Post Processing Challenge #139

Discussion in 'Contests and Challenges' started by bigboysdad, Dec 6, 2014.

  1. bigboysdad

    bigboysdad Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 25, 2013
    Sydney/ London
    In this photo, the exposure is kept down so the bright parts of the image stay (relatively) intact. Of course, this leaves a large portion of the image underexposed; there's lots needed to complete this image, so it’s dodge, burn, highlight clipping and noise control ahoy! My attempt is somewhere on my Flickr page but I really don’t think that’ll be any help at all to be honest. Have fun post processing.

    Shot in Sydney last month with E-P5 and Oly 12/f2 lens at 200 ISO, Aperture f3.5 and 1000/sec .


    Relied on AF, so maybe the manual clutch focus would have rendered something more useful?

    Anyway, the RAW file is here

    and the JPEG here

    Good luck to everyone and I will close the competition some time on Wednesday.

    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.


    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" 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
  2. minibokeh

    minibokeh Guest

    <a href="" title="PB141364_v1 by Moritz Berger, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="766" alt="PB141364_v1"></a>

    #2 "What is the matrix?"
    <a href="" title="PB141364_v2 by Moritz Berger, on Flickr">[​IMG]"1024" height="766" alt="PB141364_v2"></a>
  3. Conrad

    Conrad Mu-43 Veteran

    Lots of burning/dodging in ACR. Boost in clarity for getting a slightly "hard"look. Noise reduction, no sharpening in ACR. Local desaturation and sharpening in PS.

    • Like Like x 4
  4. dbuckle

    dbuckle Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    • Like Like x 2
  5. Second entry. Main work done in DXO Optics Pro, some retouching using nik Viveza. Highpass sharpening.

    • Like Like x 2
  6. previz

    previz Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 8, 2011
    Real Name:
    I find the old lady to distracting so I went for the traffic crop instead.
    Added a bit of blur and a bit of a yellowish tint and closed it with vignette border.

    • Like Like x 2
  7. Matero

    Matero Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 22, 2013
    • Like Like x 2
  8. bigboysdad

    bigboysdad Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 25, 2013
    Sydney/ London
    Great interpretations. Another day and a half to go, any other entries?
  9. vorlon1

    vorlon1 Mu-43 Regular

    May 8, 2012
    Kept the original image, tried to keep it subtle. Left her face somewhat in shadow from the building in front of her. Various selective exposure,sharpening and saturation edits, using Adobe Camera Raw and Photoshop.

    [​IMG]city1edit by vorlon44, on Flickr
    • Like Like x 2
  10. bigboysdad

    bigboysdad Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 25, 2013
    Sydney/ London
    Bump, about another 7 hours or so to go if anyone fancies doing some post processing.
  11. bigboysdad

    bigboysdad Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 25, 2013
    Sydney/ London
    Ok, results time. I can honestly say I have learned from every entry here, which is why I follow these post processing challenge threads in the first place. I could easily write about what I like about every entry but I suppose I’m restricted to the runners up and winner. So, keeping in mind that it is only my interpretation, the final results are as follows:

    3rd place goes to entry no.8 from Matero and the second image therein because all of the post processing skills displayed there have resulted in the most realistic interpretation of how it was. Based on that criteria, one could argue that this entry should have won.

    2nd place goes to entry no.4 from Conrad, great dodging & burning there, bringing life and vibrancy to the whole scene (I like how the whites appear to have been powered up so to speak). Total and utter improvement to the original raw file. I’ve noted Conrad’s post processing skills and descriptions thereof in previous challenges and suggest that we all look out for them because he’s really good.

    But 1st place this time goes to entry no.2 from minibokeh who has really stolen the show - I generally don’t go along with the arty pre-set themes that always come with image editors and tbh never saw myself allowing such an entry to win. Indeed, in the back of my mind, I wonder whether such entries should win something like this at all (again, only my interpretation folks). But this was different - as a piece of artwork it was simply spectacular, there was a proper purpose to it and all of the effects in that image focused on the expression of the lady her sense of purpose, giving her and the image a jolt of life and character well beyond my capabilities. Minibokeh, if you didn’t mean it, that’s the best fluke I’ve ever seen. But seeing your previous work on this forum, I’ll guess that you did. Can you confirm please?

    Anyway, thanks to everyone for taking part, hope you all found it a useful exercise like I did and on to the next challenge.
    • Like Like x 4
  12. minibokeh

    minibokeh Guest

    @bigboysdad, thank you for your kind words!
    Your general feedback for the top 3 entries is very well considered and sets a world class example for how to run this contest.
    Not much mystery behind my interpretation of the image: In this case, it's a combination of basic photography technique (composition, patterns, lines, colors) taken to an abstract level by the filter (Fractalius by Redfieldplugins, colors enhanced by Alienskin Exposure 6.0); the motive of the picture plays with the cliche of alienation in big cities (so much going on in an anonymous environment), unmasking the moving lady, who is clearly the hero of the image, brings back a focus on her humanity. As you pointed out, the amplified compositional elements happen to emphasize the motion and direction of our leading character, this is what motivated me to try the filter in the first place (based on a hunch) and convinced me that there was something special when I saw the result.