Snow shot help!

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by Defy, Jan 28, 2009.

  1. Defy

    Defy TPF Noob!

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    Ok this has probably been beat to death on this forum but i would also like some help with fixing my photo. I am a total PS noob and have no photography skills so be gentle. How do i fix this photo? I mean like total idiots guide style.... (i have photoshop CS3, once i find a good deal on cs4 i will upgrade)

    [​IMG]


    Then after i fix it how do i take the shot right the First time?
    Lastly how do i put all those cool borders on my pics with my website name?
     
  2. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Unfortunately, the firewall here at work is blocking your image, but judging by the title, I'm going to go out on a limb and guess a very over-exposed snow scene? Since I can't see it, I can't offer any "rescue" assistance, BUT, assuming I'm correct, then getting the exposure right really isn't all that difficult.

    First, you need to understand that your meter is designed to read the light reflected off of an "average" surface. In photographic terms that's referred to as middle grey. So, your camera is "seeing" middle grey, even though the scene is bright white. This results in something between slightly over-exposed and totally blown snow.

    How do we compensate? Easy. The secret's in your hand. Assuming you have average caucasian skin, then set your camera's meter to 'Spot' and exposure mode to 'Manual'; meter the palm of your hand and add one full stop. In other words, if your hand meters as 1/125 at f8, then you need to use 1/250 @ f11 (or any equivalent).
     
  3. Defy

    Defy TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for your help i will go try! Anyone want to help with fixing the pic in ps?
     
  4. TheUndisputed

    TheUndisputed TPF Noob!

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    [​IMG]

    Is this what you are looking for?

    Fixing it was easy. I used the quick selection tool to select the dog (Only available in CS3 and CS4) then I took the dodge tool and set the exposure to 24 and selected shadows, and ran over it with a very large SOFT brush size (By soft i mean the hardness was turned to 0%), and I repeated the process until I got the right exposure of the dog I was looking for.

    Now, it still needs some tweaking after this, you will notice that after doing this the dogs features look kind of washed and faded. I then go to Image>Adjustments>Brightness/Contrast, and increase the contrast slightly to get the correct shadow tone from the dog.

    after the contrast is set, you will notice that the color of the fur is off, then you need to go to Image>Adjustments>Selective Color, and select reds, and adjust the reds until you get a golden look.

    Then go to Image>Adjustments>Hue/Saturation, and select reds again, and turn the saturation down a bit.

    then, click the marquee tool, and right click the image, and select "Select Inverse". Once you do this, select the burn tool, turn the exposure to 17, and increase the brush size very large, then go over the snow, darkening the snow to the desired level (make sure the selection for the burn tool has highlights selected). Once you achieve the desired tone of the snow, you will see some areas on the dogs fur that are still pure white where the snow is seen through the fur.

    Select the marquee tool again, and once again, right click the image and select "Select Inverse." Once you do this, select the burn tool, and shrink the tool brush size to a size that is moderate just to cover the basic outer edges of the dogs fur, and run over the edges of the dog with the burn tool until the correct tone is achieved. Then select the marquee tool and click anywhere on the image, and you are done.
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2009
  5. Ptyler22

    Ptyler22 TPF Noob!

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    Not sure if this is what you wanted or not but all I did, was go to the Image tab on top, and then go down to adjustments, then right near the bottom you will see Shadow/ Highlight. click on this and check "show more options" so that you have more adjustments you can make to fine tune the things you want to make brighter or darker. I also did some basic sharpening.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Samanax

    Samanax TPF Noob!

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    Be aware of the light and which direction it's coming from. Understanding light is one of the most important things in photography.

    For this pic you'd want the light coming for another direction so that the dog is lit up on the side you're taking the picture of, not the other side.
     
  7. chadsdphoto

    chadsdphoto TPF Noob!

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    Another way to look at shooting a situation like this is - The light meter in any camera is trying to make everything a medium (18%) grey. So white snow will be darkened or deep shadows will be lightened if you follow what an overall average meter reading tells you.

    So, in bright sunlit snow conditions you are going to need to overexpose so the snow is white and not grey. In this picture what you really want exposed properly is the dog. The solution can be spot-metering on only the dog, metering your hand for an average as mentioned above, or taking a guess at needing about 1-2 stops more light than the meter says.

    On my Nikons in situations like this I usually dial in about +1 stop on Exposure Compensation and it comes pretty close. Spot metering is probably the best way to go, but if the subject is moving quickly, it's not easy to do.

    Realize that you are also probably going to blow out some of the highlights in the snow and the edges of the shot in this case. Many times snow doesn't have much for detail in it anyway, so pure white is okay. And you can darken the edges in PS later. Again, the dog is what is most critical in this shot, not the snow.

    Hope that helps some. :wink:
     
  8. Judge Sharpe

    Judge Sharpe TPF Noob!

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    Good Job Tirediron- great explanation of snow (or Beach) exposure. Too often we go by the meter reading not realizing the background will over power th subject and leave it dark. Bracketing helps and with Digital cameras, it does not cost anything to shoot a bunch of images with different exposures to get the right one.
    Judge SHarpe
     

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