Post Processing Challenge #133

WhidbeyLVR

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Feb 14, 2014
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Lyle
I am sure this never happens to you, but it has happened to me regularly. I have spent big $$$ on a once in a lifetime trip, to get to the top of a building, tower, mountain, or overlook in some far away and exotic locale. I want a photo which captures a view that goes on forever. Yesterday was perfectly clear. This morning was nearly as good as yesterday. But I am here today, in the afternoon, and it is hazier than my old college dorm on a Saturday night (or perhaps, hazier than my memories of said dorm). I didn't bring a polarizing filter to this high place (it works like crap on my wide-angle zoom anyway). So I take the shot I have, and hope to salvage something from it later. To wit:

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Hi-res image links:
JPG
RAW

See what you can make of it. Save my vacation!

The Challenge will conclude on Tuesday, November 11, 2014, at 23:00 PDT (Seattle local time).

Have fun!

-- Lyle


The Rules:

The Challenger will provide any photo that he/she deems worthy of challenging other members to "improve" by way Post Processing. It must be their own photo, and taken with m4/3 equipment. "Improve" is a subjective term, and includes many creative ideas as well as traditional "fixing". The Challenger agrees that entrants may make any changes they deem fit to post in their entry.

The winner of the previous challenge gets to post the next Challenge and serves as the judge for his/her PP challenge.

For obvious purposes, the judge is disqualified from participating in his/her own PP challenge. Instead, he/she should post a photo to start out the challenge.

***** If the winner fails to post a new challenge within five days, the responsibility passes to the runner-up. *****

At the end of the 72-hours (we don't have to be strict about 72-hours, especially with time differences depending on where you are on the globe), the judge will name a winner, a first runner-up, and a second runner-up.


Entrants:

The Challenger's image is posted for the sole purpose of the PP Challenge; it is not posted to invite Critique or Criticism.

Entries shall be limited to 2 per member for each Challenge.

Entrants to post a BBCode link to the Large size image of their PP edit(s), preferably 1024px x npx, or npx x 1024px, if the original image and/or the PP edit allow for these sizes. Also a click-through to the original sized hosted edit if appropriate (but not a requirement for entry). If you post your entry to a photo-hosting site such as Flickr, Photobucket, or a Gallery, etc., please credit the original photographer to make it clear it is not your photograph; something like "Photo taken by xxxxxx over at Mu-43.com" should suffice.

Entrants are strongly encouraged to post the settings and techniques used for their entry, however this is not a requirement for entry.

As we all know, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. We may not all agree with the chosen winners, but the judges decision is final without adverse comment from the Entrants; the judge is encouraged (but not required) to state what criteria he used to decide on a winner.

To make sure we don't break any Mu-43 rules/regulations, by participating in the PP Challenge you are allowing the judge to re-post your image for the sole purpose of announcing the winners in the thread.
 

Conrad

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Feb 13, 2010
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255
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Veldhoven, The Netherlands
In ACR: Perspective correction, straightening the horizon, remove lens distortion, noise suppression (NO sharpening). Doge and burn, also combined with local clarity, contrast, and white balance adjustments. Overall white balance change.
In Photoshop: patch up the sky where no information was left because of the perspective correction. Three pass smart sharpen: 3p/40%, 1p/100%, resample bicubic to 1024x768, 0.7p/40%.

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Brian Beezley

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San Marcos, California
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dancebert

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Hua Hin, Thailand
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My editing skills are inadequate to produce a serious entry.
 
M

minibokeh

Guest
(original size uploaded on Flickr, follow links)
Process:
- DXO 10 with anti-haze (100% for background, 50% for foreground, composite with gradient mask in Photoshop)
- Piccure+ (again gradient mask, no enhancement for background to avoid artifacts)
- v2 and v3: AlienSkin Exposure 6 - whenever I have technical "issues" in an image, I like to explore if those can be translated into something interesting, in this case miniature "art filter"

My "official entries" are the first and second version, 3rd included to illustrate other possible directions

<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/101667287@N08/15564681138" title="P9211111_DxO-v1 by Moritz Berger, on Flickr">View attachment 393877"1024" height="768" alt="P9211111_DxO-v1"></a>

<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/101667287@N08/15130166814" title="P9211111_DxO-v2-bw by Moritz Berger, on Flickr">View attachment 393878"1024" height="768" alt="P9211111_DxO-v2-bw"></a>

<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/101667287@N08/15130716513" title="P9211111_DxO-v3 by Moritz Berger, on Flickr">View attachment 393879"1024" height="768" alt="P9211111_DxO-v3"></a>
 

WhidbeyLVR

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Feb 14, 2014
Messages
1,513
Location
Whidbey Island
Real Name
Lyle
For some reason, the first image isn't showing on this contest page, but I can click through to its Flickr page. Did you maybe replace the image on Flickr after your initial post, so that the img link was changed?

(original size uploaded on Flickr, follow links)
Process:
- DXO 10 with anti-haze (100% for background, 50% for foreground, composite with gradient mask in Photoshop)
- Piccure+ (again gradient mask, no enhancement for background to avoid artifacts)
- v2 and v3: AlienSkin Exposure 6 - whenever I have technical "issues" in an image, I like to explore if those can be translated into something interesting, in this case miniature "art filter"

My "official entries" are the first and second version, 3rd included to illustrate other possible directions

<a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/101667287@N08/15564681138" title="P9211111_DxO-v1 by Moritz Berger, on Flickr">View attachment 393887"1024" height="768" alt="P9211111_DxO-v1"></a>

[...]
 
M

minibokeh

Guest
For some reason, the first image isn't showing on this contest page, but I can click through to its Flickr page. Did you maybe replace the image on Flickr after your initial post, so that the img link was changed?
thanks, it was showing fine on my PC, reposted the link
 

WhidbeyLVR

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Feb 14, 2014
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Whidbey Island
Real Name
Lyle
There are about 25 hours left in the contest. The entries thus far have been great! You have all brought an amazing amount of detail out of that shot. The DxO stuff is particularly impressive. I might have to give that software an extra look.

I can't believe I failed to notice that a Gojira monster was wreaking havoc in Central Manhattan while I was atop the Empire State Building! But in my defense, I may have been distracted by the giant ape which was climbing up the building from below.

Anyway, there is plenty of time and room for more entries. For example, we have only one "art filter" interpretation at this point. So if you have an inspiration, please join in the fun.

Thanks to all the entrants so far.
 

Kenny

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Sep 9, 2012
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KL Malaysia
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nsd20463

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Santa Cruz, CA

WhidbeyLVR

Mu-43 All-Pro
Joined
Feb 14, 2014
Messages
1,513
Location
Whidbey Island
Real Name
Lyle
Thanks to everyone who participated. The entries were really great, and judging them was tough. Each of them had their strengths. I appreciate the efforts of those who did perspective correction, but after seeing them, I felt the perspective distortion actually enhanced the feeling of the high vantage point. Thanks to those who corrected my crooked horizon.

In the final analysis, I thought the first place image recovered maximum detail with well controlled noise, and kept a fairly neutral white balance, thus giving the feeling of being there on a clear day. The winner is the #1 entry from minibokeh:

View attachment 394262P9211111_DxO-v1 by phoplex, on Flickr

In second place, with punchy foreground colors and good detail recovery, was the first entry by Zeus1:
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Third place goes to Brian Beezley's B/W entry:
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Honorable mentions to Zeus1 for his colored pencil rendition, to Conrad for his city of gold, and to dbuckle for his gritty b/w version.

As I said yesterday, I was quite impressed with the quality of the images that folks were getting with DxO, and the results reflect that. So today, I took the challenge myself, and tried to achieve comparable results using the free tools I have at hand: Olympus Viewer 3, Hugin, and GIMP. After considerable effort, I was able to achieve the following:

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I do not think this image is quite as good as the winning entry. There is less recovered detail and more noise. Does any other raw processor do as good a job of haze removal as DxO?
 

lightmonkey

Mu-43 Veteran
Joined
Dec 22, 2013
Messages
479
Second entry: as the first one, but now a pencil drawing using Topaz filters.

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this actually would make for a nice wall hang
 
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