Stainless steel items photo retouch

Discussion in 'Photoshop' started by white lightning, Dec 30, 2008.

  1. I am using CS2 and I'm trying to retouch stainless steel products such
    as fridge and kitchen items. I took the photos in ordinary lighting
    inside a room, no studio setup.

    To bring out a stainless steel feel, I used a Pen tool to remove the
    background. Then I used Image > Adjustment > Desaturate to get rid of
    all the colors. Then I used Curve to brighten up the image and used
    Selective color's Neutral mode to get rid of some of the black.

    The images look ok but I'm still not fully satisfied. Am I following
    the right steps? or is there a better way to retouch stainless steel

    white lightning, Dec 30, 2008
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  2. white lightning

    Misifus Guest

    Although SS is, itself, colorless, wouldn't it reflect colors from other
    objects in the room? Perhaps, after brightening up the object, you
    could restore a bit of color, maybe by reducing the transparency of your
    top layer a bit?


    Rafael Seibert
    Misifus, Dec 31, 2008
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  3. white lightning

    stephen68 Guest

    I wouldn't desaturate the image. Go to image and open Hue &
    Saturation. Use the drop-down menu at the top to get rid of unwanted
    color casts or add some color casts. Use the eye dropper tool at the
    lower right to select areas that you want to adjust. Stainless steel
    is like a blurry mirror so there is going to be some color in it.
    stephen68, Dec 31, 2008
  4. white lightning

    Joel Guest


    Well, just by reading your message I don't think I am fully satisfied
    either. Even I never photograph stainless steel product, but I think I can
    smell quite a bit of problem.

    - Brighten - if I am not mistaken you are trying to say that the photo isn't
    very good to begind with.

    a. Too much underexpose then we are looking at NOISE, and color casting

    b. In order to work with very detail photo you may need a DSLR camera.
    DSLR camera alone won't do the trick but at least few basic requirements
    (1) top_of_the_line_LENS, (2) DSLR is good with low-light sitution.

    For the low-light situation I would suggest to go with Canon DSLR. If
    you decide to go with Nikon then only the current newest (around 3 times
    more expensive than Canon) may do almost as good as Canon (mid range not
    the top)

    Without the basic requirement then you will need lot of Photoshop work
    and may not be able to get the best you really want.

    - Lighting - since I am an indoor photographer so lighting is what I do
    best. Studio strobes isn't very expensive, or usually less expensive
    than top-noth flashes. And most pro and entry level DSLR and flash allow
    you to fire multiple flashes and wireless too.

    *But* if you don't have wireless flashes, external flash etc.. then you
    still can afford the TRIPOD to give you a brighter and better quality
    photo. And if you already have DSLR camera, then I would suggest to toss
    away the cheapie lens but learning to take advantage of the GOOD GLASS

    - Retouching - "removing background", I really don't know how good the
    *bright* stainless steel look against *bright* background, *unless* you mean
    "replacing" the background with darker color (unless the stainless steel
    doesn't have stainless steel color).

    But it seems like you forget to mention "MASKING" and "LAYER" which may be
    the must have. "Masking" there are several types of Masking, one is for
    removing other is for replacing, patching etc.. depending on how you use the
    Mask command.

    - Color - Photoshop does have some problem with some color's (channel) and
    especially the shinny look.

    P.S. I can't be able to picture what you have at your end.
    Joel, Jan 2, 2009
  5. Another simple thing to try is checking which channel contains the
    most contrast. Duplicate it, and lay it on top of the others. Make
    that one about 50 (or less) opaque and then push the levels.

    The 'texture' of the steel -- which are really little bands (depending
    on the resolution) might jump up a little. You'll have to play with
    it, but it's something i would try. Resolution is a key issue here,
    clearly -- as is any hints or color that might be there. Tonal ranges
    will determine which channel is best to dupe.

    Hope this works a little bit. Like anything else, we can all think of
    a dozen things we might try -- and it all depends on the original

    gary in florida
    Self-meditating in Tampa, Florida USA, Jan 2, 2009
  6. white lightning

    Joel Guest

    I have never work with steel or stainless steel to know much about it, so
    I can only be able to give some general information about retouching
    technique. But as a professional photographer and photo retoucher, I
    usually go the the root of problem, so I would say.

    - Good retouched starts with good original photo

    - Good original photo starts with good glass (lens)

    - And good lens still require good lighting to capture the best quality

    And as I suggested to use tripod to be able to get around low-light
    situation. No, I don't wotk with poor explosure to have much experience, or
    since I work for $$$$ and even I am pretty good with repairing damaged
    photo, but I prefer working on good photo to improve my retouching instead
    of wasting energy repairing.
    Joel, Jan 3, 2009
  7. white lightning

    Joel Guest

    I don't know what message you are responding too. But your message is
    saying you ain't verty smart.

    Or may be you are one of the stupid I kill-filed before and just got
    expired... cuz I never like stupid and I have kill-filed thousands of them.
    Joel, Jan 4, 2009
  8. white lightning

    Joel Guest

    Agree! and I just kill-filed that sucker (probably once again). The only
    thing we can do is trying to get the best out of the camera (by using good
    camera, correct setting, good lens, and right lighting) then Photoshop or
    similar for fine-tuning or modifying depending on the work.

    I have no idea what the sucker respinses too, but it shows the coward and
    foolist stinky mouth so I kill that sucker. I just added to existing group
    of "foul-mouthed" which supposes to be around 300 days, but it was made 150
    days ago so the sucker will re be reborn in 150 days.
    Joel, Jan 4, 2009
  9. white lightning

    Voivod Guest

    Cowards are the ones who shout (semi intelligible) insults and then hide
    behind their filters.
    Voivod, Jan 4, 2009
  10. white lightning

    Joel Guest

    Exactly what you really want then you are probably right, but it's ok for
    print then you may not be right. Or I do slightly fine-tuning about 99-100%
    of my photos, but I have done quite a few printing directly from camera and
    they looked great too.

    IOW, I sometime at family getting together I print with inkjet printer
    (Epson RX680) directly from camera. Or if I don't make a quick print for
    family to enjoy then I may do a light exposure/contrast adjustment.

    Or I never believe wasting time with poor lens, poor lighting etc. to do
    repairing when I can get a better quality with top-of-the-line-lens, good
    lighting, and setting etc.. And I don't know who Ansel Adams is, and I
    don't care what or how s/he does his technique., and I never believe in
    "perfect" either, or life would be boring if thing needs no more
    Joel, Jan 5, 2009
  11. white lightning

    Joel Guest

    Well, when you get to the level you no longer need to ask to compare one
    thing to other then I may show you something to enjoy. In the mean time.
    all you need to follow the very basic enjoyments.

    1. Use the best lens to capture the best quality the lens can capture.

    2. Learn to take advantage of the lighting (flash) to bring light to where
    it's needed.

    3. Learn to know your gear well

    4. Learn to develope your very own style. Or learn not to study the history
    of other photographer which usually won't help you with the photography
    skill, or may be good for TRIVIA.

    That's pretty much all you need to know, and that is the level when you
    can start enjoying the work of other. Or have you ever seen me interested
    in the work of others? No, I sure can enjoy quite afew but I don't care,
    because if it's the same style I do then I already know, if it's different
    then it may not the style I interest in.

    Yup! that's me, and if you pay close attention then you may have noticed
    I never correct anyone (here and other group), but I won't shy from sharing
    my opinion.
    Joel, Jan 5, 2009
  12. white lightning

    Joel Guest

    No need to feel thing needs not to feel cuz life has so many thing to
    learn many different levels to reach, and we can only be able to reach so
    much or so far.

    Not even talking about photography or photo retoucher, but some very basic
    thing of life like we all know how to BREATH on the first second we we were
    out of the womb. And later in life some (a very small number of people) may
    have some basic training at either hospital (therapy) or gym (sport) etc.,
    and even fewer who train to breath as Yoga, Meditation, and different types
    of Martial Arts.

    So I hate to agree to put you down but because you are so right the way
    you disagree with me, so I have to agree with you even it won't make you

    So, I would suggest you to learn to learn to enjoy whatever you are
    capable of, learn to realize that life seems very simple but it could be
    much more complicate then it seems, and it can be much less comples than we
    may think.

    Yup! I even mention the breathing that most people think they have
    mastered without even trying, or we have been doing every seconds for the
    rest of our life. But if we want to reach the higher level of breathing
    technique then it's a very word work and won't be easy to master.

    Have I told you I was even a martial art instructor? (I retired because I
    am too old and health problem), and I can even talk more detail about the
    nartual life (like eye blinking and reaction etc.) that most normal people
    don't even think ONCE in their life time.
    Joel, Jan 5, 2009
  13. white lightning

    tony cooper Guest

    I do a lot of photography, but not studio stuff. Your question really
    pertains more to studio photography. In the studio, the subject is
    posed and the lighting is arranged. A great deal of the composition
    is done before the photographer touches the camera. The photographer
    is visualizing as he/she sets it up.

    I do some of that with table-top photography, but most of what I
    photograph doesn't allow me to pose the subject or arrange the
    lighting. I can position myself to take advantage of lighting, but
    that's limited in some cases.

    In landscape, architectural, candid, animal, etc, photography,
    post-processing comes more into play. There's more attention to
    cropping, some manipulation, and the other adjustments possible in
    Photoshop. An uninteresting wide shot can be cropped to an
    interesting detail shot that wasn't seen when the camera snapped.

    Not that there's not some of both in each. Try to get a good
    photograph of an osprey or a hawk or any wild animal, and you do a
    lot of just sitting and waiting without touching the camera until the
    composition arranges itself. Photograph a barn and you move around
    snapping off shots looking for the right composition. Photograph the
    barn door hinges close-up, and you arrange the lighting with a
    collapsible reflector.
    tony cooper, Jan 6, 2009
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