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Fashion Retouching Sharpening

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  #31  
Old 05-19-2010, 09:28 AM
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Der_W Der_W is offline
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Re: Fashion Retouching Sharpening

Once again I forgot about Smart Sharpen... thanks for the reminder, Murray :-)!
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  #32  
Old 05-19-2010, 09:53 AM
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Re: Fashion Retouching Sharpening

Murray, you are a wealth of knowledge! I've been using high pass and usm forever, and never knew the relationship as you described. And the other thread '15min D&B', I wouldn't have thought of that! So thanks!

--shift studio.
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  #33  
Old 05-19-2010, 10:16 AM
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Re: Fashion Retouching Sharpening

Shift, thanks. I really like you website - style and content!
Regards, Murray
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  #34  
Old 05-19-2010, 10:40 AM
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Re: Fashion Retouching Sharpening

Thanks! I'm hoping to update soon.
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  #35  
Old 05-19-2010, 02:38 PM
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Re: Fashion Retouching Sharpening

The right tool for the job is always the way to go. And like anything else in Photoshop, there is usually more than one way to do the same thing.

One thing I do like about separating to sharpen is the idea that I can separate multiple times at multiple radii and then selectively sharpen or soften each range by itself with a clipped curves on each HF layer. This is also sometimes useful for creating masks.

Best advice: Try various methods of sharpening to get the effect you want. Once you get the idea of what each method can give you, you will be able to more easily determine which method to use to get what you want without having to try them all.
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  #36  
Old 05-19-2010, 02:49 PM
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Re: Fashion Retouching Sharpening

Jugenjury, yes, that works. However, you can stack masked merged layers upon which you have applied Smart Sharpen. You can also apply SS at different radii to selected areas on the same layer. Split layer sets have one other significant disadvantage that I find. They generate 2 pixel based layers instead of one. If you happen to be working on a 16 bit image and you sharpen at 2 or 3 frequencies, you are adding a huge size to your file and it really slows PS down quite a bit.
However, you are correct when you state there are many ways to do the same thing in PS. If it works for you, that is the way to go.
Regards, Murray

Last edited by mistermonday; 05-19-2010 at 03:48 PM.
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  #37  
Old 05-19-2010, 05:22 PM
jugenjury jugenjury is offline
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Re: Fashion Retouching Sharpening

Each High Frequency layer only generates a single pixel based (normal) layer, not 2.

Example: Let's say I wanted to sharpen details in an image at a 5 pixel radius. I want to soften the details that are at 7 pixels in radius, then sharpen details at a 10 pixel radius. I make 3 copies of the initial layer. Blur the initial layer to 5 pixels and use apply image on the first copy. Then I blur the initial layer another 2 pixels and apply image again on another copy. Then I blur the initial layer again at 3 pixels and apply image on the last copy. I now have separations at 5, 7, and 10 pixel radii. I can bump up contrast on the 5 and 10 layers and down on the 7.

Now, let's say that after I sharpen the 5, I sharpen the 10, then I soften the 7. If I decide that the 5 layer should be a bit sharper, I just adjust the curves layer a bit more. I don't have to go back through and redo all the filters to check if it's OK. This is non-destructive and allows for later adjustment/fine tuning if desired.

Also, I'm not sure how you could sharpen at a 5 pixel radius, soften at a 7, and sharpen again at a 10 and have all that show on the final image unless you mask which can also be done with the HF layers. Unless I misunderstand what you're saying.

I work in 16 bit and typically have 3 or 4 HF layers along with a LF (sometimes 2), the original and a copy of the original. I haven't noticed any slowdown at all. Keep in mind, it's simple to build a mask from the HF layers and then apply that mask to each of the HF layers so only the affected pixels are present on the layer. This keeps file size down.

I'm not arguing this to be a superior method, just another tool to use if the situation calls for it. Since I normally have a few HF layers already for detail cleanup, it makes sense to just clip a curves to them for sharpening. I'm not fond of merging visible and then continuing to work from that merged copy. If I want to change something that was in the merged copy, I have to redo some or all of the work I did after I merged. That was my old workflow. If the client decided they wanted something a bit different that was done in the pre-merged copy, it made hours of work for me instead of a couple minutes.
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  #38  
Old 05-19-2010, 07:49 PM
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Re: Fashion Retouching Sharpening

Jugenjury, I see what you are doing but I think you have a hung jury (sorry for the pun).
Here is what you are really doing:
When you go to make your 7 px HF layer, if you blur the the base layer (which you have already blurred with R=5 px), if you use 2 px you will do absolutely nothing to that layer. That is because Gaussian Blur is not additive, its a threshold. You can verify this by duplicating your GB 5 layer, blur it at 2 px and set the blend mode to Difference and it will be black, 0,0,0. If instead you blur that GB5 layer at R=7 px, that will not be the same as if you had blurred the orig base layer at R=7px. You can try that as well with a difference layer and you will see they are not the same at all.
The bad news is that you need to have pairs of layers (a LF/GB and a HF/HP)for every radius if you want to maintain the integrity of all the layers below or what would have been a merged image.
But the good news is that after you have created all of those sharpening pairs, you can delete all of the LF or blurred layers. You don't need any of them because each HF layer functions as a High Pass sharpening layer. As long as you "hide all" mask each of those HF layers so that each freq sharpening only affects areas you've targetted you will be OK. Moreover you can still clip curves to those layers.
Sharpening is the last step in my workflow so it is very quick and easy for me to make changes. Our methods are different but in the end we both get to where we need to be.
Regards, Murray
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  #39  
Old 05-19-2010, 09:13 PM
jugenjury jugenjury is offline
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Re: Fashion Retouching Sharpening

With all due respect, I beg to differ. While I did skip an important step, it does work exactly as I described. The step I missed is that instead of copying the background layer 3 times, you would make a copy of the LF layer at each iteration, then further blur the LF layer, then apply image.

You are wrong about GB. For a simple test of this, open an image. Make a copy of your background layer. Run Gaussian Blur at a radius of 5.0 pixels. Then run another Gaussian Blur on the same layer at another 10.0 pixels. With the GB dialog still open, uncheck and check the Preview box while zoomed in at 100%.

You are also wrong about the separation needing pairs of layers.

Do this, exactly as I outline with a 16 bit image and you will see what I mean:

1. Copy the Background layer and name it LF.
2. Copy the LF and name it HF1 and set to Linear Light blend mode.
3. Blur LF at 5.0 pixels.
4 Apply image on HF1 using LF as the target Layer. Blending: Add, Scale: 2, Invert: Checked.
5. Copy LF and name it HF2 and set to Linear Light blend mode.
6. Run GB on LF at 5.0 pixels.
7. Apply image on HF2 with same settings as before.
8. Copy LF and name it HF3 and set to Linear Light mode.
9. Run GB on LF at 5.0 pixels.
10. Apply image on HF3 with same settings as before.

I think at this point you get the picture. You can do this as many times as you want and the Gaussian Blur is additive for each iteration as well as each stacked HF layer is additive down to the LF layer to maintain original image integrity. To check this, place a copy of the original on top and test with your preferred method. You will find a variance of less than 2/63k.
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  #40  
Old 05-19-2010, 10:09 PM
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Re: Fashion Retouching Sharpening

Also with due respect, I believe you understand what you are doing but perhaps I am confused by the way you have explained it. So let me try to phrase my explanation another way. Let's simplify the process and forget about splitting for the moment. Take any BG layer and duplicate it. If you run a GB with R=5 on that layer and the run a GB=5 on the resulting blurred layer, and then tun the GB=5 a 3rd time on the already twice blurred layer, the resulting layer after the 3rd GB=5 will be equivalent to a GB of approx 9 , NOT 15. You can just duplicate that orig BG layer and set it on top of that triple blurred layer, run a GB=9 on it and set the mode to difference. Or run the GB = 15 and you will see that it is very different. Now perhaps I have misinterpreted your flow but the point I was trying to make is that compound blurring is not linearly additive.
In a similar vein (I use this as example - I know you are not doing this), if you have 3 high pass filters each run at a R=5 and you set them on top of each other on one of the contrast blend modes, what you will have is NOT = to a High Pass at R=15. What you will have is the equivalent of a High Pass filter at R=5 but where the edge contrast is > 3 times greater which would be equivalent to running an Unsharp Mask Filter at a R=5 but an amount closer to 500.
You may well be achieving the splits / HF layers at the R values you claim but it is a bit unclear to me from the way I interpret your flow.
But I don't think we need to toss this back and forth. In the end if the we achieve the sharpening results which meet our goals and look visually pleasing, the exact method or precise radii don't really matter.
Regards, Murray
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