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Thread: Image enhancement help CS3

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    Image enhancement help CS3

    Hi APers,

    I have been trying to enhance my photos with CS3, like dodge & burn, colour effects etc.
    I am having a lot of trouble trying to get the finished product to look natural. I have read and used Photoshop CS3 by Scott Kelby, 7 Point System by Scott Kelby, Digital Masterclass by Tom Ang and numerous photo mags. but can't find any books or information on the net to help me perfect the finished product. I know some of the developing is basic stuff but I still need more help with that.
    Could you please point me in the right direction regarding books & sites.
    Thanks Heaps.
    Carmen

    My Stuff:- Canon 50D l EF 28-80 f2.8-4L
    l EF 100-300 f4-5.6 l Canon 100mm f2.8 macro l Tokina 11-16 f2.8 l Pol. Filter l Flash l Grip l Remote l Tripod l Lightroom 2 l CS3

    Constructive Critique of my photos always appreciated

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    Post up a couple of the problem photos; you may be expecting too much of yourself ; and what do you consider as "natural" photos.

    Cheers

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    Agree with Ian, we need to see your starting and finishing photos. Dodging and burning is a lot about selecting an appropriate brush and opacities etc, so tell us what you arre doing in detail.
    "It is one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like, it is another thing to make a portrait of who they are" - Paul Caponigro

    Constructive Critique of my photographs is always appreciated
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    "I am having a lot of trouble trying to get the finished product to look natural."
    This sounds like you are over applying the effects, when I am dodging/burning I use a soft brush and have the exposure set at 3~4% and build up the effect, same with increasing the saturation, curves etc, do it in very small steps.
    I find it handy to apply the effects to a layer, then if you think you have gone to far you just reduce the opacity so they have less effect.

    When doing "improvements" to an image, it is definitely ... less is better and only just is best

    Cheers David
    c&c always welcome, both good and bad, provided it is constructive.
    Feel free to edit my images (hopefully for the better).
    Nikon D40x, SB600, 18~55 & 55~200 kit lenses, Sigma 105 Macro and an understanding wife

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    Member davesmith's Avatar
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    It also depends what you mean by trying to "enhance" your photos. Photoshop can make a good shot look better but if the shot is poor to start with it can make a poor shot look just as bad, if not worse, and obviously processed.

    Best way to learn might be putting up a shot that you're looking to enhance and get some suggestions on how to go about enhancing it.
    Cheers,
    Dave



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    Quote Originally Posted by davesmith View Post
    Photoshop can make a good shot look better but if the shot is poor to start with it can make a poor shot look just as bad, if not worse, and obviously processed.
    Photoshop can also make a good shot terrible if the work is poorly done, its a fine line and a very subtle tool to work well.
    Agree with most others post up some examples and we can lead you through step by step
    Cheers David.

    Canon 40D/EF-S 17-85 mm IS/Kenko Extenson Tubes/Canon EF 50mm F/1.8 II (nifty fifty)
    Sigma 10-20mm 4-5.6 /Sigma 70-200/ Sigma 1.4 teleconverter/ some Conkin filters | Adobe Photoshop CS6



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    Hi Guys,
    Internet on a go slow tonight so I will post some pics tomorrow.
    pommie, I have been using burn @ 20 - 50% so I will now try at 3 - 4% as you suggested.
    Rick, The photo that got me started on dodge & burn in ernest was your one "Dark & Stormy" posted 9.2.09 in POTW.

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    Ah. 20-50 % is way to much. Use a soft edged brush and definately under 10% and work it up in using repeated brush strokes where needed, and adjust the opacity as you work.

    I dont use the dodge and burn tools, I use an action called "Paint with Light II". It creates layers and you use a white brush to lighten the already light areas, and a black brush to darken already dark areas. I Prefer this action to using the dodge and burn tools as it creates a better result (for me). A free version of the action is available in the download section of www.atncentral.com

    Not sure if you know how to use actions or not in PS?

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    To add to Rick's reply: with D+B it's better to use the brush 10 or more times instead of only once. I also use a D+B tool similar Ricks made using blending layers; I have it set up in actions and not use how I made it; but if I can work it I will post it later. If some else can do it, please do so.

    Cheers

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    In Training MarkChap's Avatar
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    Sorry can't help
    Smoke Alarms Save Lives, Install One Today
    I shoot Canon
    Cheers, Mark


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    Thanks Rick,
    I looked up wite and it explains a lot.

    To everyone else who replied.
    I have looked at all your websites and It has opened my eyes to the fact that no enhancement was needed in any of your photos.
    I have been through my photos and honestly don't have one good enough to enhance yet, I was just practicing on some cemetery photos I had taken.
    Thanks to everyone for your help, you have made me look at my photos again with new eyes and realise I have a lot to learn. More practice is definately needed.

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    Member doufdoug's Avatar
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    I don't use the dodge & burn 'controls' at all - I believe that this a better solution and you can control any effects (or go back several steps should you need to do so)
    (Assuming Photoshop)
    Make a new, empty layer (click on icon next to Trash)
    In the Layers panel change this new Layer from 'Normal' to 'Soft Light'
    Go to 'Edit' (in the main top command menus - File, EDIT, Image, Layer, etc)
    In the 'Edit' drop down menu select 'Fill'
    In the box that appears, choose '50% Gray' (it may default to this anyway)
    Select the default foreground / background in the tools palette (towards the bottom - two overlapping boxes is the icon) to Black / White
    Choose the brush tool
    Change the brush tool's opacity and flow to around 10% - 20% (I use 10%)
    Where you want to burn on your image, choose black and brush on your image, slowly building up to what you require
    Where you want to dodge, choose white.
    If you have 'burnt / dodged' too much, either go back into your history, or use a matte to 'erase' mistakes etc.
    You can also change the opacity of the new 'Soft Light' layer in the layers panel should you wish, or make another one to add further dodging/burning.

    Hope this helps.

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    I also use Dougs method above but add a layer mask if required to clean up a little.
    Greg

    Please feel free to rework any of my images on this forum.

    I also welcome any constructive criticism or suggestions.

    http://www.gregwallis.com

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    Pushed the wrong button again; wrote this yesterday>I use doug's way also.

    That's well written Doug and your post should go somewhere else so it is available to more members Ask Rick about it.


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    Member doufdoug's Avatar
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    Thanks Greg, I probably was not clear enough, but yes - exactly right, a layer mask, or layer matte (nomenclature differs but the same process) is a huge help.

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    'Pushing wrong buttons' is my middle name, lol. I am currently rebuilding many many many discs back into Lightroom after an impetuous button press called 'Del'.

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    yeah shouldn't touch that one

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    Quote Originally Posted by doufdoug View Post
    'Pushing wrong buttons' is my middle name, lol. I am currently rebuilding many many many discs back into Lightroom after an impetuous button press called 'Del'.
    But aren't you luckly you had the back ups.


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    Will also agree with the others we need to see a base image and then a re-worked one,when dodgeing and burning i always use 0% and use it very minimal

    steve.

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