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Nix77 11-26-2010 11:26 AM

Hello everyone- I need some help please.
Ok well I've been a member of this site for ages but have hidden in the wings until now. Quite stubborn and like to figure things out for myself but on this occasion I am at my wits end.

Firstly, I'm not new to photoshop though would not call myself a pro. Secondly I haven't just stumbled upon this look and decided to post in here in the hope of a quick solution! I know these things take practice and are the result of many different processes.

But anyway, down to business. Can anyone shed any light as to the techniques being used here:

What I know so far, or think I know! There is selective blurring going on all over the place. There are colour gradients being used and pretty sure selective colour tool too.

My question is about the almost 'cartoony' quality to the colour and tones. They are almost blocky. Does this make sense to anyone else? And the haze over the shots....I've tried the blue exclusion method but it doesn't give the same results. Any sensible insights or signposts in the right direction would be greatly appreciated and save me from tearing any more of my hair out!
Thanks in advance!

Tony W 11-26-2010 11:58 AM

Re: Hello everyone- I need some help please.
Hi Nix77 and welcome :).

Looked at the images in your first link and my first impression was that I wanted to correct the colour balance and haze - still this only my opinion and tastes do vary :grin:

One simple way to mimic this in PS is to:

1. Curves layer

2. Adjust the Red channel values by shifting the bottom of the shadow end in a vertical direction upwards about one step on the 4 on grid. Then do the same for the highlight end this time bringing it down by the same amount as shadows.

3. Repeat this for the Green and Blue Channels

4 . The effect can be intensified overall by adjusting the RGB in the same way

Hope this makes sense

Nix77 11-26-2010 12:10 PM

Re: Hello everyone- I need some help please.
Thanks for the quick reply! Almost said in my original post that I doubted it'd be to everyones tastes!
Will give your suggestion a try, but any other insights would be welcome too.

Tony W 11-26-2010 12:48 PM

Re: Hello everyone- I need some help please.
1 Attachment(s)
No problem happen to be working and downloading so killing a little time :grin:

As to further insights I have not formed any other than to say if you download an image like this and have a play in reverse i.e. you actually try and correct the image to what may be seen as normal this may help you gain an understanding of what steps have been taken in post processing.

Just grabbed a random image and applied my theory which I think mimics at least some of the images on the sites you linked to. Is there a particular image that stands out to you on either site?

mistermonday 11-26-2010 01:33 PM

Re: Hello everyone- I need some help please.
3 Attachment(s)
Nix77, welcome to RetouchPro. There are predominantly two main effects going on in that series of images.
The 1st is reduced contrast, global and micro. If you have Photoshop, one of the most efficient ways to achieve it is open the image in Camera RAW and drag the Claarity slider to the left. You can also drag the Contrast slider to the left in combination but the majority of the effect can be otained with Clarity alone.
The second effect is one similar to Cross Processing. It can be done with curves but there are two really quick and effective methods. The 1st is also to open the image in Camera RAW and click on the Split Toning tab. Move the Highlights Hue slider to Yellow just before you get into Green and then drag the saturation slider up to around the midpoint as an initial view. Next drag the Shadows Hue slider over to the Cyan just after it clears the Greens, and drag the Saturation slider up to mid point. Now tweak those four sliders to your taste, usually means lowering the saturations. Finally play with the balance slider till the ratio looks right. The goal is to force yellow into the highlight and cyan/blue into the shadows. See Attachment 1 and 2. This original was much brighter and more saturated than most indoor wedding shots so I reduced the saturation of the background in attachment 3.
The other efficient method to generate the cross processing effect in PS is to use a Selective Color Adj layer. Click Absolute and in the White channel increase the Yellow. In the Blacks channel, reduce reuce the Yellow and / or increase Cyan.
Regards, Murray

mistermonday 11-26-2010 01:53 PM

Re: Hello everyone- I need some help please.
2 Attachment(s)
And here is one more example (a bit exaggerated for effect).
Regards, Murray

Nix77 11-26-2010 04:22 PM

Re: Hello everyone- I need some help please.
That's great - thank you both for taking the time to reply. It's much appreciated. It's bedtime here in UK now but will have a go with your suggestions tomorrow!
Thanks again

Wolfman 11-27-2010 12:15 AM

Re: Hello everyone- I need some help please.
Checkout some of the actions on this site:

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