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Author Topic: Dull RAW images  (Read 7414 times)
RMichael
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« Reply #20 on: May 14, 2007, 06:52:08 AM »
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Bernard, thank you. I will try the Pentax software. I just found Photoshop easier,clueless as I am. Silkypix of Pentax generally confuses me quite a bit more than photoshop. And a true clueless newbie question I wanted ask for a long time......What is workflow?



JohnnyV, thanks for the link.It's usually to avoid the aspirin that I ask questions  

You know, when you are a beginner trying to find your way,and you encounter a hurdle, it is better to ask a question about that specific hurdle rather than having an avalanche of information,which is only remotely concerned with the topic at hand and completely befuddles you. By the time you reach the solution, you forget why you were there at all...  So, sometimes, getting expert solution to a problem is a much more attractive and viable option.




Thanks for your help again.

Regards
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #21 on: May 14, 2007, 07:45:51 AM »
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And a true clueless newbie question I wanted ask for a long time......What is workflow?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=117427\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
"Workflow" is one of those innocent-sounding words that really packs a wollop. Essentially it is simply the list of steps you go through in order from taking the picture to looking at the print (or computer image). Back when I used film, my workflow was essentially: Take the picture, develop the film (develop, fix, wash, dry), make the print (expose, develop, fix, wash, dry), and look at the print (the next day).

In digital photography, the whole business of "post-processing" (what you do after the image comes out of the camera until you have a finished print) has become very complicated, so "workflow" often refers just to that part of it.

There are a great many steps you can take (having to do with color management -- another dangerous phrase -- or sharpening or control of contrast, light balance, saturation, etc., etc.). And the order in which you do them can make a significant difference in the final image. So it is often a good idea to read what some experienced photographer does, which steps in what order, and start with that, modifying it to suit your own needs as you become more experienced.

Somewhere on this forum recently Schewe suggested books by Bruce Fraser and others. That's a great place to start. And keep on asking questions (especially in the new Beginner thread).

Good luck!
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-Eric Myrvaagnes

http://myrvaagnes.com  Visit my website. New images each season.
RMichael
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« Reply #22 on: May 14, 2007, 08:43:09 AM »
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"Workflow" is one of those innocent-sounding words that really packs a wollop. Essentially it is simply the list of steps you go through in order from taking the picture to looking at the print (or computer image). Back when I used film, my workflow was essentially: Take the picture, develop the film (develop, fix, wash, dry), make the print (expose, develop, fix, wash, dry), and look at the print (the next day).

In digital photography, the whole business of "post-processing" (what you do after the image comes out of the camera until you have a finished print) has become very complicated, so "workflow" often refers just to that part of it.

There are a great many steps you can take (having to do with color management -- another dangerous phrase -- or sharpening or control of contrast, light balance, saturation, etc., etc.). And the order in which you do them can make a significant difference in the final image. So it is often a good idea to read what some experienced photographer does, which steps in what order, and start with that, modifying it to suit your own needs as you become more experienced.

Somewhere on this forum recently Schewe suggested books by Bruce Fraser and others. That's a great place to start. And keep on asking questions (especially in the new Beginner thread).

Good luck!
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=117433\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]





Eric.....thank you   I think I had a faint idea. And you confirmed it. I do intend to ask a lot of questions  .....better to ask than be sorry.



Thanks again
Regards
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BernardLanguillier
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« Reply #23 on: May 15, 2007, 04:18:39 AM »
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Bernard, thank you. I will try the Pentax software. I just found Photoshop easier,clueless as I am. Silkypix of Pentax generally confuses me quite a bit more than photoshop. [a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=117427\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

PS is for sure very easy to use, but I find their default conversion without optimization for a given camera type to be typically not that great compared to the native offering of the camera manufacturers.

This is at least very clear for Nikon, I am not sure about Pentax, but your comments lead me to think that it is probably the same.

Regards,
Bernard
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elied
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« Reply #24 on: May 15, 2007, 05:34:02 AM »
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Hi

I have had my dslr about a month now and since hadn't picked up a camera ever before,I was shooting JPEG. The colors were nice and alive and needed little post processing. I started experimenting with Raw and my experience has been that they come up pretty dull and tweaking doesn't help. I am not too familiar with photoshop so I have no idea how I could get the spunk in my Raw photos. Funny part is my camera,as per the reviews,is supposed to have dull JPEG results and far better raw results. Could someone help please?
Thanks
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I would like to make a few comments if I may. First, getting the right answer is often dependent on asking the question in the right place. There are many larger forums, for instance Digital Photography Review, which has many tens of thousands of viewers each day, which are more appropriate for general and beginners' questions. Often the the replies will come from those who were not too long ago beginners themselves and are eager to share their new-found knowledge. (And they are not suffering the fatigue of already having seen the same questions hundreds of times.)

However, getting the right answer is also dependent on asking the right question and "Why do my photos look dull" is not likely to get a very precise answer.

Finally, I think you are not aware of just what RAW is and because of this you have misunderstood the reviews you refer to. Although I have not seen them, I imagine that what they meant was that after intelligent and informed manipulations of the RAW data have been set in the converter the converted image will be better than the camera-produced jpg. RAW is for people that want to invest a bit of time and effort to get a better image. An automatic conversion will be no better than the jpg and maybe worse. It does require learning. As well as the series of "Understanding" articles on the LL site I would recommend the excellent articles on Ron Bigelow's site and especially this one:
[a href=\"http://www.ronbigelow.com/articles/raw/raw.htm]http://www.ronbigelow.com/articles/raw/raw.htm[/url]

Elie
« Last Edit: May 15, 2007, 05:43:09 AM by elied » Logged

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RMichael
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« Reply #25 on: May 15, 2007, 06:42:24 AM »
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I would like to make a few comments if I may. First, getting the right answer is often dependent on asking the question in the right place. There are many larger forums, for instance Digital Photography Review, which has many tens of thousands of viewers each day, which are more appropriate for general and beginners' questions. Often the the replies will come from those who were not too long ago beginners themselves and are eager to share their new-found knowledge. (And they are not suffering the fatigue of already having seen the same questions hundreds of times.)

However, getting the right answer is also dependent on asking the right question and "Why do my photos look dull" is not likely to get a very precise answer.

Finally, I think you are not aware of just what RAW is and because of this you have misunderstood the reviews you refer to. Although I have not seen them, I imagine that what they meant was that after intelligent and informed manipulations of the RAW data have been set in the converter the converted image will be better than the camera-produced jpg. RAW is for people that want to invest a bit of time and effort to get a better image. An automatic conversion will be no better than the jpg and maybe worse. It does require learning. As well as the series of "Understanding" articles on the LL site I would recommend the excellent articles on Ron Bigelow's site and especially this one:
http://www.ronbigelow.com/articles/raw/raw.htm

Elie
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=117647\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

elied,

     From what I understand, RAW is the pure untouched data that the camera records. When I apply various steps to a raw image such as color balance,contrast,exposure,sharpening, it is nowhere near a Jpeg that I have edited similarly. There is no automatic conversion. I do everything manually and I am not able to produce as alive results as I do with my edited jpegs. It is most likely my lack of knowledge of photoshop. Is there something I am missing?That is what I was asking. So my question is not as simple as 'why are my photos dull?'.  


If it is the treatment of raw for editing that is different than Jpeg,then the answer could be simply that. If it needs more than a jpeg needs, my question has already been answered. If it is more than these two simple answers,then somebody would come up with it.


I consider this forum a huge knowledge base and though the knowledge holders may not all be very tolerant of cluelessness, there will always be some who will share their knowledge willingly and freely.


Thanks for the link. I have a stack to read now...  
 

Regards
« Last Edit: May 15, 2007, 06:46:38 AM by RMichael » Logged
jani
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« Reply #26 on: May 15, 2007, 09:40:44 AM »
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     From what I understand, RAW is the pure untouched data that the camera records.
While this isn't strictly true, it's a close approximation, and you can for the sake of the argument pretend that it is the case, since you'll never get any data that's "purer".

Quote
When I apply various steps to a raw image such as color balance,contrast,exposure,sharpening, it is nowhere near a Jpeg that I have edited similarly.
This is your first misstep.

In your camera, you have settings for "white balance", "saturation", "contrast", "brightness", "sharpness" etc.

First, the camera takes a "RAW" image.

Then it processes it using these settings.

Then it creates the JPEG.



Now, if you want to take a RAW image and reproduce the look and feel of your JPEGs, you should first convert your RAW image using similar settings for white balance etc., and then you can perform the same adjustment steps that you're used to doing with JPEGs.

After a while, you'll learn how to do most of this in one step rather than two.
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Jan
PeterLange
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« Reply #27 on: May 15, 2007, 04:13:15 PM »
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COLOR MANAGEMENT POLICIES
6. RGB : OFF
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Why do you have your Color Manamgnet OFF? That is the single most stupid thing to do...seriously. Desides the fact that you can't really turn it off (off ain't off, it's just hidden from you and gives you no control), what you are doing with management off is screwing up with your color.
You’re right that "Switching-off color-management" is another subject. Above settings mainly rule the policy when opening a file in Photoshop. No problem to leave it OFF, provided that the checkbox "Profile Mismatches: Ask When Opening" is enabled.  Just untagged files or newly created files could be a troublemaker, however, this should be a non-issue when you import from Camera Raw. Though I agree that "Preserve Embedded Profiles” can be more fail-safe, above OFF setting shouldn’t be the root cause of mentioned problem with Dull Raw Images (again, provided that the checkbox "Profile Mismatches: Ask When Opening" was enabled).
http://www.computer-darkroom.com/ps10_colour/ps10_1.htm
 
 
Quote
If it is the treatment of raw for editing that is different than Jpeg,then the answer could be simply that. If it needs more than a jpeg needs, my question has already been answered. If it is more than these two simple answers,then somebody would come up with it.
Any native Raw image will almost always look dark and dull until a huge amount of data-processing is applied. That’s simply a given fact resulting from dynamic range compression (scene to output: monitor or print). To get at least an impression about this native Raw appearance you might wish to visit Camera Raw and to set all sliders of the Main Adjust Tab to zero (except Temp. & Tint). Or just check this article authored by Andrew Rodney et al.:
http://www.color.org/ICC_white_paper_20_Di...ment_basics.pdf

Editing Raw files in a dedicated Raw conversion software largely means to tweak the conversion and the pre-set data-processing algorithms in order to reach a somehow preferred rendition. It can be seen as a kind of "ab-initio" approach, because you’re essentially working with the material which the sensor chip originally recorded.

JPEG’s from in-camera conversion were already processed ("baked") to the camera- manufacturer’s idea of a pleasing rendition. Further editing e.g. in Photoshop can be seen as a kind of "repair approach".  Or, let’s call it "refinement" if you like this term more.

The appreciated reader may note that this is meant as a neutral description without intending to favor this or that option and to provoke another "Raw vs JPEG" discussion.

Another thing to realize is that the data processing from a somewhat accurate, native Raw state to a pleasing rendition is unfortunately NOT a straight A-to-B road. The pre-sets or auto settings of any Raw conversion software or any camera may serve as a kind of educated guess. However, it’s seldom done by just operating a sigmoidal tone curve plus saturation enhancement, while being more a (future) field of applied fuzzy logic, neural networks, artificial intelligence, etc.  Just for example, Canon holds a patent to include user-specific information like the language setting, the time zone or the price of a camera in order to shape mentioned processing pipe:
http://www.freepatentsonline.com/6795084.html

Finally my recommendation to the thread-opener is to try different options, to do some reading, to continue asking questions and finally to select a workflow which in fact lets your work flow.

Best regards, Peter

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