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dalippe

How to post-process 2500 ISO B&W

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Maybe too obvious, but keep in mind the CS3 edit>fader. Often there's a sweet spot of grain that's below what NN wants but still effective. Hard to hit it on the first attempt.

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Do you have a RAW file somewhere? I was only using the JPEG you posted.

 

Anyway, I hope this works for you!

 

Hi Jamie,

 

Thanks for the clarification. I do indeed have a raw file from which I'm working. Here's what I've done so far:

 

1. I took your advice about the WB but otherwise did no editing on the raw other than to pull the black point back to zero so as not to lose any information before going to PS.

 

2. Conversion in Alien Skin (Tri-X 400, no additional grain).

 

3. Some local corrections (lightening their faces, darkening the background).

 

4. Heavy NN restricted to her neck

 

5. Very light NN on entire image

 

6. Add back in grain. I used Filters...Noise rather than the film grain you suggested for no particular reason other than familiarity. I'll probably try your suggestion also.

 

Here's how it looks so far. As you can see, I opted to keep a fair amount of grain in the shot rather than trying to clean it up too much. The only grain that really bothered me was on her neck, and I attacked that pretty aggressively. How do you think it is going?

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Hello David...

This is one of my trial....

 

I did a lot of things, so I recorded an Action in CS3 to send it to you together with the file.

If i remember exactly:

1) I removed any sharpening in ACR

2) desaturated the blue channel

3) corrected WB

4) set a curve of contrast

5) opened the file in CS3

6) corrected the blue channel again

7) converted to grayscale

8) manually regulated levels

9) applied a contrast curve again

10) saved the picture as JPG (after resize)

 

11) please let me know what you think about...

 

Maurizio,

 

I responded to your email. Did you get it?

 

I like your B&W image quite a bit. In fact seeing it makes me think I overdid it when I ligtened their faces in my version above... Unfortunately, I'll have to correct it as yet another layer since NN layers don't respect changes below themselves and I lightened their faces before removing noise...

 

David

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Here's a completey different version, made with no work in PS. All in LR. Not as much dynamic range, but perhaps "truer" to the dark event. Perhaps the one thing I might do to this in PS is to clean up her neck with NN.

 

David

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Well, I liked the lighter skinned version... if you want to correct the density a wee bit on a "too light" shot like that, add a duplicate layer and set the mode to multiply, then adjust the opacity till it looks right.

 

Anyway, I think you're getting a good sense of many of the tricks here

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Oi! Shootie the grumpy one......... the images look awfull and a flash would have done the job, saves on cling wrap, but I still luv ya babie:) with you smug life style here catcha brick

 

..... anway one is better shooting 800 minus two stops

I like your photos.....very edgy!

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Looks like you get the same grid-like pattern of noise that I do on the higher ISOs with slow shutter speeds. The grid goes away with shutters speeds around 1/60th and faster at the same high ISOs. Still never got a good explain as to why. The grid is very regular.

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Here is a conversion I did with True Grain.

 

I used the curves function to brighten up the dark tones and increase contrast. I used the Bergger film stock, no filters.

 

Oh, as an afterthought in Lightroom I bumped up the exposure a quarter stop and tweeked the fill.

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Here is another go at it...

 

a Lightroom only job with a boost in brightness, a touch of curve... a bit of cyan tint and vinginetting. The grain is so course that the only real options are to hit it with a dedicated application like NN, or to cover it up and lean with it by adding more grain.

 

Nice question.

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Thanks Hans! I think it looks quite good. Did you NR before or after the Alien Skin conversion? And did you use grain or no grain in Alien Skin?

 

Thanks!

 

David

 

Hi David, first NR, then Exposure 2. I used grain to hide some of the imperfections caused bij NR.

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my first post. about 5 minutes work just using cs3 ps a combination of levels/layering gaussian blur/unsharpen/add noise along with utilizing normal/multiply/screen layering modes... and a little touch up here and there. I think Maurizio has a nice one there too... I say embrace the grain, don't fight it. more time could be spent on careful masking and touch up, but this gives you a quick idea. good luck.

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Thanks tollie and bhomatude for your versions. Sorry I didn't responded earlier, but time has been short of late

 

I had some time tonight, so I tried another version. I think Maurizio got the tonality of the faces just right, so I imitated his version in that regard, but used a darker background. With regard to noise, I used neither NN nor added grain, except on her neck. There I used NN to get rid of the nasty digital noise, and added back a modest amount of grain so it wouldn't look too smoothed out. The rest of the "grain" is just the digital noise, neither reduced nor enhanced.

 

At this point, I think it is fair to say that this mediocre shot has received more cumulative attention from the LUF forum than it deserves! But it was a great example for me for learning how to deal with noise in extreme situations, so thank you to everyone for your help!

 

David

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File DNG opened with C1 and converted in PS CS 2 B & W, duotone Pantone, adj.levels, iso 2500 Speed 1/20 Aperture f/2 Summicron 50 m8. No noise reduction.

Thanks for attention.

Lorenzo

 

 

 

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wonderful shot. Amazing tone, esp. at such a high ISO. So now its time to go shooting at ISO 2500, BW. Very impressive.

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