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Lens flare hell

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  • Lens flare hell

    I've been having a lot of trouble fixing a photo I've been given. It's a wedding group standing outside, backlit. There is a lot of flare coming in from the top right of the image and bleeding onto the first 2 people. Becouse the flare goes from really bad in the corner to not there at all about one third of the way through-I just don't know how to go about fixing this thing!! I tried making a serch for removing lens flare on this site but can't find anything. Am I not looking in the right places? If someone can point me to a challenge or example similar to what I'm talking about I would really appreciate it. Thanks.

  • #2
    If you could post a copy of your problem image I'm sure we can advise you. :-)


    • #3
      Depending on how bad the lens flare is, you might try duplicating the layer, set the blending mode to multiply, make a layer mask and fill it with black. Then using a soft brush and low setting, paint the affected areas with white, but do it gradually. This should help if it's not too bad. You might also have to repeat the process another time or two. Good luck.



      • #4
        Ed's suggestion is a solid one. I had a similar problem with a photo that was taken at night with a flash and one person in the photo had a jacket with reflective tape. (Suggestion - if you are ever taking a photo with flash and someone is wearing anything reflective, ask them to remove it if at all possible - or put something in front of it. It ruins the photo!)

        Anyway, I fixed the photo almost exactly as Ed said. The only difference is that once I got it as far as I could with the multiply layers, I used the burn tool at a very low opacity (3-4%) to touch up the edges that were being hit by the light.

        Good luck,


        • #5
          Thanks Ed...

          Well, I got it done. I'm pretty happy with the results but the man's face on the right is still a lacks punch like the others. Regardless, since you folks were nice enough to advise me, I thought I'd show you a before/after and you can tell me what you think or how you would improve it more.
          -After doing as Ed suggested (it took 3 layers) I then look the paintbrush on color-black setting to get rid of the yellow in the suits and then selected the last 2 people and punched up the contrast in face and clothing with a levels adjustment layer or two.
          Attached Files


          • #6
            Hey, looks like you got excellent help on this one and your results look fantastic. See what you mean about the guy but I don't think it's that distracting. There seems to be a slight fuzzyness to him. But the overall job looks great.


            • #7

              I downloaded the file, and tried to do something more with it. Here's what I did (for better or worse):

              Opened the image and added a new layer.

              Filled that layer with 50% gray at 100% opacity.

              Changed the blending mode to color burn.

              Decreased opacity to 20%.

              Painted with airbrush (white and soft brush) at 2% opacity on the places I wanted to lighten.

              This technique came from Katrin Eismann's book "Restoration and Retouching", which you'll see mentioned many times on this site. It's a great book that's worth the money. If you should decide to buy the book, please use the link from this site. Doug gets a small percentage of sales made from the link, and it keeps things going for all of us.

              By the way, you did a nice job with what you had to work with. Most of the people on this site are much better than yours truly. I've learned most of what I know from this site.


              Here's a link to the review. You can click on the title header to buy the book.
              Attached Files
              Last edited by Ed_L; 03-26-2002, 07:13 PM.


              • #8
                After I posted the last time, I thought the three people on the right side of the image could use a little more lightness in the skin tones. So I re-opened the image, and made a very quick selection with the lasso tool around the three people. Then using a curves adjustment layer, I picked a spot on the groom's cheek, and while holding down the ctrl key I clicked on the spot. This left a marker on the curves chart showing where this spot was located. I lifted this marker slightly to lighten the skin tones. This also lightened some of the surrounding areas slightly, but not enough to make it very noticable.
                Attached Files