Optimal Output with Photoshop CS6

When not to sharpen


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Optimal Output with Photoshop CS6

with Tim Grey

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Video: When not to sharpen

Sharpening is a critical component of your workflow for preparing images for output. And so you might assume that you need to apply sharpening to every single image in order to improve the appearance of all of those photos. But that's not the case, in certain situations you may not want to apply sharpening at all. And I think this image is a good case in point. There are very smooth textures in the photo. And very gradual transitions of tonal values. The boat in the fog has not a tremendous amount of detail to it. Most of the details that would have been there are shrouded in fog.
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Watch the Online Video Course Optimal Output with Photoshop CS6
2h 4m Beginner Apr 23, 2012

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In this advanced workshop Tim Grey delves into some of the finer points of creating top-quality output of your digital images. First, get an introduction to color management, which is absolutely crucial to maintaining consistent colors throughout your workflow. Tim then takes an in-depth look at the topic of sharpening—when and how to do it, as well as when not to—and covers some advanced sharpening techniques. He also offers tips for printing your photos, exploring both the relevant settings in Adobe Photoshop and those you're likely to find in your printer driver. Finally, he discusses troubleshooting suboptimal output—i.e., when something goes wrong, figuring out what happened and how to fix it. If you spend a lot of time optimizing your images, this workshop will help you make sure all that effort is reflected in the quality of your output.

Topics include:
  • Getting started with color management
  • Early-workflow sharpening
  • Output preparation
  • When not to sharpen
  • Advanced sharpening techniques
  • Printing a photo
Subjects:
Photography video2brain
Software:
Photoshop
Author:
Tim Grey

When not to sharpen

Sharpening is a critical component of your workflow for preparing images for output. And so you might assume that you need to apply sharpening to every single image in order to improve the appearance of all of those photos. But that's not the case, in certain situations you may not want to apply sharpening at all. And I think this image is a good case in point. There are very smooth textures in the photo. And very gradual transitions of tonal values. The boat in the fog has not a tremendous amount of detail to it. Most of the details that would have been there are shrouded in fog.

If I go to the Smart Sharpen Dialogue, for example. I'll choose Filter, and then Sharpen, followed by Smart Sharpen. And zoom in on a portion of the boat. You'll see that even with a modest increase in sharpening, we're really causing more problems than we're solving. I'll click on the preview to show the image before sharpening and then release and the effect is subtle but you can see a little bit more noise and texture in the image. An not texture in a good way. We're not enhancing any of the details. We're simply accentuating noise and other problems in the photo. And so in situations like this, when you don't have a lot of detail in the photo you may not need to sharpen the image at all.

For some images, subtlety of detail is really a big part of the photo, and so we don't want to enhance detail that isn't really there. So we'll go ahead and click Cancel in this case, and we'll assume that this image is ready to go with no sharpening applied at all. So I encourage you to keep in mind that sometimes for certain photos sharpening is not necessary and in fact, sharpening can be problematic. Usually sharpening helps to improve a photo but that's not always the case.

There are currently no FAQs about Optimal Output with Photoshop CS6.

 
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