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A mass of multicolored dots!

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  • A mass of multicolored dots!

    This photo of my daughter and mom is priceless AND it is a mess. The red and green channels are pretty bad but the blue is shot. Does anyone have ideas about how to tackle this problem? I've done a little bit of work with channels, switching to LAB, Apply image, but I don't know if that's even the place to start. I'm working in Photoshop CC if that's helpful.
    Attached Files

  • #2
    Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

    Here is a beginning - some lab adjustments to bring out more detail, then noise reduction and color blending. All that's left is to use a brush to improve the skin (time consuming).
    Attached Files


    • #3
      Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

      Interesting result! In my most current version, I also used a lab adjustment and did some blending. I put together a mask for the faces which helped contain the changes. The mask is a little stiff around the edges but I can fix that I think. You did a great job getting the little green specks out - what blending did you use to achieve that?
      Attached Files


      • #4
        Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

        Originally posted by Pentaxlover View Post
        Interesting result! -what blending did you use to achieve that?
        Up to this point the only brush I used was the history brush. After the LAB adjustment to open up the shadows, I did a Reduce Noise adjustment, which softened the grain in the face (notice the hat on the boy is still very grainy in the shadow area - I focused on the faces for this quick fix).
        After reducing the noise there were still large brown specks, so I made a duplicate layer, and using curves, I lowered the color contrast in the skin (which wiped out most everything, but created a soft, flesh colored blob that I blended into the faces to reduce the noise even more - old technique). Then did a contrast adjustments with curves to enhance the detail, along with a selective color move to brighten the skin, and then did some sharpening.


        • #5
          Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

          Thank you so much for your help! I'll post it again when I've gotten to a good point.


          • #6
            Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

            Hi Pentaxlover
            Here is a B&W shot using mostly camera raw filter functionality and removing some background objects:


            • #7
              Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

              Hi John,

              I like what you did. I'd been thinking about making it black and white and after seeing your version, I'm pretty sure that I will. I'll play around in Camera Raw and sometimes I've had good luck with the Photoshop CC B&W.

              Thank you!


              • #8
                Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

                John's B/W got me thinking about an alternative workflow.

                1. I split the channels into individual greyscale images.
                2. Opened each image in Camera Raw to reduce the noise and open up the shadows.
                3. Pasted each channel into a blank RGB image.
                4. Applied another Highlight/Shadow adjustment to the composite image.
                5. Then adjusted color with blending to improve contrast.

                Result is similar to my original but with less saturated skin (I toned it down using Hue/Saturation) and smoother shadow areas.
                Attached Files


                • #9
                  Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

                  What a cool trick! I love how much I learn every time that I go into this forum. I've done the split channel on this end and when I'm done with what I've got I'll post it. Thank you so much for all of the help and information!


                  • #10
                    Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

                    I think it is soooo kewl that their noses form a heart.... A sign of true love?? I think so!

                    fixed as above with a little noise removal added
                    Attached Files


                    • #11
                      Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

             did you get the colors so clean? I'm guessing all sorts of blending?


                      • #12
                        Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

                        I used Imagenomic Noiseware selectively, the Spot healing brush and the Patch tool for problem areas.


                        • #13
                          Re: A mass of multicolored dots!


                          I've spent a bit of time on this picture. I lost track of time, it took oh my a few hours, I think.

                          Anyway I'll explain some of what I did in general.

                          Step one: I did an average blur over the entire image to get the average colour of the image. Then I invert this layer and set the blending mode to colour and lower the opacity to 0% then bring it up from there to suit. I do this to remove the general colour cast of the entire image. I learnt this technique from

                          Step two: I masked 4 areas of the image The main part which is the people. The car the grass and the dark area at the back.

                          Step three: I did a skin tone correction using the mask of your daughter and mum and adjusting cmyk values, using the technique here
                          I also raised the black to rgb(15,15,15) and white down to rgb 245,245,245

                          Step 4:After getting the skin tone as best as I could, what I then did is I further masked individual areas such as the hat, hair, both faces, the blue and white shirt, I got average colours for each masked area and used the same technique as in step one.

                          Step 5: I did an average blur again for the other areas in the background within the masks for those areas. This was to seperate the general colour cast at different depths.

                          Step 6: Everything from here was a lot more manual(minor adjustments using my tablet and mouse). I used surface blur to soften the skin of your daughter and a little on your mum. After that I reintroduced texture into your mums skin using a skin texture brush set to a soft light blending mode, then I added a small outer glow to the layer to simulate the skin texture.

                          Step 7: Custom dodging and burning with tablet.

                          The rest: At this point I grabbed the image from because I liked the values in this which worked reasonably well I took the values and applied them within my foreground mask.

                          I continued a little bit more using my tablet and painting where I thought things could be improved.

                          It's a bit intense but I think it's the type of image where individual areas need to be worked.


                          So that was a bit of work. Hope you enjoy feel free to ask any questions for any part of the image and I'll see if I can remember what I did.
                          Attached Files
                          Last edited by zeroLiver; 12-17-2015, 05:12 AM.


                          • #14
                            Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

                            That looks good!


                            • #15
                              Re: A mass of multicolored dots!

                              Thank you, it's a lovely picture.


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