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Suggestions for Image PP

Postby Alpha_7 on Mon Jun 19, 2006 1:23 pm

Hi All,

I'm working on a submission to a photography assignment called "Stuffed Toys in Peril", late last night before the World Cup I managed to get this shot which captures the general feel of what I was going for. They little bears have got themselves into hot water and the villagers are licking their lips for Bear Stew.

Since I wasn't allowed to burn or cook any of katie's bears, I had to make do with matches and well while it kind of works I think with some PP the whole image could be better but in particular the fire around the cookpot.

I'd really appreciate any suggestions or ideas of how to improve and polish this shot before tomorrow's deadline (yep, always leaving things to the last minute). If need be I can post the raw, or a higher res version, not sure if that would help you out.

Here goes.
Image

Also being on my LCD, if in general it's too dark or too bright please let me know, in general it's meant to be fairly ominious but bright enough to see some detail in the villagers.
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Postby wendellt on Mon Jun 19, 2006 1:28 pm

i think it's great conceptual photography
lots of levels of menaing in that setup shot

i would just fix up the flames a little and maybe ad some smoke
to the scene

or scribble
' i love teddies' tatoo on the cocconut
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Postby PiroStitch on Mon Jun 19, 2006 2:31 pm

I think the lighting is cool as well but maybe capture the scene and the flames in seperate shots and composite it in photoshop. The "flames" are a bit too bright. Also if you want to be really tricky, if you take the flames shot, put some water in the pot and get some steam to form.

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Postby DJXtreme on Mon Jun 19, 2006 2:39 pm

I love it! Great topic and you seem to have come up with a fantastic idea. Same as what the others have said, the flames are a touch too bright on my monitor other than that though the lighting is good.

The only other thing is the unlit match in the right hand of that thing... given the fire's going shouldn't it be used, maybe great potential to get a shot of it alight or smouldering, then again this might detract from the focus of the picture, probably just me being pedantic.

And to think everyones being telling us not to play with matches all these years.

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Postby ABG on Mon Jun 19, 2006 2:43 pm

Great shot Craig. I reckon Piro's comments are right on the money.
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Postby Alpha_7 on Mon Jun 19, 2006 2:52 pm

DJXtreme wrote:I love it! Great topic and you seem to have come up with a fantastic idea. Same as what the others have said, the flames are a touch too bright on my monitor other than that though the lighting is good.

The only other thing is the unlit match in the right hand of that thing... given the fire's going shouldn't it be used, maybe great potential to get a shot of it alight or smouldering, then again this might detract from the focus of the picture, probably just me being pedantic.

And to think everyones being telling us not to play with matches all these years.

Will


Good pick up, the unlit match was for the shots were the wood was stacked but the fire hadn't been lit, I didn't think to remove it to change it once I had "started the fire" but it would of made sense.

I'm not sure how confident I am with a composite, but I may give it a go, atleast adding some steam / smoke would add a bit more realism to the shot.
I didn't know if I could use the burn tool to perhaps make the fire a bit more realistic ?
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Postby DJXtreme on Mon Jun 19, 2006 2:56 pm

i was thinking about the smoke bit, if you're going to go for a composite pic perhaps you could take one with the matches alight... then blow them out. from memory matches always seem to smoke when you extinguish them, so if you then took another pic, you'd have your smoke, then you could throw it all together.
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Postby Bodak on Mon Jun 19, 2006 6:22 pm

Just a quick PS

New layer on top/render-clouds/blending mode color dodge/ then a mask to show the bits from the bottom layer.
Image

You could also try overlay or soft light as blending modes.
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Postby Marty on Mon Jun 19, 2006 8:01 pm

Hey Mate,
just a very quick fix in Photoshop.
The flames are just a bit of smudging, could be done much more realistically with more time.
Other fixes, contrast, sharpen, multiple layers.

Image
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Postby Alpha_7 on Mon Jun 19, 2006 8:56 pm

Wow! Bodak and Marty thanks guys, these are great versions much more alive then mine and Marty the fire is awesome looks far more sinister, the bears look like they're toast!
Thanks again!
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Postby Bodak on Mon Jun 19, 2006 9:00 pm

Just added flames to my original smoke only touch up
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Postby Alpha_7 on Tue Jun 20, 2006 10:14 pm

Hi everyone, I took on board some of the suggests, but in the end I didn't have the time to reshoot the shot so I worked with what I had. Marty I hope you don't mind I based my flame design on yours, I also found a plugin that provides differnent types of smoke, I hope this one kind of looks realistic. I'll be submitting the image soon, so if anyone has any last minute suggests then I'll gladly listen, if not thanks for all the help.


Image
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Postby sirhc55 on Tue Jun 20, 2006 10:16 pm

Submit it quick as this is your stated deadline :wink: :lol:
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Postby marcotrov on Tue Jun 20, 2006 10:22 pm

Looks as though you are on a winner. Craig :)
cheers
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Postby Alpha_7 on Tue Jun 20, 2006 10:42 pm

Thanks, it has been submitted.
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Postby Geoff on Tue Jun 20, 2006 11:53 pm

Good luck Craig - I love it! :)

Let us know!
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Postby blacknstormy on Tue Jun 20, 2006 11:57 pm

Craig - good luck - brilliant concept :) ;)
I kind of hate it though - we get these bloody coconut people through the airport all the time, and they just don't want to answer any questions !!!!! And to know that they burn teddybears !!!!
Well !!!!!!!
;)
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Postby Alpha_7 on Wed Jun 21, 2006 12:08 am

blacknstormy wrote:Craig - good luck - brilliant concept :) ;)
I kind of hate it though - we get these bloody coconut people through the airport all the time, and they just don't want to answer any questions !!!!! And to know that they burn teddybears !!!!
Well !!!!!!!
;)
Rel


Thanks Rel you gave me a good laugh, glad you like the concept, I think the help from the forum made it a stronger entry.

Your right you have to watch those savage coconut people, they have a taste for Bear Soup now, who knows what other atrocities they will commit.
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Postby Marty on Wed Jun 21, 2006 7:15 pm

Hey mate,
hope I get 50% of the prize if you win...!!!!
Your flames look identical to mine, did you use the version I posted as it was only a low res image...?
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Postby Alpha_7 on Wed Jun 21, 2006 7:34 pm

Will if I win I'll give you 50% of the glory marty, but as there isn't a prize I can't split it with you. I did a rough selection of your flames and layered and blended them into my attempt, I tried to make them red too.. I hope you don't mind the appropriation, if you do I can with draw my submission.
If you want to see the submission it's here.
http://www.digitalcoffeelounge.com/viewtopic.php?p=3407#3407
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Postby Marty on Wed Jun 21, 2006 7:40 pm

No problem Mate,
it would have been better to use a higher res version and spend more time with the flames.
If you ever need to do it again, just start with a large brush to smudge the main areas, then progresssively reduce the brush size to add the smaller details, more time consuming but will give better results.
Good luck with your entry, and next time go for a comp with a bigger prize that we can share.....!
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Postby Alpha_7 on Thu Jun 29, 2006 1:24 pm

Well just a quick update! I won! and Marty if you want half the Coffee Vouchers I won (website currency) then you welcome to them (but get in quick before I lose them) :).
http://www.digitalcoffeelounge.com/viewtopic.php?t=938

Thanks everyone for the help, this has been a great learning experience for me, I'm really proud of the outcome.
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Postby graphite on Thu Jun 29, 2006 1:26 pm

I really like the concept as well. The final version does improve on the original nicely, as the flames did need more definition. That and the smoke make it a complete picture.
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Postby Alpha_7 on Thu Jun 29, 2006 1:32 pm

graphite wrote:I really like the concept as well. The final version does improve on the original nicely, as the flames did need more definition. That and the smoke make it a complete picture.


Thanks for the feedback Nathan, I had thought about shooting a different version of this at your place, with the number of toys at you place and the BBQ nice and handy...;) but I don't think the kids would of enjoyed it.
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Postby graphite on Thu Jun 29, 2006 1:46 pm

No, I dont think my kids would have enjoyed seeing one of their stuffed toys being melted in various ways... Of course we could have waited until they were in bed!
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