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FORUMS Photo Sharing & Visual Enjoyment Transportation 
Thread started 09 Jul 2014 (Wednesday) 14:54
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Working on lighting.

 
Chad ­ Truss
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Jul 09, 2014 14:54 |  #1

I want to work on my lighting skills. More specifically I want to work on my skills using a single flash, and then layering the shots together to light the whole car, in photoshop.

Up until now, when I lit a shot I would involve a bunch of lights, softboxes, the works. All this equipment makes shoots take longer, AND it limits when and where I can shoot.

So here is my first attempt at lighting with a single light and then combining the images in photoshop.

IMAGE: https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5556/14581222151_8b3321a468_o.jpg

I took this shot very early in the morning at dawn. So the background and sky are not darkened in post. That is how dark everything would have been with no lights.

I took a single exposure with no lights to get the background.
Exposure with nose lit.
Exposure with the front corner/wheel lit.
Exposure with the side lit.
Exposure with the rear quarter/wheel lit.

Then I made my white balance, contrast, and other basic adjustments in LR, and copied the adjustments to all the images involved.

Then with the unlit background shot as the base, I brought each lit image as a new layer over the background. I applied a Layer Mask to each layer and painted out the parts of each layer that did not apply.

More important than critique, I would like any info you have on how to speed up or improve the workflow for an image like this.

Thanks

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AdrianFRST
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Jul 09, 2014 15:53 |  #2

There's a quicker way. How I do it is this:

Process the background image that's been shot with just ambient light.

Open all the strobed raw files in Camera Raw at once. You'll get a list on the left with them all. Apply the settings I want to the first image in the sequence, then hit "Select All", "Synchronize..." , then "Open Images". This will save you having to open each exposure separately and duplicate the setting each time.

You'll then get all the raw files open as individual documents in PS. You can just drag or duplicate the layers into one doc, but there's a quicker way:

File > Scripts > Load Files Into Stack

Click "Add Open Files" and then hit OK. You'll get a new untitled doc with all your exposures as layers.

Select all these layers and change the blend mode to "Lighten" This will (non destructively) merge them together and quickly do what you've been doing with layer masks, but without having to blend them together with the brush.

A brief explanation of the "Lighten" blend mode:

"If the pixels of the selected layer are lighter then the ones on the layers below, they are kept in the image"

Then you can just add back in your background layer and paint out the bits you don't want - light overspill etc, or streaks if you're light painting.

Hope this helps speed things up a bit!


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PhotosGuy
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Jul 09, 2014 15:54 |  #3

Except for what's happening in the drivers window, I think it looks very nice because you used a flash exposure that didn't overpower the natural highlights from the sky. I'm not loving the reflection of the building in the hood, though.
Personally, I don't know of a way to improve the workflow to save time. I don't use a flash, make several exposures, & it still takes time: http://img.photobucket​.com …ProStreet-Jim_TreeBKG.jpg (external link)


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
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Chad ­ Truss
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Jul 09, 2014 17:35 |  #4

Yeah, I couldn't figure out how to get the side windows to match. Nor could I get rid of that little building top in the hood without it looking like I did something.

I'll play with it though.

And yes, natural light lines from the sun help keep the car looking "real" to me. I insisted on not completely flattening out the car with strobes.


I shoot Nikon. What?
http://www.flickr.com/​photos/ctruss53/ (external link)
www.trussphotography.c​om (external link)
www.ratrodmagazine.com (external link)

  
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Chad ­ Truss
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Jul 09, 2014 17:38 |  #5

Thanks for the processing tips Adrian. I'll have to try that out.


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www.ratrodmagazine.com (external link)

  
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bsmotril
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Jul 09, 2014 22:02 |  #6

Would a shot with a circular polarizer filter on get rid of the hood reflection?


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PhotosGuy
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Jul 09, 2014 22:22 |  #7

bsmotril wrote in post #17022049 (external link)
Would a shot with a circular polarizer filter on get rid of the hood reflection?

It's in a highlight isn't it? Lose one, & you'll lose the other.


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
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Chad ­ Truss
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Jul 10, 2014 07:58 |  #8

I think the reflections in the hood were unavoidable with the polarizer. The polarizer is what caused the pattern in the window on the drivers door though.


I shoot Nikon. What?
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www.trussphotography.c​om (external link)
www.ratrodmagazine.com (external link)

  
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Bluetibby1
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Jul 12, 2014 09:07 |  #9

I think it looks nice with a single strobe. I have several strobes and typically just get one out because it's quicker, so I understand that. Over all I think you did a nice job. As far as the window goes, I would mask out the bubbly area and then transfer the rear window "highlight" portion over the bubbles to remove them. Just throwing ideas out. :)


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jonpwn
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Jul 13, 2014 08:58 |  #10

I think the three strobe shots did a good job as far as capturing most accents of the car, i.e. bring out the Dark blue pearl, show the wheels and brembos without any overexposed areas (i get a lot of that when I shoot and the light bounces off polished lips). Because the ambience is a bit dark, the car doesn't look too far from unnatural, whereas if it were broad daylight I could perhaps see the front end being a bit more exposed.

Overall i like it!




  
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Chad ­ Truss
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Jul 13, 2014 22:20 |  #11

Bluetibby1 wrote in post #17026742 (external link)
I think it looks nice with a single strobe. I have several strobes and typically just get one out because it's quicker, so I understand that. Over all I think you did a nice job. As far as the window goes, I would mask out the bubbly area and then transfer the rear window "highlight" portion over the bubbles to remove them. Just throwing ideas out. :)

Explain this one please. I'd like to fix that window. :)


I shoot Nikon. What?
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www.trussphotography.c​om (external link)
www.ratrodmagazine.com (external link)

  
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PhotosGuy
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Jul 14, 2014 09:20 |  #12

Chad Truss wrote in post #17030113 (external link)
Explain this one please. I'd like to fix that window. :)

I'd select the drivers window. Then clone from the back window.
I'd be tempted to just try a Gaussian blur on the selection first to see if/how that worked.


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
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Chad ­ Truss
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Jul 14, 2014 13:10 |  #13

I was thinking I could just copy over or clone the back glass into the drivers door, but I would like to learn about this "highlight" technique.


I shoot Nikon. What?
http://www.flickr.com/​photos/ctruss53/ (external link)
www.trussphotography.c​om (external link)
www.ratrodmagazine.com (external link)

  
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AdrianFRST
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Jul 14, 2014 16:11 |  #14

My preferred method for fixing the window and hood is to redraw the shapes of the affected area using the pen tool, then apply a gradient overlay matching the colours of similar areas. Adjust until it looks right, add noise, then gaussian blur.

Hope you don't mind but I had a quick go:

IMAGE: http://www.expure.com/old/temp/golf-fixed.jpg

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Holster
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Jul 14, 2014 17:29 |  #15

Another shooter from my back yard! I use a monolight the same way. Did you fire an exposure for the front of the car? Looks like a dark grill and would be hard to light.



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