saturation

All posts tagged saturation

I found another good “victim” for the cross-processing.
Before:

Cross-processing a door

D700, ISO200, 1/180 sec @ f/4, Nikkor 50mm

Then into Photoshop:

Screenshot of Photoshop

Four different Hue/Saturation layers with different blending modes...

… gives us this end result:

Cross-processing in Photoshop

The end result after cross-processing

A month or so ago I wrote a little post about HDR. A little post about what HDR really is and how it should be used in order for it to be called HDR, and how the biggest part of the people confuse HDR with cross-processing.

I decided to also do a little post about cross-processing. Now, this cross-processing has nothing to do with combining shots which are taken from a series of photographs with different exposure times. It originates from the film days (you know, that funny plastic stuff with a light-sensitive emulsion layer, on which you took pictures in the previous century 😉 ) when photographers – by accident or on purpose – e.g developed on the “wrong” photographic paper or with the “wrong” chemicals. Cross-processed images are/were typically recognized from their unnatural colors and high contrast.

In the current days of digital cameras and Photoshop cross-processing has gained a stack of new possibilities. Blending modes in Photoshop are a great way to cross-process images. They’re a great way to get those unnatural, muted or seemingly super-saturated colors.

Under here I put a couple of pictures that are cross-processed (nothing over-done, mind you, I have the sliders and blending modes well under control 😉 ). On the left the unedited, straight out of camera RAW-file, on the right the processed image in Photoshop. This isn’t just a matter of boosting the saturation. If you were to do that, you’d lose all the detail.

Barn door

Original image info: D200, ISO100, 1/180 sec @ f/2.8, Nikkor 50mm

Barn door

The final result

Barn door

Original image info: D200, ISO100, 1/180 sec @ f/2.8, Nikkor 50mm

Barn door

The final result

You might want to click the images to see the details in the Photoshop settings. And if you want to try yourself, just scroll through the blending modes in the layer palette to see what effect it has on the image. It’s the best way to learn what the different modes do to the images.

Ever since photo editing software saw the light of day the discussion has been going on whether or not post-processing is acceptable.
Many a “photographer” firmly believes that you’re not a good photographer if you can’t do “it” in-camera.
I think the whole discussion is too hilarious for words, if not even hypocrite.
I might not be the best person to get this discussion going, since I’ve been an avid Photoshopper (whooopsie! According to Photoshop’s Permission and Trademark Guidelines we’re not allowed to use Photoshop as a common noun or verb) ever since version 2, but what the heck… I’ll get it going anyway.

So… Why do I think it’s hilarious or even hypocrite?
Ansel Adams was a darkroom master. And he was a post-processing master. He dodged and burned the living daylights out of (or into?) his photographs.
Oh, but he used FILM! That’s different!
Yeah, right.

What about all those film photographers who pulled out their Velvia film, which was supposed to saturate the colors more?
The only thing that’s changed in the digital world is that we don’t pull out the Velvia film for extra saturation BEFORE shooting, but we go into Photoshop or Lightroom and do the saturation afterwards. And clean up some beans that got stuckon our sensor.

Oh, and all you photographers shooting JPG.
What do you think happens in-camera with the image when the data is processed into a JPG format? There’s a good amount of contrast added, a good amount of saturation, a good amount of sharpening.
But I guess that doesn’t count, because YOU’re not doing it, right?

I absolutely agree that editorial images should be untouched. That’s the golden rule.
But if you’re a landscape photographer, or any other kind of photographer…
Whatever it takes to make your images look good (just be careful not to overdo it) and makes them sell.
I’ve had discussions with people about this and even if I agree that you can’t make a good picture out of a bad picture, no matter how well you know Photoshop, you can enhance pictures.
If you get to know the possibilities of software like Photoshop, you learn to see potential in images that you didn’t see before. And you learn to create a unique style to your images if you’re going towards a more fine-artsie look.

And well… Be honest… Which one would YOU buy (if any)?

Before editing

Before editing

After editing

After editing

Or which one of these?

Before editing

Before editing

After editing

After editing

Note that these changes are all very minor changes. We’re not talking radical changes here, like one of my other creations:

Now this is Editing with a capital E. It some Photoshop knowledge and a peak in your other half's underwear drawer ;o)

Now this is Editing with a capital E. It requires some Photoshop knowledge and a peek in your other half's underwear drawer ;o) (source image courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox)

A screenshot of some of the Photoshop layers that were used to make this image

A screenshot of some of the Photoshop layers that were used to make this image (yeah, yeah, I know, not all the layers are named... ;o) )