Simulating an orange filter in Photoshop

Discussion in 'UK Photography' started by Al Treacher, Aug 22, 2003.

  1. Al Treacher

    Al Treacher Guest

    The answer to this may be fairly obvious, but it currently eludes me!

    How does one simulate the effect of taking a monochrome photograph
    with an orange filter in Photoshop?

    Doing it with a red filter is easy - the red channel is easy to find
    and manipulate.

    However, how does one do the same with a colour that's not simply Red,
    Green or Blue? I'd like to experiment with orange because sometimes I
    find the effects of a red filter too extreme.

    Thanks in anticipation,
    Al Treacher, Aug 22, 2003
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  2. Looking at my color wheel, I find orange in-between red and yellow.

    What? There's no yellow channel??

    Luckily, there is a blue channel and that happens to be directly across from
    yellow on my wheel, so I say use blue and go the opposite way.

    Do 50/50 of each.

    That should get you in the ballpark.

    - jz
    Jeff Zawrotny, Aug 22, 2003
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  3. It is not possible to simulate an orange filter in Photoshop.
    You cannot either simulate a deep red filter. The information
    is lost when taking the picture.

    Roland Karlsson, Aug 22, 2003
  4. Al Treacher

    Pete Guest

    Maybe I'm having a senior moment, but this doesn't make sense to me.
    Could you explain why?
    Pete, Aug 22, 2003
  5. Doing it with a red filter is easy - the red channel is easy to find
    All colors come from red green and blue. Mixing in some of the green
    should get the red to get more orange. Try it.
    Steve Jenkins, Aug 22, 2003
  6. Al Treacher

    Alan F Cross Guest

    The way to do it is to use the Image\Adjust\Channel Mixer. Set the box
    to 'monochrome' and play with the sliders.

    For orange you can start with 100% red, 0% green and 0% blue, and see
    how you like the effect. You can then 'dilute' the effect by bringing in
    the other primaries and reducing the red, always ensuring that they add
    up to 100% (or tweak the 'constant' slider).

    You can simulate any number of filter colours this way. But I would
    suggest you get away from the constricting notion 'must simulate an
    orange filter' and move towards the creative possibilities of channel
    Alan F Cross, Aug 22, 2003
  7. He must be thinking black and white. I presume we are talking about a color
    original, filtered with an orange filter, then printed in B&W. In this case,
    the "information" is certainly not lost before filtering.

    Gary Eickmeier
    Gary Eickmeier, Aug 23, 2003
  8. Al Treacher

    Pete Guest

    I'd agree with that :)
    Pete, Aug 23, 2003
  9. Al Treacher

    Faolan Guest

    Assuming you taken the shot in colour consider the following article:

    There is a set of filters call Niks Effects that simulate camera filters
    for Photoshop(and compatible):

    Downside is that they are pretty expensive :eek:(
    Faolan, Aug 23, 2003
  10. Take the picture in colour in the normal way. Then just play with the
    colour gain/contrast settings in your graphics software until the
    picture appears tinted the colour of the filter you want to simulate.
    Then reduce it to monochrome/greyscale.

    I did some experiments once to see what proportions of red green and
    blue were mixed to make monochrome in both Photoshop and Paint Shop Pro,
    and found that PSP uses something very close to the photopic proportions
    of 0.59G, 0.30R, 0.11B used in television, but Photoshop uses quite
    different values, so it's worth experimenting.

    Roderick Stewart, Aug 23, 2003
  11. Al Treacher

    Pete Guest

    It seems strange to me that these programs don't have a high-level
    function for standard color filters. For example, a dialog box showing
    the original color image, a dropdown list of color filters by number,
    and color and grayscale images showing the effects of the filter.
    Pete, Aug 23, 2003
  12. Al Treacher

    Bruce Murphy Guest

    Bearing in mind that once you've taken a lovely light image and
    smashed it beyond recognition into three channels, you really can't go
    back and do anything but really broad filters. In particularly narrow
    band-pass, or band-stop filters, and filters have sharp cutoffs except
    at carefully chosen locations can't be duplicated.

    But hey, this is digital, who cares about reality.

    Bruce Murphy, Aug 23, 2003
  13. What's monochrome got to do with reality anyway?

    Roderick Stewart, Aug 23, 2003
  14. There is a continous spectrum from bluest blue to redest red,
    there are an infinite number of wavelenghts in between. An
    optical orange filter is a sharp low pass filter, letting light with
    a longer wavelength than e.g. 540 nm (Wratten 21).

    The CCD in your camera has sensors for three colors only.
    The transitions between the filters are smooth. You can only
    simulate transmission curves that are linear combinations
    of those three tone curves. You cannot simulate any sharp
    filters - and you cannot choose the cutof frequency.

    If you apply an orange filter in photoshop you will mix R
    and G to get orange. This will look (to the eye) the same
    as the color of an orange filter. But, it will not filter
    the wavelengths the same as an orange filter.

    Roland Karlsson, Aug 23, 2003
  15. This is correct! You can do wonderful things with the
    channel mixer and B&W. But, you cannot simulate a real
    optical B&W filter. It is simply not possible. But, that
    does not really matter.

    What do matter though is that you can never simulate a
    deep red filter with color filtering only. You cannot get
    those very dark skies. You have to cheat. One way of cheating
    is to use the "select color" tool and select the sky, then
    darken it before using the channel mixer.

    Roland Karlsson, Aug 23, 2003
  16. Al Treacher

    Zol. Guest

    Can`t you use an adjustment layer on the image & vary the properties of the
    layer to similate this. I`m not sure which blending mode would be best -
    I`ve not really tried `cheating`, prefering a natural sky ... let me know if
    I`m totally off the wrong track here ... Zol.
    Zol., Aug 23, 2003
  17. Al Treacher

    Liz Guest

    In message <>
    Is it possible to 'fade' the effect you got with the red filter?
    Sorry, I'm not on the pc just now, so can't check.....

    Liz, Aug 23, 2003
  18. Al Treacher

    Tony Spadaro Guest

    Tony Spadaro, Aug 24, 2003
  19. Al Treacher

    Tony Spadaro Guest

    You are forgetting that thre are 4096 shades each of red and green in a
    16 bit per channel image - this is close enough to continuous as to not
    matter a hangnail. Even a 256 shade 8 bit per channel file will give you
    enough oranges to cover Florida. Will you get exactly the same effect as you
    would from a Hoya Orange #XX -- probably not, but if you wish to and are
    willing to do a bit of experimenting, you could get close enough that you
    won't be able to see the difference.
    Furthermore: You won't find any two orange filters by different
    brands to be exactly the same shade either - And it really ain't all that
    important anyway, unless you are doing spectroscophy or something equally
    critical - in which case I would assume you would be smart enough to buy
    your orange filter material by the square yard so it will all be exactly the
    Most people put on a yellow filter to darken sky and/or lighten skin
    tones, an orange filter or even a light red is going to do essentially the
    same thing to a greater degree - few people own more than two filters of any
    single colour and many people don't even bother with orange (in fact the
    only reason I have one is because I bought a pile of used filters cheap. I
    have two yellow/green filters, one yellow, one orange, and one red. I don't
    feel the need for any more. In fact the only other specific B/W filters I
    own are a deep green and a dark blue - all save one yellow green and the
    darker red were bought from the same guy at the same time, otherwise I
    wouldn't even have that many.
    Where filtering can get critical is the cc filters - and even there
    using one is no guarantee you will get the results you thought you would. An
    80B that works jes'fine at noon is not going to do the job at either 7 am or
    7 pm. Filtering can actually be much more accurate using Photoshop or some
    other program. I think I can recall seeing companies selling filter plug-ins
    for the program. I never have had that much need for exacting filtration so
    I've never tried them - it's more the sort of thing a catalog shooter would
    You cannot simulate a polarizor in photoshop (or you can but only with a
    lot of work and pre-knowledge) and if your original is in B/W you cannot
    create detail that was not on the original - so darkening sky and making
    fluffy white clouds pop out would be a painstaking operation not worth the
    effort. But if your ortiginal is in colour you can apply a colour filter and
    get the effect you want - it takes practice, and patience, but it is not
    hard and you can save the "filters" you create for later re-use. I usually
    don't, but it would not be a problem.

    home of The Camera-ist's Manifesto
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    New email - Contact on the Menyou page.
    Tony Spadaro, Aug 24, 2003
    journalist-north, Aug 24, 2003
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