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increasing contrast without colorboosting?

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Old 02-09-2006, 03:25 AM
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pure pure is offline
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increasing contrast without colorboosting?


i would like to know if there is a easier/faster way to improve a picture like i do usually:

first of all i have a little problem in translating my german Photoshop CS2 into the correct english ones, is there any site which has all english Photoshop actions/menus/etc.. for me?

Usual Case:

picture has no or less contrast, it comes from RAW Converter.
so i use adjustement layers: graduation curve and make a kind of "S" curve or use basically the other tool where i get the histogram and set my dark and light point.
every time i do this, the color gets boostet intensively, so i always have to apply immediately after that a layer with colorcorrection where i remove the Red and Yellow by increasing the faders for LAB and saturation to lets say 30 or 40 sliding points. that removes usually the red-boosted skin colors. or i decrease the saturation in the Red channel of the colorcorrection layer.

is this correct? i ve learned this procedure from a self-trained Retouching professional, who is actually very goood im her job.

i guess, there must be something faster and easier for setting more contrast but same time not boosting the skin colors to red and yellowish

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Old 02-09-2006, 06:13 AM
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Flora Flora is offline
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... Me again ...

i guess, there must be something faster and easier
... Yes, there is ... It's in Image>Adjustments>Shadow/Highlight .... (just check the 'Show More Option' tab on the dialog box ...

One go with it... and not even a minute in time ...

* Settings: Attachment 1
* Result: Attachment 2

Another very easy and quick way is using the S-shaped Curves your have been taught ... but in a slightly different way:

* Use your S-shaped Curves Adjustment Layer on the image ... (= increased contrast + colour shift)

* Change the Cuves Adjustment Layer,'s Blending to "Luminosity" (= contrast still OK, but loss of Saturation)

* Create a Hue/Saturation Adjustment Layer and increase Saturation only until you are satisfied with the result!

Attachment 3:
* Left= Original
* Middle: S-shaped Curves Adjustment Layer, Blending>Normal
* Right: S-shaped Curves Adjustment Layer, Blending>Luminosity+ Hue/Saturation Adjustment Layer ...
Attached Images
File Type: jpg SNAP-0127.jpg (97.6 KB, 36 views)
File Type: jpg SNAP-0128.jpg (94.9 KB, 61 views)
File Type: jpg SNAP-0125.jpg (95.2 KB, 69 views)
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Old 02-09-2006, 06:20 AM
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wow thanks

exactly what i wanted to know....

i ll try now.

by the way, a little off topic:
i am looking for a course i could take in Photoshop CS.
how can i look for one in my city? and how to find out it
is even good for my purpose and skills? and not too expensive.

i never thought about this as i did learning by doing,
but a course should define everything to perfection.

has anyone taken a course and is satisfied now?

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Old 02-09-2006, 06:46 AM
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Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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we kind of figure we've got one of the best courses going. it's called 'try to duplicate flora's techniques'. the course material is a bit spread out, and professor flora runs all over the world, so she's not always available, but hey, the price is right. besides, she's got a cute avatar

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Old 02-09-2006, 06:51 AM
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Old 02-09-2006, 07:37 AM
edgework edgework is offline
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Here's a totally different approach that uses Unsharp Masking filter.
Dan Margulis refers to this as HIRALOAM, which stands for High Radius, Low Amount. Elsewhere I've seen it referred to as Locaiized Contrast. Call it what you want, it works.

Open your Unsharp Mask filter, preferably in LAB mode with only the lightness channel active (though with the EYE icon clicked on in the LAB composite channel so you can see the results in the actual image).

Pull your amount to 500. (Yes, it will look horrible).

Adjust your Radius slider until you minimize the halos. You want to see a little bit of a halo, but not huge blobs of light and dark. (It will probably look even more horrible at this point because the halos aren't blowing out the gross noise.)

Now pull your Amount slider back to a level that looks believable. Numbers vary based on resolution but usually you'll have a radius anywhere between 10 and 50, or so, and an amount around 20-45.

Set a threshold of between 2-8, to taste.

It's a good solution for images that don't really have lights and darks out of balance over the whole range, in which case an "S" curve would plug already existing shadows or blow out highlghts. It enhances contrast between adjacent objects and the result is subtle but quite effective. And it doesn't preclude following up with a more traditional Unsharp Masking operations as well.
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Old 02-09-2006, 08:07 AM
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yes edgework this is a fantastic idea.
one photopgrapher told me this hint some month ago also,
but as always i forgot it completely.

it works very good. though i dont dare sometimes to use it, or havent had the curage using it on 39Mio pixel-pictures advertising-shoots. i am afraid a bit of loosing information which would be needed in offset-printing.

maybe trying worth with testshoots and editorials.

i dont know, its an excellent thing
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Old 02-09-2006, 08:17 AM
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Hi Pure, sorry I misunderstood what you wanted to accomplish in your 1st posting of the skin problems, so perhaps I can make up for it with something useful. I use Flora's technique a lot when working in RGB especially when I am trying to squeeze every bit of contrast out of a weak image.
It appears that you have been experimenting with LAB. You should find that a curve adjustment of the lightness channel should have a lot less affect on color, permitting you to produce great contrast and then adjust the color or boost the saturation with A & B curves. Many digital cameras tend to underexpose rather than overexpose. Very often, like Flora, I will also perform a Shadow/Highlight Adjustment in LAB first, then fine tune with an L Curve, and then tweak the color / saturation.
Using the Flora's image of that beautiful girl (Flora, I hope you do not mind ), I just took it into LAB an applied a simple L curve and then a B to get a slightly warmer skin tone (discliamer: looks good to me only because I am remote and using a poor LCD monitor this morning).
I agree with Craig about Flora being the best instructor around. But she no doubt has time challenges like the rest of us. If you are in a hurry to learn, there are some good training materials like the Total Training DVD based series and there are probably courses taught in your city.
Regards, Murray
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Flora SNAP-0128 Crop.jpg (87.2 KB, 7 views)
File Type: jpg Flora Snap0128 M-LAB L.jpg (91.6 KB, 22 views)
File Type: jpg Flora Snap0128 M-LAB B.jpg (91.0 KB, 29 views)
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Old 02-09-2006, 08:43 AM
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studioj studioj is offline
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I definitly need to get Photoshop CS, I use 7.1 and does not have SHADOWS/LIGHTNING

Je, when Kraellin told about Flora's Avatar, I scroll to see it. Yeap, nice avatar
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Old 02-09-2006, 09:13 AM
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yes youre right.

one disadvantage i figured out today afternoon, is, that using the very nice and good feature in "image>adjustments>...deep/light (cant remember correct english name), you all told me before, it cant be applied as a adjustement layer.

so i repaird the skin manually in the morning at a copied main-layer and then i saw that i cant copy the wonderful deep/light layer into the repair-layer with blending features, as it always left some bad skin.

and i dont dare to repair the skin on the deep/light layer

so as i dont have enough time now and the image should leave my room tomorrow i had to erase it again and do the deep/light thing with a standard adjustement curve, increasing the curve to bring up the dark tones abit.

i will look and see to find another way, or maybe i better re-read the whole topic.
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