Minor Crisis

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Thru_These_Eyes, Aug 3, 2009.

  1. Thru_These_Eyes

    Thru_These_Eyes TPF Noob!

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    I did some portraits yesterday and when I started to edit them, I thought they'd look better if I had done them on a white background....unfortunately they are out of town-ers so I won't have the chance to re-do them....does anyone know of an easy way to make the background white in photoshop? I am awful in PS and would love some tips. The background on the originals is just your typical outdoor shots....lots of green and a a house or two in some. Is this even possible? Or should I just re-shoot them?
     
  2. musicaleCA

    musicaleCA TPF Noob!

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    Meep. Easiest thing to get a white background is to...well...shoot them on a white background. But you probably figured that already.

    There is a way to do it, but it's a little painstaking. You have to take your time and be careful, mainly around the hair, because that is frighteningly easy to butcher. (I'll admit my masking of hair still sucks. It's such a pain to do right.) I'd start with a new layer of white, add a layer mask, fill the mask with black, and then start painting-in white on the mask where you want the white background to be. When you get to the small details, go very, very slowly, use a soft, small brush, and double check every stroke. And when you're done, take a break, have a coffee, and then look over every small detail again to make sure you did it well.

    Rinse and repeat. My advice would be to limit this editing to a few images at most. It'll be hell if you try to do this to a ton of them.

    Edit: If that fails, OnOne's MaskPro might help you (or save you).
     
  3. Thru_These_Eyes

    Thru_These_Eyes TPF Noob!

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    oh. no.
     
  4. SrBiscuit

    SrBiscuit TPF Noob!

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    what about "replace color"?
    if your BG is an obvious color, you might be able to make some headway by using the replace color adjustment. just play with the fuzziness and see if it looks ok. if there is any of the current BG color in their clothes or skin or anywhere BUT the BG...you might be in trouble. scenic BG are gonna be tough.

    musicale is right though...it;s a real PITA around hair.


    *EDIT*
    post up what youre working with and lets see how tough it'll be.

    *EDIT 2*
    just tried the replace color with a scenic pic i have....BRUTAL...just mask it ;)
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2009
  5. camz

    camz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    +1 on masking hair...very difficult especially when there are runaway strands where the hair isn't grouped together. Why don't you post a sample and see if it's something easy to fix. If the hair is bunched up together it shouldn't be to bad. But if the color of the background shows in between the fine details of hair strands.. it does suck to PP.
     
  6. musicaleCA

    musicaleCA TPF Noob!

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    Yeah. Replace colour is really only a viable option if you have a very obvious colour that isn't even close to skin tones or other tones common to the human body...like a green screen. >.<

    I agree. Post an example, and we can offer-up some relative opinions on just how much of a ride you're in for.
     
  7. deci

    deci TPF Noob!

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    Another vote for the 'Replace colur' option. Unless your a real expert with masks, channel masking and 'calculation' methods, most of the work is going to be really messy and/or take hours. Good luck:sillysmi:
     
  8. shmne

    shmne No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The replace color option isn't going to work, I can tell you right now. Unless you set up the shot with using this process in mind you'd be spending hours selecting the right colors. Maybe doing many layers of color removal would work but it would be even worse then just pen tooling.

    At this point your best bet is to pen tool out the body and recreate the hair using the liquefy tool and dragging out tiny strands of hair on your own to mimic the original. It is what we learned to do :)
     
  9. JerryPH

    JerryPH No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    If the backgrounds are of something outside... game over, it will be a long involved process, even if you bought something like MASK PRO.

    The trick, as mentioned, is to do it right the first time (why was this not cleared up before the shoot is what I am asking myself ;) ). Unless this is something that they specifically asked for, why are you even agonizing over this?

    Plan B could be... if they are from out of town and they want white backgrounds, do a reshoot (takes 30-60 minutes if you are setup before hand and ready), and send them the few pictures a day later. There are tons of ways they could receive the pictures, starting with email attachments or if it is photos, the post, and on from there.
     
  10. musicaleCA

    musicaleCA TPF Noob!

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    Don't you get annoyed with the pen tool? Don't get me wrong—sometimes it's great to have a vector mask instead of a raster one—but I've agonized over the pen tool quite a bit. Takes a whole bunch of effort to get those little kinks in what you're masking to get right. Good point about the joys of liquefy though.

    I'm with Jerry, really. It's probably not worth the pain. >.<
     
  11. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Check out GML Matting it's freeware that works pretty good for this kind of thing. At least it has the few times I've ever used it.
     
  12. c0ps

    c0ps TPF Noob!

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    Trust me on this one! shoot it again on the next meet.
     

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