Flower: 1; Schmoo: 0

schmooschmoo word nerdPosts: 8,468Registered Users Major grins
edited June 2, 2007 in Landscapes
As prompted, here is a shot from the wild west that I just want to throttle. No matter what I do to it I get frustrated. I'm flattered that the other Dgrinners remember this one, but....... me? HULK!!! SMASH!!!1!!oneone11

:boid

Here is the "best" that I have come up with:

158536918-M.jpg

and I HATE it. I can't get the white balance right, the rest of the colors are off, it has the wrong kind of pop, and it seems too "square" -- but no other cropping options look better to me.

The original file (in jpg form, sensor dust cloned out but otherwise untouched)

Have at it, guys!! And please tell me what you did. I'm a n00b.

Comments

  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkPosts: 60,808Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 1, 2007
    schmooo wrote:
    HULK!!!

    Yes?

    158548292-L.jpg
  • schmooschmoo word nerd Posts: 8,468Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 1, 2007
    Mr Andy, sir.






    You rock.

    :D
  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkPosts: 60,808Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 1, 2007
    schmooo wrote:
    Mr Andy, sir.
    You rock.
    :D
    lol3.gif

    OK so I think you need to get more contrast between the flower and the rest of the scene. So try darkening the flower, eh?
  • Ted SzukalskiTed Szukalski Major grins Posts: 1,079Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 1, 2007
    yellow-desert-flower.jpg

    It's hard to tell what you were trying to achieve, also jpg does not allow for colour temperature adjustments. I've adjusted the levels, changed the crop to reduce the bright sky in proportion to the rest of the view, finally I've brighten the center of the image and darkened the rest. Not sure if this comes close to your desired pop but it certainly looks different from your original.
  • AndyAndy Bicameral New YorkPosts: 60,808Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 1, 2007
    yellow-desert-flower.jpg

    also jpg does not allow for colour temperature adjustments.
    headscratch.gif sure you can, use the curves tool :)
  • Ted SzukalskiTed Szukalski Major grins Posts: 1,079Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 1, 2007
    Fair enough, what I should have said is: you cannot dial in a desired temperature in Kelvins like in DPP or Lightroom.
    Andy wrote:
    headscratch.gif sure you can, use the curves tool :)
  • pathfinderpathfinder Drive By Digital Shooter Posts: 14,027Super Moderators moderator
    edited June 2, 2007
    Hi Stephanie,

    I pulled down your original jpg and opened it in ACR 4.1 in PSCS 3. I did not change the color balance there, just used Auto

    I set black and white points - white in the white streak in the stem of the flower.

    The problem with this image in my humble opinion, is that the yellow flower does not stand out very well against the orange background - If this had been shot from a lower perspective to capture the yellow against the deep blue sky this image would rock.... Blue and orange are complementary colors, but yellow and orange are not unfortunately.

    So I used Apply Image to increase the contrast between the yellow flower and the orange background, and the Blend If Sliders to control where the multiply blending was used to pop the colors more. Here is what I got - Is this anything more like what you had in mind? I cropped out a lot of the unneccesary sky also. Marc will be proud I remembered:D :D

    158585242-L.jpg
    Pathfinder - www.pathfinder.smugmug.com

    Moderator of the Technique Forum and Finishing School on Dgrin
  • saurorasaurora Major grins Posts: 4,320Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 2, 2007
    I tried a couple of different directions. First looked at what auto-levels gave me...it was too light and by the time I multiplied it, it seemed to be right back where it started. I tried threshold, and I kept tweaking in curves as the flower seemed too....wimpy. I really wanted to bring that flower closer, tried numerous crops, none totally satisfying. So, I ended up being more agressive than I would normally be with my processing, darkening as much I could. I wanted to keep the warmer colored light and not get too cool, I ended up using a filter that pushed in some green. Made the plant look like Popeye's spinach!!! rolleyes1.gif I also used Noise Ninja and sharpening. Anyway, here's 3 of my attempts....I'll probably regret posting these.

    First crop

    158586660-M.jpg

    2nd crop (sorry...lost all your sky and scenery!!! Had to get closer!)
    158586663-L.jpg

    Processed slightly different....faster, mostly filters. Went for more of a pano.

    158586655-M.jpg
  • schmooschmoo word nerd Posts: 8,468Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 2, 2007
    pathfinder wrote:
    Hi Stephanie,

    I pulled down your original jpg and opened it in ACR 4.1 in PSCS 3. I did not change the color balance there, just used Auto

    I set black and white points - white in the white streak in the stem of the flower.

    The problem with this image in my humble opinion, is that the yellow flower does not stand out very well against the orange background - If this had been shot from a lower perspective to capture the yellow against the deep blue sky this image would rock.... Blue and orange are complementary colors, but yellow and orange are not unfortunately.

    So I used Apply Image to increase the contrast between the yellow flower and the orange background, and the Blend If Sliders to control where the multiply blending was used to pop the colors more. Here is what I got - Is this anything more like what you had in mind? I cropped out a lot of the unneccesary sky also. Marc will be proud I remembered:D :D
    Holy cow pathfinder! That is great!

    I agree with everyone that the biggest problem was the similarity in tone between the flower and the sky. But Skip got a photo of me taking this photo, and I couldn't get any lower (and those rocks were sharp!). I agree having it against the sky would have helped.

    In my approach I did set the black and white points, although I think I ended up using part of the cloud as my white because it left the least offensive cast on the overall WB. I'm still having trouble fixing my WB sometimes, depending on the shot. I do remember Marc saying NO CAST!!

    I don't think I understand the tools in your last paragraph well enough, which explains my fairly limited bag o' PS tricks. Time to do some studying.... rolleyes1.gif
  • schmooschmoo word nerd Posts: 8,468Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 2, 2007
    yellow-desert-flower.jpg

    It's hard to tell what you were trying to achieve, also jpg does not allow for colour temperature adjustments. I've adjusted the levels, changed the crop to reduce the bright sky in proportion to the rest of the view, finally I've brighten the center of the image and darkened the rest. Not sure if this comes close to your desired pop but it certainly looks different from your original.

    Ted,

    Thank you for the stab! I did find the overall brightness of the image a bit flat, which was one of the obstacles I couldn't seem to get right. I am not sure how I feel about the vignetted look, but it certainly gets my attention. :D
  • schmooschmoo word nerd Posts: 8,468Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 2, 2007
    saurora wrote:
    I tried a couple of different directions. First looked at what auto-levels gave me...it was too light and by the time I multiplied it, it seemed to be right back where it started. I tried threshold, and I kept tweaking in curves as the flower seemed too....wimpy. I really wanted to bring that flower closer, tried numerous crops, none totally satisfying. So, I ended up being more agressive than I would normally be with my processing, darkening as much I could. I wanted to keep the warmer colored light and not get too cool, I ended up using a filter that pushed in some green. Made the plant look like Popeye's spinach!!! rolleyes1.gif I also used Noise Ninja and sharpening. Anyway, here's 3 of my attempts....I'll probably regret posting these.

    saurora,

    You are such a sweetheart! :D You described my thoughts to a T. I had the same problems every time I tried something that I would normally do to a photo when I opened it up and ran into walls each time. Then I just said "Screw it" and got more aggressive, but PS has a way of being able to turn a bad photo into an OMGGETITAWAYFROMME horrible one.

    Spinach! rolleyes1.gif
  • PhyxiusPhyxius SmugMug Support Hero Posts: 1,350Registered Users Major grins
    edited June 2, 2007
    I took the easy way out...

    I followed David's pop tutorial to find the black and white points, so I went to Image->Adjustments->Threshold and slid the bar around to find and mark (shift+mouse click) the black and white points. Then, I opened a curves adjustment layer and set the black point (shadow under the leaves) and the white point (upper stem of the flower).

    While this changed the white balance and lightened up the image I thought a little more "pop" was in order so I opened another curves layer, though I could have added curves in the same layer that I used to edit the black/white points. Once I adjusted the curves I thought the effect was a little strong and that the leaves were too dark. I totally masked the leaves and then lower the opacity on the whole layer.

    I only spent a very short time in the desert, but I'm not a fan over the oversaturated images people make of it. The true colors are not like that and so I feel that they make the images look very fake. So, my image is probably flatter than most others will like. ne_nau.gif

    ...Speaking of fake, I also cloned out a large bush in the background, just to the right of the flower. :D

    158661611-L.jpg
    Christina Dale
    SmugMug Support Hero - www.help.smugmug.com

    http://www.phyxiusphotos.com
    Equine Photography in Maryland - Dressage, Eventing, Hunters, Jumpers
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