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Thread started 27 Oct 2008 (Monday) 13:58
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Skin tones "by the numbers" but I need numbers!

 
klynam
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Oct 27, 2008 13:58 |  #1

Just as I learned to use the histogram to accurately judge exposure instand of the image preview, I'm beginning to explore skin tones "by the numbers" rather than solely trusting my visual perception through capture > post > printing.

Does anyone have or know of a reference with specific (RGB,LAB,CMYK) equivelancy values for ALL skin tones?

Ok - yes I realize there are as many skin tones as their are people. But surely someone somewhere has a range of 10-20 general skin tones with (RGB,LAB,CMYK) numeric targets. I found some for caucasion but that's it so far.

Thank you,


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wem
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Oct 27, 2008 14:39 |  #2

I use, for RGB, the following:

213, 172, 129.

That's all I use. I am interested in other numbers as well.


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ssim
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Oct 27, 2008 14:46 |  #3

I can't remember where I got this but it might be what you are looking for. The original file is quite large and this is about as good as it gets for an attachment here.


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Redfish
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Oct 27, 2008 15:09 |  #4

Are you kidding????? What is the skin tone for the palm of your hand? now what is it for the back of your hand...in the summer....in the winter?????

Shoot a custom white balance and you will not have to worry about a RGB number, but will have the actual skin tone - correct for the light that is being reflected from it.


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ssim
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Oct 27, 2008 16:49 |  #5

Redfish wrote in post #6570986 (external link)
Are you kidding????? What is the skin tone for the palm of your hand? now what is it for the back of your hand...in the summer....in the winter?????

Shoot a custom white balance and you will not have to worry about a RGB number, but will have the actual skin tone - correct for the light that is being reflected from it.


Steve

What issue is it that you have with this thread, the OP asked for something that showed skin tone color numbers, which I posted. I thought it was a pretty straight forward question with no picture posted to draw the "shoot a custom white balance".

Certainly there are literally many more skin tones than on my post but it was a direct response to the OP's question.


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PamR
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Oct 27, 2008 17:53 |  #6

Skin tones "by the numbers" and a curves guide...

@ ssim:
That's Bruce Beard's Skintones Color chart. He also has one for hair color. It's a great "retoucher's" resource. And one can NEVER have too much information and resources. Thanks for posting that one :D

klynam wrote in post #6570567 (external link)
Just as I learned to use the histogram to accurately judge exposure instand of the image preview, I'm beginning to explore skin tones "by the numbers" rather than solely trusting my visual perception through capture > post > printing.

Does anyone have or know of a reference with specific (RGB,LAB,CMYK) equivelancy values for ALL skin tones?
Thank you,

Skin tones "by the numbers" for me, doesn't mean exact numbers. The range is far too wide. Bruce Beard's chart is a good reference for hand-coloring images and traditional retouching. But Dan Margulis, before he wrote the LAB technique so many use to punch up colors, wrote a great book on color correction by-the-numbers, "Professional Photoshop: The Classic Guide to Color Correction" that has some general guidelines on skin color.

You'll also find his numbers used on SmugMug's guide to skin color. (external link)

Here's a quick and dirty guide to color correction, Margulis style, that may help. This is a general guide covering a range of skin tones. Treat them as ratios, not numbers carved in stone.:

For Caucasian skin:
- yellow should be equal to or up to + 1/3 of the magenta - cyan should be 1/5 to 1/3 less than magenta (the more bronzed the skin, the higher the cyan percentage)

Hispanic and Asian:
- yellow is higher than magenta
- cyan is 1/4 magenta up to +1/3 magenta

African-American:
A wide range. Lighter skin tones are similar to Hispanic/Asian. For darker skin tones, yellow and magenta can be equal. Cyan, there is no limit.


How to Measure Skin Color

These numbers are measured using the color sampler tool, which is found grouped with the eyedropper in the tools palette. Make sure the "Sample size" on the options bar is set to a number appropriate to the image resolution. Try 5x5 to start. Click on the image to set the samplers on areas of the face which are typical skin colors on evenly lit areas of the face, not in highlights or shadow.

Then open the info palette (Window>Info). You'll find your sampler numbers listed at the bottom, #1-4. Next to each set is an eyedropper. Click on the very small arrowhead to open up the menu and choose "CMYK". You don't have to convert your image to CMYK, these numbers just make the adjustments easier.


Adjusting Skin Color Using Curves

To adjust your colors, open up a curves adjustment layer and pull down the appropriate channel:
Red channel for cyan changes.
Green channel for magenta changes.
Blue channel for yellow changes.


Say you have too much yellow. To lower the yellow number, choose the blue channel from the drop down channel menu. Ctrl+click on the sampler. This will place a point on the curve. This point is what will be adjusted to change the yellow number in the info box. Basically, move that point to the right and you'll add yellow. Move it to the left and you'll add blue.

Here's a visual of the colors each channel is responsible for when working in RGB. Look outside the curves dialog box and notice the color changes on the image of the patio stones when the curve is moved (I've masked the image on the diagonal along the curves dialog box.

Remember that pulling the curve in one direction (adding more of that color) is the equivalent of subtracting the color opposite.


Red channel controls Red and Cyan:

IMAGE: http://upload.pbase.com/pam_r/image/93734948.jpg



Green channel controls Green and Magenta:


IMAGE: http://upload.pbase.com/pam_r/image/93734950.jpg



Blue channel controls Blue and Yellow:


IMAGE: http://upload.pbase.com/pam_r/image/93734949.jpg

Pam
http://www.pbase.com/p​am_r (external link)

  
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Nathan
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Oct 27, 2008 18:26 |  #7

ssim wrote in post #6570863 (external link)
I can't remember where I got this but it might be what you are looking for. The original file is quite large and this is about as good as it gets for an attachment here.

If that was saved as a .gif, you woulda been able to get a larger image.


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PamR
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Oct 27, 2008 18:41 as a reply to  @ ssim's post |  #8

Here are the color charts (credit to Bruce Beard for both)...

You can also download the colors as Photoshop swatches (.aco) files here, so you can easily sample the colors:

http://www.photoshopcr​eativity.com …n_Hair_Color_sw​atches.zip (external link)

To use the swatches, open Window>Swatches in PS, then "Load swatches", and navigate to the files:

IMAGE: http://upload.pbase.com/image/105149285/original.jpg


The Skin Color chart:

IMAGE: http://upload.pbase.com/image/105147199/original.jpg
IMAGE LINK: http://www.retouchpro.​com/pages/skintones.jp​g  (external link)


And the Hair Color chart:

IMAGE: http://upload.pbase.com/image/105147197/original.jpg

Pam
http://www.pbase.com/p​am_r (external link)

  
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blssdwlf
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Oct 27, 2008 19:00 |  #9

Thank you PamR :)


Regards,
Peter
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klynam
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Oct 28, 2008 10:37 |  #10

My thanks to everyone, this is exactly what I was hoping for...


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klynam
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Oct 28, 2008 15:31 |  #11

In my continuing research, I just found that PS Elements has (or did have) a Skin Tone Adjustment slider. Interesting...


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Skin tones "by the numbers" but I need numbers!
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