I've seen the light (but the wall hasn't... help!)

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Sim, Oct 19, 2008.

  1. Sim

    Sim TPF Noob!

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    I got two speedlites a couple weeks ago and have been experimenting with them ever since. I took this picture last night and need a bit of advice about removing the shadow above/behind my head:

    [​IMG]

    I know ideally I should have shot it so there was no shadow present, but I didn't quite manage it (for the record, I did have a flash behind me shooting up but hey, I'm still learning). Anyway, I know a reshoot would be the best approach, but I'm curious how others would go about removing the shadow if that wasn't an option. I use Photoshop CS3 for editing -- what tools/steps would you follow? I've tried the clone tool and dodging but nothing looks quite right.

    Edit: full res jpg is available here if anyone's interested.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2008
  2. Early

    Early TPF Noob!

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    I'm perplexed, and can only come up with maybe the pages have hot spots from the front flash. It would be a nice challenge to correct it without resorting to PS. Perhaps you can PM MyaLover, who usually hangs out in People photography. She's great with lighting.
     
  3. Ls3D

    Ls3D TPF Noob!

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    There is not much data in your thumbnail, so cloning results are blotchy... even at larger resolutions it could be difficult to get an even looking result... but once you have your self isolated on a layer, larger clone stamps, and then some smaller cleanup cloning should work alright at full rez.

    Alternatively you could just paint gradients or whatever behind your isolated layer. Look at the layers in this PS.

    You might underexpose a stop or two and then adjust curves and levels to regain dynamic range in post. Sorry if I'm nerding out on your here..

    -Shea :mrgreen:

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Sim

    Sim TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for your response :) The hot spots on the pages are definitely from the front flash, which was in the book. The only reason for the shadow on the wall that I can think of is that the front flash overpowered the back flash; it make sense because I did have them on the same power setting. I'll try setting them to different groups next time and playing with the power.

    Thank you for taking the time to create the psd... it's really helpful! Makes me wonder if it's possible to use the colour from the gradient layer while taking the texture (but not the colour) from the background?

    And nerding out's a good thing as far as I'm concerned! I did underexpose the shot but I'm not sure by how much... I just played with the shutter speed until I liked the look. Thanks again!
     
  5. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Move yourself and the light source(s) further from the wall. Were you using diffusers on your strobes?
     
  6. Sim

    Sim TPF Noob!

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    Yep, had Sto-fen Omni-Bounces on them. I know that cuts about a stop so I guess I should increase the power if I move away from the wall too...
     
  7. Ls3D

    Ls3D TPF Noob!

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    Sure, this is not only possible the practical. Look at the transfer modes of these layers used to both texture a clear gradient, and produce a specular lighting effect.

    This does not remove the problem of a small cloning area, but you could work up a texture that tiles or capture another texture to use in a composite as loosely illustrated by my example.

    BTW - I just desaturated the 'fx' layers, and used some curves, and brightness and contrast to 'purpose' the layers for use after some rough cloning.

    I enjoy compositing and 'in camera' skills as well, so it will be interesting to see what you come up with should you choose to share it.

    BTW - This approach to composting is not unlike building 'shaders' in 3D rendering work... may day job.

    -Shea
     
  8. Sim

    Sim TPF Noob!

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    This is great, thanks a lot! I'll see what I can do and if it's at all presentable I'll post the results :)
     

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