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Can't D&B technique be greately simplified with...

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  #1  
Old 02-21-2010, 10:53 PM
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_jason_ _jason_ is offline
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Can't D&B technique be greately simplified with...

...with a trick?

I am watching the famous Dodge&Burn tutorial video from http://nienna1990.deviantart.com/ now.

It's amazing. And impessive.
Especially the hours of work, all the nearly pixel-based micro dodging and burning needs... Well, the results are impressive so far...

...but the idea spontanuously comes to me the is: can't that be extremely simplified with doing some logical/automated tricks?

Why not simply generate some certain greyscale highpass images based on the picture contrast and use it as a masked overlay with Lighten/Darken Mode to dodge or burn with a layer mode? This way all the hours of manually dodging and burning could be traced down to some easy steps on wide parts of the picture?

I mean, if it were possible to capture the areas of darker and lighter micro areas into a greyscale image, then it theoretically should be possible to use that grayscale image as a dodging/burning mask...

Has anyone tried that yet? I do not know whether that really works but i'll surely make some tests next days. If that works, it could be a greatly improveme workflow and save alot of precious time.

It's an really interesting theme!
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Old 02-22-2010, 12:09 AM
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mistermonday mistermonday is offline
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Re: Can't D&B technique be greately simplified wit

Essentially dodging and burning is the reduction (or increase) of contrast. Doing at the extremely localized level (a few pixels at a time) produces the best results as you have seen but takes many hours for most images. Yes, there are many techniques out there which are applied to an entire image or parts of an image. Many involve blurring, filtering, and advanced blending. Some are very effective and realistic looking but no one has come up with an automated way that looks as good as the "hard labor" pixel level D&B. That being stated, many of us continue to develop new techniques to speed up the process without sacrificing quality. I have not yet found another solution which is acceptable for high end retouching.
Regards, Murray
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Old 02-22-2010, 12:33 AM
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0lBaldy 0lBaldy is offline
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Re: Can't D&B technique be greately simplified wit

you might try Luminosity masks on a curves layer to adjust specific Light, Dark, and Mid tones... Luminosity masks are explained here: Tony Kuyper Photography (luminosity masks tutorial)

Amica has made and provided an action that puts all of the luminosity masks into the channels pallet and can be downloaded from here: RetouchPRO>Blogs>amica999

To use the mask: Control-Click on the masks then back in the Layers palette add a new Curves Adjustment layer - this will load the selection in the Adjustment Layer mask. Now you can adjust your individual Light, Dark, and Mid tones. Paint the mask black on the parts you do not want lightened/darkened

Have fun and when you get your technique perfected make sure to post it here!
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Old 02-22-2010, 01:02 AM
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Re: Can't D&B technique be greately simplified wit

Quote:
Originally Posted by mistermonday View Post
Essentially dodging and burning is the reduction (or increase) of contrast...
Well exactly. But basicaly you make the darker areas (pixels) lighter and vice cersa the lighter pixels darker to match an nearly equal tone. And all that manually over hours but with a slightly randomized imperfection due to human errors, which is part of the system.

It's in the century of computer algorithms somewhat puristic and cumbersome I think.

I believe there is the possibility to automate such behaviour or at least develop a tool or technique which supports us doing just that: making the darker micro areas lighter and the lighter micro areas darker in a much faster manner than doing it quasi per pixel manually. Possibly this could work similar to the healing tool or such...

But the principle schould be very clear. There must be a logical mechanism which can support us with that D&B. I even believe this could be improved drastical with some smart calculations/algorithms including that human error factor.

And yes, it probably has something to do with highpassing or bandpassing and blending modes...
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Old 02-22-2010, 01:13 AM
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Re: Can't D&B technique be greately simplified wit

Quote:
Originally Posted by 0lBaldy View Post
you might try Luminosity masks on a curves layer to adjust specific Light, ...
I think it hasn't so much to do with masks, rather with blending modes.

I am currently experimenting with highpassing the image and using certain blending modes. There are same really nice and promising combinations found already ...

But I still need more time to understand the theory behind.

It definately hasn't something to do with bluring or healing or similar techniques. It's all about creating/calculating a specialiced overlay image for certain blending modes like dodge and burn to automatically equalize the dark and bright micro areas as on wrinkles and blemishes and certain kind of unwanted shadows.
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Old 02-22-2010, 01:44 AM
Flashtones Flashtones is offline
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Re: Can't D&B technique be greately simplified wit

Jason, it sounds like you are going down a path many have gone down before (see degrunge, split frequencies, high pass, inverted high pass guassian blur, apply image, Imagenomic Portraiture, clone tool at low opacity, airbrushing, etc.)

All of these are effective to varying degrees and can diminish the amount of D&B required (and possibly eliminate it on lower end work) but they are ultimately global solutions to local problems. Or, when used locally they are local solutions to micro problems. IOW, blunt instruments when exactitude is required.

If all that was required was that darks got lightened and lights got darkened the problem would have been solved a long time ago. The problem is that it has to be done selectively and judgmentally to differing degrees across the surface.
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Old 02-22-2010, 01:48 AM
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Cuervo79 Cuervo79 is offline
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Re: Can't D&B technique be greately simplified wit

The thing is that D&B is applied with the vision of the retoucher and as of yet it can't be done via an automation process. Look at the healing and clone tools, there isn't a filter or automation that can take away scars or pimples automatically and with a realistic look, that same principle applies to D&B since it's not done with a defined method. Nor will the problems be the same with every photo. Since I ignore how the math works in photoshop I have no idea if there can be a way to make a filter or an automation that can do that work.

There are at times shortcuts you can do (for example copying the red channel and adding it to a new layer with the luminosity blending option leading to less contrast on the skin) but if you're looking for the "realistic" look the shortcuts don't always work.
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Old 02-22-2010, 05:52 AM
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Re: Can't D&B technique be greately simplified wit

Ah well. I've seen already.
The technique I tried still needs alot of manual adjustment.

But it basicly works (in principle) and all traces down to generating a kind of lightness analysis and 2 resulting masks or overlays, which then can be used to apply some sort of automated/calculated D&B on selected areas.

Don't get me wrong, but I still believe this could dramatically speed up the entire process of using D&B.

I'll do some more research on that...
(Saying "No, it won't work" is the enemy of any invention.)
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Old 02-22-2010, 07:25 AM
Quantum3 Quantum3 is offline
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Re: Can't D&B technique be greately simplified wit

Degrunge is the fast way to D&B, but be careful with this technique.
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Old 02-22-2010, 08:05 AM
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Re: Can't D&B technique be greately simplified wit

Hi quantum3 i´ve seen your homepage and your work looks realy good. Is it possible to talk about your "degrunge" technic?
I´ve never heard of that.
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