adding magenta.. what's enough/too much? pic included

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txdoula's picture
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adding magenta.. what's enough/too much? pic included

Okay.. so stemming from the other post where I think I worded what I was thinking wrong. (blushing.. i'm seriously kicking myself for that ladies!) I am trying to figure out how to add magenta or fix an image that looks too cyan? So this is what I got by adding like -6 magenta on a color balance layer in cs4. If I added more it looked really pink to me and I would assume that is not the right color either.. I added "sunshine" to the picture and I think that is what is throwing it off. I like the effect it gives it but I just need to get the color right. I have seen a lot of sunburst pictures and I am trying to learn how to add that when you are not in a location to get it naturally because the ones I have seen done RIGHT like that are beautiful if done to the right image.

okay.. so here is 'before' that looks too cyan, right?
IMG_6606

and here is "after" with the magenta slider at -6 on a color balance layer... how do you know how much to do? is there a way to tell easily other than eye-balling it? This one seems too "pink" to me, or is that just me?
IMG_6606-m

txdoula's picture
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ok.. just tried hue and saturation layer.. decreased hue and increased saturation.. what about this?

IMG_6606-hs

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Not seeing much change in your two images at all. Hope you don't mind...I had a play. Private in my flickr...let me know if you want me to take it down.

Oh, and a correction...she's not too cyan...she's too green (and yellow here). If she were too cyan, the fix would be to add red. Too green, you add magenta. Too yellow, add blue. Really is important to train your eye to see those colors so you can fix them easily and quickly.

For the first image, I did a color balance layer. Settings are: Shadows (from top down) -1, -9, +13. Midtones -6, -10, +9, Highlights 0, -6, +6. Basically that means I added magenta and blue to everything and reduced red in the midtones.

With just those settings I got this. A noticible improvement in the overall color.

Then I proceded to play with a levels layer as well as a contrast layer and added some saturation using the saturation tool. Also played with the burn tool to add darkness to the background and other select parts and the dodge tool to brighten her face.

That got me this:

Not perfect...but was just a quick messy play. A check of the color numbers shows that the skin "numbers" are now just about right. Hope that helps some.

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OOPS...just noticed you wanted to have that sun haze.

Here is the last edit from above tweaked by adding Pioneer Woman's free sunshine action. I added a layer mask to the action and used the gradient tool to fade it from all but the upper left hand side of the photo. Then I did the CS4 lens flare effect that can be found under "filter" > "render".

That resulted in this:

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THANK YOU!!! Perhaps I should have posted the sooc. I used the pioneer woman free sunshine action at a low (maybe 25-30% opacity) and added contrast with a levels layer and I also added the lens flare that you can barely see because I JUST found that and so this is one of the first pictures I have played with the sunshine AND lens flare. I think that is what washed the image out too much b/c the original is not like that. Thank you for taking the time to explain that and playing with it and showing the image you came up with. I am going to play with this tonight using what you said and see if I can come up with something similar but starting with the original. I do have a question about the lens flare.. which one did you use and at what percent? I can't remember which one I tried first on this, I think it said "35mm prime"?? something like that and at 100%. It didn't show it near as much as yours did and you got MUCH closer to the effect I was looking for.

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I used the zoom lens one. Can't remember what the brightness level I chose was. I think it was about 100....someplace near the middle.

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WOW.. you make this seem so easy! ugh.. I've been messing with this and can not get it to look like your version! I am not good with the dodge/burn tool and can't figure out how you did that to her face and hair, her hair is beautiful in your version! THIS is why I have not been charging.. sometimes I nail the images, especially in perfect shooting conditions (like my bridals).. others, I use the same techniques I would normally use (meter the same, make adjustments accordingly..)but the images just don't turn out the way I want them to. I usually get the focus I'm looking for but photoshop kills me. So until I learn how I can do THOSE (like you just did) kind of things, I just don't feel right charging much, if anything. Even when I "understand" what someone is telling me, I am not doing SOMETHING right in photoshop! How did you learn this stuff? Are there websites you recommend or books? I don't want to be a pest, but I REALLY want to learn this stuff! I really need to start making money to help things out around here and I love doing this!

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I honestly learned 90% of what I do in photoshop through trial and error. It's the part of the photographic artform that makes the most sense to me...probably due to my background in painting. There are a few small tips and tricks that I learned from tutorials...things like how to create an action, sharpen for web, stuff like that. But as for the photo adjustments, it comes with time. The more you do it, the more you know what effect each tool is going to give and then you start to naturally know what each photo needs.

My suggestion to learn photoshop is to play with all the tools that are there. If you don't know what something does...do a google search on it and read about the tool, what it does, and how to use it. Then try it out on a photo.

That burn tool can be tricky because it's just not that precise. Another option to explore instead of the burn tool in this case is to go to select -> color range for the grass. Select the eyedropper tool and click on the green background somewhere...then slide the fuzziness slider towards the right to get the majority of the grass selected. Then once everything is selected, go to adjustments ->brightness/contrast. Slide the brightness slider to the left to darken the grass and the contrast slider to the right to give it a touch more saturation and contrast. A bit easier to do than the burn tool...but harder to describe. Smile This solution works great when you have a background that is totally different from any of the colors in your subject.

The thing that made the biggest improvement to her hair when I was working with it was contrast. It just needed some darkening. The color adjustment alone can make the hair start to look funky. Add that contrast to get that rich tone. You can add contrast really simply with the burn tool on the "shadows" selection and maybe a touch with the "midtones" option.

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Okay.. been playing with this for hours and here is what I have come up with so far. It seems fairly close (I love the second image you posted plus the lens flare but minus the sunshine).. but I feel like that spot on her hand and dress is too bright on mine and the background and her dress are not quite the same.. but closer, right? Biggrin

IMG_6606-2

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hmm... looks way different when i post it.. arg! maybe too much contrast?

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Without so much contrast..

IMG_6606-1

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looking good.

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LOVE LOVE LOVE that last edit! A real winner!

Good on you!

Best,
GiGi

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Very beautiful! I would have thought her dress was supposed to be a heather-blue/gray like in the original....even though I could easy see her skin & hair were too green/yellow.