Hedgecoe - Crop - Kid - Color - Flash

jcdeboever

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Cropped. Got the ideas from Hedgcoe project on portraits using multiple flash. Looking for comments to improve. I think exposure, color, and composition is adequate. Not 100% so looking for the beat down if necessary.

#1 D3300, 85mm 1.8G, Two Flash Umbrellas, f/9, 1/80s, Manual focus-WB. AF-S, Center Weight
DSC_0873 CU.jpg


#2 Where she learned the duck face, have not a clue. Cropped, same settings as above.
DSC_0879 UC.jpg
 

Derrel

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I think these look noisy for a D3300. There are a few things going on that are just a bit tricky, and the first is the dark eyes with the big, black pupils. The first thing I would do is to use the iris enhance brush in Lightroom, at a moderate strength, and brighten up the eyes to match the skin. The skin is fairly bright in these, but the eyes show a dark room.

The second issue I see is the way the skin is rendered, in that we can see some yellowish undertones, as well as some pinkish tones, and also some under-eye magenta tones. This is something I've noticed on young children, and I think it has to do with their relatively thin, delicate skin. It seems to me that electronic flash light, from closer distances or when shot directly, can actually penetrate into the skin, and reveal color differences in areas that are close to one another on the face and nose. Whatever is the issue, I think the hair and skin have too much of a yellow tinge to them.

Something makes me think these were shot as in-camera JPEG files. There's just something to the color that looks like Nikon's JPEG engine rendering. I took a crack at these in Lightroom and did a bit of Yellow and Orange HSL (highlight, saturation,lumninance) correcting, but I'm not really satisfied that these are as good as they ought to be in terms of skin tone color.

I burned that magenta background issue down in shot #2 at the top and on the left side with the burn tool. I think there might have been a white balance mismatch with the light source at the time these were shot, which has lead to less than optimal color rendering. I did a bit of iris enhance on both these, and brightened the look up a little bit in both and tried to cancel out some of the yellow undertone in the hair. Shot #2 is still a bit overly contrasty,and was to begin with, with the hair ma bit plugged up in the shadows.
 

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Derrel

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Hmmmm...I just pulled the two originals into my EXIF reader and saw they had been shot using Nikon's "Portrait" capture mode...which is something I've not really used except to know that I don't like it. I think it is what made the skin tones look the way they did. I prefer Nikon's "Standard" picture control setting.
 
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jcdeboever

jcdeboever

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OK. They do look different on here than my desktop, I noticed that right away. I think your right on the color. They were shot in raw and converted to jpeg using the viewNX2 software, using a windows based machine. They were cropped so maybe noise from that, they were shot at ISO 100. I knew they were not quite right, flash / light is super hard for me. I used the Calculate automatically for WB in NX2 software. I used flash WB in camera. I also need to study up on the historgrams and Gimps version of the eyeball treatment you mentioned for LR. On my list of things.

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jcdeboever

jcdeboever

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Hmmmm...I just pulled the two originals into my EXIF reader and saw they had been shot using Nikon's "Portrait" capture mode...which is something I've not really used except to know that I don't like it. I think it is what made the skin tones look the way they did. I prefer Nikon's "Standard" picture control setting.

Well, that may have added to it... Crap... I did select portrait instead of standard. I forgot I did that, read it somewhere, maybe Ken Rockwell? I don't recall but I made a note of it to try it, and I did here... I should have known better, I didn't like the vivid mode, suppose just keep it in standard default. I guess I like to stand in front of strong winds and pee.
 
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jcdeboever

jcdeboever

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Thanks @Derrel. I think I can change that portrait to standard in the software, got to get to a windows machine and check. It added a second flash of less power so need to figure the distances out with it.

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Derrel

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There are a number of things that can affect skin tones. It's amazing anything every looks right once all the possible variables are accounted for. For example: UV coated flash tube(s), or uncoated tubes? Umbrellas with UV-enhancing brighteners in the cloth, or old, yellowed umbrellas or softbox with an old, yellowed interior or front panel? White balance setting on camera--is it 5500 or 5650 or even 5700 degrees Kelvin? What about software's influence: Nikon's Vivid, Portrait, and Standard color picture styles are EACH different. Adobe RGB, sRGB, Pro Photo RGB. WIndows system gamma, Macintosh system gamma? Is the web-browser in use color profile aware, or not? Laptop? Desktop monitor? Calibrated? Not calibrated? Yeeeesh!
 

The_Traveler

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imo, these are overbright and the light is straight on, losing all the lovely texture and coloration on the surface of a child's face.
 

Donde

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The first looks grainy to me...maybe my monitor.
 
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jcdeboever

jcdeboever

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The first looks grainy to me...maybe my monitor.
It is not your monitor. It was cropped and looks as such. I'm hard at it trying to learn and flash photography is driving me insane. Working light in photography is much different than working painted light on a canvas. I am going to continue to work at it.


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jcdeboever

jcdeboever

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imo, these are overbright and the light is straight on, losing all the lovely texture and coloration on the surface of a child's face.
Any suggestions would be welcome sir.

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