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Frequency separation: Really non-destructive?

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  #21  
Old 09-12-2013, 04:06 AM
baryon baryon is offline
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Re: Frequency separation: Really non-destructive?

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Originally Posted by chillin View Post
I use a setup similar to mistermonday's, but I don't use masking. If I need to correct something I simply copy the part in question from a layer below.
On the HF layer I use healing brush set to a Current Layer.
Yeah, yours or mistermonday's method seems perfect, thanks!
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  #22  
Old 10-02-2013, 01:08 PM
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holgaman holgaman is offline
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Re: Frequency separation: Really non-destructive?

My frequency retouching is two layers - high frequency and low frequency and I do the retouching on the high frequency layer. I think this is the most common way, but I don't want to assume. If I need to back up or remove a retouched area I just add a layer mask to the high frequency layer. No need to create more layers.
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  #23  
Old 10-09-2013, 12:33 PM
jack zucker jack zucker is offline
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Re: Frequency separation: Really non-destructive?

Here are my thoughts on the freq separation retouching. I realize this doesn't address the non-destructive component of this thread but...

I have been using this technique off and on for a while. I'm not convinced it's "all that" when it comes to retouching and I think that basically the spot healing brush, dodge & burn and the clone stamp used on a new layer are still the goto techniques though obviously they can be combined with freq separation. I think freq separation's real power is in color correcting images because you can paint underneath the high freq layer to make color corrections to the image.

IMO however, the technique is flawed in that the current techniques for splitting the layers into high and low cannot discern true texture from luminance. What this means is that you will get shadows up on your high freq layer which are not true skin flaws or texture. Then, if you want to retouch or color correct those areas, you need to do additional work.

Not saying it's not a useful technique but that it's often seen as a panacea of retouching but in reality it's just another tool that can be useful but is not the one-size-fits-all methodology.
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  #24  
Old 10-09-2013, 02:18 PM
baryon baryon is offline
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Re: Frequency separation: Really non-destructive?

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Originally Posted by jack zucker View Post
Here are my thoughts on the freq separation retouching. I realize this doesn't address the non-destructive component of this thread but...

I have been using this technique off and on for a while. I'm not convinced it's "all that" when it comes to retouching and I think that basically the spot healing brush, dodge & burn and the clone stamp used on a new layer are still the goto techniques though obviously they can be combined with freq separation. I think freq separation's real power is in color correcting images because you can paint underneath the high freq layer to make color corrections to the image.

IMO however, the technique is flawed in that the current techniques for splitting the layers into high and low cannot discern true texture from luminance. What this means is that you will get shadows up on your high freq layer which are not true skin flaws or texture. Then, if you want to retouch or color correct those areas, you need to do additional work.

Not saying it's not a useful technique but that it's often seen as a panacea of retouching but in reality it's just another tool that can be useful but is not the one-size-fits-all methodology.
Yep, I agree, it's definitely not a hands down better technique for everything. But for some things it's amazing, say if you have a patch of skin on the model's face that has no definition (it was in shadows and you brightened it a lot and went noisy with no texture) then you can clone the texture from one place to the other almost perfectly. You can't do that as nicely with the clone/heal tool alone.

But it's true that the current frequency separation techniques do not actually separate frequencies: you blur one layer, so you actually lower all frequencies including the already low ones, and then create a layer that compensates for that. I doubt there's a better way to do this, or that there will be, since there is no such thing as an obviously low/high frequency in reality, it's something we perceive and the computer might never be able to separate them correctly.

Something I love about freq sep is that you can further blur the low freq layer in select areas to smooth out bumpy parts like cellulite, which is a pain with manual dodge/burn.

The more techniques there are, the more choice there is, and of course none are perfect.
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  #25  
Old 10-09-2013, 02:57 PM
jack zucker jack zucker is offline
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Re: Frequency separation: Really non-destructive?

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Originally Posted by baryon View Post
Yep, I agree, it's definitely not a hands down better technique for everything. But for some things it's amazing, say if you have a patch of skin on the model's face that has no definition (it was in shadows and you brightened it a lot and went noisy with no texture) then you can clone the texture from one place to the other almost perfectly. You can't do that as nicely with the clone/heal tool alone.
Yes, but you can easily add texture in soft light layer above any retouch which more than coincidentally is how the high freq layer works.

Quote:
Originally Posted by baryon View Post
Something I love about freq sep is that you can further blur the low freq layer in select areas to smooth out bumpy parts like cellulite, which is a pain with manual dodge/burn.

The more techniques there are, the more choice there is, and of course none are perfect.
Agreed. I find better than blurring the low freq layer is to use the smudge tool on it for stuff like what you're talking about with cellulite.

The downside I have found is that the apply image and any other techniques I have used to generate the high freq layer end up putting low freq content (i.e. shadows) up on the high freq layer so even after retouching color in the low freq layer, I often times have to retouch shadows out on the high freq layer, making it less attractive as an all-in-one retouching technique.

When I first started using freq sep, i used it for everything and then later, i realized I get just as good results using standard spot healing and dodge & burn and in some cases, I liked the results better and it was less work.
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  #26  
Old 10-09-2013, 04:04 PM
baryon baryon is offline
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Re: Frequency separation: Really non-destructive?

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Originally Posted by jack zucker View Post
Yes, but you can easily add texture in soft light layer above any retouch which more than coincidentally is how the high freq layer works.
That sounds good, how exactly do you do that?
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  #27  
Old 10-09-2013, 04:27 PM
jack zucker jack zucker is offline
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Re: Frequency separation: Really non-destructive?

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Originally Posted by baryon View Post
That sounds good, how exactly do you do that?
just paint your texture in on a layer on top of the image. The texture layer should be in soft light blend mode. You can clone onto that layer and then desaturate or "place" a texture layer on top of the image and set it's blend mode to soft light and then mask it and reveal it where you want it.

I have also created a new layer, and painted on it with a regular brush, then put another layer on top of that and add texture or noise, set to soft light. Then clip the texture layer so the noise only appears where you have painted in the layer underneath. Many ways to accomplish that without using freq separation. In some ways , freq separation makes things worse because it can't differentiate high contrast lighting from texture so when that happens, you have both high and low freq layers rendering shadows.
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  #28  
Old 10-09-2013, 05:19 PM
baryon baryon is offline
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Re: Frequency separation: Really non-destructive?

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Originally Posted by jack zucker View Post
just paint your texture in on a layer on top of the image. The texture layer should be in soft light blend mode. You can clone onto that layer and then desaturate or "place" a texture layer on top of the image and set it's blend mode to soft light and then mask it and reveal it where you want it.

I have also created a new layer, and painted on it with a regular brush, then put another layer on top of that and add texture or noise, set to soft light. Then clip the texture layer so the noise only appears where you have painted in the layer underneath. Many ways to accomplish that without using freq separation. In some ways , freq separation makes things worse because it can't differentiate high contrast lighting from texture so when that happens, you have both high and low freq layers rendering shadows.
I'll have a play with that method, thanks for the tips!
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