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Author Topic: 5D skintones in lightroom  (Read 18314 times)
Nate Weatherly
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« on: August 31, 2007, 03:42:07 PM »
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Just wondering if anyone else is having a terrible time getting good skintones in lightroom with a canon 5D.   The tones in the jpeg previews (before lightroom has fully rendered it's preview) look great, but then once the new preview snaps in they go very blah and pink.  I know a lot about RAW and I know that you have to add all that contrast and saturation back in, but this seems more like a genuine color shift than a contrast/saturation problem.  No matter how I adjust the image I can't get  the good color and depth back into the skin tones.  I've tried using the greytag color chart to do my own profile, but it really doesn't seem to help much.  

I guess I'm just wondering if I'm crazy or if anyone else has this problem.  

Thanks!
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madmanchan
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« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2007, 01:25:02 PM »
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Nate, roughly what's the color temp of the lighting? For color, I find that ACR does a very good job for skin tones near daylight, but under tungsten not as much luck. You've set the white balance first, right?
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NateK
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« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2007, 04:41:40 PM »
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I am having the same exact issue only I shoot with a 20D. This thread seems to be the only thing i can find relating to this.(and its funny that we're both named Nate) Have you had any luck fixing this?

Madmanchan- Im finding the skintone problems under all lighting conditions(with and without white balance settings)

I also have an issue with fire... the other day I was taking some shots of a campfire and when the preview loads you can see all this beautiful gradation from red to orange. once the file loads the whole thing evens out to one orange tone. it sucks.
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flash
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« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2007, 07:48:03 PM »
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All our cameras had poorish colours in Lightroom/ACR. Mainly a yellow tinge to skin tones and sometimes redish.

I have just finished calibrating the cameras we use (5D, 400D, 10D, 20D, 1DSII) for the weddings we shoot using the Xrite Color checker and the calibration script at

http://www.fors.net/chromoholics/

The differences in colour are not huge but significantly better. Both Micheal and Ian Llyons both have good articles on this. It is well worth the cost of the colorchecker if you don't have one. Our colours are now spot on.

Gordon
« Last Edit: September 16, 2007, 07:48:49 PM by flash » Logged
madmanchan
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« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2007, 08:53:36 PM »
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There are some complications with fire. Not that LR/ACR does anything unusual with fire, but just that the default LR/ACR rendering with fire loses some of the punch you might expect. You can fiddle with the orange and red HSL sliders and get most of the punch back (tweak the hues and boost the sat), maybe bump up the vibrance a bit. What you're seeing in the preview just before the ACR/LR rendering takes over is the embedded JPEG preview, which shows you what Canon's default DPP rendering would give you.
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NateK
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« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2007, 09:48:44 PM »
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flash,
thanks for the info I will certainly look into calibrating my camera. However the issue at hand is still why the image looks ideal before lightroom converts it. I just cant understand why it does what it does.
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michaelbs
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« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2007, 11:12:57 AM »
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flash,
thanks for the info I will certainly look into calibrating my camera. However the issue at hand is still why the image looks ideal before lightroom converts it. I just cant understand why it does what it does.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=139875\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

It applies a preset you don't like. It's that simple. If it applies the default preset I can understand why you don't like it. Especially for skintones.
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flash
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« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2007, 06:32:59 AM »
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Lightroom first shows you the inbuilt preview imbedded in the RAW file. It then loads the default settings which is the change you are seeing. those default setting are based on the data that Thomas Knoll and others at Adobe built. However......

The simple reality is that as Adobe does not have access to the proprietary information of the camera manufacturers it must estimate a starting point by whatever means, be that reverse engineering or just taking a guess. this is the same for all third party Raw converters. You may feel one product is better but it's just you agree with the opinion of the person who made that profile. Others may love the profile you hate. It's just opinion. Even DPP has profiles and offers a choice (landscape, portrait, natural etc) of profile for each camera model. For the record I really dont like what Lightroom/ACR does with colour either. Adobe take a 5D or two (for example) and use the camera and RAW files to make the profile. Those cameras may or may not represent the true average colour for that model and the methodology may or may not get the most pleasing colour. Adobe simply don't have the information to provide more than an informed guess as to what the colour for a particular model should be, and some profiles are better than others.

But DPP doesn't let me make my own profiles. I have to settle for what Canon says the colours should be. I don't want to be the same as every one else. By using the calibrate tab in Lightroom I can make as many camera colour profiles as I want. I can make my own portrait, natural and landscape profiles for each camera I use based on serial number. They don't have to be made using a colorchecker (although I used one as a starting point). You don't have to have reality or accuracy as a colour profile. DPP doesn't do it and I know of no film that ever had perfectly accurate colours. If we all wanted accurate there'd be no Velvia. Go and make a profile you like using the calibrate tab and set that as your default.

So it is important that in some way that you profile any Raw converter to both your camera and preferences, as not everyone likes their colour the same way. I think profiling your cameras is a hugely understated feature of Lightroom and other raw converters.

I would suggest that before you jump up and down about the colours in Lightroom or any other raw converter that you should stop and look to see if a simple solution like creating a profile and applying that as a preset is available. You never know you may realise that you don't like the colours in DPP after all.

Gordon
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The View
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« Reply #8 on: September 19, 2007, 10:47:11 AM »
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By using the calibrate tab in Lightroom I can make as many camera colour profiles as I want. I can make my own portrait, natural and landscape profiles for each camera I use based on serial number. They don't have to be made using a colorchecker (although I used one as a starting point).
Gordon
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140139\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I am not shooting Canon, but this is interesting for everybody.

How can you calibrate a camera without a color checker or some other device to measure color and color temperature?

Are you shooting a color chart and analyze it with Lightroom and then do adjustments in the camera calibration panel?
« Last Edit: September 19, 2007, 10:52:27 AM by The View » Logged

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madmanchan
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« Reply #9 on: September 19, 2007, 03:15:15 PM »
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Yes, this method of "ACR calibration" involves shooting a color checker and then comparing the results against reference chart values, then making adjustments in the ACR calibration tab until the numbers match (within an error threshold).
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The View
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« Reply #10 on: September 19, 2007, 08:10:00 PM »
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Yes, this method of "ACR calibration" involves shooting a color checker and then comparing the results against reference chart values, then making adjustments in the ACR calibration tab until the numbers match (within an error threshold).
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140509\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

But wouldn't the result be the same as using a development preset?
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madmanchan
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« Reply #11 on: September 19, 2007, 08:36:43 PM »
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Once you have the appropriate Calibration numbers, then yes -- you can save it as a Preset in Lightroom. Or better yet, you can save them as part of the new defaults for your camera.
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flash
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« Reply #12 on: September 19, 2007, 08:46:33 PM »
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How can you calibrate a camera without a color checker or some other device to measure color and color temperature?

[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140446\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Depends what you are calibrating it to. There are two reasons for using the calibration in PS and Lightroom.

1. To have colours closely match a known standard. For this you will need a colorchecker and run the Fors script. I used this as a starting point when I calibrated our cameras. From there I tweaked the results to get something I liked better.

2. To have colours be close to what you want them to be. If you like reds (or greens) more (or less) saturated than what your camera says or what the Fors script results tell you they should be, who am I to say that's wrong. To calibrate like this you could use any image and make the colours as you would like. Its going to be a lot easier if you use a colorchecker or a setup scene to do this though. You can just use your eyes for this but it will take some trail and error.

Gordon
« Last Edit: September 19, 2007, 08:55:20 PM by flash » Logged
flash
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« Reply #13 on: September 19, 2007, 08:50:08 PM »
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But wouldn't the result be the same as using a development preset?
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=140580\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Not if you have images from more than one camera in a single import (think of 1200+ images from a wedding from 4 different cameras as a single import session into Lightroom). We have a profile for each camera and these are applied by Lightroom based on serial number, automatically. A dev preset would apply the same settings accross all the cameras.

Gordon
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madmanchan
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« Reply #14 on: September 20, 2007, 03:37:35 PM »
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Yup that's the beauty of the defaults mechanism in LR. Settings can be set for per-camera defaults, or even per-ISO defaults. I didn't even realize this until Michael posted the link to Ian Lyons's article about it.
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Deep
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« Reply #15 on: September 21, 2007, 04:28:14 PM »
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This is a really interesting thread - thanks chaps.   I used Lightroom successfully with a Sony V3 and Olympus E300, with great colours.  I recently picked up an E330 and a little Minox pocket camera and the 330 colours were very flat and dead while the Minox put purple everywhere.  The 330 files were easy to tweak but the Minox less so, yet when I tried the Minox in humble old iPhoto the colours were pretty decent.  Now I know why and, hopefull, what to do about it!  

Cheers for that,

Don.
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Don
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« Reply #16 on: December 27, 2007, 11:13:24 PM »
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All our cameras had poorish colours in Lightroom/ACR. Mainly a yellow tinge to skin tones and sometimes redish.

I have just finished calibrating the cameras we use (5D, 400D, 10D, 20D, 1DSII) for the weddings we shoot... Our colours are now spot on.[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=139854\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Gordon,

I hope that it's not too much trouble, but would you be able to post the 400D calibration settings that you obtained for use with Lightroom? I'd appreciate being given the opportunity to give them a try with my RAW files from my 400D.
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wsolum
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« Reply #17 on: December 28, 2007, 01:32:53 PM »
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I shoot a 5D and also have an awful time with LR skintones -- particularly if the shot is the least bit over-exposed using studio flash.

What I have found is that I do not like Adobe's default settings -- particularly the tone curve and the contrast setting.  Knocking the contrast down to +8 or so, and setting tone curve to linear gets me much better tones, then adjusting the WB for blue/gold and magenta/green gets me the rest of the way there.

That and making sure I don't over-expose.  What's cool though, is that the overexposed shots can be recovered fairly well by reducing exposure and applying the adjustments mentioned above.

I have tried the calibration route but I prefer my adjustments.  It gets the CMY numbers properly oriented with Magenta being less than or equal to Yellow.  Adobe's default always leaves me with magenta being greater than yellow.  Not pretty.


Quote
Just wondering if anyone else is having a terrible time getting good skintones in lightroom with a canon 5D.   The tones in the jpeg previews (before lightroom has fully rendered it's preview) look great, but then once the new preview snaps in they go very blah and pink.  I know a lot about RAW and I know that you have to add all that contrast and saturation back in, but this seems more like a genuine color shift than a contrast/saturation problem.  No matter how I adjust the image I can't get  the good color and depth back into the skin tones.  I've tried using the greytag color chart to do my own profile, but it really doesn't seem to help much. 

I guess I'm just wondering if I'm crazy or if anyone else has this problem. 

Thanks!
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=136640\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
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flash
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« Reply #18 on: December 28, 2007, 07:40:25 PM »
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Gordon,

I hope that it's not too much trouble, but would you be able to post the 400D calibration settings that you obtained for use with Lightroom? I'd appreciate being given the opportunity to give them a try with my RAW files from my 400D.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=163518\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Here they are. I also bump up the midtones in the curves panel.

Gordon
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MBehrens
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« Reply #19 on: December 29, 2007, 08:09:43 PM »
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Canon 400D (Rebel XTi)
x-rite Color Checker
Rags Gardner Calibration script

WB Temp     5100
WB Tint       14
Exposure    0.00
Brightness    37
Contrast      -4
Shadows        4
Shadow Tint    0
Red Hue      -22
Red Sat       39
Green Hue     -9
Green Sat    -11
Blue Hue       2
Blue Sat       6


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Gordon,

I hope that it's not too much trouble, but would you be able to post the 400D calibration settings that you obtained for use with Lightroom? I'd appreciate being given the opportunity to give them a try with my RAW files from my 400D.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=163518\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
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