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Author Topic: Camera to Print - Softproofing  (Read 8350 times)
rdonson
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« on: August 03, 2007, 12:58:40 PM »
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First, kudos to Jeff, Michael and Chris for a truly outstanding piece of work.  First rate, guys!

I've taken a lot of Photoshop classes and purchased, read and hopefully used information from a number of books by authors such as Bruce Fraser, Stephen Johnson, Harald Johnson, Amadou Diallo, Uwe Steinmueller, etc. etc. etc. and know that you guys have just shortened the learning process for hundreds if not thousands of photographers.  You've shown techniques and concepts in a manner that's extremely difficult to get across in written form.  I'm impressed.

My question concerns soft-proofing.  The example you gave was excellent but I was a little disappointed that you chose to demonstrate with Epson Premium Luster.  That is close enough to the original image that the adjustments Jeff made were quite modest.

I was hoping you'd demonstrate soft-proofing and the corrections/adjustments to make a matte paper look great.  

Would the approach or techniques be different if you had chosen a matte paper?

I have a theory that many people print on glossy or luster papers because they're so dismayed when they soft-proof a matte paper.
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[span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'][span style='font-family:Arial'][span style='font-family:Geneva'][span style='font-size:8pt;line-height:100%']Regards,
Ron[/span][/span][/span][/span]
Schewe
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« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2007, 10:05:54 PM »
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Would the approach or techniques be different if you had chosen a matte paper?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=131368\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Same approach. . .same saturation and curve tweak but the curve would be different.


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I have a theory that many people print on glossy or luster papers because they're so dismayed when they soft-proof a matte paper.

I think it's because they don't like the current papers...
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digitaldog
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« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2007, 10:46:29 AM »
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I haven't gotten this far in the video yet but its important to note that if everything is working as it should, the soft proof is reality of the situation which you may not like. Not much you can do about it from some areas. The max dynamic range, dmax, gamut is fixed. The soft proof shows you this reality. That you may prefer the glossy paper reality is all fine and good and useful information. But the matt paper can only do what it can do, the soft proof is showing these limitations. As Jeff says (and he may say on the video) "reality sucks (that's why we have Photoshop."
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Andrew Rodney
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picnic
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« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2007, 03:21:35 PM »
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I haven't gotten this far in the video yet but its important to note that if everything is working as it should, the soft proof is reality of the situation which you may not like. Not much you can do about it from some areas. The max dynamic range, dmax, gamut is fixed. The soft proof shows you this reality. That you may prefer the glossy paper reality is all fine and good and useful information. But the matt paper can only do what it can do, the soft proof is showing these limitations. As Jeff says (and he may say on the video) "reality sucks (that's why we have Photoshop."
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=131466\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I don't remember that particular quote LOL--but he did keep referring to softproofing as 'the make my image look like crap button'---many times LOL.  Its a pretty good segment.  Jeff's tips about using a duplicate to compare to the softproofed one--and correct it as much as possible--will be helpful to many people.  

Diane
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Schewe
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« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2007, 03:51:31 PM »
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I don't remember that particular quote LOL--but he did keep referring to softproofing as 'the make my image look like crap button'---many times LOL. [a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=131496\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


I usually use a slightly different word, one starting with the letter 'S' and ending in 'T' but this was a family oriented video, don't ya know...(ironic that wihile taping, I got to look at Mike's Lolita print the whole time)

:~)

But Andrew is correct that I've often said that reality sucks, that's why Photoshop is so successful!

The real key to understanding soft proofing is that depending on your soft proof settings, you'll be soft proofing only the colors in the final print space (when the Display Options On-Screen are turned off) and both color _AND_ dynamic range when those options are turned on. The biggest disconnect is the process of turning on soft proofing, when the options are on you literally see your image turn to crap-compared to the way it looked just before. Bruce used to suggest looking away so you didn't actually see it change.

The other thing is that many people think it makes the image look _TOO_ bad...it doesn't, it's actually scary accurate but the problem is then when ANY white Photoshop UI remains on screen during soft proofing, your eyes are white adapted to the brighest thing on screen and it makes the soft proofed image look worse by comparison.

I hit on the two up original and copy technique trying to work on RGB>CMYK image separations where once you soft proof the RGB image it looks so bad in CMYK (particularly if you have a lot of blue) that many times I couldn't get a handle on where to try to take the image. Seeing what it's _SUPPOSED_ to look like really helps.

All of this of course presupposes that you have a really accurate display profile and an accurate printer profile that has good tables going both directions...
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rdonson
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« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2007, 12:04:17 AM »
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I haven't gotten this far in the video yet but its important to note that if everything is working as it should, the soft proof is reality of the situation which you may not like. Not much you can do about it from some areas. The max dynamic range, dmax, gamut is fixed. The soft proof shows you this reality. That you may prefer the glossy paper reality is all fine and good and useful information. But the matt paper can only do what it can do, the soft proof is showing these limitations. As Jeff says (and he may say on the video) "reality sucks (that's why we have Photoshop."
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=131466\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

The key in my mind is learning how to go from that god awful reality of the initial soft-proof on matte to having it be the best it can be on matte.  I don't expect it to look like glossy.

Jeff's tactic of "punch blacks", curves and saturation is the guidance I sought.  It will take a bit of time to develop the eye and skills for me to get the most out of my matte prints.  I've done some good work on matte but I was looking for that final step to feel comfortable I'm doing all that I can without unnecessary test prints.

I did go back and find punch blacks under the tone correction set in PhotoKit.  I'd wondered what that was used for.  Now I have a real use for it.
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[span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'][span style='font-family:Arial'][span style='font-family:Geneva'][span style='font-size:8pt;line-height:100%']Regards,
Ron[/span][/span][/span][/span]
mbeckelman
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« Reply #6 on: August 08, 2007, 06:13:04 AM »
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I too found the soft proofing segment invaluable.  Nothing like seeing it done "live".

I'd love to see a similar style video on handling CMYK conversions, with soft proofing and file corrections that can be carried out in CMYK, as well as producing proof prints in-house.

Books are all well and good, but looking over someone's shoulder really conveys the information so much better.

Keep up the good work.

Mark Beckelman
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jtindel0
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« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2007, 04:45:46 PM »
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I enjoyed to article on soft proofing. However I was left a little confused about how to use the corrections made to the soft proof. After making a new group of them do I drag that group to the original file and then print? Do I save them and later apply them to the original print? Thanks for any help.

jtindel0
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Schewe
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« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2007, 09:57:16 PM »
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After making a new group of them do I drag that group to the original file and then print? Do I save them and later apply them to the original print?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=132565\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


When you softproof, you do the tweak edits on your original file...the copy file is there _ONLY_ to show you what the image looked like BEFORE you softproofed (and as an aid to how to tweak it).

Since the original file then ends up with the Saturation and Curves tweaks, you can save those in the file and remember to turn those layers on whenever you print using that particular printer/papper. You turn them off when not printing...depending on how many printer you print to and what papers you may have several different tweaks in a file. I put them in layer groups named for the printer/paper to organize them. The trick is to make sure you turn on the right layer groups and ONLY those groups otherwise you end up with multiple tweaks visible-which is less good.
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jtindel0
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« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2007, 10:07:30 PM »
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Thanks, It all makes sense now. Don't know I got so bumfuzzled.

jtindel
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prashant
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« Reply #10 on: August 17, 2007, 06:29:36 AM »
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I also find it invaluable.
I find it odd that in the next segment a different images is used (printing from CS2/CS3). I would have made more sense to print the same image.
It may confuse many people, what to do next? There are many open questions like...what after soft proofing for a printer/paper combo? What the settings should be in photoshop while printing etc. (I have not seen all of video, and this might have been covered).
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francois
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« Reply #11 on: August 17, 2007, 08:03:08 AM »
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...(I have not seen all of video, and this might have been covered).
...
You should definitely see all the videos (at least those coming after the soft-proofing segment).
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Francois
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« Reply #12 on: August 23, 2007, 05:54:40 PM »
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can soft proofing be done on a labtop screen?

I found the video's very interesting and usefull, but what i don't understand is that the softproofing could be done on a laptop screen.? and there was no mentioning of the importance of the quality of the screen you use.

In my opinion the quality of the screen is an important factor in the softproofing or am I mistaken?
If I can't see the colours that I am able to print it is difficult to get a grip on the outcoming print...
please help me out on this..

regards,

Pieter Kers
« Last Edit: August 23, 2007, 05:55:28 PM by kers » Logged

Pieter Kers
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michael
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« Reply #13 on: August 23, 2007, 06:08:08 PM »
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Yes, it can. But obviously the better the screen the more accurate the preview.

I use a 17" Macbook Pro, and it matches my 30" Cinemadisplay quite nicely when properly profiled.

Michael
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Josh-H
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« Reply #14 on: August 23, 2007, 07:06:38 PM »
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Yes, it can. But obviously the better the screen the more accurate the preview.

I use a 17" Macbook Pro, and it matches my 30" Cinemadisplay quite nicely when properly profiled.

Michael
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=135138\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


I also soft proof on a 17" laptop profiled screen with excellent results.

The luminosity of the screen is the biggest issue to watch for - I'll dull my screen right down when soft proofing.
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