Sony Digital Camera Forums

Digital Photography Technique => Digital Darkroom => Topic started by: AScot on March 29, 2008, 07:10:49 AM

Title: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: AScot on March 29, 2008, 07:10:49 AM
If you need help with Adobe photoshop/Elements/Lightroom, or have suggestions for tips that we can add to the growing list, please post your request/ideas in this thread.

If you have a tip that you wish to share, please post it in this other thread. (http://www.dynaxdigital.com/index.php/topic,4197.0.html)

Thank you.
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on March 30, 2008, 02:35:30 AM
Ascot- I would suggest (if I may) that if somebody has a request or needs help that the answer is directly posted in the relevant thread with a reference under the request where the answer is? This would avoid posting double?
Stef.
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: AScot on March 30, 2008, 03:49:12 AM
Ascot- I would suggest (if I may) that if somebody has a request or needs help that the answer is directly posted in the relevant thread with a reference under the request where the answer is? This would avoid posting double?
Stef.

Stef, I apologize for this communication glitch, but I thought I was doing that. The link in my first post in this thread is pointing those who wish to share a tip, to do so in the main 'Add a tip for Photoshop please!' thread, which is the relevant thread. I was also starting a new thread (this thread) where members could ask for help or suggest tips, without clogging up the main thread. No Tips would go into this thread.

If I understand you correctly, you feel that the questions and/or suggestions should all go into the 'Add a tip for Photoshop please!' thread. If that is what you mean, then I am more than happy to correct it. It may be better to keep everything in one place. Is this what you mean?
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on March 30, 2008, 10:53:06 PM
Sorry mea culpa- no I wholly agree with you!!! People should ask here and get the answer in the relevant thread! I just thought for instance if somebody asks for a particular thing in this thread and I should be able to give him/her the answer than I would do that in the PS tips section but would also post here that I have answered the question. So that the person who asked knows he got an answer and where the answer is?
No I full agree no questions in the PS/ IR or Macro threads! Only here.
My ENGLISH!!!
Stef. :-[
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: AScot on April 01, 2008, 03:14:48 AM
If you wish to post in this thread that you have answered a request/suggestion in the 'Add a tip for Photoshop please!' thread, then go for it, do what you feel is necessary, or best.

Bear in mind that I will be keeping the Index up to date, so that members can more easily find what interests them, saving you the time of answering requests that you may have already answered. In the end it's your choice, I will still maintain the Index. :)

Now all we need are requests/suggestions. :D
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: AScot on April 05, 2008, 11:54:40 PM
Stef, could I request a repeat of (This Tip) (http://www.dynaxdigital.com/index.php/topic,4772.msg34325.html#msg34325), but posted in the Digital darkroom?

It's very interesting, but as it relies on questions by others and will soon be lost as it goes down the page, it would be nice to have it redone and in the detail that you find would be suitable. No rush, just if you get some spare time after you get back from vacation.

Thank you.
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on April 06, 2008, 01:24:20 AM
Ascot- no problem...well Springtide had the colour swatches... will give an explanation soon in darkroom tips.
Stef.
Title: applying a texture layer to a photo
Post by: okiegirl on June 05, 2008, 03:09:01 PM
Hi All.
Has anyone applied a texture layer to a photograph in cs2 or 3? I have a few texture shots (brick walls, etc) stored in picasa and I am interested in learning how to appy it to a picture as a layer in cs3. I don't really want the colour of the brick so much as the pattern.
So, anyone know how to do this?
Could you explain it to me?
Thank you!
Amie
Title: Re: applying a texture layer to a photo
Post by: Stef. on June 05, 2008, 04:38:58 PM
Sounds like this might be a question for me ;)

1. Open your image you want the texture applied to in PS
2. Open the image with the texture
3. Click the image with the texture to activate it. Make sure that both images are the same orientation (makes it easier)
4. Ctrl + A > click on the image you want the testure applied to > ctrl +V (cmd for apple)
5. edit > transform > scale > if you hold shift +ctrl at the same time and pull one of the corners you can adjust the size of the texture layer without changing its perspective.
6. You have now the texture layer on top of the image layer which you can't see
7. Now set the layer blending mode either to darken/ multiply/overlay/soft light/ and change the opacity of that layer to somewhere around 50%

Tip: any of these layer blending options might work. The easiest is to first lower the opacity to 50% then click in the layer palette where it says "normal" so that normal changes to blue colour. What you can then do is just scroll down through all layer blending modes by using the downwards arrow next to your number pad on your keyboard!
Voila- just should find easily the right blending mode in a couple of seconds!

Any questions- feel free! Let us know how you get on :D
Best of luck and happy photoshopping!
Stef. :P
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: AScot on June 18, 2008, 04:28:57 AM
Does anyone know how to batch re-size (down size) photos in CS# without reducing the quality or changing the originals?

This could be another for Stef to answer, however if anyone else knows, please show your tip in the Add a tip for Photoshop please! (http://www.dynaxdigital.com/index.php/topic,4197.0.html)

You may not get a prize, but your heart will be lightened by the knowledge that you may have helped a few members of our forum. :)
Title: working with raw
Post by: Dr.Theo on September 18, 2008, 11:56:10 AM
Do you think we could get a stickied thread about working with raw, and all the little ins and outs of it.
As i just played with my first raw image last night in CS3 and was blown away by all the sliders and curves and buttons and histograms and color-o-grams

but i did end up with an interesting picture in the end color wise, some sort of warm black and white.

anyways what i am basically asking for is a thread / lessons to guide the uninciated such as myself through the misteries of RAW in the hopes that it will become less intimidating and more of a usefull tool.
Thanks
Title: Re: working with raw
Post by: Simon [aka springtide] on September 18, 2008, 12:15:33 PM
Do you think we could get a stickied thread about working with raw, and all the little ins and outs of it.
As i just played with my first raw image last night in CS3 and was blown away by all the sliders and curves and buttons and histograms and color-o-grams

but i did end up with an interesting picture in the end color wise, some sort of warm black and white.

anyways what i am basically asking for is a thread / lessons to guide the uninciated such as myself through the misteries of RAW in the hopes that it will become less intimidating and more of a usefull tool.
Thanks

I'm not sure what you shoot and how much you shoot, but if the answer is 'varied' and 'lots' I would suggest getting dedicated software for a RAW workflow, like Lightroom, DXO, Bibble Labs, Phase One etc rather than CS3.
The reason for stating this, is because you then treat RAW's just like you treat a Jpeg file.
I tend to find that CS3 is great for doing those one off photos, but your unlikely to process large amounts of RAW within CS3 as it's too time consuming, and you'll switch back to Jpeg.

FYI - I took my first Jpeg shots with the A700 last week, and I've owned the A700 for almost a year!  The advanced DRO also works pretty well, but was shooting 3MP files - which I just wanted small photos for (for Ebay pics)
I just don't use Jpegs for master files at all.  Just use them for uploading to Flickr etc.

Title: Re: working with raw
Post by: winjeel on September 18, 2008, 02:06:31 PM
For my images that I really want top quality, I only use the raw file. But if it's for the web (or for here) then it's just quick and easy to use the jpeg.

Here, at Adobe's White Papers, there's some articles on working with raw: http://www.adobe.com/digitalimag/ps_pro_primers.html

And here is the basic processing (http://www.winjeel.com/photography/how_to_take_photos/images/pShop_tutorials/BSR-2008.09.11-13.19.01.wmv)(large video file) that I do, please excuse the narrator's voice (and here's the better detailed screenshot (http://www.winjeel.com/photography/how_to_take_photos/images/pShop_tutorials/raw_screenshot03.jpg)).
Title: Re: working with raw
Post by: Frank [aka Wires] on September 18, 2008, 02:17:53 PM
Having just decided to try out RAW after some recommendations regarding the shots I put up from Warwick Castle visit I'd say give Capture One v4.1 a try. The site gives a few video guides on using it and there's a 30 try/buy on it.

It comes across as a very easy program to use on a KISS principle... euros 99.00... $129 US ?

On a side note; SONY have now issued a version 3 of their "Image Data Suite for Windows";

http://support.sony-europe.com/dime/downloads/downloads.aspx?site=odw_en_GB&m=DSLR-A700&f=sids_win

and Mac OS.
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on September 19, 2008, 04:04:39 AM
Do you think we could get a stickied thread about working with raw, and all the little ins and outs of it.
As i just played with my first raw image last night in CS3 and was blown away by all the sliders and curves and buttons and histograms and color-o-grams

but i did end up with an interesting picture in the end color wise, some sort of warm black and white.

anyways what i am basically asking for is a thread / lessons to guide the uninciated such as myself through the misteries of RAW in the hopes that it will become less intimidating and more of a usefull tool.
Thanks

Doctore- well frankly that's not soo easy. My suggestion with all my students is to first of all get yourself a good book and work it through. Then come back and ask specific questions. I am more than willing to try my best to answer them but it is always easier if you have done some footwork first- if you know what I mean. Firstly there are quite a few raw processing softwares out there- the only one I am quite efficient in- is Photoshop's Raw Converter (some of you might know that I am writing a book for advanced Photoshop users- the reason for it being "advanced" is that there is a bit of a lack in that area) anyhow back to the topic: to start explaining raw from scratch is very time consuming and it's easier to answer precise questions- at least for me. Scott Kelby is a oogd adress for books from the US and also Martin Evening for books from the UK (very different approaches to the same topic so have a look at both if you can) And there are books particularly for raw conversion- if you need a list let me know.
Stef.
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Oldy Baldy on September 19, 2008, 08:17:57 AM
one for Stef can you recommend a few titles the type of book I can work easiest with is set out as lessons if you know what I mean. Sort of this is a result that might be useful now step by step here is how you do it. I have How To Cheat In Photoshop but that is more for playing tricks and creating effects
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Dr.Theo on September 19, 2008, 12:57:38 PM
i am trying to order the big photoshop cs3 book from kelby along with his down and dirty tricks book. then i am also trying to order the martin evening cs3 book. i should know by monday if i can get them here
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on September 19, 2008, 05:38:25 PM
Doctore- CS4 is coming out in about two weeks. You might want to hold back should you consider upgrading.
Stef.
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Dr.Theo on September 19, 2008, 06:01:17 PM
stef i just got cs3 4 months ago i think it will keep me going for a while, i need to learn something before i upgrade lol
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on September 19, 2008, 06:04:27 PM
You should be able to get the books quite cheap than as they will be soon outdated!
Stef. :P
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Oldy Baldy on September 19, 2008, 10:40:18 PM
are any of the photoshop dedicated magazines worth buying they seem expensive probably buy a book cheaper than half a dozen of the mags
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on September 20, 2008, 05:51:47 AM
There is one out there in the UK that I can whole heartedly recommend and it is even worth getting it sent to you all over the world: "Digital Photo" http://www.photoanswers.co.uk/GLOBAL/About-Us/Digital-Photo/ (http://www.photoanswers.co.uk/GLOBAL/About-Us/Digital-Photo/) and careful it is not Digital Photo Pro !!! and also on second place: "Digital Camera Magazine" http://www.dcmag.co.uk/ (http://www.dcmag.co.uk/) Both are worth every single penny in my opinion and to be very brutal the rest are pretty ... well whatever...
Stef. :P
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Rob aka [minolta mad] on September 20, 2008, 02:46:04 PM
I must admit that if i do buy any mags, its usually ione of the two that Stef has mentioned, also digital photo quite often includes CD's with it covering many aspects of editing, including RAW and a very easily followed and very informative.



Rob [minolta mad]
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on September 20, 2008, 11:43:53 PM
Rob- they are both goldmines of information and they come out only once a month. I think I have studied every Photoshop book on the planet in all languages that I speak but those two mags still come up occassionally with stuff that's new to me. Anyhow I DO NOT receive anything from them for telling you that ;)
Stef.
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Oldy Baldy on September 21, 2008, 08:26:34 AM
Hi all went to the site Stef recommended for digital photo and they are doing 3 issues for a GB pound each if you take a years subscription the rest are just under a fiver each so looks like I am going to have to learn to read and more important at my age remember what I have read think I have just found my next challenge ta again Stef
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on September 21, 2008, 11:31:43 PM
Glad you are doing it- promise you will not regret it!
Stef. :P
Title: Re: White balance tool.
Post by: peterf on February 26, 2010, 07:10:17 PM

When using the White Balance Tool (eyedropper) in Camera Raw, do you think it is better to pick on WHITE or on GREY? (I am using PSE 8)
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on February 26, 2010, 07:26:31 PM
Peter- the white balance tool is for either white/black or grey. If you have something in your picture that you know is either of the three colours than click on this one. Now there is a slight problem with this:let's assume you white point is all the way to the right of your image and you click on it than the wb for your centre part might be slightly off as the light intensity and temperature varies over your image. In other words: if you include a grey card in your first shot than this grey cards needs to be placed let's say in front of your subject's face as later on you want the right wb patricularly for that part of the image. If you'd come from the olden days where we used lightmeters than you might remember that you always hold your lightmeter facing the camera from i.e. the face of you subject. Once you move this lightmeter slightly to the side of your subject you will get a different reading (usually). The same principle is with grey cards: they need to be place exactly where you want your wb to be corrected.

Now coming back to your question: if you can find a white spot/ black one or grey one in the middle of your image- than this would be better. Alternatively...if you have neither of the three colours in your image than the wb toll can be used on something that you would consider the nearest to a grey point. I.e. a stump of a tree...

Finally it has to be said: a custom wb is the best you can do- followed by: including a grey card in your first image that you then use for setting your wb in your raw converter. Here again: you have to repeat doing your custom wb or include a grey card EACH time the light changes...

Hope this helps? More questions? Just shoot...

Stef.
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: peterf on February 27, 2010, 01:43:51 PM
Peter- the white balance tool is for either white/black or grey. If you have something in your picture that you know is either of the three colours than click on this one. Now there is a slight problem with this:let's assume you white point is all the way to the right of your image and you click on it than the wb for your centre part might be slightly off as the light intensity and temperature varies over your image. In other words: if you include a grey card in your first shot than this grey cards needs to be placed let's say in front of your subject's face as later on you want the right wb patricularly for that part of the image. If you'd come from the olden days where we used lightmeters than you might remember that you always hold your lightmeter facing the camera from i.e. the face of you subject. Once you move this lightmeter slightly to the side of your subject you will get a different reading (usually). The same principle is with grey cards: they need to be place exactly where you want your wb to be corrected.

Now coming back to your question: if you can find a white spot/ black one or grey one in the middle of your image- than this would be better. Alternatively...if you have neither of the three colours in your image than the wb toll can be used on something that you would consider the nearest to a grey point. I.e. a stump of a tree...

Finally it has to be said: a custom wb is the best you can do- followed by: including a grey card in your first image that you then use for setting your wb in your raw converter. Here again: you have to repeat doing your custom wb or include a grey card EACH time the light changes...

Hope this helps? More questions? Just shoot...

Stef.

Thanks, Stef. That is very helpful. Especially the part about light differences from center to edge; I really wasn't considering that point. Now if i can get the birds to hold a grey card...
Peter
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. on February 27, 2010, 06:50:27 PM
Peter- LOL! You can always put your camera onto the tripod- walk somewhere into your picture wheere the birds are- hold up a grey card and shoot a self-portrait that you can then use for wb. Alternatively- and this is the more serious suggestion: just hold up a piece of white paper roughly in the right direction and take a custom wb reading from that. All of this is better than just shooting AWB.
Stef.
Title: Sharpening Questions
Post by: peterf 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
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. 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.
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: peterf 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
Title: Re: Requests or suggestions for new Darkroom Tips.
Post by: Stef. 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.