Getting rid of bright white.

Discussion in 'Critique Forum Archives' started by Tweek Sound, Aug 31, 2006.

  1. Tweek Sound

    Tweek Sound TPF Noob!

    Aug 22, 2006
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    Concord NH
    Here is a photo of some candles. I took a half dozen and tried different things with lighting but I was pretty limited and this was the best shot.
    I used a flash and now I want to make it b&W (surprise, surprise).
    But there is so much brightness that I can't seem to tame.
    I know reshooting it with a decent lighting would be best but it's not really an option.

    I also really like very contrasty B&Ws so that makes it harder.

    Here's what I got minus the leveling I was trying.


    I'd love for someone to get a good balance and maybe explain a bit on how they did it.

    Here's the original Jpg.

  2. tempra

    tempra TPF Noob!

    Feb 26, 2005
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    Oxford, UK
    The bright white parts are whats known as blown out or overexposed, there is nothing that you can do about them sadly as there is no information there to bring back any detail.

    With digital, you are better to underexpose rather than overexpose as you can bring dark detail to life but not vice versa.

    The only option is a reshoot, preferably without flash and use a tripod for the longer exposure, if you want it B&W then you can use any available light as it won't matter too much with any colour casts from lights that are not balanced.
  3. JamesD

    JamesD Between darkrooms

    Mar 20, 2005
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    Living in Snapshot reality.
    I thought I read somewhere that there is a lot of unused information toward the bright end of the scale in digital. I don't know the details, since I'm a BW film guy (and I'd merely burn in the bright parts) but you might try using PS's burn tool if you have these images in RAW format.

    I'm sure someone more knowledgeable will come along and correct me. :lol:
  4. markc

    markc TPF Noob!

    Mar 8, 2004
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    Rochester, NY Velocity: Unknown
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit

    Yup. You want to push it towards the bright end as much as you can without blowing anything out. It can be a tricky balance. If you shoot RAW, you might be able to recover the highlights, as JamesD mentioned. Even if the LCD shows blown areas, you can sometimes push it more and extract more info, since it's showing a default conversion.

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