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How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

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  #1  
Old 11-26-2008, 03:17 PM
TMR Design TMR Design is offline
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How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

Hi everyone,

I just joined RetouchPro and it looks like there's a lot of great information and resources here. I'm a photographer and I mostly do portraiture.

I want to learn how to clean up stray hairs and frizzies. I've had limited success using the healing brush, patch tool and clone stamp tool but I really haven't found anything like and I realize I don't completely understand which tool is the right tool for the job.

I have a feeling that the technique will change based on surrounding elements and evenness of color.

If someone could give me some help I'd really appreciate it. I've attached a sample image that I would like to clean up.

I should also point out that I'm using Photoshop CS, not CS2, 3 or 4
Attached Images
File Type: jpg carolyn-37a.jpg (81.8 KB, 159 views)
File Type: jpg carolyn-37b.jpg (29.7 KB, 107 views)

Last edited by TMR Design; 11-26-2008 at 03:30 PM.
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Old 11-26-2008, 03:41 PM
KR1156 KR1156 is offline
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Re: How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

i like to use stamp for 99%. Use stamp at 100 hardness 9if the hair is a bit blurry, you could soften your brush, whatever works), and use it in darken and lighten modes to help transitions. letting your tablet control brush size helps as well.

no matter what you use, take your time, it is painstaking, but bad hair is the worst, and also the easiest way to spot retouching.

if it's a large area of hair, then you're better off taking a chink of good hair, and warping it on top...then try and modify it a bit so it doesn't look copy & pasted.

one thing for sure is hair sucks, and there is no trick.

Last edited by KR1156; 11-26-2008 at 03:55 PM.
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Old 11-26-2008, 04:00 PM
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Juergen D Juergen D is offline
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Re: How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

You have a fairly even and consistent background. Select it and inverse the selection. Refine the edge of the selection. If you used a Tolerance of about 25, the loose hair will not have been selected.

Place the head on a new layer. Create a new background. Leave the layer that contains the original underneath. That way you can use layer masks on the upper two layers for some fine tuning.

Juergen
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File Type: jpg Untitled-1.jpg (193.2 KB, 90 views)
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Old 11-26-2008, 04:23 PM
KR1156 KR1156 is offline
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Re: How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

sorry, i skimmed through your post and thought you meant cross hairs!
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Old 11-26-2008, 05:39 PM
TMR Design TMR Design is offline
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Re: How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Juergen D View Post
You have a fairly even and consistent background. Select it and inverse the selection. Refine the edge of the selection. If you used a Tolerance of about 25, the loose hair will not have been selected.

Place the head on a new layer. Create a new background. Leave the layer that contains the original underneath. That way you can use layer masks on the upper two layers for some fine tuning.

Juergen
Thanks but although the background is fairly consistent there are subtle variations from the lighting created that I would like to maintain. I would rather not create a new background.

How can I do this without creating a new background?
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Old 11-26-2008, 05:43 PM
TMR Design TMR Design is offline
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Re: How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

Also, another thing I'm noticing is that when you select the head and place it on a new background it does not have the same appearance. It looks like it's been extracted and there is a harder edge around the hair. To my eye it doesn't blend and flow as it does in the original.
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Old 11-26-2008, 06:01 PM
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Re: How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

I do work for Hair Style Publications. I use a gray background for photographing as well because it gives me a fairly consistent color to be able to eliminate the stray hairs. I dont use color backgrounds much because they contaminate the edges of the hair and in between and it makes the retouch harder...so your background is the preferred color.

I use the clone tool at a low opacity of approx 20-30%, semi hard. I make a new blank layer above the original so all my retouching work goes on that layer only...and so I have control of it...and I can easily erase any mistakes ive made without affecting the original image. I make sure sample all layers is selected and I occasionally use the aligned feature (its unchecked usually). I sample the gray from a small area near where im working and then click, click the stray hairs till they blend to the background and disappear. I usually click alot rather than drag down the long hairs because dragging the brush creates too many false edges. When the background color or texture changes some...as in your case...I sample another gray point that matches the look better and then work on that small section. Its fairly easy, but time consuming work...but you can usually get great results. I dont get every hair all the time...it makes the retouch look less hard edged.

Nice image.

Ray12
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Old 11-26-2008, 07:07 PM
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igot2pman igot2pman is offline
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Re: How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

Another option that many people don’t realize works well is liquify. Use the push left tool for the outer areas. Click and move mouse down slowly to push left, and click and move up to push right. Use the below settings to slowly move the hair together. Work slowly as you want a round hair line, not a bumpy one.

Brush size: I used 25 for this size picture... larger for bigger pictures
Brush density: 17
Brush pressure: 17

The other suggestions will work well with long strays, but when it comes close to the hair line, liquify will help finish it off. In the below picture, I only used liquify, and nothing else.

Hope it helps,
-Keven
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File Type: jpg carolyn-37a--KA.jpg (90.3 KB, 103 views)
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Old 11-26-2008, 08:02 PM
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Re: How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

Kevin,

Great idea...great thought.

There are now ten ways to skin the cat in Photoshop!! LOL.
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Old 11-27-2008, 09:42 AM
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Juergen D Juergen D is offline
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Re: How do I get rid of stray hairs and frizzies?

OK, this version uses the original background, slightly modified. It is duplicated on Layer 7 copy and slightly downsized. It thereby covers the loose hair on Layer 7. The Levels adjustment layer and Layer 8 help blending the two backgrounds together. Some additional cloning is done on Layer 6.

Admittedly not the most straight forward approach, however, it expands upon my first attempt.

Juergen
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File Type: jpg Untitled-3.jpg (199.1 KB, 61 views)
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