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  • Tonal Range

    Hello. This is my first post to the forums and need some direction. I have searched around but am not really finding the answer to my question, and I don't even know if I am searching for the right answer.

    I really like Evan Kafka's work. I am not trying to duplicate it exactly, but what really interests me and what I want to learn to control more is the fall off (is that the right word?) from highlight to shadow.

    I can shoot a punchy high contrast image, but when trying to get this similar look, I feel like my highlights sort of drag out very slowly to the shadows. I really need, from looking at these images, to make that transition much quicker.

    Would this be considered contrast? Tonal range?....help!!

    I am really at a loss for what to look for on the boards and don't even know if I am describing it correctly!

    Anyone care to take a stab at it and help me figure out my question?

    Thanks
    Chad

    How do I attach an image to show where my starting point is? thanks!!
    Last edited by chadlatta; 09-26-2011, 07:59 PM.

  • #2
    Re: Tonal Range

    Click the "Go Advanced" button, then "Manage Attachments". Your image must be under 100k (unless you're a Patron).

    Try a gentle S-curve.

    I don't know if this will help, but I read it today and it's quite good:
    http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tu...er_print.shtml
    Learn by teaching
    Take responsibility for learning

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Tonal Range

      Thank you! It was a great article and there is some really cool stuff there. It was worth the read, but I think I am going for something a little more extreme.

      Here is the starting image I was talking about (straight out of camera) followed by a finished image along with another, side by side.

      Looking at the image, it may a little bright for exactly what I am trying to achieve, but you will notice there is not a really sharp transition from shadow to highlight the way you see in some of the work i am trying to emulate.

      I am happy with these images, but want to try again.

      Do you think it is the lighting? I feel like maybe I need more shadows and highlights and less midtone...I don't know! It is tough to explain.
      Attached Files

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Tonal Range

        It's not free, but you might want to check out Gry Garness' "Allegra" show here on our rentals page http://www.retouchpro.com/rentals
        Learn by teaching
        Take responsibility for learning

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Tonal Range

          From the portraits I saw on his website, looks like a lot of high pass run at a couple different radius and blend modes combined with some dodge and burn.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Tonal Range

            I have an action on my computer that I got from somewhere or other called "Grunge & Shine" which goes like this:

            Copy the background layer twice.

            Background 1: fiddle with the shadow/highlight (the action mainly tweaks midtone contrast up, and minimal shadow and highlight adjustment with larger radius, but you can do this to suit you)

            Group Background 1 and 2. Name this group "Grunge" Set Group to Overlay blend mode

            Background 2 layer: Invert. Set to Vivid light. Surface Blur to taste

            Select highlights with color range. Create new layer and fill highlight selection with white. Blur to taste and set blend mode and opacity to taste. Name this layer "shine"

            I would add that manual dodge and burn and High Pass will give you even more of this look you are after. This kind of look is not my favorite, but it seems to be very popular

            I used the method described in the action above and then ran a High Pass layer set to Linear Light, then I stamped up and set that stamped layer to multiply and turned the opacity down to 20%. I've attached my version of your baby. Is this something similar to what you are after?

            The Gry Garness video Doug suggested(haven't seen it yet) might be more useful to see how one can really tweak the image more artfully, as a pro-retoucher would.
            Attached Files

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Tonal Range

              Oh, and I forgot that the original action had a curves layer too that desaturated the image a bit--obviously I forgot that step! I went highly exaggerated on your low-res image--not the way you would do it in real life, but you can play with it and achieve a much more subtle version.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Tonal Range

                Originally posted by Doug Nelson View Post
                Click the "Go Advanced" button, then "Manage Attachments". Your image must be under 100k (unless you're a Patron).

                Try a gentle S-curve.

                I don't know if this will help, but I read it today and it's quite good:
                http://www.luminous-landscape.com/tu...er_print.shtml
                That bit on the history brush is really fascinating

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Tonal Range

                  Thanks for the feedback. I appreciate it. I have alot of learning to do, but most importantly, I am trying to understand how this technique works, why and such. This way I have a better handle on it and know when to use it and what advantages is offers. Also, I am hoping it will help me to discover something new!

                  Gry Garness? I will check it out, but why her. Just wondering how she differs from all the other rentals.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Tonal Range

                    Her image in that show is very similar to yours (see the thumbnail).
                    Learn by teaching
                    Take responsibility for learning

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Tonal Range

                      Originally posted by chadlatta View Post
                      Thank you! It was a great article and there is some really cool stuff there. It was worth the read, but I think I am going for something a little more extreme.

                      Here is the starting image I was talking about (straight out of camera) followed by a finished image along with another, side by side.

                      Looking at the image, it may a little bright for exactly what I am trying to achieve, but you will notice there is not a really sharp transition from shadow to highlight the way you see in some of the work i am trying to emulate.

                      I am happy with these images, but want to try again.

                      Do you think it is the lighting? I feel like maybe I need more shadows and highlights and less midtone...I don't know! It is tough to explain.

                      Try a graysh blue background with a white circle gradient, and watch the image pop...

                      Although it is a different workflow but here is an example of a difference a change of background can do to your work...
                      http://boneappetit.deviantart.com/ga...et=48#/d3bouih
                      Last edited by Boneappetit; 09-28-2011, 07:38 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Tonal Range

                        BTW, I should say that I liked what you did with your retouch. Personally, I prefer that treatment to the more extreme styles.

                        Comment

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