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please help this is pissing me off!
Old 12-31-2007, 10:38 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Hi all,
my images at much sharper the what they look like once I down load them.
this is my resizing routine. Please tell me what you do ro retain sharpness.

After cleaning (including a little unsharpen tool when needed) in photoshop,
I do use an action to "glamourize" the image but mask it and the pull all the detail back into the eyes and lips.


In PS I use the "save for web"
I reduce the image to 400x600. with no bur, checking opimize, quality 100%.
then save it as a JPEG.

What the freak is the problem!
Please advise
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Re: please help this is pissing me off!
Old 12-31-2007, 12:36 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm no PS master but I find that Sharpen Edges and a little added Contrast help before converting to jpg and save for web.
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Re: please help this is pissing me off!
Old 12-31-2007, 12:40 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Sharpening is always a challenge and many people make the mistake of thinking that they can add sharpening to the eyes (for example) when the eyes were not sharp to start with. But, if you have a photo that has sharp eyes (in other words that was "really" your focus point in the original shot), then you should be able to end up with nice crisp sharp eyes. But keep in mind that eyes are not all the same. Dark colored eyes and light colored eyes often need different lighting and different ways of doing the sharpening in PS.

I usually take a 3 step approach. To start with, I shoot in RAW. I focus on the eyes and make sure after the fact (by chimping and zooming) that the eyes are really sharp. I then process the RAW image in CS3's ACR and I apply light sharpening. I don't try to sharpen all the way there, but just enough to put back the sharpness that the digital process as slightly softened.

In PS, I then do selective sharpening of eyes and whatever needs it. I might also do light retouching to the eyes (whites, colors, etc). Now right before I use Save for Web, I use a stairstep plugin called WP Pro (link to WP Pro) to resize down to about 700 x 500 or 500 x 700. I have this set to do "light sharpening" which it does interactively during the stairstep reduction in size. Finally I use Save for Web. You never want the quality at 100% as that is massive overkill. I generally set it to 60 or 65 and that is more than enough to retain a good overall image. When you upload the huge 100% quality files like you're doing, G1 seems to over compress them and they often suffer somewhat. But keep in mind you can always insert the "original" image you uploaded by using the information I provided in How to use the G1 portfolio system article. Also be sure that the image is set to sRGB colorspace prior to using Save for Web to avoid any color shifts.

Anyway, the above 3 step process works very well for me.

Hope this helps.

Cheers,
rfs
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Re: please help this is pissing me off!
Old 12-31-2007, 12:57 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I've always heard (read, whatever) that sharpening is the last thing you should do before saving.
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Re: please help this is pissing me off!
Old 12-31-2007, 01:15 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmyd View Post
I've always heard (read, whatever) that sharpening is the last thing you should do before saving.
I've heard the same thing and it is in print in a number of places. As outlined in my workflow the sharpen process is really the last thing I do (it uses the WP Pro tool that I use). One also sharpens depending on the output. So if going to print I use a different sharpening process than if going to the web. But for selective sharpening, you can really do that at anytime. You just want to make sure that the final sharpening right before output does not undo the effects of the selective work (or over due it). Likewise one has to be sure not to undo the selective sharpening work by other effects applied afterward. I usually do a snapshot after selective sharpening and then I can come back later if needed and use the history brush to restore sharp eyes if some other effect undoes part of it.
Cheers,
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Re: please help this is pissing me off!
Old 12-31-2007, 03:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks, I purchased that plug-in and it works very well, especially for the price.

An quick example (less than 5 minutes processing and with the new plug-in):

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Re: please help this is pissing me off!
Old 12-31-2007, 03:39 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Hey Michael -- post a before/after so we can see what you're talking about. Chances are, moving the sharpening to the last will help, though.

If you're shooting with a high mp camera, don't need the extra resolution given your intended medium and want to maximize sharpness across the image, shoot wider and crop on the computer rather than zooming with a lens. By shooting wide, you'll greatly increase your depth of field leading to a sharper final image.

Here's an example "headshot":

8ft from the model's eyes using a Canon 40D at 100mm, your DOF is 6.8 inches.
8ft from the model's eyes using a Canon 40D at 80mm, your DOF is 10.8 inches.

By shooting at 80mm instead of 100mm, you increase the DOF by nearly 60%.
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Re: please help this is pissing me off!
Old 12-31-2007, 03:44 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I should have added that if you're using a lens like the 85mm prime, you can back up to get a similar sharper net effect:

8ft from the model's eyes using a Canon 40D at 85mm, your DOF is 9.5 inches.
10ft from the model's eyes using a Canon 40D at 85mm, your DOF is 15.0 inches.

By shooting at 10ft instead of 8ft, you increase the DOF by nearly 60%.
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Re: please help this is pissing me off!
Old 12-31-2007, 05:34 PM   #9 (permalink)
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DOF can definitly help, but keep in mind that there is still an actual point of focus and that will be the sharpest point with other points further from that one being only "acceptably sharp".
Cheers,
rfs
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Re: please help this is pissing me off!
Old 12-31-2007, 06:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R_Fredrick_Smith View Post
DOF can definitly help, but keep in mind that there is still an actual point of focus and that will be the sharpest point with other points further from that one being only "acceptably sharp".
Cheers,
rfs

Way back in the day, I'm talking the 70s--which ain't as "way back" as "way back" is for some others--I used to shoot a lot of actors for their headshots and portfolios. Actresses really liked my stuff.

I always shot them, indoors or out, with a 135mm prime and always tried to make it work @ f/2.8. (Since it was B&W, generally with Plus-X, my outdoor stuff always utilized a green filter.)

With tack sharp focus on their eyes, the ends of their noses went soft and, because the lens was long, it tended to flatten their faces. Since I lit them generally soft and even in the face, slightly over-exposed, their eyes became the principal focus of the images. As Sir Laurence Olivier once remarked about acting, "It's all in the eyes." I took his words as photographic advice.

I'm not sure this has anything to do with this thread. hehehhehe
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