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How to Retouch Areas Blown by Flash?

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  #1  
Old 12-12-2004, 02:49 AM
comfoosed comfoosed is offline
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How to Retouch Areas Blown by Flash?

Can someone suggest an easy way to retouch the areas which are "blown" by the flash? I have many photos where the areas nearest the flash are overexposed, while those in the main subject's plane are properly exposed.
I've attached an example of this problem, where you'll find the face of the lady in the right foreground is overexposed.

I would appreciate detailed steps because I'm still new to Photoshop.

Thanks for any help.
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File Type: jpg DinnerPix.jpg (97.0 KB, 93 views)
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Old 12-12-2004, 03:09 AM
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Gary Richardson Gary Richardson is offline
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Hi Comfoosed, you've picked an unfortunate first question. Unfortunate in that there is'nt too much you can do if it's really blown out to get a really good result. The reason being that there is no real picture data to manipulate. You can improve things by sampling colour from non blown out areas and painting into the blown out area, then apply texture to blend area with skin. Alternatively try cloning from a good area into the bad, but there is not always enough good area to get a realistic result. The best way round this is not to let it happen in the first place. When using digital cameras, it is always better to underexpose rather than overexpose. So always underexpose by 1/2 a stop, this is easily corrected in PS.
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Old 12-12-2004, 04:57 AM
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kiska kiska is offline
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Hi, Comfoosed, it is a problem to fix 'blown out' areas. I've tried the simplest approach to get some improvement. Don't know your PS skills.
Duplicate background
set blend mode (top of layer palette) to multiply
add layer mask (bottom of palette, rectangle with circle inside)
fill with black (to cover/mask the multiply)
soft brush,white paint, about 50% opacity
paint over blown out area(to allow multi to come thru on areas where it's needed only)
sometimes it helps to dup this layer and paint some more
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File Type: jpg dinner.jpg (90.7 KB, 63 views)
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Old 12-13-2004, 08:50 AM
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byRo byRo is offline
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Hi, comfoosed,

As Gary said, there is not much you can do for the lady on the right. I have gone about as far as I can without repainting the face.
You may find this tutorial interesting - it won't do miracles but it'll get you a long way.

byRo
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File Type: jpg DinnerPix-byRo.jpg (95.7 KB, 68 views)
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Old 12-14-2004, 12:10 AM
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I don' t know if you are using digital or 35mm but if you have digital and can shoot in RAW mode, you can often recover some or all of the blown out area.
Of course, in any case, that won't help with the pictures already taken.

Dave
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Old 12-14-2004, 07:54 AM
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Ed_L Ed_L is offline
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I let Ro do all the work! I used his image, selected the face and arm, made a curves adjustment layer, then a hue/saturation adjustment layer set to -6.

Ed
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File Type: jpg DinnerPix.jpg (95.9 KB, 53 views)
File Type: jpg Dinner_pix_curves.jpg (85.2 KB, 14 views)
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Old 12-14-2004, 12:50 PM
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Something you may have success with is borrowing parts of the skin on the woman behind, stretch and blend it over the face.

Cheers
Dave
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File Type: jpg D-DinnerPix.jpg (100.0 KB, 33 views)
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  #8  
Old 12-17-2004, 08:41 AM
comfoosed comfoosed is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed_L
I let Ro do all the work! I used his image, selected the face and arm, made a curves adjustment layer, then a hue/saturation adjustment layer set to -6.

Ed
The result of yours and Ro's work on this problem photo was great. I had given up on these shots. But there seems to be hope.

Biggest lesson I learned though was prevention is much easier and better than the cure.

Thanks guys for all the help.
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