Post-Processing Challenge #248

Discussion in 'Contests and Challenges' started by AussiePhil, May 3, 2016.

  1. AussiePhil

    AussiePhil Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 1, 2014
    Canberra, ACT, Aust
    Post-Processing Challenge #248

    I'm going to head a little off normal as well.

    I got to do some live band photography about a month ago and still haven't edited the main act yet.
    This is Rosendo Mercado, a Spanish rock singer and songwriter. He was a member of bands Ñu and Leño, and is a prominent exponent of the so-called urban rock in Spain. He is famous in Spain and has rarely left the country so to both see him perform (awesome show) and to do some photography was rather special. They were also shooting a documentary for Spanish TV on the same night :)


    Shot with EM1 and 40-150Pro, the image presents some real challenges especially with ISO5000 noise.
    Please have fun and be creative.

    Raw (dng):
    JPG: (unprocessed version of dng):

    OOPS: forgot the closing date:
    It's Tuesday Night in Aus, so closing Friday Night sometime in AUS = Early Friday morning US time.


    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. "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 dlpruk 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.
    Last edited: May 3, 2016
  2. NY Gadget Guy

    NY Gadget Guy Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 17, 2016
    Yup. Serious colour problems there. B&W is the easiest way out. DxO Optics Pro: Prime NR, "Selective Tone" midtone and shadow sliders dialed way down to cut out the haze and let the subject pop out a bit:

    Same sort of thing, but in colour. I used the eyedropper to find a white balance that cuts down the redness overall, choosing to have the main subject go a bit blue:
    • Like Like x 2
  3. Brian Beezley

    Brian Beezley Mu-43 All-Pro

    • Like Like x 5
  4. rloewy

    rloewy Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    May 5, 2014
    P4021534 (4).png

    Some contrast changes, sepia and texture to make it look like older (70s) grainy film image
    • Like Like x 2
  5. Gidget

    Gidget Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    Apr 22, 2010
    Leah Hallett
    I can't even begin to post how it was done...I was interrupted every little bit by my grandson. PS and ON1 photo suite P4021534.jpg
    • Like Like x 4
  6. aKilter

    aKilter Mu-43 All-Pro

    Dec 13, 2013
    • Like Like x 5
  7. azjsb

    azjsb Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 19, 2015

    I processed in LR so that that Rosendo was more prominently featured with the supporting guitarist taking a more diminished visual role in the image. View attachment 122262
    • Like Like x 3
  8. WhidbeyLVR

    WhidbeyLVR Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 14, 2014
    Whidbey Island
    Looks like it was a fantastic event!



    I made a couple of images in DxO -- one for the "red" side and one for the "purple side" -- to get back the skin tones. I blended them in Gimp, then "rearranged" things a bit to emphasize the main subject and reduce noise in the background.
    Last edited: May 3, 2016
    • Like Like x 6
    • Informative Informative x 1
  9. NY Gadget Guy

    NY Gadget Guy Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 17, 2016
    This one looks like it was taken two stops down in exposure. In other words, it could have been shot at ISO 1250 and avoided the harsh noise. Maybe worth bracketing under these kinds of lighting conditions?
  10. AussiePhil

    AussiePhil Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 1, 2014
    Canberra, ACT, Aust
    It was a smallish stage with largely basic lighting that was predominately backlighting the performers with an extreme use of reds, I was shooting in A mode at F2.8 with both ISO and shutter floating. ISO was locked to a max of 5000 with the knowledge I can deal with the EM1 noise pretty well in post. Think the lowest ISO seen on the night was around 1250.

    Also remember I did deliberately pick a photo for the Challenge that presented challenges and opportunities and to potentially push people outside of normal post processing experiences.
  11. vorlon1

    vorlon1 Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    May 8, 2012
    Noise reduction, some white balance adjustment but I wanted to keep some of the unusual color effects, color and saturation adjustments and selective sharpening.

    26534205010_ccae4730ef_b.jpg guitar1a by vorlon44, on Flickr

    This one processed to look like an old black and white shot.

    26806080185_dd4c16d0f8_b.jpg guitarold by vorlon44, on Flickr
    • Like Like x 4
  12. jyc860923

    jyc860923 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Feb 28, 2012
    Shenyang, China
  13. P4021534.jpg

    Cropping, B/W rendition in ACR, 0.25 stop exposure decrease on the face and left hand, a touch of dehaze....
    • Like Like x 4
  14. dlpruk

    dlpruk Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 1, 2016
    Hinckley, Leicestershire, UK
    I wouldn't dare show anyone what a mess I made to start but LRCC and a bit of PSCC cloning to remove some distractions produced these attempts to emphasise the lead singer:
    Original at Flickr

    Original at Flickr
    • Like Like x 3
  15. Conrad

    Conrad Mu-43 Veteran

    Tried to recreate what I think my brain would have registered when watching the scene. In ACR I made local adjustments of contrast, color balance and temperature, exposure and some other subtleties. Cropped to 1:1 to balance the composition between the two musicians (and it gives a classic MF touch). Medium strong noise reduction (setting 50 in ACR), but still maximum detail enhancement via a triple smart sharpen in Photoshop (radius 3/40%, then radius 1/40%, then resize to 1024, then radius 0.7/40%). This leaves the rather pleasant noise in, but grabs your eye to the detail in the in-focus areas.

    • Like Like x 3
  16. AussiePhil

    AussiePhil Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 1, 2014
    Canberra, ACT, Aust
    with a day and a half to go the entries so far are excellent and will make judging a hard task indeed, great to see.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  17. protapic

    protapic Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 12, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    dire straits filter

    • Like Like x 1
    • Funny Funny x 1
  18. aKilter

    aKilter Mu-43 All-Pro

    Dec 13, 2013
    "Off normal" processing, as well.
    • Like Like x 2
  19. azjsb

    azjsb Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 19, 2015
    2ND ENTRY: Feature the lead guitarist; remove unnecessary imagery from the frame using square format P4021534-2.jpg ; localized adjustments including temperature; clarify and exposure.
    • Like Like x 4
  20. AussiePhil

    AussiePhil Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 1, 2014
    Canberra, ACT, Aust
    Wow, now this is tough judging with so much to like across so many entries.

    Despite what many thought, the colour balance was fairly close, as the stage was, in that image, really washed in red so the EM1 actually caught it as it looked.

    NYGG: liked the BW.
    Brian: the tightened crop is really interesting.
    rloewy: does remind me of the film days :)
    Gidget: can't put a finger on it but this one appeals, maybe the muting of the colours without loosing the vibrance.
    Scotsman: I went wow the first time I seen it.
    azjsb: you achieved the goal, the eye keeps getting drawn back to the singer.
    WhidbeyLVR: I like both versions, think the colour one is excellent.
    Vorlon1: love the saturated colours as it was just like it on the night.
    jyc: I do like the simplicity of the image with distractions gone
    Zues: Now that to me is a great portrait crop.
    dlpruk: i don;t dare show some of the messes i make either :) nice work removing distractions.
    Conrad: likely the most accurate processing with the square crop changing the feel.
    Protapic: Huge Dire Straights fan so big smile for this one
    Scotsman: second entry: that is a truly interesting effect.
    azjsb second entry: like conrad the square crop does change the feel and brings emphasis to the singer.

    Well that didn't make it any easier............

    Equal Third: Protapic for the smile inducing image and Zues for the great cropped BW.

    Now first and second was largely a tie but there can only be one so......

    Second goes to Scotsman for the first image, I continue to see that as a A3 sized canvas print on the wall.

    First goes to WhidbeyLVR for the colour image, something makes the emotions on Rosendo's face pop out in this edit and reminds me of how he was on the night, heart and soul into the performance.

    Over to Lyle for the next one
    • Like Like x 3