MM.jpg (79.6 KB, 34 views)
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Old 03-23-2007, 08:32 PM
stosh7 stosh7 is offline
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Re: Help me find this picture's problem areas?

I agree, the background needs to be separated from the puppy. Here's a quick extraction and treatment of the background Hue/saturation / blur and some sharpening and a contrast adjustment on the foreground.

this puppy wants to bark!

Stosh
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File Type: jpg Dachshund.jpg (83.6 KB, 36 views)
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Old 03-24-2007, 02:55 PM
stephmarie23 stephmarie23 is offline
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Re: Help me find this picture's problem areas?

Here's another quick try at it. (not finished)
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File Type: jpg Francis31.jpg (99.5 KB, 28 views)

Last edited by stephmarie23; 03-24-2007 at 03:58 PM.
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