How would you post-process this image?

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by john_ashby|2, Nov 2, 2009.

  1. I shot this image of a quarter being dropped into a wine glass of water. I really like the overall effect but I was wondering what you'd suggest doing to make it really stand out. The dark circle is the quarter, and I think it detracts from the overall effect but I'm not sure what to do about it. Even if it were successfully cloned out, I think I'd feel like something were missing.
    Thanks for looking.
  2. the composition is a little bit distracting to me, not being able to see the stem of the glass. Really all you can do to this image is get rid of the uneven background lighting to achieve better balance. This shot shouldn't be to hard to set up, why not set it up again and reshoot a couple times to get perfect lighting and either focus on the face of the coin, or eliminate it entirely?
  3. just checked your shot in pse7. the image is extremely blownout on the highlights. also, the exposure is uneven. there is definate vignetting on the right side. what i would do is reshoot the image and get the exposure right, then decide what if any pp is needed. reshoot the shot and check the aftershot histogram on your lcd and adjust the exposure as needed. as it is the image really cannot be pped to improve it, since almost all the image data is up against the right wall.
  4. The level of standards on this site always amazes me (in a good way).
    Steve, I did take some shots with the whole glass without dropping the quarter. I found the area where the splash would be to be too small, so the image would look a lot less dynamic and the composition would be worse. The uneven lighting does bother me, and I tried to fix it while shooting, I just couldn't strike a balance of lighting the background and positioning a screen to prevent specular highlights. How could I eliminate the coin entirely? In that glass shape, it's always visible.
    Gary, I shot the image in RAW, and in ACR I boosted the "exposure" control until I just started having areas blown out and backed it off a bit. I ended up increasing it 1.5-2 stops, so the original exposure is "right", but this looked okay when I processed it. I can take another look at that though. The uneven lighting on the wall is a definate problem though.
  5. Darkening of the right side is the most distracting thing to me. It also needs a little more splash IMO. I would copy some drops from another shot (if you have any) and put them in this image. My main reason for jumping in is to say there is a great article in this months Pro Digital Photo Magazine about a guy who shoots these types of shots. They are phenomenal.
  6. I suspect you really like the almost monochrome effect, but personally, I would have preferred to see this shot lit with some highly directional gelled lights to bring out splashes of color in the glass and in the turbulent interface between the liquid and the air. One could try to simulate that sort of lighting in PS, but I think it would take a lot less effort to re-shoot it.
    Tom M
  7. Michael, I'll have to take a look at that magazine. I do have plenty of shots from the session so I could take drops from another. But maybe it's not worth it because of the dark right side. I wanted to have the background completely white, but as I said I couldn't get my light even enough and for other reasons I was only allowed to use one light
    Tom, I did really like the monochrome effect. I was tempted to use some food coloring in the water but I didn't want to spoil the play of white and shadow. I may reshoot it anyway just to try and fix the other problems, but it was mainly just to see if I could do it.
    I've seen shots in the same style with 2 glasses clinking together and splashing out. Any idea how they do it? It looks like there should have to be hands moving the glasses in the shot.
    Thanks again.

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