Author Topic: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.  (Read 33762 times)

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Offline peterf

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Sharpening Questions
« Reply #30 on: March 04, 2010, 02:36:39 PM »

I have been reading a lot about sharpening images lately and have some questions.
1) Do you sharpen your full size image or do you wait until you have re-sized it for printing or posting?
2) Do you do any sharpening in Camera Raw? Is this where you do 'Capture' sharpening?
3) In general is 'Unsharp Mask' or 'Adjust Sharpness' your preffered tool?

Thanks,
Peter
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Offline Stef.

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Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
« Reply #31 on: March 04, 2010, 05:23:51 PM »
Peter- the amount of sharpening depends on your output. So in other words I leave my images unsharpened and only sharpen depending on whether I will print it or put it up on the web. Alternatively you can sharpen your image and save it under a different file name.
There are various ways of sharpening an image- most of them are under the darkroom tips and they all have their advantages and disadvantages:
My favs are:
edge sharpening: I created an action for this one and it works very well for something with a lot of fine edges such as landscape photography where you have trees and bushes
unsharp mask: ideal for high ISO shots as it has a grea threshold slider which when used can localie the sharpening just to the edges. Also very good for portraits.
bevel in connection with unsharp mask: great if you want to "pop" someting such as a still life of fruits.
smart sharpening: works well when you have a slight camera movement/blur

Also important: do the sharpening on a separate layer. You need to set the layer blending mode of this layer to luminosity (!). You can then work with a mask on thsi layer AND you can lower the opacity depending on your output.

I hardly use the sharpening in Raw but it does work well. I just don't want to sharpen an image before reducing the noise- this is counter productive. In other words the first thing I do if needed when opening up the image in PS is to reduce the noise and then I continue with whatever needs to be done.

In summary: there is no real right or wrong- you have to try the different techniques and see what works.
Hope this helps?
Stef.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2010, 05:28:22 PM by Stef. »
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Offline peterf

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Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
« Reply #32 on: March 04, 2010, 06:04:53 PM »
Thanks, Stef.
I post on a forum that is primarily Bird Photograpy. The link below will take you to a forum discussion about sharpening images. Most of it is above my head, but I did learn a few things. You may find it interesting reading.
If you want; skip to the 12th post by Arthur Morris dated 8-26-08 and then to the rebuttal by rnclark immediately following.

http://www.birdphotographers.net/forums/showthread.php?t=18534
Peter
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Offline Stef.

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Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
« Reply #33 on: March 04, 2010, 06:50:33 PM »
Peter- Arthur is saying exactly what I am saying...sharpen a separate file. And sharpening is dependent on output.
MClark- again is saying what I have tried to say. You should sharpen a copy of your backgound layer at full resolution and then lower the opacity for your intended output. You should NOT downsize the image and then sharpen.
This is what I said:
Quote
Also important: do the sharpening on a separate layer. You need to set the layer blending mode of this layer to luminosity (!). You can then work with a mask on thsi layer AND you can lower the opacity depending on your output.

An important point to know that I did nto mention is that any sharpening technique does NOT make your image sharper but increases the contrast in a way that makes your eye believe it is sharper.
Stef.
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