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Old Jan 9, 2007, 2:53 PM   #21
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TDN wrote:
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Ira, I found a very cool thread about airbrushing techniques

http://photography-on-the.net/forum/...d.php?t=171753

I tried to apply it to your image, hope you don't mind

(also gave it a slight level bump, to accent the white background a little

I still like better the second one posted by Ira.
Too much airbrushing on this one; it just does not look natural to me.

I know certain ladies who would rather like tons of airbrushing thou:-)
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Old Jan 9, 2007, 3:07 PM   #22
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bill.guenthner wrote
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I have a bright, high contrast LCD monitor and the original posting looks just fine to me. I believe that what you are correcting for is color variance in your specific display. I think this is born out by the fact that his prints of the original post are coming out fine. I have three monitors on my desk and there are huge differences between the "good" one and the other two. When I post photos I adjust them to look acceptably good on all three monitors. The adjusted version is never what looks best on my "good" monitor, and what looks best on my "good" monitor produces the best and most accurate prints.
I'm not sure I understand how being bright, contrasty and LCD makes something accurate. From my few years of catalog photography work LCD monitor never illustrated exceptional color accuracy compared to CRT monitors. More often the opposite was true.

If the image looks fine to him on screen it doesn't surprise me that the prints look ok to him as well. Tastes can be subjective, and I haven't seen the prints myself.

The guide I posted is from Smugmug. They specialize in printing for photographers, and this guide was designed to get the kinds of results most people find pleasing. I attached a comparison of some of their examples to Ira's original photo. Most people would tend to find the skin tones on the first three photos more pleasing, but there's certainly nothing wrong with going for a cooler tone if that's your preference.
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Old Jan 9, 2007, 3:26 PM   #23
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Corpsy wrote:
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I'm not sure I understand how being bright, contrasty and LCD makes something accurate. From my few years of catalog photography work LCD monitor never illustrated exceptional color accuracy compared to CRT monitors. More often the opposite was true.

If the image looks fine to him on screen it doesn't surprise me that the prints look ok to him as well. Tastes can be subjective, and I haven't seen the prints myself.
When you look at the specs for computer displays you will see numbers like "500:1 contrast ratio" or "700:1 contrast ratio". The higher the contrast ratio of the screen, the better the color reproduction will be. This is what I meant by "high contrast". I didn't mean to offend you, only to point out that you can't really discern the finer details of a photograph on most monitors so you can never be sure that what looks great on one display will look equally good another. It's obvious that Monza76 has put considerable thought and effort into this shot, so if the color did look a little off to me I would think it's most likely an effect of resizing or of my display settings. Thanks for the link to the guide.
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Old Jan 9, 2007, 3:46 PM   #24
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Bill, I certainly wasn't offended. It only appeared that you were trying to defend Ira when I didn't feel that I'd attacked him in any way, and only wanted to clarify my intention. I try not to take things to personally in here.

The reason I mentioned the contrast thing is that, while contrasty images do tend to look nicer and make colors look richer, it doesn't mean you're getting the accuracy of having a monitor professionally calibrated, or even self calibrating by comparing your images to SWOP proofs (what I typically tried to do with my work monitor). Oftentimes, having a more contrasty monitor means you're not seeing details in the darker areas that will show up more prominently in prints, like chroma noise.

A contrast ratio is simply a measurement of the lumen output of a white pixel compared to a black pixel. If the black pixels were pure black, then the contrast ratio would be infinity:1, no matter how dull the display actually was. There are already televisions out there boasting 10,000:1 contrast ratios, but like megapixel, it isn't necessarily the best guide for determining quality.
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Old Jan 9, 2007, 3:59 PM   #25
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TDN and Corpsy, nice touches . I will play around some more with the colour balance (Lightroom has some nice features in that regard). As I said, the prints aren't that bad but I can see the need for much fine tuning. Thanks for the links BTW.

Here is my latest fix.

Ira

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Old Jan 9, 2007, 6:57 PM   #26
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DigitalAddict wrote:
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Pretty nice result: the second one seems better in terms of capturing the colors.

I am really interested in the tech of it. Can you describe a bit the strobes setup? What did you use?
Details: It consists of two small strobes (OPUS OPL-M40 with sync socket and built in slaves) the type that screw into a standard light socket. They are only 40 WS with an ISO 100guide number of 85 (in feet). The kit also includes light stands, sockets and umbrellas of decent quality. I also have a Sekonic L308 flash meter.

Next time I assemble the kit I will get a couple of pictures of it.

Ira


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Old Jan 9, 2007, 8:00 PM   #27
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Ira, the color and tonal balance of your latest modification looks very nice..it conveys a nice warmth. Jay
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Old Jan 10, 2007, 8:51 AM   #28
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Monza76 wrote:
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TDN and Corpsy, nice touches . I will play around some more with the colour balance (Lightroom has some nice features in that regard). As I said, the prints aren't that bad but I can see the need for much fine tuning. Thanks for the links BTW.

Here is my latest fix.

Ira
The skin looks better now (maybe a little less saturation?), but I would consider using a layer mask on this one, so you can keep the pure white bg instead of the colored one you get by correcting the skincolor. (if you already deleted the psd file, don't worry, just paste this one in a new layer on top of the original, select Layer>Add Layer Mask> Reveal All and then "paint" the original background back on by selecting a black brush and painting on the bg channel.
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Old Jan 10, 2007, 11:32 AM   #29
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For the first time using the kit I think you did great Ira. I just bought a light set up myself. Anyway, goodluck with the new system. I hope to see lots more portraits for you. I love all types of photography, from landscapes to Macro, but for some reason my favorite seems to be portrait photography, both viewing and shooting.
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Old Jan 10, 2007, 4:04 PM   #30
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I've found this whole discussion interesting - there sure is a whole lot more to studio/portrait photography than just shooting what's there. This just convinces me even more that its one area I'm not going to try my hand at!
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