Date   

Re: Niagara Spray--comments on individual versions.

Gary Bailey
 

 

From: colortheory@groups.io <colortheory@groups.io> On Behalf Of Dan Margulis via groups.io
Sent: Thursday, June 11, 2020 11:39
To: colortheory@groups.io
Subject: Re: [colortheory] Niagara Spray--comments on individual versions.

 

 



On Jun 11, 2020, at 2:06 PM, Gary Bailey <ggb18@...> wrote:

 

Hello. I am a member of this group but I have not posted or uploaded a photo to it.
I cannot see how this is done. Can yu help?

Thanks. 
Gary

 

When we moved the list to groups.io we never activated member uploading. I have done so now, so you should be able to create a new folder in the Photos section. Photos are still not permitted in the Files section.

 

Dan Margulis

 

Thank you. Once signed in, can I add my attempt to the Niagara Spray works? I found it interesting and look forward to the critiques.

 

G

 

 


Re: Niagara Spray--comments on individual versions.

Dan Margulis
 



On Jun 11, 2020, at 2:06 PM, Gary Bailey <ggb18@...> wrote:

Hello. I am a member of this group but I have not posted or uploaded a photo to it.
I cannot see how this is done. Can yu help?

Thanks. 
Gary

When we moved the list to groups.io we never activated member uploading. I have done so now, so you should be able to create a new folder in the Photos section. Photos are still not permitted in the Files section.

Dan Margulis


Re: Niagara Spray--comments on individual versions.

Gary Bailey
 

Hello. I am a member of this group but I have not posted or uploaded a photo to it.
I cannot see how this is done. Can yu help?

Thanks.
Gary

-----Original Message-----
From: colortheory@groups.io <colortheory@groups.io> On Behalf Of Andre Dumas
Sent: Thursday, June 11, 2020 10:37
To: colortheory@groups.io
Cc: Andre Dumas <dumas@magma.ca>
Subject: Re: [colortheory] Niagara Spray--comments on individual versions.

A low-quality image to start with, I’m looking at her face, in many entries the rendering is excessively pixelated, but so is the original. In a few, the results are blotchy, patchy skin.

Judging them for acceptable skin rendering (texture) and skin tones (believable smoothness and gradations), some are very good, some are good, some are not bad. Just looking at the face; number 404 is a winner, but too blue, 401 a close second, 406, 410, 411 are good, 402, 407, 412, 422, 423, 425 are not bad.

Just my opinion about the entries. Mine is 404… ;-).

André Dumas


Re: Niagara Spray--comments on individual versions.

Andre Dumas
 

A low-quality image to start with, I’m looking at her face, in many entries the rendering is excessively pixelated, but so is the original. In a few, the results are blotchy, patchy skin.

Judging them for acceptable skin rendering (texture) and skin tones (believable smoothness and gradations), some are very good, some are good, some are not bad. Just looking at the face; number 404 is a winner, but too blue, 401 a close second, 406, 410, 411 are good, 402, 407, 412, 422, 423, 425 are not bad.

Just my opinion about the entries. Mine is 404… ;-).

André Dumas


moderated Re: Case Study: Cinque Terre

Dan Margulis
 

In this and the Niagara study I had to return three entrants for the following reasons, so I kindly request that you keep them in mind.

1) Many mail clients automatically downsize attached images. Obviously, this feature needs to be disabled before sending me your entry.

2) We have all seen the value of the par images, which are produced by blends of the best versions. Please do not resize, crop, rotate or do anything else that would prevent your version from aligning properly with others.

Thanks,
Dan Margulis


Re: Niagara Spray--comments on individual versions.

ROBIN MARK D'ROZARIO
 

Dan,

Thank you for the comprehensive reply.

My early efforts were all screened and I thought harsher in transition than the subsequent false profile workflow.

"Screening an overly dark face definitely adds contrast to it because lighter areas lighten much more rapidly than relatively darker ones do"

However, one of the images used in the final blend was screened and perhaps was a contributing factor as below or maybe I just missed lightening the face enough!

"if you look at these entries you’ll find several where the lower half of the face looks nice but the top half, around the eyes/eyebrows/forehead is too dark. The chances are that these are the people who used Screen mode"

Regarding masks for the multiply layer-

"Here, for example, I’d be looking for a mask that was light in the waterfall and darker in the face. That would be the green channel, where the contrast between these two areas would be greater than in the RGB composite."

I never even considered this and conventionally used the merged RGB.Something new learnt here!

"It was interesting to note, however, that many of the people who assigned false profiles in the Niagara exercise said they were using some gamma value other than the above"

I used 1.4 and 1.5 on two images contributing to the final blend.While I preferred the final result using 1.5,However, the steps subsequent to FP involved were not the same in both images.

I personally find the purple spots terribly irritating.

"the following kloodge generally works:
 
1. In LAB, make a duplicate layer
 
2. Make a rough feathered selection around the blotch, keeping the blotch to less than half the selection area.
 
3. Filter: Blur>Average.
 
4. Change layer mode to Color and adjust opacity if needed.
 
Again, this is unlikely to work with captures from a higher-quality source."

Not knowing the above I spent considerable time to avoid aggravating them in the sky/falls and hid them in the concrete pillar bottom left by desaturating and darkening it.

Thanks very much.

Regards,
Robin Mark D'Rozario



Re: Niagara Spray: Results

Dan Margulis
 



On Jun 10, 2020, at 11:46 AM, k_d@... wrote:

I was surprised by how many entries had so much color noise in bkgd. Even the par image seemed terrible for water mist and clouds purple noise so evident; tho rest of the image was very good. I immediately judged in my mind that too much noise, so bad even seen at less than 100%, makes an image unacceptable....am I wrong?  Especially since it can be fixed rather easily.

I would say that the question answers itself. It is indeed easy to remove these splotches or at least minimize them. The fact that so many of us declined to do so suggests that they do *not* render the image unacceptable.

Dan


Re: Niagara Spray--comments on individual versions.

Dan Margulis
 



On Jun 10, 2020, at 9:52 AM, ROBIN MARK D'ROZARIO <rdrozario@...> wrote:

Two questions out of this:
1) Is False Profile/Multiply superior to Screen/Multiply or is it user/photo specific.

To some extent it’s image-specific but basically FP (or Exposure)/Multiply is more flexible and less dangerous.

If you look at these entries you’ll find several where the lower half of the face looks nice but the top half, around the eyes/eyebrows/forehead is too dark. The chances are that these are the people who used Screen mode.

Screening an overly dark face definitely adds contrast to it because lighter areas lighten much more rapidly than relatively darker ones do. With FP the face actually loses contrast temporarily, it becomes closer to the lighter areas (in our case, closer to the weight of the background falls) and overall the image is temporarily too light.

Tonal contrast in a face is sometimes a good thing and at other times not. I would prefer not to pre-empt the decision of whether to add it by using Screen while still in RGB. I’d wish to postpone the reckoning for another day, preferably when I’m in LAB.

Screening also may not lighten the image enough, and you may or may not have to make some kind of artificial mask. With FP/Multiply at least eight ready-made masks are available; by default I’d use the RGB composite from the background layer unless the dark areas are considered more important than the light ones, in which case I’d use RGB/Merged layer. There are also six individual channels that might make a better mask as well. Here, for example, I’d be looking for a mask that was light in the waterfall and darker in the face. That would be the green channel, where the contrast between these two areas would be greater than in the RGB composite.

If handled carefully all methods work, though some people make them more complicated than others. The PPW panel carries 1.0 and 1.4 gamma false profiles. The false profile, artificially lightening the image, is needed because otherwise the multiplication would probably plug the shadows, mask or not. The only time I use anything other than 1.0 and 1.4 is when the image already is somewhat light and there is no danger of shadow plugging. In that case I sometimes assign ColorMatch RGB (which is 1.8 gamma, rather than the 2.2 most of us use) and multiply away.

It was interesting to note, however, that many of the people who assigned false profiles in the Niagara exercise said they were using some gamma value other than the above.

2) Is there a permanent way to deal with the purple/Magenta blotches that magically appeared in this iphone image?  I assume they are an issue in other highly processed smartphone images as well.

They are indeed an issue at least in iPhone captures. In my experience they affect color only, not darkness, so they can be fixed directly in the A channel of LAB. Although the B channel is home to these defects as well it is not nearly as pronounced as the A so it can usually be ignored. 

These blotches show up  in areas of little color variation. Apparently Apple’s engineers have decided to save on storage and computation by ignoring minor AB variations. The area around the magenta splotches is a splotch as well, basically no variation in the channel at all, we just don’t recognize it as a splotch because it’s the color we expect.

If they needed to save on resource use, I tend to agree with them: these splotches can offend a professional audience but I doubt that the viewers of the Niagara Spray image would even notice. So I rarely bother taking them out.

There are several ways to fix them, some more complicated than others. If a similar blotch for some reason appeared in a capture from a better camera, there wouldn’t be much alternative to working directly on the A channel. But with the A and B in these areas being so detail-free in iPhone captures, the following kloodge generally works:

1. In LAB, make a duplicate layer

2. Make a rough feathered selection around the blotch, keeping the blotch to less than half the selection area.

3. Filter: Blur>Average.

4. Change layer mode to Color and adjust opacity if needed.

Again, this is unlikely to work with captures from a higher-quality source.

Dan


Re: Prince Phillip 99th Birthday photo

Rex Butcher
 

You are probably correct.  However, their daughter-in-law (Kate) takes some terrific photos of her children;  may be HRH should have asked Kate to take a portrait?  As an 'official' portrait, I don't have a problem  with the aesthetic quality, only  what I perceive as the technical quality.

And if I don't post again, I have  probably been locked in the Tower!

Toodle pip
--
What if the hokey cokey IS what it's all about??


Re: Niagara Spray: Results

john c.
 

I agree with you Doug. Also, I purposely didn’t do anything to downplay the man in the back because he might’ve been someone she met along the way and wanted to remember, maybe even a friend or relative. We just don’t know. I also saw that the water wasn’t looking good no matter what I did and I don’t really like the way it looks in almost all of the versions where it was emphasized, so I downplayed it, maybe to a fault, but I figured that after all, it was a portrait of a happy moment, and not a National Geographic photo of the power of water. Mine is 411
 
john castronovo
 

From: k_d@...
Sent: Wednesday, June 10, 2020 11:46 AM
Subject: Re: [colortheory] Niagara Spray: Results
 
I was surprised by how many entries had so much color noise in bkgd. Even the par image seemed terrible for water mist and clouds purple noise so evident; tho rest of the image was very good. I immediately judged in my mind that too much noise, so bad even seen at less than 100%, makes an image unacceptable....am I wrong?  Especially since it can be fixed rather easily.

Doug Schafer


Re: Niagara Spray: Results

Doug Schafer
 

I was surprised by how many entries had so much color noise in bkgd. Even the par image seemed terrible for water mist and clouds purple noise so evident; tho rest of the image was very good. I immediately judged in my mind that too much noise, so bad even seen at less than 100%, makes an image unacceptable....am I wrong?  Especially since it can be fixed rather easily.

Doug Schafer


Re: Prince Phillip 99th Birthday photo

Roberto Tartaglione
 

Maybe is a “private” snapshot, He and the queen are looking downwards, maybe toward a nephew or some young amateur.

Roberto Tartaglione
roberto@tartaglione.com


Prince Phillip 99th Birthday photo

Rex Butcher
 

What ho one and all,
 
I am a diligent lurker on this site and do not feel that my PhotoShop skills are worthy of the various challenges.  I have Dan's books but have to admit, that in many areas, the techniques are somewhat beyond me.
 
Recently, I have downloaded the challenge photos and attempt to 'improve' them and compare my results with Dan's designated 'best.'
 
However, this morning, here in the UK, all the national papers have a photograph to celebrate the 99th birthday of Prince Phillip.  In the interest of whatever copyright exist, this is a link to the photo from one of the national newspapers.
 
 
I may be missing something, but given the number of photographs taken of the royal family, and the technical ability of whomever they have to  edit the photos, this particularly image is terrible. Some fill-flash to fill the shadows but the image still lacks 'pop.'   If nothing else, the contrast between the front lit background and the backlit dark jacket was a poor clothing choice. 
 
Surely, a better image could have been selected?  Definitely needs a MMM work-over (in my humble opinion.)   Your opinion would be appreciated.
 
Thanks, toodle pip and stay safe.
 
Rex

--
What if the hokey cokey IS what it's all about??


Re: Niagara Spray--comments on individual versions.

ROBIN MARK D'ROZARIO
 

Thank you for the comments.
Despite multiple blends my effort(407) ended up with a darker, colder face and greener poncho. I concentrated too much on the falls.
Two questions out of this:
1) Is False Profile/Multiply superior to Screen/Multiply or is it user/photo specific.
2) Is there a permanent way to deal with the purple/Magenta blotches that magically appeared in this iphone image?  I assume they are an issue in other highly processed smartphone images as well.

Regards,
Robin Mark D'Rozario


Niagara Spray--comments on individual versions.

Dan Margulis
 


These are my notes on the specific versions in this case study. I thank all participants and hope you found it worthwhile.

Dan

*********************

401 Straightforward and effective. Pretty much a straight PPW with various blends. Used both Bigger and Velvet Hammers, and Shadows/Highlights, to try to get more detail into water. Blended red into RGB composite, luminosity mode, to lighten the face.

402 Chosen for par version. The person briefly describes making three different versions, each attempting to darken the background and lighten the face, then averaging them 33% each. I find the whole thing too dark so chose it somewhat reluctantly, but the falls themselves are excellent, and it has a certain excitement not found in, say, #401.

403 Chosen for par version. I’m not thrilled about choosing this one either, because the falls are definitely the wrong color, even though they make a nice contrast of mood and tonality with the woman. Note how the photobomber was desaturated to avoid distraction, too much IMHO. The young woman came out really good, it’s everything else that might be objectionable. The facial quality appears to derive from extensive work on the red channel.

404 Nasty cyan cast. The fleshtone isn’t necessarily wrong by measurement but a couple of areas are: the light background area between her shoulder and the photobomber measures 90L(3)a(4)b; something that light can be slightly biased toward coolness but this is too much. Also, the slicker (rainwear) is clearly supposed to be yellow. It gets affected by the background because it’s so transparent, but the tie area should be a strong yellow, and it’s 75L(8)a19b, greenish. The same point in the par version is 83L(12)a67b, lighter and much yellower.

405 Chosen for par version. My official entry, so no comment.

406 A very nice face, but basically a void where the falls should be. This person was very concerned with the prominence of the photobomber, and tried various things to emphasize the woman and de-emphasize him. In this he was successful. The photobomber is understated, but in a more natural way than #403.

407 another nice effort, downgraded for making the skin too dusky. He made several trial versions and blended them. He used Screen mode to lighten the face in a couple of them, and a false profile in another. The falls got a convincing dose of MMM.

408 similar basically to #407 but not as good because the slicker takes on added greenness, and so does the face. This person used a false profile at 0.75 gamma to reduce the darkness differential between face and falls. He also used Bigger Hammer, which accounts for the added pop in the water, missing from #407.

409 Contrast way overdone, top of face is plugged, shirt is losing color and lightest part of slicker washed out. Like many people, this guy had four different versions.

410 Similar to #403, which I preferred slightly because of a better face. The blueness of the water is wrong, but it sets off the woman nicely. Most of the work was done globally in Camera Raw, which accounts for the lightness of the falls. Some fairly standard manual retouching of the face. And, like #403, a serious effort to downplay the photobomber.

412 Chosen for par version. I really didn’t want to choose this because I don’t think it’s a picture of Niagara Falls; the water isn’t pronounced enough. OTOH this is one of the very best portrayals not just of the face but of the yellow slicker. The explanation: “I tried ALCE and VH, also ACR, none especially improved what I didn’t like, so it’s all soft masks and channel chops.”

413 This is mine but it is only to make a point about strategy. Many people worked with multiple versions but AFAIK they all were trying to make multiple *good* versions. Not me: I had one “good” version already, the one I made to give to the woman in 2017, #419. I was looking for a way to jazz it up, so I created this second version. There was no need to make #413 a usable image by itself as it was to be used only for blending. Making an overstated version like this has the additional advantage that it makes certain hidden problems obvious. I did not realize that I needed to worry about making the slicker too green, but this version made it clear that I did.

414 Another reasonable version with good background. It falls short of the best ones of this type because the face is slightly too dark and the slicker/face combination somewhat green. The workflow was largely PPW, employing a red>RGB blend in Lighten mode on a Luminosity layer to lighten the face. This necessitated masking out strongly red areas, such as her identification tag.

415 Here the presentation is not as attractive as #403 and #410, which also had them blue waterfalls (incorrect) but used a lighter touch. Here the face is too dark. The person tried to help it out with Velvet Hammer, which couldn’t go far enough. The falls were multiplied on a layer limited to blues, which may account for the purplish sleeves of the photobomber.

416 Face too dark and too red. The magenta cast can be measured at the top of the falls. The water may look green in comparison to the face, but according to the Info palette, it’s 2a(3)b, a light purple. The dark receptacle or whatever it is at left should clearly be black, but it, too, is purple.

417 Awful green cast. My guess is that the person was concentrating so hard on getting a good facial color (which he did) that he overused MMM and created a mess elsewhere.

418 Falls are interesting and overall the image is more or less neutrally correct, but the face is too gray. The person laid out his steps and commented, “Not satisfied, but too discouraged to try a redo.”

419 My 2017 version. Probably I am so used to compositions like this needing to feel sunny that I overlooked the physical setting. As many people pointed out, we could use a cooler feel.

420 Pretty good, interesting treatment of the sky, face rather colorless. This person used a false profile/multiply routine to try to lighten the face. Finding that not enough, he also blended, on a Luminosity layer, the red into the green. He overlooked the need to mask out the bright red stripe at the bottom of the ID tag.

421 Dark and foreboding,

422 Forgot to check range when complete. The colors are basically OK but just running Auto Tone on the final version makes a big difference.

423 Chosen for par version. This is my personal favorite because it has an excellent face while giving reasonable prominence to the falls. It also has an attractive coolness that others only achieved by making the falls blue. I would wish for a yellower slicker but that’s about it. Nice handling of the sky/falls intersection. The person’s explanation of his steps is long, but worth the reading:

The image from the Falls has color that is quite flat, and though there are no true highlights, the "white" of the Falls blocks up and suggests a sort of yellow-green cast overall. At the same time the girl in the foreground is too dark and will need a boost in contrast as well as color.

1. I started with a conventional approach, using separate curve layers to pull our some of the yellow-green color cast and add brightness/contrast;
2. then made a loose selection of the Falls portion & added a CRV layer in Multiply mode to increase contrast in the Falls;
3. and a separate HSL layer to pull much of the green cast out of the Falls & sky.

This produced an overall lighter image (except the Falls now with more detail), no huge color cast, but overall pretty anemic color- still flat & lacking color contrast. I thought about going further down this road, but I decided to experiment and do a second version with completely different technique. So I brought the original jPeg into Lightroom Classic.

4. In Lightroom I started with Color Balance, pulling -12 for the Color Temp (Blue) and +5 Tint (Red);
5. For tonal adjustments I added +.35 stops exposure, then -35 for Highlight Recovery, +55 Shadows and +12 for whites;
6. Then a high Dehaze setting (+45) and +15 Vibrance, but no use of Texture or Clarity - they just seemed to overdo it (maybe I should have anyway, could have dialed them back later?);
7. I also applied two different radial gradients, both centered in the face - for the effect outside the face, darkening exposure + highlight reduction and +15 Clarity, and for the effect on the face only, a slight exposure increase, shadow lightening, bumping up the white a bit and a slight contrast decrease.

The result was an image worlds apart from what I had done in Photoshop - bright, good color contrast as well as overall tonal contrast - for a moment I thought, hmm, maybe I'll do the whole thing in Lightroom, that would be fun! But I wanted to work on a few more local areas in the image, and I had to admit as bright and punchy as LR color is, it can look a bit unreal sometimes. So…

8. I blended the Lightroom image into the file from step 3 above at 50% opacity, this produced more believable color with better tone on both the foreground (the girl) and the Falls & sky;
9. Her face needed some work though, so first I worked at brightening, esp. the shadow areas with CRV layers, then a HSL layer to move the skin tones away from orange toward pink;
10. then I decide to get the man to recede a bit - built a quick mask, used HSL layer to slightly desaturate & darken him, then ran a 3.6px gaussian blur on him (85%);
11. returning to overall image tweaks - another layer to slightly darken the blue in the sky;
12. some final touches on her - a burn & dodge layer to tweak shadows on her face & under eyes, a vibrance layer to very slightly enhance her lipstick, and a pixel-retouch layer for skin blemishes & jPeg artifacts on her skin;
13. a Sharpen 2018 layer (50% opacity), masked to include only the girl and the area of the "Natural Wonder" sign; and finally
14. a Soft Light layer (60%) with Add Noise (gaussian) about 7px - to ease some of the harshness of the sharpening layer and try to help some of the unevenness & jPeg artifacts in the highlight areas of the Falls.

424 The triumph of technique over common sense. This person desaturated the background and the sky, which I find successful in creating the cold look that many of us wanted. And the overall image weight is right. This guy apparently got carried away with channel blending, however. It looks like he must have tried to blend the red channel into the green (at least) to lighten the face, which it certainly did. It also wiped out detail and leaves her looking like some kind of ice-woman.







Niagara Spray: Techniques

Dan Margulis
 

The biggest surprise in the techniques here is how many people used a strategy of blending multiple images, but probably that has to do with the nature of this image. The tactics in use here were not unexpected. Everyone recognized the need to lighten the face, and almost everyone also wanted to add shape to the falls. These two things can’t be done simultaneously IMHO, so everyone used some variation of a masking routine—or a multiple image strategy.

Not too many people had trouble with the color of the face but many could not lighten the eyes/forehead region enough to be acceptable.

To lighten the face the popular methods were:

*False profile/multiply. This seems to have been the most successful method, possibly because it enhances the relationship between foreground and background.

*Curves through a mask.

*Screening the face onto itself through a mask.

*Blending the red channel into the green or the RGB in Lighten mode on a luminosity layer. This has some merit but a couple of people created problems for themselves with it.

*The Velvet Hammer action.

For the falls the MMM actions were popular and so was the Bigger Hammer, sometimes aided by Velvet Hammer and/or Shadows/Highlights. A few people also tried isolating the falls and multiplying them.

Many people tried local retouching of the face and also of the photobomber. Some also tried isolating the sky to move its color away from that of the falls.

Dan


Re: Niagara Spray: Results

Dan Margulis
 



On Jun 9, 2020, at 12:34 PM, Gerald Bakker <gc.bakker@...> wrote:

The hardest part of this exercise I think is the background. How heavy can it be without becoming a distraction? And what color should the water have?

I agree that this is a difficult choice but at best I think it’s tied with how to lighten the face. By my quick survey (hope I’m not missing one) I rate that only ##403, 405, 406, 407, 410, 411, 412, 413, 418, 422, and 423 have acceptable faces. That’s not a particularly good ratio, and I it’s lower than the number of people with acceptable waterfalls.

Ken Harris is right when he says that this shot is not amenable to a global correction. The face must be lightened but this tends to do unacceptable damage to the falls unless they are masked out. Some people tried to blend the red channel into the RGB in Lighten mode, which would lighten the face without doing it to the water, but there is only so far this technique will go. All of the successful people tried something in addition, such as a false profile/multiplication routine.

Even so, the best faces here tended to be paired with poor waterfalls.

I also agree with Ken that this is the direct opposite of the Veiled Bride exercise (which is why we are doing them consecutively). In one the background is so boring that a near-majority of us tried to suppress it in one way or another; in this one the background is so important that the majority tried to enhance it. In the other there was no color to be had almost anywhere, but this one has many opportunities to brighten things up. Ken also makes a good point that I missed, that the bride’s mood is somewhat ambiguous. Given that there are so few perfect husbands in the world, and that I am already spoken for, she is probably asking herself what kind of mess she has gotten herself into. And who knows how she will feel about this shot in ten years? The Niagara image, OTOH, is about pure happiness, nothing ambiguous about it at all.

I disagree about the importance of the image; I suspect that given the context of one’s first six-month trip to America this is going to be one of the most memorable shots, because few things are as recognizably North American as Niagara Falls, and the pose is attractive.

I do agree that the file is full of traps. The slicker is difficult. In real life, we perceive it as bright yellow. The camera sees it as more transparent and picks up a lot of what’s behind it, or makes the whole thing too weak. The result can be a distressing green. And there are these colorful blotches in the background, typical of many iPhone captures in my experience.

Almost nobody solved all the problems posed by this image. The closest to that goal is #423. Everything else has some kind of weakness, even when there are other areas of strength, as Paco pointed out in the description of his #403. This explains why IMHO the par version is decisively superior to any of its parents, which I didn’t think was the case in the last two studies. Here, though, an averaging of the imperfect yields an excellent result. Paco’s waterfall is too blue, but it is only weighted 20% in the par version so we no longer perceive that the color is wrong.

When I first reviewed these entrants I thought that we did a poor job on the whole, because it was easy to eliminate all but half a dozen or so entrants. On further review I see a lot more near misses, and fewer disasters, than I first anticipated. True, there are a few lemons in this assortment, but not as many as there were in Veiled Bride—and this image is technically more difficult.

Dan





Re: Niagara Spray: Results

Paco
 

Forgot to suggest that, even though the water is a dull grey color in real life, a bit of blue would not hurt and make it a prettier picture. Just not go as far as the way the water is idealized in the plaque on the left.


Re: Niagara Spray: Results

Paco
 

Hi to all! Mine is 403. I'm very happy with the foreground because she looks happy and bright, and so does her poncho. Desaturating the guy in the background, I feel, makes him less distracting. On the fall itself I think I did not get it right at all. From the individual entries, 415 is my favorite as far as the water goes. The Par version is, for me, the best but... I would desaturate the guy in the background and would not push the water as far because there are some ugly artifacts being created on the left side of the falls.

All the best!

www.pacomarquez.com


Re: Niagara Spray: Results

john c.
 

Well now we’re talking about the purpose of the photo and what it’s supposed to say instead of color correction. Is it about this young girl having a fun moment, or more so the falls behind her. Which is more important? The instruction was to make an image that one might put in a frame on a desk. Of course the falls are important, and everyone knows how awesome they are, but should that take precedence over the joy of the moment shown in her face. It’s a delicate balance, but I’d rather treat it like a portrait at the falls instead of falls with people. Maybe if there were more information in the water to begin with I’d feel differently, but there wasn’t a lot to work with in the water to feature it. I thought 423 got it right. It’s not my version unfortunately. I was never there, so I didn’t know about the dirty green, and I actually thought about it really being that color, but I just don’t like it and don’t think it matters to the stated purpose of a nice pic in a desk frame, so I put the falls in more sunshine rather than a storm.
 
john castronovo
 
 

Sent: Tuesday, June 09, 2020 12:34 PM
Subject: Re: [colortheory] Niagara Spray: Results
 
The hardest part of this exercise I think is the background. How heavy can it be without becoming a distraction? And what color should the water have?

Descriptions on internet (plus a lot of photos) suggest that the Niagara falls are a bluish green. In some of the versions, e.g. #415, they look distinctly blue. That certainly looks fine, and it creates a nice contrast with the yellow raincoats, but is it acceptable? People who know the scene may say "it's the wrong color". I like the backgrounds of #401 and #408. Good detail without getting too heavy.

I think both woman and waterfall are important areas. It's not that one should be subdued in favor of the other. A busy background is not a distraction, or maybe it is, but in real life too, the water would compete with the woman for attention. In versions #406 and #411, the waterfall is reduced to something misty and far away, that doesn't work for me.

The par version is again very good. Just a nitpick: the clouds are on the purple side of blue, and there is some color noise in the water. The rest is very good though.
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Gerald Bakker
http://geraldbakker.nl

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