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Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

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  #1  
Old 10-09-2007, 10:54 AM
bohngy bohngy is offline
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Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

Hi all, I'm a long (ish) time reader of this forum... and have picked up some great info' from you guys, so thanks for that!

my question is specifically concerning a common approach to tonality of fashion images. I'm a photographer myself and have been hunting for the "missing element" in my images for a while.. and think this might help me grately.

So here's the kind of thing I'm looking towards, again I'm talking about the tone/colour/contrast etc.
http://bwgreyscale.com/edits09/deser...o_bwtblb05.JPG
http://bwgreyscale.com/edits09/altobordo_bwdbgg15.JPG
http://bwgreyscale.com/edits09/playtime_bwrbrd03.JPG
http://bwgreyscale.com/edits09/luckystar_bwglebjf08.JPG

strangely enough all these images have a loose tie, in the sense that the tonality of the images have a similar, muted/partially desaturated appearance.

In Photoshop I have added grain, used warming filters and partial desaturation. But achieving these types of colours is not down to a simple partial desaturation. I'm sure a selective colour correction is employed somewhere, but this is where I get lost.

How can I mute the colours like my example images? because I know from my own work that these colours do no come out of the camera, regardless of digital capture type or film stock.

thanks in advance, Ben
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Old 10-09-2007, 12:43 PM
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LonK LonK is offline
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Re: Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

For the most part, they all look like they're about 1 stop underexposed to me -- not necessarily desaturated. This can be verified by examining the histograms too. Have you tried that?
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Old 10-09-2007, 01:28 PM
bohngy bohngy is offline
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Re: Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

Thanks for the suggestion lonnie, but i'm sure it's a certain set of colour adjustments done in PS.... I say this because I have been lucky enough to work for some big fashion photographers.. and I know the way they like to expose their images.... What I've never been able to see is what happens after the shutter goes click! If anything images are deliberately overexposed (ever so slightly), though not so much with digital.

thanks, Ben
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Old 10-09-2007, 01:42 PM
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LonK LonK is offline
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Re: Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

Without seeing a source and being able to compare, it's certainly hard to say.

Here's something to try. Dup the base image and apply a gentle contrast mask. Desaturate completely. Then use a luminosity blend mode.
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Old 10-09-2007, 02:45 PM
bohngy bohngy is offline
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Re: Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

Hi Lonnie, what do you mean by a GENTLE contrast mask? I've done this a few times, (dup, desat, invert and then set to overlay) but setting the layer mode to luminosity muddied the skintones or caused solarisation of colours.. I've also found contrast masking on people to be rather troublesome on high contrast edges, leading to halo effects.

anyone else have any clues? many thanks
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Old 10-09-2007, 03:59 PM
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Re: Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

bohngy, I may have misled you slightly since I'm not using Photoshop and my translation was lacking. By GENTLE, I mean apply a somewhat minimal contrast mask to the image (a slight gaussian blurred inverted desaturation, with about 20% overlay blend opacity). Using a duplicate of that combined result, fully desaturate and luminosity blend with the original again. (Opacity may need some additional adjustment.) Does that work for you? I attached an example.
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File Type: jpg bohngy.jpg (73.9 KB, 195 views)
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Old 10-10-2007, 03:00 AM
bohngy bohngy is offline
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Re: Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

Thanks for your efforts Lonnie, but it's still not quite it. It's almost as if the image is desaturated by some other method than the hue/desaturation tool.
The contrast mask flattened the contrast somewhat (I see what you were getting at) but it made the colours pop more, not less. A subsequant desaturation of the flattened image didn't yield the right feel.

I know this is horribly objective, so I apologise for that, but thanks for trying to help out.

Are there any fashion retouchers here who could lend a hand?
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Old 10-10-2007, 03:09 AM
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Re: Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

I'm in for this!!! I'm photographer also.
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Old 10-10-2007, 05:04 AM
duwayne duwayne is offline
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Re: Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

Sorry Lonnie, I had to use your image because I didn't have a suitable one of my own.

I looked to me like the desaturation was non-linear. Lights were desaturated more than the dark colors. Sooo... I duplicated the background layer, switch to LAB, selected the L channel, switched back to RGB and pasted the L channel as a layer mask on the dup'ed background layer. Then ran Image->Adjustments->Desaturate and set the opacity to 60%. I then added a layer on top (check "Use Previous Layer To Create Clipping Mask")and filled with 255, 225, 255, blending mode Normal. You can run Hue/Saturation adjustment on this layer moving Hue and Sat to taste.
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Old 10-10-2007, 06:45 AM
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cricket1961 cricket1961 is offline
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Re: Trying to achieve a particular tone/feel in my images

I had to use your image also Lonnie. Hope you don't mind.
Ben it would have helped to have an image of yours to try this on as style might be different from Lonnies shot.

I did a selective color adjustment layer set to saturation blend mode and pulled all the colors blacks down to -100 and left white, neutral, and blacks alone.
Then I made a luminosity mask (opt-com-~) and using default colors, made a gradient map adjustment layer set to saturation blend mode.
Both adjustment layers were at 100%, but use your own settings.
Selective color was on absolute.
Contrast I leave up to you and your taste.

Chris
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Last edited by cricket1961; 10-10-2007 at 06:52 AM.
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