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Author Topic: Your Personal 7-Point System  (Read 5224 times)

Jettatore

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #15 on: December 09, 2011, 06:20:11 PM »
Nice!  I'm gonna have to try that one.
Ditto, i'm a definite beginner with GIMP and layers in particular, but that's one i'm going to try too...

Not sure if there are any plug-ins yet to do that in GIMP.  Last I checked it's a few ticks down on upcoming features list but isn't here just yet and isn't handled by add on plug-ins but I could be wrong.

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #15 on: December 09, 2011, 06:20:11 PM »

distant.star

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #16 on: December 09, 2011, 06:26:16 PM »
I don't know how useful it could be, but here's my typical workflow.

1. Import RAW files into Lightroom.

2. Enable lens profile correction, if appropriate.

3. Crop, level, etc.

4. Check, correct, change white balance.

5. Adjust exposure if needed.

6. Work overall lighting, adjust highlights, darks, mid-tones, etc.

7. Adjust clarity, sharpness, vibrancy and color saturation if needed.

8. Go into tone mapping and globally adjust if needed.

9. Work individual color saturation if needed (grass is most common to pop the green).

10. Decrease noise as needed.

11. Export the file as jpg, then open in a 25" monitor and check the work.

12. Go back to Lightroom and make adjustments as needed based on looking at the big monitor.

Interestingly, I just got the Nik software plugins for Lightroom. Their workflow directions says work out the noise first. Here's their flow:

1. Use Dfine to reduce noise.

2. Go to HDR Efex or Viveza to develop an HDR look or to adjust light and color.

3. Go to Color Efex for color corrections.

4. Use Silver Efex if converting to B & W, if not, skip this.

5. Finish with Sharpener Pro to sharpen image.

What surprises me is that most software adjustments I've ever done always increase noise -- so I've always gone to noise reduction last. Nik advises doing it first.

Such is life, I guess.
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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #17 on: December 09, 2011, 06:29:27 PM »
Nice!  I'm gonna have to try that one.
Ditto, i'm a definite beginner with GIMP and layers in particular, but that's one i'm going to try too...

I wasn't at my computer when I wrote the post, so a couple of things to keep in mind. Be sure you hold down the "shift" key to open the file as a smart object. And then, when you want to create a new layer, be sure you hold your cursor over the first layer and use the right mouse button and select from the context menu "New Smart Object Via Copy."

If you just copy the layer, you'll get a new layer that is linked to the old one and whatever changes you make on one will be reflected on the other (useless IMO). But if you use the context menu and select the "New Smart Object" option, the two layers will be independent of one another so you can make changes to the one in RAW and it won't affect the other.

Thought I'd better point that out.
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Jettatore

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #18 on: December 09, 2011, 06:37:13 PM »
distant.star The reason you would work out the noise first is that, while utterly mild, it can have an effect on contrast and if you have your contrast set perfectly and then remove noise, you might have to re-adjust contrast/exposure/recovery settings again although it's a minor issue.  Otherwise, however, if you don't do the exposure first, it's a bit trickier to be able to figure out if you even care about noise removal for a particular image.  Either approach would work.

wickidwombat

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #19 on: December 09, 2011, 07:08:27 PM »
I'll bite... while this is a post raw filter, I love the topaz filters... from topaz denoise to adjust... adjust is good at giving a little pop and expanding DR and can even do faux HDR if you want to push it that far, Detail is very good at sharpening, denoise goes without saying... I use them when finishing an image to give a good photo a "wow" affect...

i like topaz too do you run denoise first or detail? i find detail can create some strange artifacts so i stopped using it
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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #20 on: December 09, 2011, 07:26:17 PM »
I wasn't at my computer when I wrote the post, so a couple of things to keep in mind. Be sure you hold down the "shift" key to open the file as a smart object. And then, when you want to create a new layer, be sure you hold your cursor over the first layer and use the right mouse button and select from the context menu "New Smart Object Via Copy."

If you just copy the layer, you'll get a new layer that is linked to the old one and whatever changes you make on one will be reflected on the other (useless IMO). But if you use the context menu and select the "New Smart Object" option, the two layers will be independent of one another so you can make changes to the one in RAW and it won't affect the other.
Thought I'd better point that out.
Not sure if there are any plug-ins yet to do that in GIMP.  Last I checked it's a few ticks down on upcoming features list but isn't here just yet and isn't handled by add on plug-ins but I could be wrong.

Yeah, I don't have photoshop (for the $1k i'd have to pay for a licence, winbloat, and possibly another PC so it doesn't mess with my current setup, i'd rather slog through GIMP and buy another lens). But still, just the general idea of processing RAW twice (or more), sharp foreground and less-sharp and higher-NR background at different exposures, staurations, etc, and then copying the sharp subject onto the soft background is something definitely worth investigating (even if it's slower than a simple 'smart select' in PS).
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Jettatore

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #21 on: December 09, 2011, 07:38:43 PM »
Oh don't get me wrong dr croubie, there are few to no essential features missing of which there is no work-around in GIMP.  You can get the same end result if you know what you are doing with it, and a lot of convenience features are fast on the way.  I'm currently working with a beta that is only published on the official site as source code and it's really quite impressive.  It's just that smart objects aren't currently in GIMP as far as I know and that's not a deal breaker for me, and they are coming.  I'm going to move away from all closed source software and use only Open Source by the end of 2012 if I can help it.  I don't even mind temporarily losing a few niceties.
« Last Edit: December 09, 2011, 07:47:28 PM by Jettatore »

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #21 on: December 09, 2011, 07:38:43 PM »

RC

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #22 on: December 09, 2011, 07:50:48 PM »

... Anyway, what does DPP stand for?  And is it better to use for my RAW images than what I currently use (Adobe Camera Raw in CS5 & Lightroom 3.5)?
Thanks

Didn't see this answered yet so...
DPP = Digital Photo Professional - Canon's included RAW image editor.  Is it better?  I doubt anyone would say yes.  I've only used LR and DPP.

dr croubie

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #23 on: December 09, 2011, 08:00:06 PM »
Didn't see this answered yet so...
DPP = Digital Photo Professional - Canon's included RAW image editor.  Is it better?  I doubt anyone would say yes.  I've only used LR and DPP.

I've only used DPP and UFRaw (a linux plugin for GIMP and Digikam). DPP is better than the ufraw in terms of it uses the 'picture style', which affects the gamma of the shot, looks a lot better than the defaults of ufraw. There's a way around this i've read (find the right file from the dpp library and use it), but once I got DPP working under WINE I didn't bother with ufraw anymore.

I do know Neuro's done a DPP vs DXO comparison and (i'm pretty sure) DXO won, if he reads this he can link to it...
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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #24 on: December 10, 2011, 01:23:55 PM »

... Anyway, what does DPP stand for?  And is it better to use for my RAW images than what I currently use (Adobe Camera Raw in CS5 & Lightroom 3.5)?
Thanks

Didn't see this answered yet so...
DPP = Digital Photo Professional - Canon's included RAW image editor.  Is it better?  I doubt anyone would say yes.  I've only used LR and DPP.
I only use camera raw and LR3.5, I really dont want to learn a new program.....  Who know's, I might just install it and play around... Thanks Guys!
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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #25 on: December 10, 2011, 01:49:49 PM »

... Anyway, what does DPP stand for?  And is it better to use for my RAW images than what I currently use (Adobe Camera Raw in CS5 & Lightroom 3.5)?
Thanks

Didn't see this answered yet so...
DPP = Digital Photo Professional - Canon's included RAW image editor.  Is it better?  I doubt anyone would say yes.  I've only used LR and DPP.
I only use camera raw and LR3.5, I really dont want to learn a new program.....  Who know's, I might just install it and play around... Thanks Guys!


One very nice feature in DPP that LR doesn't  have (at least to my knowledge).  You can view the specific AF point(s) positions on your image and check for focus and IQ.  That's pretty much all I use it for.

Neuro stated in another post that Aperture can do this as well.


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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #26 on: December 20, 2011, 07:03:44 AM »
Some of the questions which have been going through my mind are how do you get the sharpest and highest IQ images possible from your gear. For example, I always shoot in (large) RAW, lowest ISO possible, and the optimum aperture setting.  My Picture Style is set to standard and usually with highest sharpening.

I, too, have my first DSLR body after a long association with film.  I shoot RAW, at lowest possible ISO, and the optimum aperture setting, for highest IQ.  But here's where we differ...  And I'm not saying I'm right, I just want to hear from the more experienced digital shooters...

I set the Picture Style to "Neutral" and apply no in-camera sharpening.  I also switch off/disable all the automated optimizers in the Custom Functions.  Everything I do to the RAW image is applied in PP.  Have I got something wrong?

Thanks in advance for the advice!
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briansquibb

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #27 on: December 20, 2011, 08:00:25 AM »

I, too, have my first DSLR body after a long association with film.  I shoot RAW, at lowest possible ISO, and the optimum aperture setting, for highest IQ.  But here's where we differ...  And I'm not saying I'm right, I just want to hear from the more experienced digital shooters...

I set the Picture Style to "Neutral" and apply no in-camera sharpening.  I also switch off/disable all the automated optimizers in the Custom Functions.  Everything I do to the RAW image is applied in PP.  Have I got something wrong?

Thanks in advance for the advice!

All the camera settings apply to the jpeg image. By shooting in RAW you can change all these parameters in DPP without loss of IQ. The style settings, for example contrast and saturation, are then reversibly set in the RAW file - get it totally wrong in the camera and it still be corrected later.

This applies only to the camera settings, not aperture, shutter speed or iso, although some minor adjustments to exposure can be made.

The image you see on the screen is a mini jpeg which is the cameras interpretation of the stored RAW file

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #27 on: December 20, 2011, 08:00:25 AM »

thejoyofsobe

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #28 on: December 20, 2011, 09:22:23 AM »
1. Open folder containing RAW files in DPP

2. Quick check to once to mark strong shots and then a second pass now to confirm the ones marked are the strongest now that I've seen how all of them have turned out, this time paying closer attention to if I nailed focus.

3. Open the remaining marked images in the Edit Image Window

4a. Apply lens correction to the first image.
b. I usually shoot my shots in a tweaked Landscape picture style as take a lot of nature shots but if what i shot that day is low light, portraits or events I'll switch the image's Picture Style to Standard or Portrait.
c. If it's not already there adjust the unsharp mask to 7-7-2 as consistently like its results best
d. Copy recipe to all selected images

5. Crop and angle all selected images

6. Go one by one and tweak RAW settings for each file adjusting exposure, crop, sharpness, picture style, contrast, shadow, highlights, color temperature, chromatic abberation as I see fit. Unchecking and removing ones that I wasn't happy with.

7. Process to JPEG in separate folder with today's date and description

8. View all exported images in a slideshow. Then going through all of them once again I delete those JPEGs I'm not happy with their results

That's the main workflow with the following caveats.


If there are mixed clusters that have consistent lighting I'll get the white balance right for one and paste the recipe to that group.

Between 6 and 7 if there are any dust spots, hot pixels or easily removed distracting elements I'll use the Stamp tool with it's dust remover and clone brush.

If I've chosen Monochrome without a tone (i.e. Sepia, Blue, etc) I'll going into the RGB tab turn saturation down to 0 and then play with the Luminance and individual RGB curves to help make the photo pop more. I usually end up working with the Red filter but while I'm playing with the curves I might go back to the RAW tab and try out Yellow, Orange, Green, etc.

I've got my default noise reduction set to Luminance 2 and Chrominance 10 because I've been consistently happy with those results. I'll tweak it if I need to but if I'm not happy with the results from my first processing with the RAW noise reduction I process the resulting JPEGs through DPP again tweaking JPEG noise reduction. Obviously the results aren't going to be better than dedicated noise reduction programs but for I find in a lot of cases I can get it to a level I'm comfortable with.

If I want to increase dynamic range in a single photo I'll bracket the RAW's exposure and load the exported images into Photomatix for Exposure Fusion.

If it's a portrait that needs some tweaking I'll load the exported JPEG into Portrait Professional.

If I'm stacking StarTrails or making a composite shot of fireworks I load the processed JPEGs into StarStax

Panoramas go into Canon's photo stitch
« Last Edit: December 20, 2011, 09:27:41 AM by thejoyofsobe »

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Re: Your Personal 7-Point System
« Reply #28 on: December 20, 2011, 09:22:23 AM »