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Painting a Penguin's Nails

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  #1  
Old 01-24-2010, 04:12 PM
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Bulldoggie Bulldoggie is offline
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Painting a Penguin's Nails

How does one retouch a penguin's black nails to look as if they were painted with a red fingernail polish befitting a penguin? If the penguin had been kind enough to have her nails painted any color but black, I don't think I'd have much difficulty making the change on my own.

Why would anyone want to do this? I have a friend who owns a nail shop. She asked for a photo or two from my recent trip to Antarctica for her shop. This seemed like a neat idea and I had a few shots with fairly well defined feet and nails. One is attached.

Any suggestions on how to proceed would be most welcome!
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File Type: jpg pengiun_nails.jpg (41.1 KB, 107 views)
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Old 01-24-2010, 05:06 PM
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Re: Painting a Penguin's Nails

Just pick a nice color, paint over them on a separate layer, and then on yet another layer, dodge and burn some volume (40% gray layer set to overlay, then paint white or black on it). Lastly, create some specular highlights and reflections. This is no "apply filter" and go kinda thing. Try your best, or hand it to one of us with wacoms


ps: still, this is not the best photo for that effect. The side we are looking at is in the shadow and looks several stops below ambient. You have to know that, no matter what color you choose for your nails, it's gonna have to be dark and desaturated. What i mean is that, if you really achieve a realistic effect on this one, it might not be the best photograph for advertising a nail shop if that's what u wanted to do. Next time use a flash for taming the sun.
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Old 01-24-2010, 06:18 PM
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Re: Painting a Penguin's Nails

red is on a new softlight layer @ 73% opacity
Texas sports emblems are on their own layers and free transformed to fit (any other pattern would do here also)

OR

Do the photo, poster size, then let them paint the nails in whatever color(s) and/or patterns they want on the picture fer real in their own style
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File Type: jpg pengiun_nails.jpg (69.3 KB, 95 views)
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Old 01-24-2010, 11:12 PM
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Re: Painting a Penguin's Nails

Thx I'll give these a try!

Although I'm not happy with the photo example, I expect all will have very dark nails once tone corrections are applied. (I'm still working through some 6,000 photos so who knows.) I was hoping there might be something I could do short of essentially rebuilding the nails to provide the illusion that maybe someone did do the nails. Fortunately, this won't be for advertising, I just think she'd find it very special.
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Old 01-25-2010, 05:17 AM
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Re: Painting a Penguin's Nails

In addittion to the above comments you could maybe make the result more dramatic/graphical, after painting those nails red, by making the image B/W and then bringing back the red nails with the History Brush.
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Old 01-25-2010, 12:23 PM
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Re: Painting a Penguin's Nails

How about just a quick change to the A and B curves in LAB mode?
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File Type: jpg pengiun_nails[1].jpg (73.5 KB, 62 views)
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Old 01-25-2010, 04:57 PM
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Re: Painting a Penguin's Nails

I had to try this just to see how I did.
Gradient map. smoothed the nails with smudge brush, Plastic wrap filter to give some highlights, a little noise added - not sure why but looked better to me.

Peter
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File Type: jpg pengnails.jpg (99.5 KB, 61 views)
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Old 02-02-2010, 06:50 PM
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Re: Painting a Penguin's Nails

Many thanks for all the great ideas! I suspect I'll use the A B curves, some plastic wrap and volume/highlight additions. The emblem idea is excellent, I'll ask her after she she's the first version if she'd like those added.

I'll post the result and work flow when life gives me a little time to do it.
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