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Thread: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

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    Subscriber and Workshop Member MGrayson's Avatar
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    Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    I was processing a Holiday Snapshot (tm) made difficult because a large nearby green awning lent the subjects a sickly cast. Here it is out of the camera: Yuck! Never mind that my daughter is OOF etc. etc. I worked on this one for the skin tone challenge.



    Usually messing around with white balance is enough, but this time I could not get it right. It needs to be warmed up by about 5 million degrees and then a 300% magenta shift helps, but that can't be right.

    PS, of course, has the most flexible tools for fixing this - in particular, using curves in CMYK mode makes it easy to hit a skin tone target.

    My question is: what do users of LR and Aperture (my own DAM of choice) do? Aperture will show CMYK values in the loupe, but oddly doesn't seem to change those values as sliders are moved. I have to go nudge the loupe a bit with the mouse to get the new values to show up. In the end, I used the Tint brush on the particularly green or magenta skin areas and adjusted the slider to the hue that looked ok.

    Any advice or pointers to good tutorials on raising the dead in post processing would be much appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Matt

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    Here is an attempt...nothing was done to minimize the residual green on your wife's rt torso and cheek...could be amenable to a layer mask brushed in with a color balance correction.

    Here is correction with two steps...black/white point selection with curves then over all color balance of red/magenta .




    Bob

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    Here is a mild brushed correction over rt side of torso and face...



    Bob

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    Promise I will stop....

    Here is the above with a mild rotation...vignette...gaussian blur to eliminate
    some high frequency noise...NIK color efex Sunlight filter (20%).




    Bob

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    Bob,

    Thank you! I used Color efex, but missed the sunlight filter. That does wonders for the look-of-death. Rotation and vignette I did use - I showed the out of camera above, not my pitiful final result. But which correction brush did you use? Your results are better than what I managed...

    Matt

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    This last is a "Auto Curves with options.>Snap Neutral Midtones<." selected.





    On my monitor the previous looks good in PS...less so here. This is more red saturated....

    As far as workflow...Versace's Welcome to Oz has a number of great suggestions for color and light.

    Bob

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    Quote Originally Posted by MGrayson View Post
    Bob,

    Thank you! I used Color efex, but missed the sunlight filter. That does wonders for the look-of-death. Rotation and vignette I did use - I showed the out of camera above, not my pitiful final result. But which correction brush did you use? Your results are better than what I managed...

    Matt
    Matt,

    I used a layer with a color balance correction of +4 -1 0 on a mask...mild soft brush at 40% opacity to correct the regional imbalance...tough pic to do in one step but what an amazing view....

    My wife wants our Christmas picture in front of the fireplace...I would prefer your setting.

    Bob

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    Bob,

    I'll give the Versace a look. In PS, I tried the Auto Curves with Snap Neutral Midtones and it looked quite green still. Nevertheless, you've given me some good targets to shoot at.

    Thanks again,

    Matt

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    Quote Originally Posted by MGrayson View Post
    Bob,

    I'll give the Versace a look. In PS, I tried the Auto Curves with Snap Neutral Midtones and it looked quite green still. Nevertheless, you've given me some good targets to shoot at.

    Thanks again,

    Matt
    Matt,

    The Auto Curves was after all the other corrections....by itself it will not always get close.

    Color Checker Passport....keep it with you at all times for portraits. One capture with it will save a lot of work.

    Bob

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    Thanksgiving at the in-laws. It is a nice view. Here is looking east from that balcony. That 50 Lux does pretty well for a pre-ASPH

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    Showing your age Matt...

    Lovely capture...most of us who have a history with Leica...mine dates from 1983 appreciate the pre_asph's.

    In reality...how sharp do you need?

    I am shooting with the S2 and 70 but keep returning to the RF as it is
    such a part of my photographic history.

    Bob

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    My age is right - I finished grad school in 1983, but I came to Leica only a year ago. I have a V1 50 Lux that I like for wide open portraits, but then added this lens which is from much later - just before they went ASPH. I figure if I keep buying Leica RF lenses, I'll be able to sell them all one day for an S2 kit without it showing up on the household finances. "You must be confused, honey, I've always had this camera." (I should ask Guy if this ever works...)

    Actually, my wife complains about the M9, as she has an even harder time capturing the kids with it than I do, so maybe she'll buy the "this one has AF" argument. One can hope.

    Matt
    Last edited by MGrayson; 29th November 2011 at 18:19.

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    I spent an frustrating afternoon trying to capture my daughter at 4 years of age with a Sinar F2 4x5 camera on the porch...I can identify with your wife and all of us who have moving targets....perfect practice makes perfect.

    My wife is a visual and color savant....iPhone is her camera but she humbles me with her ability to see reality.

    S2 helps those of us with aging eyesight and high aspirations. Captures evolve into perspective and asthetic issues....makes the process much more personal. One can no longer hide behind the process...as the camera makes it so fluid, so transparent.

    We are of similar age...different histories.

    Look forward to seeing your posts.

    With warm regards,

    Bob

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    Re: Skin tones in Aperture/LR/PS

    Quote Originally Posted by MGrayson View Post
    I was processing a Holiday Snapshot (tm) made difficult because a large nearby green awning lent the subjects a sickly cast. Here it is out of the camera: Yuck! Never mind that my daughter is OOF etc. etc. I worked on this one for the skin tone challenge.
    If you were in Capture One Pro you could use the dedicated Skin Tone tool in the Color Editor to select all adjacent colors to the desired skin tone and compress (not replace) them towards the desired skin tone. You could then mask out areas of the image that you didn't want effected (or start with nothing included and paint in the change to just the face)

    All without leaving raw (so you could continue to make other underlying changes) and with about 10 seconds of effort. And you could copy/paste the color changes to other similar raws in seconds.

    That doesn't mean you have to give up your DAM; you'd just catalog the raw file and the Capture One processed TIFF in your DAM of choice.

    Doug Peterson (e-mail Me)
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