Can someone look at this and tell me if it's too dark on your screen.

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by alex, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. This image looks good on my screen and very dark on a different screen. Can you tell me how this image looks to

    On my screen the darkest areas are at about 12 to 18 RGB. I fixed 6 of these Gorila pictures and all of them seem
    dark on this other screen. What bothers me the most is that I recntly got the Eye 1 to calibrate my monitor and I still
    seem to come up with dark pictures.

    Thanks for your comments

  2. Sorry. Here is the link for it.
  3. The problem is the gorilla is in shade and if it were lightened, the grass would be way too light.

    It can be improved with photoshop by raising the dark values only.
  4. it doesn;t look too dark on my screen,
  5. You've recorded your main subject (the gorilla) in rim lighting, meaning almost completely backlit. Throwing in some light
    with a high output fill flash or reflector would've helped. This is a tough lighting situation to photograph well. RAW might
    have helped some, but fill light was still needed.
  6. Body of the gorilla looks too dark on my profiled screen.

    Not easily fixable in Photoshop, since there is not much separation of tones in the gorilla itself.
  7. Body of the gorilla is too dark on my non-profiled work monitor and on my profiled home monitor.
  8. "Body of the gorilla looks too dark on my profiled screen. "

    On mine too.
  9. I got the raw file and there is no clipping. As a matter of fact I shot it to the right of the histogram (If recal correctly) I you guys care I can provide the file for someone to look at it.
    Thanks again.
  10. on a calibrated NEC 2490 in Firefox 2.0 and Safari, the image is not too dark.

    To me it appears that the gorilla is actually lacking true black (like Ronald M said : it looks like you increased the overall brightness of the image) which would lessen the black values.

    The dark areas I see are the ear, right chin and below tricep and leg crease. the ear oddly looks like they are PP edits.

    Also looked on my macbook pro and it looks the same as I describe above.


    I'd give the file edit a shot.
  11. OK, so you exposed to the right, but that only means that the highlights (i.e. the gorilla's arse and the grass on the right) are on the right of the histogram. The rest of the gorilla is basically backlit and in the shade, and is too dark if what you want to show is the gorilla's features. However, the picture does clearly show a gorilla chilling out in the sun and trying to keep its head in the shade so perhaps it doesn't matter. Depends on what you wanted to achieve.
  12. Looks too dark on my calibrated screen as well. Took it into Photoshop Adjustments Shadow/Highlight. Could lighten up
    but then overall image was too flat.
  13. on my every month calibrated nec 2690wuxi, calibrated at 2.2 and 6500 with a eye1 display pro the file look waayyyyyy too dark, not printable for sure, i mean too dark where you should see some detail on his i can barely see it, so it will not be printable.

    and believe me, i can trust my monitor. And it also look like the image was dark to start with and you use a tool to get some details back..that why its seem not to be real black.
  14. a strong shadow / highligth reveal that you dont have detail at all in that area, and that it even seem blurry and patch. see here
  15. + your image is save with a Adobe RGB profile, that make it look even darker than in reality.. let see if this one unretouched just convert to sRGB will look better
  16. well, nope, look as dark as your original...
  17. It looked too dark on my calibrated screen. I still see some clipping in the highlights after adjustments. How does this look on your screen?
  18. Here we go again... Chances are your monitor is set way to bright, causing you to edit your images too dark. Your monitor brightness should match the brightness of your digital darkroom lighting. Compare a totally white image on your monitor (all R, G, B values at 255) with a blank piece of printing paper illuminated by your digital darkroom lighting. Adjust your monitor and/or lighting if there is a mismatch. Don't use dimmers for your lights as they cause a dramatic change in color temperature.
  19. Don't know if this is any good, but just brought the "brightness" down a very small touch to get rid of the blown highlights, the clipped the dark end of the histogram to get some proper black back and did a histogram adjustment curve to boost mid darks and cut the lights, followed by a very slight boost in saturation to get back the colour in the grass. Saved as sRGB. I think it's ok.
  20. here's the pic...
  21. Thanks a million for the great feed back. Here is the raw file so you can see what is shoot. I like the get the best of it since it is the one I like the most. He seem so relaxed it looks like he is posing.

    I believe I went heavy handed.

    Again thanks for your time and efforts with this picture.
  22. This is a job for the local adjustment brush in Lightroom 2. You can paint that gorilla a bit brighter very
  23. Sorry here is the file
  24. How do you upload a raw file. I just tried 2 times and it does not seem to work out.
    I wrote on the answer box what you can see on the previous 2 postings, Clicked submit, then confirm and then I
    clicked on browse look up the file, name it and from there it does not seem to upload. I get some windows vista
    connection problem.
  25. It could well be too big. How about saving a copy as a TIFF and downsizing a little.
  26. Alex, the picture is way too dark on my monitor which is calibrated my nVidia's inbuilt color calibration tool 6500K. Mark's adjustments are good, but I would do it differently, I would correct it from Adjustment>>Shadow and Highlites, not from the curves or levels. See these two example, upper one is good for me>>>>
  27. Lets try again as a tiff file a smaller res and fewer pixels. the image went down from 57 mb down to 18 mb
  28. I can't make the file to upload this is the last try. now it's a 8mb tiff. If it does'nt upload I'd appreciate some ideas since I think I've seen raw files here.
    Thanks and sorry about not being able to upload file.
  29. What about your monitor brightness? What level did you calibrate it to?
  30. jam


    My 2 cents to this discussion: What monitor do you have? I used to have Dell 1703FP and had similar problem with it. If the picture looked OK on that monitor - it almost certainly was waaaay too dark on other monitors. This was the same after I started calibrating that monitor every two weeks. Ended up selling it couple weeks ago, because it was too frustrating. Right now I am looking for a replacement.
  31. I don't understand why your first posting became so dark. When converting the tiff-file to jpeg using CaptureNX and performing some standard histogram adjustments (I actually made it darker, you are right it's being shot to the right of the histogram) and white balance adjustments, I get this result which look great on my screen.
  32. Alex, thanks for the TIFF file. I've just done a levels adjustment on that to clip the left of histogram slightly to give true blacks, and then converted to JPEG in sRGB colour profile and finally downsizing to fit here. Let's see if this works...
  33. full size one here....
  34. I should have converted to sRGB before posting. You can also add i little more punch by applying an unsharp mask of about 8-10%, using a radius of about 40 pixels, this will add some more contrast without destroying the end points of the histogram. See attached suggestion.
  35. hmmm, hadn't thought of applying USM for adding a bit of punch. Here's my GIMPed version.
  36. my edit
  37. I like Ed's and Jon's edits the most so far.
  38. Sorry mine is not showing up in the post. I read FAQ on posting and can't see what I did wrong or the bulletin
    board upload feature. <br>New to posting here.
    my edit via PS3: SRGB> Levels > Curves> Shadow/hilight> color balance> UnsharpMsk> jpg-9 .....on a mbpro lcd.
  39. The image looks fine on my screen, under the conditions on which you shot it that is probably as good as your going
    to get. I will admit the gorilla is a little dark, but he is backlit and without some fill light I'm not sure what else you
    could do. But I can still see detail in the gorilla so if he is really dark on your screen then it is probably your monitor.
    My suggestion is spend a little money and get yourself a really good monitor. If you do a lot of digital work on your
    computer it is worth the extra money. I finally bought one about year ago and it was one of best investments I have
    made. I purchased an 20" Apple Cinema display and the picture is absolutly beautiful and they profile really really
    well. This monitor I got has been recommended by several different proffesionals. When you look at what a high
    quailty monitor cost, the Apple Cinema display is really a very good bargain. They run about $600 for a 20", but the
    prices keep dropping so they might me cheaper now. They use to cost around $1100-1200 several years ago but
    have dropped in price a lot.
  40. Wow. So many interpretations from the same file. Thanks a lot for all your help so far. Today I was about to give this image a second try but my PC got infected with HIV or whatever virus called Untivirus XP 2008 so I have to fix that and then retry fixing the image.
    Again thanks to all of your who took the time to assist.
  41. I feel dumb the attachment is right at the end of the posting process.
  42. "Today I was about to give this image a second try but my PC got infected with HIV or whatever virus called Untivirus XP 2008 so I have to fix that and then retry fixing the image."

    Ouch, I used to be an expert at removing malware but support Mac more than PCs these days at work and have lost my touch with that stuff, but I've had several co-workers complain that they were never able to remove that one completely.
  43. sRGB, new layer, selective levels ( the shadowed areas of the gorilla), flatten image.
  44. Alex,

    Did you look at my posts re the brightness of your monitor?
  45. how


    On my monitor It is much too dark.
    You might also try an HDR program that will work on a Raw file.
  46. You may want to check the gamma setting on the computer. The original looks fine for me with a Mac Power Book calibrated at 1.8 gamma. When I switch to 2.2 calibration it appears too dark.
  47. If the brightness of the monitor is too high, then all the tweaking talked about sofar will do nothing to resolve the issue at hand and it will persist. Interesting to see everybody jump in with editing suggestions and almost nobody trying to address the issue of monitor brightness.

    As for gamma, most people agree that 2.2 is the better number to use.
  48. Frans that is a great question that I can't answer. I trully don't remember the number and now my computer it's dead. But what is the desired brightness so I can check it when the PC is back in action?
  49. Frans, I made an assumption that the monitor brightness was probably ok as Alex has calibrated it.

    Alex, you can check the brightness using a test chart of different shades from black through white. There was a link to one in a recent thread (which I don't have to time to hunt for at the moment). I use the ones that come with the free "Quicjgamma" software.
  50. Yeah, I tried to find the grayramp test target I recently created and posted in a recent thread and the thread got pushed down and off the listing. So I've reuploaded it again and posted at the bottom. The top four dark rectangles should have reasonable separation with the second next to black with less separation from the others. The top highlight rectangles should show separation from white and the entire bottom 21 step grayramp should show a smooth and gradual increase in luminosity from black to white. Everything should look neutral as well.
  51. My computer latest report is that I'll have to wipe out the hard drive and reload windows from scratch. I guess I'll be without the computer for a few days my main PC that is. I don't use the laptop for editing.

    Tim I can see the 20 colors out of the 21 the withe one fades away but I can clearly see the other ones.

    Now I have to spend some quality time re reading this tread to see what I gather as far as fixng this image.

  52. Print the image, blacks looks different on paper in my opinion. The image should be too dark, even printed.

    In my opinion this image is a Low-k, unusual for the highlights in the background. This type of picture are typically overexposed and then underdeveloped! You should find something more on internet. It also requires a fill-in flash to reduce the exposure latitude of the scene.
  53. Well, as Frans mention, your image could look darker or lighter depending of your monitor calibration..and with what? normal calibration is 2.2 gamma, 6500k and 120cd, i personnaly prefer 110 as it give me a slightly darker monitor closer to what a print will look like.

    Second thing is, even corrected your image show a lack of information du to the poor exposition..even with the multiple try on this post, the image still look too dark or when people try to get it *right* you can see artifact and blurrines in the gorilla chess.

    Whatever the methode use to try to get something out, this image wont print well. The best version i have seen come from Jon and Ed..the other look like bad photoshop.

    Is this image worth to be pritn even if the result is just OK? maybe for you if you fall in love with it. I would have trun it BW so i can get all the detail possible and add some noise to cover my problem personnaly : )
  54. Well, here is my attempt to adjust it. All edits performed in LR2. I dont have time at the moment to type them out - off to class now. If you'd like the edits listed, let me know.
  55. I thought the last one might have looked a bit washed out. Here it is with the blacks and contrast adjusted slightly.
  56. <br>
    How did your gorilla look in real life? On my screen, a Mac Book Pro, it looks a bit dark grey. May be it's how
    it is?
    This one here was real black.
    <img src="">
  57. Alex,

    I'll be happy to host your RAW file and put a link here for people to have a look at.

    Send me the RAW file, and NOT the TIFF one, to thierry (at) nomadphotography (dot) com (dot) au

    I have a 100 Gig mail box so it should be ok to load your RAW file.
  58. Keep in mind that Macs and PCs are calibrated differently regarding gamma. Macs are usually calibrated to 1.8, while PCs normally use 2.2. This means that a photo edited on a Mac will look darker on a PC. I tried a web search on the topic and found this article which could be of interest:
  59. please, drop this old school 1.8 mac vs 2.2 pc thing...all monitor should be calibrated at 2.2.

    if you own a Mac, and still use 1.8 for your calibration, its time you read a good book on the subject.

    The link you provide is from a 1998 article...i recognise the young girl from photoshop 3 (i think)..and i have look at the bottom of the page for the article date : )
  60. Alex,

    As I wrote before your monitor brightness should match the brightness of your digital darkroom lighting. There is no magical number, although for many viewing conditions a range of say 90 to 120 nits (or cd/m^2) may be a good starting point.

    "Here we go again... Chances are your monitor is set way to bright, causing you to edit your images too dark. Your monitor brightness should match the brightness of your digital darkroom lighting. Compare a totally white image on your monitor (all R, G, B values at 255) with a blank piece of printing paper illuminated by your digital darkroom lighting. Adjust your monitor and/or lighting if there is a mismatch. Don't use dimmers for your lights as they cause a dramatic change in color temperature."
  61. Curves only, and just once. Trying not to drift too far from the original. May as well look as though he is actually in shade, after all.
    my edit
  62. It seems like it's a combination of 1. Your profile settings must be a little too light, and 2. The photo is a little too dark in the shadows. I would just brighten up the shadows a just a touch. However, it appears that you aren't the only one with a problem. It's pretty crazy how much images people sent you as examples varied!
  63. Here is my try. Simply 2 masks, lighting up the animal, keeping the background as it is. Drop me a note if you want the PSD file.
    I worked on the jpg, sorry for artefacts, guess with the RAW you could get a lot more detail out of it.
  64. Wonderfull picture Omega, I like his expressions... Amazing.
  65. Frans Watterlander: That was a very crafty photoshop change. it looks like a totally different gorilla. I'll send you the raw file as soon as I can fix my PC thanks for the offer of hosting the file. Also how do you deternine the brightness of your digital darkroon? I find my self correcting pictures at night and sometimes during the day so the lighting does change. I calibrate my monitor with the eye 1 and there is an attachment to read the ambient light. I don't know how useful that is though.

    Patrick Lavoie: I do have the gamma set at 2.2 I'm not sure about the brightness but What is the CD adjustment your are talking about.

    Jon Gausdal: Nice fix on the image I was hoping for a bit darker image but i guess I will have to go back and hope for better lighting or take the flash with me. I do notice a bit od a gree/yallow cast on this not calibrated monitor.

    Pete Millis: Good corrections too the one that was not sharpen looks better here.

    Ed Ci: Your correction is the one that looks the best here. The chest seems a bit dark though but that is the feeling I wa after.

    greg Lorriman: Your correction as Ed Ci's are the ones that appeal the most to me.

    Forgive me for not mentioning everyone who took the time to respond. I trully appreciate each and every comment.

  66. Andre Appel: very nice. That's what I had in mind. I like the background to stay the way it is and just lighten up the upper portion of the animal enough to see detail.
    Thanks for working on it.

    What 2 mask did you use? or how did you used them?
  67. Charlie "It seems like it's a combination of 1. Your profile settings must be a little too light, and 2. The photo is a little too dark in the shadows. I would just brighten up the shadows a just a touch. However, it appears that you aren't the only one with a problem. It's pretty crazy how much images people sent you as examples varied!" -

    Things will vary not just because of monitor calibration, but most likely because of difference in personal preference. I don't think there's a problem.

    Alex, thanks. I agree, the one without the USM is better - I just did that after Jon mentioned it...but don't like it.

    Patrick "bad photoshop"..... clearly some of us are either still learning or had different ideas about how the original scene looked. we can't all be experts like you. Sorry.
  68. 66 hits on fixing an under exposed gorilla. sigh... t
  69. dont be sorry Pete, its OK to learn.

    but people could not be in denial about the fact that some example heres are worst than the original; a blue gorilla when black as the original is not good. People stay amateur when they denied the fact that what they have done is not good, a blue gorilla cant be a matter of taste or opinion if you want to keep thing real. You can get a lemon orange if you like, but it will not look real, therefore for me its a bad photoshop if the task was to get him right.

    Opening shadow of a dark exposed shot will only get noise to show or lack of detail and artifact to be visible, again, for me thats a bad photoshop.

    I call thing as they are, sorry if that offend you. As i said, dont be sorry to learn, but be ready to get bad review along the way could only help you get better..and one day you will be call expert by others, and appreciate it..i have walk that road too.
  70. Ha, Patrick - my one's b;ack in a bluey sort of way as I didn't do a white balance adjustment. How could I correct white balance without having seen the gorilla myself, or without a grey or white card in the picture? Some gorillas are dark brown, some are black. Black things - fur and that - often takes on a blue appearance. I could have assumed he was some other colour and then altered WB accordingly, but I didn't.
  71. "Frans Watterlander: That was a very crafty photoshop change"

    No, you're mistaking me for someone else. I'm the one who keeps bringing up the monitor brightness issue and you may be wasting your time with all the other suggestions and picking up more bad habits in the process.
  72. "...How could I correct white balance without having seen the gorilla myself.."

    by assuming that it as a better chance to be black than blue : )

    "...Black things - fur and that - often takes on a blue appearance..."

    Agree, but they take it to a certain degree only..when a original is black, if yours is suddently blue, you got something wrong. No need for a gray card or a white card there...simply assume that the gorilla must be black, and make sure he is. A *touch* of blue could be had to get the feeling of a real fur..but a touch only.


    In the end, make sure youre monitor is well calibrated to a standard, shoot well and learn how to, experimented and ask people who dont know you to give you some feedback of your work, people that dont know you but from who you respect theres oppinion. acollegue, a friend, a family member are the worst to give constructive feedback as they wont like to offend you : )
  73. This is why we need a DSLR in 35mm format that has 13+ stops of DR as the new P65 MF. Then this wouldnt even be a topic. This is were film still wins.
  74. There is a lot written here that didnt need to be. People often say to me , you can Photoshop it later. Well No !
    I try and get it right now because I dont want to waste hours "photoshopping" rubbish. The gorilla has very
    little info in the shadows and a lot of noise. There has to be a 3-5 stop variation between its rump and unhappy
    head.Its front section is way too dark on my screen.
  75. If I were shooting a stationary gorilla in these lighting condidtions I'd use fill flash or high speed HDR (see Outback photo for details) so that I'd have a good range of tones to work with.

    For the folks above who "fixed" the image by blowing out the highlights, moving the gorrila from the shadows to the midtones, and changing the color of the grass/plants until they looked unnatural please look again at your edits. You can't fix one problem if it causes three other problems. Andre did a nice job.

    Here's a quick and dirty edit in Photoshop using masks and layers. If the TIFF upload doesn't work I'll post to my website and you can download.
  76. Yes, it's way too dark, the subject is unrecognisable.
    The 'rescue' attempts look totally processed to me.
    This is why I take 'bracketed' shots in these shaky lighting situations.....
    Bill P.

Share This Page