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Sharpening Using Layers

Mon Oct 24, 2011 5:10 pm

A few years ago, I used to use this method for my sharpening, but since I started this hobby up again, this method has escaped me. I just can't remember the process. I recall using control J to add the layer, but from there I'm at a loss.
Can anyone jog my memory please ?

Phil.
 
RonS
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Mon Oct 24, 2011 5:18 pm

I just right click on Background Layer, and it adds the duplicate layer.

I then mask out the sky, right click select inverse, so it only selects the aircraft / background without the sky. I expand pixels by 1 pixel.

I then sharpen using Smart Sharpen, .3 165-200 or so, then erase jaggies with Eraser tool.
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ThierryD
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Mon Oct 24, 2011 5:19 pm

Phil,

I use Paint Shop for my editing so not quite sure how exactly it works in Photoshop.
Anyway, it might be enough to "jog your memory".  

First, create duplicate layer, then sharpen as required, hide all mask, use the brush to selectively sharpen the desired areas, merge all et voilà!

Hope it helps!

Thierry
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vikkyvik
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Mon Oct 24, 2011 5:39 pm

Quoting RonS (Reply 1):
I just right click on Background Layer, and it adds the duplicate layer.

I then mask out the sky, right click select inverse, so it only selects the aircraft / background without the sky. I expand pixels by 1 pixel.

I then sharpen using Smart Sharpen, .3 165-200 or so, then erase jaggies with Eraser tool.

I use a very similar method:

Note that before I use layers, I'll usually sharpen the airplane as much as I can without creating jaggies anywhere (Unsharp Mask, usually around 0.3, 70-100, 1). After that:

1.) Add Duplicate Layer.
2.) By whatever method, select only the airplane (if it's against blue sky, it's easy to select the sky then "inverse"...if it's against a detailed background, I usually just use the polygonal lasso to select the airplane).
3.) Expand selection by 2 pixels (only if I selected the background then inverse).
4.) Unsharp Mask (usually around 0.3, 60-100, 1)
5.) Erase jaggies using eraser tool (usually at 100% opacity).
6.) Flatten image.
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RonS
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Mon Oct 24, 2011 6:16 pm

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 3):
I use a very similar method:
Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 3):
if it's against a detailed background, I usually just use the polygonal lasso to select the airplane

90% of the time I just sharpen the background and aircraft all together.

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 3):
Erase jaggies using eraser tool (usually at 100% opacity).

I'm at 55-60% for everything, 40% for liveries roughly and more than 70% and more for heavy jaggies.

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 3):
Flatten image

I've never gotten a good explanation on the reason to flatten image or flatten layers,etc, so I just either Save As and Save for the Web when I'm done editing.
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vikkyvik
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Mon Oct 24, 2011 7:42 pm

Quoting RonS (Reply 4):

90% of the time I just sharpen the background and aircraft all together.

A lot of people do seem to do that.

The main reason I don't is that I don't want to have to be bothered erasing jaggies from the background.

Though I did get a rejection the other day that said, "background looks soft(washed out. From too much noise reduction?"

So maybe I will have to start sharpening it.  

(probably was NR...I can go overboard on that sometimes)

Quoting RonS (Reply 4):

I'm at 55-60% for everything, 40% for liveries roughly and more than 70% and more for heavy jaggies.

Gotcha. That's why I do the pre-sharpening prior to using layers. Then I can just leave the eraser at 100% and not worry about it.

Quoting RonS (Reply 4):
I've never gotten a good explanation on the reason to flatten image or flatten layers,etc, so I just either Save As and Save for the Web when I'm done editing.

I don't really know, to be honest. But sometimes I'll look at an image after sharpening and realize it could be a bit brighter or what-have-you. And if I don't flatten the image, I'll only brighten the selected layer.

Basically, I like to have multiple layers for only as much as necessary.  
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spencer
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Mon Oct 24, 2011 7:52 pm

Select the sky if it's a "sky" shot, CTRL+SHIFT+i to reverse the selection so the aircraft is selected (as sometimes it can be quite long-winded to select the entire aircraft in one foul swoop), then hit SELECT>MODIFY>EXPAND (norm by 1px), then sharpen in whatever method you chose fit. It's also a good way to NR the sky before you reverse the selection.
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cruce
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:26 pm

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 5):
Quoting RonS (Reply 4):

90% of the time I just sharpen the background and aircraft all together.

A lot of people do seem to do that.

I kind of do both...If the background is blurry (due to panning) then I will not sharpen it, but if its a sharp background then I will sharpen it along with the aircraft.
 
RonS
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:53 pm

Quoting spencer (Reply 6):
It's also a good way to NR the sky before you reverse the selection.

I do that too in CS5 if I'm running a second attempt at NR after LR3

Quoting vikkyvik (Reply 5):
"background looks soft(washed out. From too much noise reduction?"

haha, that's a new one! now I have to worry about something else besides the subject I guess.
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darreno1
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Tue Oct 25, 2011 1:52 am

My method is similar to Vikkyvik and Rons's. I use the unsharp mask tool as well (~175-200/.3/1 initial pass then after image resize, maybe 20-50 if needed), and never sharpen the sky. Sometimes I will use two layers, sharpen, flatten, then layer once again sharpen etc. The d7000 does a phenomenal job with noise so I usually only do one pass and hardly ever need to do selective NR, even in shadows.

[Edited 2011-10-24 18:54:26]
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jid
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Tue Oct 25, 2011 8:16 pm

Here are a couple of ways to sharpen.

http://www.jid.me.uk/sharp.html

The first method is far better than all these wand waggler methods who rightly dont want to sharpen the sky ... but what ever suites you.

Jid
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darreno1
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RE: Sharpening Using Layers

Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:42 am

Quoting jid (Reply 10):

The first method is far better than all these wand waggler methods who rightly dont want to sharpen the sky ... but what ever suites you.

Having revisited this edge sharpening technique, I have to agree with you. A year ago when I tried it, it seemed rather complex. Now that I've had some editing experience, it is a lot less intimidating. I Just applied it to a couple of my recent shots and was pleasantly surprised. It definitely cut down on my workflow time and no 'wand waggling' was needed. Thanks for posting!

[Edited 2011-10-25 20:42:48]
Nikon D7000 / Nikkor 105mm AF f2.8 / Nikkor 35 f1.8G / Nikkor 50 f1.8D / Nikkor 85mm / Nikkor 300mm f4 AF

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