I think the main points of the procedure used are:
partial desaturation, brightening and softening...
I used Hue&Saturation to partially desaturate the picture.
Created a Shadow Mask (Ctrl+Alt+~ > Luminosity Mask, Ctrl+I > Invert > Shadow Mask) Ctrl+J copied it on its own Layer.
Set the Blending of the Shadow Mask Layer to Screen, blurred it very strongly.
Duplicated the Blurred Layer, set its Blending to Soft Light
Adjusted the Opacity of the two Blurred Layers.
No problem with using the photo, I'm sure Nicola will be delighted when she see's them.
Here's another picture from that wedding if you fancy another try.
The image is taken from the website http://gal.mvc.ru/.
I tried to achieve a soft muted effect by using the pattern stamp tool. First I prepared the image with these steps:
Layer 1 - Fill layer with white 100% normal blend.
Layer 2 - Dup original -luminosity blend - opacity 60
Layer 3 - Dup orig -screen blend- opac 70
Layer 4 - Merge all.
I made 2 patterns -- No1. was of layer 4 with g'blur and median filters to soften image. No.2 was of the original treated with level adjustments to brighten.
Working on Layer 4, and using a soft airbrush for the pattern tool, i lightened skin areas with No 1. pattern, and brightened flowers and dress with No.2. pattern.
Looking at the site - there is a particular characteristic I noticed. Most of the backgrounds seemed to be nicely and softly focused.
Some of the images might have been shot like that originally by using a very long telephoto lens set to a low f stop. This produces a sharp central focused area but anything 2 to 3 feet further on in the image suffers from the lenses natural depth of focus blurring effect. If you shoot with a 1200mm lens - all of your images will look sharp in the focus point - and velvety smooth in the background. It is a very nice soft technique.
The second thing I noticed is that some images seem to have selections made around the couples and then the background seems to be selectively blurred by using Photoshop filters such as the camera blur filter or the gausian blur filter. This inverted selection technique allows the couples to remain in sharp focus - but the background can now be made any degree of softness you want. You can also selectively choose what parts of the isolated background you want to be sharp or soft by using a layer mask to control what is sharp or soft in the background area.
You could also easily apply a hue/saturation adjustment to the images to make them look desaturated - and the Photoshop Diffuse Glow filter makes images look beautifully soft and especially glowing. Both of these effects can be applied to any specific part of the picture at any strength level by masking techniques.
Last edited by ray12; 06-16-2006 at 02:47 PM.
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