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Since the beginning of the photographic art form, photographers have been searching for clearer and sharper images. Now, you don't have to settle for what was captured in camera; you can perfect your photos in post-production. In this course, Chris Orwig tackles sharpening in three programs: Adobe Camera Raw, Lightroom, and Photoshop. They all have their strengths, so he shows you how to get the best results from specific sharpening challenges with each one. Chris shows you how to reduce noise and sharpen with sliders and make selective adjustments to certain areas of raw images. In Photoshop, he uses powerful filters like Unsharp Mask and Smart Sharpen to sharpen larger areas of pictures, and masking to paint in sharpening. Last, he shares two advanced techniques, one using high pass sharpening and another that limits sharpening to the edges of your images.
So far, we've seen in this chapter, that when it comes to working with the detail panel, there are some common rules. And some of those rules are to make sure that you aren't over-sharpening small details or that you're using a lower radius amount. And that you really use your luminance noise slider to get rid of any luminance or brightness value noise. Well in this movie, what we're going to do is break the rules. And we're going to break those rules intentionally, in order to sharpen some nice texture and detail.
And here I want to look at an example and show you some example settings that you might apply when your interested in bringing out more texture or detail in your photographs. We'll work with this image that I captured of a Monarch butterfly wing. I looked out my kitchen window and saw a Monarch butterfly had just hatched and I quickly captured this photograph. And if we zoom in on the image into the wing here, we'll see that we have some nice texture and detail. Well to bring that out, let's first begin with our noise reduction sliders.
the first one is luminance noise reduction. Typically we apply this pretty liberally. We crank this up and we bring it up in order to get rid of any luminance noise artifacting. If we bring this one up here, what we do is we loose or diminish all of the beautiful texture in the image. So, here we need to use it much more sparingly. We will need to bring it up, but we'll bring it up to a low amount and then we'll bring the detail slider up even higher to make sure we still have nice little details in the texture.
Then, the contrast slider we'll bring up as well to add a little bit of shade to that area. Now this is much different or these are much different amounts than we would typically apply but these are the type of amounts you'll probably want to apply when you're working on sharpening and when you're working on a photograph with nice details that you want to bring out. Alright, what about color noise reduction. I think the default settings actually look pretty good, I'll just bring this up a little bit higher to get rid of a few color issues I'm noticing. Next, to our sharpening controls.
Here we'll bring up the amount to apply some nice sharpening everywhere and then we'll go down to radius. Typically in most of my workflow scenarios I leave the radius where it is. but not with this photograph. If you hold down the Option key on Mac, Alt on Windows, and then click and drag the radius slider, take a look at the difference. And look at the difference of the texture, not just the edges, but also all of the little bits of texture that we have there. What this is showing me is that I want to bring this up. And I'm going to bring it up to a pretty high amount.
You know, most images I would be uncomfortable having a radius that was this high and an amount which was this high as well. When it comes though to having a, texture in a photograph this is exactly where we want it. For the detail slider, typically we have a low detail amount to make sure we aren't sharpening little teeny details, especially with Portrait. But with this image, we want to bring those out. So, again we're going to crank this up to really bring out some nice details there. Last but not least, we have the masking slider. The Masking slider we're going to leave at a default setting of zero.
We don't want to mask out any areas. In other words, if I hold down the Option key on a mac and Alt on windows and bring this up, you can see that if I were to add masking, well it would mask away the sharpening from the areas of the wing where we have the nice texture, so we're going to leave that at zero. Then we can click on the toggle switch to look at the before and then the after, and what we should see is that this is helping us to really bring out and exaggerate and sharpen in an effective way some of the texture and details that we have in the photograph.
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