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Making selections between two similar colours

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  #1  
Old 05-28-2008, 03:28 PM
gizmo001i gizmo001i is offline
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Making selections between two similar colours

Hiya guys,
I have no real problems with making selections of normal pics, even down to so called difficult selections. But the one thing I just don't seem to be able to find, is information on making a selection when the forground and background colours are similar. ie red and orange. I have found plenty of tutorials about hair and trees etc, but nothing about this. Can someone please let me know the best technique for making such a selection, as at the moment, I am reduced to spending copious amounts of time refining the edges with a normal brush and the appropriate colour. Which can result in a non-perfect selection depending upon how long I have been at it and how much patience I have at the time lol. Any advice will be very welcome.
Many thanks
Ian
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Old 05-28-2008, 06:26 PM
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mistermonday mistermonday is offline
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Re: Making selections between two similar colours

Ian, welcome to RP. Have you tried Select > Color Range? Reduce the fuzzy slide to 0.
Regards, Murray
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Old 05-28-2008, 06:39 PM
gizmo001i gizmo001i is offline
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Re: Making selections between two similar colours

Hiya Murray,
Thanks for the welcome. Yes I have, but I find that if there are any light spots (or dark) due to the lighting, I can then often get a cross over with the selection. An example, is some glamour pics I took of my wife who has fair skin. Regretably, I used a white background which didn't quite come out white in the photos. So I would like to be able to change the background colour. However, the colour of my wifes skin is so close to that of the background, that when using replace colour or colour range I get alot of bleed over on the selection. So much so that I need to very carefully and painfully select everything by hand.
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Old 05-28-2008, 06:43 PM
pixelzombie pixelzombie is offline
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Re: Making selections between two similar colours

Quote:
Originally Posted by gizmo001i View Post
So much so that I need to very carefully and painfully select everything by hand.

sometimes your only route is a lot of manual work...
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  #5  
Old 05-28-2008, 07:36 PM
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Joeven Joeven is offline
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Re: Making selections between two similar colours

Hey Ian. Have you tried copying the layer and changing the blend mode to Difference? Sometimes you can get enough separation between the colours to get a good selection. Throw the layer out after you've made your selection.

Joe
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Old 05-28-2008, 08:05 PM
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lurch lurch is offline
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Re: Making selections between two similar colours

Depending on what color your non-white background ends up, you might find that the a or b channel in Lab works for you. Skin (even pale skin) should be red. If your background isn't pink or orange, should work . . . should is a loaded word, of course.
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Old 05-28-2008, 08:23 PM
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crazyfly1 crazyfly1 is offline
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Re: Making selections between two similar colours

Ian, I would try looking at your rgb channels. Find the one with greatest contrast between the colors. copy that channel and enhance the difference with levels, and d&b.
Control click to make selection now go back to the layer menue and control j to jump your selection to it's own layer.
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Old 05-28-2008, 10:04 PM
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mistermonday mistermonday is offline
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Re: Making selections between two similar colours

Ian, in addition to the methods above, there are a number of other techniques that include other PS tools or advanced blending techniques. Can you post one part of the image that is representative of the two close colors you are trying to separate?
Regards, Murray
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Old 05-28-2008, 10:30 PM
DiamondsDr47 DiamondsDr47 is offline
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Re: Making selections between two similar colours

You can use selective methods let’s say pentool+others...without a sample everyone trying to shoot out of darkness in order to help you, help others show at least partial sample and i'm sure you get faster, to the point...
Best regards,
Edgar
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  #10  
Old 05-29-2008, 07:08 AM
edgework edgework is offline
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Re: Making selections between two similar colours

Quote:
Originally Posted by gizmo001i View Post
Hiya Murray,
Thanks for the welcome. Yes I have, but I find that if there are any light spots (or dark) due to the lighting, I can then often get a cross over with the selection. An example, is some glamour pics I took of my wife who has fair skin. Regretably, I used a white background which didn't quite come out white in the photos. So I would like to be able to change the background colour. However, the colour of my wifes skin is so close to that of the background, that when using replace colour or colour range I get alot of bleed over on the selection. So much so that I need to very carefully and painfully select everything by hand.
Sometimes it's possible to find enough contrast in one of your channels to build a decent mask from, but more often, the process of enhancing contrast obliterates the natural edge between regions in the original image. Sometimes, the only useful solution is Quick Mask and careful use of your brush, to keep the edge of your mask reasonably in line with the edge of whatever you're trying to separate. The thing is, your eye is far more efficient at discerning natural edges than any algorithm might be. But, once again, the best solution is also the most boring and time-consuming. Nature of the beast.
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