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cleaning dirty glass and reflections

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  #1  
Old 02-17-2010, 05:32 PM
NickBurchell NickBurchell is offline
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Question cleaning dirty glass and reflections

I need some help figuring out the best approach to dealing with this retouching problem, namely dirty window. Photo taken from outside, looking in. Dirt is on inside/outside of window - smeared as assistants tried cleaning it, just not well enough.
This is a small (1/20) portion of image, but the glass needs to look clean and clear.
Final image look is natural, not stylized, so retouching must be subtle.
I'm expecting this is going to take some time and work, but hoping for some suggestions on how best to approach and what tool other than clone/heal to use. Wondering if there is some way to select the dirty streaks and then apply curves with masks, similar to the way I would even out skin tones in a portrait?
Thanks for any suggestions!
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Old 02-17-2010, 06:20 PM
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0lBaldy 0lBaldy is offline
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Re: cleaning dirty glass and reflections

NickBurchell, Welcome to RetouchPRO Hope you enjoy your stay here and make lots of friends. Poke around, ask questions, offer help, have fun!

Clone tool set to Darken on a new layer?

OOPS! Disreguard... I just noticed you did not want the clone tool mentioned... Sorry!
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Old 02-17-2010, 07:08 PM
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mistermonday mistermonday is offline
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Re: cleaning dirty glass and reflections

Nick, selection of the glare may be tricky depending. If all else fails, dodging and mostly burning will even out the luminosity after which you can color correct with a blank layer set to color. A small sample attached.
Good luck with the retouch.
Regards, Murray
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Old 02-17-2010, 11:01 PM
NickBurchell NickBurchell is offline
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Re: cleaning dirty glass and reflections

Thanks guys. Good ideas there.
OlBaldy, no problem about clone tool. That's a good thought using clone set to Darken.
MisterMonday, that example looked nice. I wonder if you could expand on colour correcting with a blank layer set to colour? I'm not 100% sure what you mean there. Would that be different than using a curve layer, adjusting the individual channel curves set to colour blending mode?

Many thanks!
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Old 02-18-2010, 10:42 AM
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mistermonday mistermonday is offline
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Re: cleaning dirty glass and reflections

Nick, If you can match the luminance level of an area or a pixel with that of another area or pixel, you can make the two identical regardless of what color they are.. To do this, you use a dodge or burn technique to match the luminosity first. Then you add a blank layer on top set to color blend mode. Then sample adjcent good color and paint over the area where the color is wrong. The trick is to perform all this by converting you image to LAB color. There will be no visible loss converting you image to LAB and back to RGB unless you do so 10,000 times (LOL). Examples shown attached. The results will depend how much time you put into dodging / burning. You should also note that there may be some areas in the image where you can just clone or heal over the dirt stains. When that is possible it will be a faster method than D&B which can be time consuming.
Regards, Murray
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File Type: jpg NickBurchell 2.jpg (176.3 KB, 37 views)
File Type: jpg NickBurchell 3.jpg (147.3 KB, 29 views)
File Type: jpg NickBurchell 4.jpg (160.4 KB, 33 views)
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  #6  
Old 02-18-2010, 11:11 AM
NickBurchell NickBurchell is offline
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Re: cleaning dirty glass and reflections

Very cool!
Agree about doing as much as possible with simpler / speedier tools first, then moving onto this workflow. I've been doing some detailed skin work recently, so getting in the groove of working through problem areas patiently.
I'm hoping to get back to this image later tonight to try these techniques. Thankfully I don't have a client screaming at me to have this delivered today...

cheers!
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