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Askmir 01-13-2012 06:37 AM

White blown out background with subject shadow
Hi Everyone

This is my first post here-I'm a professional photographer but new to retouching. just finished a shoot for a fashion designer I retouched this picture with the clone stamp-my white background was creased with moving the mannequin around. My question is- is there a better and/or faster method to getting white backgrounds but preserving the shadow on the background.

Chain 01-13-2012 06:58 AM

Re: White blown out background with subject shadow
5 Attachment(s)
Do you have a starting point where you want to keep just the shadow on 100% white? It's best to give advice with a real example.

1. Usually if the background already is white/light grey i select it with quick selection tool + refine edge.

2. Then I use a Curves adjustment and pull in the white point until it is 100% white all around the object (hold down the alt key to see it clip).

3. Clone stamp/healing brush/regular white brush to clean up dust, darker areas further out, etc.

Note: You might have to adjust the steps depending on the specific image. Also, since it's usually just a bit of brightening the mask won't have to be as accurate as when we completely replace the background.

Askmir 01-13-2012 07:12 AM

Re: White blown out background with subject shadow
Thanks Chain for your response-i've included a flickr link to the picture in my post. thanks

Chain 01-13-2012 07:50 AM

Re: White blown out background with subject shadow
1 Attachment(s)
That was the after-picture i believe? So we can't see what you started of with. :)

Anyway, I had a closer look at it, and just wanted to point out that your background isn't all white (see screenshot). I recommend you try the method in my previous post (and a 100% white brush instead of clone stamp tool).

In addition to using a curves adjusment just to clip the whites, you can use on where you pull the black point far in just as an aid if you are manually painting over some spots with a white brush.

Askmir 01-13-2012 07:56 AM

Re: White blown out background with subject shadow
Thanks a ton, I'm at it now trying your method-really appreciate it!!

Chain 01-13-2012 07:58 AM

Re: White blown out background with subject shadow
4 Attachment(s)
Here's another example with the exact same method as above. In the first image the background isn't pure white.
It takes just a few clicks to get it white while keeping the shadows.

Key here is holding down the option/alt button when pulling in the white point. That way you can clearly see when the background turns 100% white. If there was any dark spots on the background I would have to paint over them with a white brush.

If this doesn't work in your image, please post the problematic picture/area.

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