Post Processing Challenge #495 - WINNER ANNOUNCED

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Richard
This challenge will close at midnight on Sunday 15th September 2019, wherever in the World you are.

I know it's an extra day, but I'm out all day on Sunday and won't be available to judge entries.

Here's my pic. Taken this summer at Trentham Monkey Forest, UK. It's not bad, but in it's raw state, it's not great either! Have fun with it.

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72-Hour Post-Processing Challenge Rules:
  1. The Challenge Master provides an image or images to be "improved" upon by way of post-processing, as well as a closing date for entries.
  2. Entrants are to post their entries, visible in this thread, at a resolution of 1000 to 1600 pixels in the longest dimension, prior to the closing date.
  3. Each entrant is allowed two entries in the Challenge.
  4. At the close of the Challenge, the Challenge Master will select a Winner and Runners-up.
  5. The Winner of the Challenge is honored as the Master of the next Challenge.
Notes:
  • Any/all source images used for the challenge must be the Challenge Master's own images. They are posted solely for the purpose of this Challenge; not to invite critique or criticism nor for other uses. If Entrants post their entries at a photo sharing site, they should credit the owner of the original image.
  • "Improve" is a subjective term, and may include many creative ideas, as well as traditional "fixing". The Challenge Master agrees that Entrants may make any changes they deem fit in their entries.
  • Entrants are strongly encouraged to share the tools and techniques used for their entries, however this is not a requirement for entry.
  • As we all know, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. The Challenge Master is encouraged (but not required) to state the criteria used to decide upon a Winner. While we may not all agree with the result, the Challenge Master's decision is final. Please refrain from posting adverse comment.
  • If the Winner is unable to post a new Challenge within five days, the honor passes to the next Runner-up.


Here are the original full sized files:

JPEG: https://www.dropbox.com/s/ogokxcltjxxyo3r/apes.jpg?dl=0

ORF: https://www.dropbox.com/s/ritt8dq1kg4c91d/_4140169.ORF?dl=0

DNG: https://www.dropbox.com/s/72phn7e4e97oof9/apes.dng?dl=0
 
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Bit of Aurora use with conversion to B&W, sharpening, crop, some structure added and a slight vignette. Just wanted to dramatise his lordship's isolation... :)
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GregRed

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Initial colour and toning adjustments in Luminar 3, then imported to Topaz Studio 2 where an "Impression" pseudo-painting effect was overlayed, and the opacity set to just above zero:

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Walter

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Who am I ? And if so, how many ?
apes p.jpg
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inspired by this book (see attachment)
 

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rpatodia

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relic

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I opened .ORF file in DXO PL2, slight noise reduction, reduced highlights a bit, added minimal amounts of ClearView and microcontrast. Then in Elements, I used Noiseware plug-in to further reduce noise, opened up shadows, cropped, and removed out-of-focus part of tree at top. In ON1 Effects added a very small amount of Dynamic Contrast, Portrait Enhancer, and a slight vignette.

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BosseBe

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She doesn't love me any more!
From .ORF in DxO PL2.
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And B&W
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No NIK this time DxO does the work.
 
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Leura, Blue Mountains Australia
I've been away for about 6 weeks but have checked in on the great work that's gone on with each comp. So here is my 1st entry for awhile.
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WhidbeyLVR

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rpatodia

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Ramesh
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betamax

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Tenpenny

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betamax

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BW filter (High Key) then some adjustments in Exposure X4.
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Hendrik

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Super simple & low drama done in Adobe Camera Raw and Photoshop.
Two smart objects - main subject and background.
Main subject brightened, contrast enhanced, eyes brought out and slight saturation boost, background the opposite.
Blended via a layer mask adjusted to favor the face.

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Joined
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Although a simple picture, it's not necessarily a simple edit. There are few visual references to help assess colours. It was an overcast day, open shade - an overgrown lawn and a couple of monkeys away from their natural habitat. To my eye, entries range from overly de-saturated to overly contrasty, with everything in between!

After much thought here are my preferences:

1st place: @betamax - a nice monochrome rendition with pleasing contrast. Not usually a fan of white vignettes but it works here.

2nd place: @Robert Davidson - I like the colours and the crop. So much so, that I forgave the slightly distracting bit of monkey on the left edge.

3rd place: @rpatodia - like the subject isolation, a touch oversaturated which is why I put Robert's version ahead of yours.

Over to you @betamax
 

betamax

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Well thank you Richard! I thought my first attempt was a little bit average. It looked better before I uploaded it. It was done in Exposure X4, with changes to highlights and colours, and some additional blurring of the background. I then used the same resulting image and applied one of the B/W filters, sharpened a little more and adjusted highlights down again.

It was a pleasure to edit the image though. I loved the story it could tell, so thanks for putting it up.

Well done runners up, and, for everyone else that had a go.

I shall put up a new challenge shortly!
 

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