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  • Help with background

    Hi there! I have been struggling trying to get this look for my pinup photos..I want the lighter spot (behind the model, not the snow flakes) in my background but cannot figure out how this is done! I have tried dodgeing. painting it with a brush..I can't figure out how to put it behind the model..I am using cs3..I have very limited skills!
    Attached Files
    Last edited by Pinup; 02-01-2010, 12:44 AM.

  • #2
    Re: Help with background

    Ok, this is a very extensive topic. For now just try to learn masking. Basically you can add whatever adjustment that will lighten the background, and then mask the model out of it. There are other approaches, like completely extracting the model out of the background, so that you can create one from scratch.

    If you have the photo you would like this effect to be applied to, upload it and link it here and we'll help.

    Welcome

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    • #3
      Re: Help with background

      I agree with Flexmanta only I would say do it backwards, instead of using the mask to lighten it would be easier to do a vignette to darken the background and leave the original lighter color on the background, you can do this by making a solid color layer set to a dark color then set the blending option to soft light then play with the mask and opacity.

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      • #4
        Re: Help with background

        I meant that you should upload full size photos so that we can help you with the mask. If you are starting with photoshop it could be a bit too much info for now, if we started explaining the 1001 ways to make a selection. Since the approach to the selection depends on the particular image, if you post a full size version we can work with photoshop and give you a step by step on how to tackle your particular masking problem. Once you have the mask and the background is isolated, you can do whatever you want with it.


        edit: It doesn't have to be right off the camera full size. 1000px should do.

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        • #5
          Re: Help with background

          Okay here is a unedited photo that I took...hope this is big enough I couldnt attach anything bigger than 100kb
          Attached Files

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          • #6
            Re: Help with background

            Pinup, there are a number of ways to do this. On for you to try is: add a new blank layer over the BG. On it draw a large oval shape covering the model. Run a Gaussian Blur to blur it and spread out the circumference. Extract the model from the BG on a copy of the BG. Place the extraction on top of the layer with the blurred white shape. Change the blend mode of that middle layer to lighten or soft light or other mode to give you the effect. You can play with the opacity to fine tune.
            Regards, Murray
            Attached Files
            Last edited by mistermonday; 02-01-2010, 11:53 AM. Reason: Added text

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Help with background

              Ok, to create your selection use calculations. This is a tricky one as both the bg and the model have a lot of yellow (absence of blue). Still you can use green as your first layer and blue as the second and set the blending mode to difference. That will give us a crappy alpha channel (screenshot 1), that at least has a grey background and a darker model (and black dress, since the difference in blue and green in the dress is almost zero as white has all of both). Still, that alpha is good enough for us to tweak by dodging and burning accordingly to have a white bg and a black subject (screenshot 2).


              Now that we have a mask, lets use it. It should still be named alpha1 in the channels pallet. ctrl click on it and that will give you a selection. Without releasing the selection, go to the layers pallet and create a group (folder icon), and give it a mask. Since you had the selection in place, that group will be masked acording to that selection. Now, whatever you create inside of that group will not affect the model. You can even create layers and paint on them freely.

              We are going to use a curve adjustment layer inside of that folder. Increase the composite RGB curve, and set the adjustment layer to luminosity mode (so that saturation and hue are not affected by the increase in lightness value). Next, create a new mask for the curves adjustment layer as shown on screenshot 3. That will give it the spotlight effect you need. The point of this whole arrangement of layers, is that now you have a group that will only affect the background. When doing pinup photography, and as shown on one of the first examples you posted, it's always a good idea to have an isolated bg so that you can go crazy with it without affecting the model at all.

              And the final result is screenshot4.


              edit: sorry mistermonday, i was still writing when you posted.
              Attached Files
              Last edited by flexmanta; 02-01-2010, 12:01 PM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Help with background

                Wow you guys are so amazing & helpful..I will post my photo as soon as I get it right!
                Thank you, Thank you!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Help with background

                  Originally posted by Pinup View Post
                  Hi there! I have been struggling trying to get this look for my pinup photos..I want the lighter spot (behind the model, not the snow flakes) in my background but cannot figure out how this is done! I have tried dodgeing. painting it with a brush..I can't figure out how to put it behind the model..I am using cs3..I have very limited skills!
                  Another method is select and activate the green channel of your original so that your work is now black & white, use the quick selection wand in CS4 to outline the model, back to RGB and refine your selection with quick mask and/or select/refine edge. With the selection still active, save it to an alpha channel for future use, control - J to place the model on a separate layer and then adjust the BG to suit. If it's a lighter area behind your model then set a new empty layer above your BG layer and below the copy of your model, define a circular area with the elliptical marquee tool, feather it with Refine Edge and fill with white. You can now control the opacity by adjusting the opacity of this layer, changle blend modes, etc.
                  Attached Files

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Help with background

                    thanks Gary! I love what you did with my photo! I will try this technique!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Help with background

                      why not light it that way when taking the image??

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Help with background

                        Originally posted by jschro View Post
                        why not light it that way when taking the image??
                        Because I have a 3 light set up and not enough lights to light the background.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Help with background

                          buy another light.. simple. Kidding, but why not substitute a reflector for one of your lights, and use the light with a grid on the bg? I'm not knocking your set up, just trying to figure out a way to save you the hassle of doing it in post work, when it could be done in much less time via lighting.

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