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exposure compensation blunder

 
 
dmedhora@gmail.com
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      04-07-2006
Hi All,

How do I undo the effects of over exposing a photograph?

I recently took a photo with my 35mm Film SLR camera where I
unfortunately
over-exposed the photograph using EV Compensation to about 1/2 or maybe

even 1
full stop.

I took the pictures for development and asked for prints and CD
storage,
and so I have 1 negative, 1 developed positive and 1 JPEG of the photo
on CD

The scene was that of a rocky snow mountain in the distance against a
greyish
white sky, but with a darker foreground (evening). I remember I focused

on the mountain
instead of the foreground but increased the exposure
in order to brighten the foreground, but that has resulted in the rocky

snow
mountain looking a bit washed out. It almost blends with the greyish
white
sky, obviously, because it is snowy ( not completely though, it can be
seen, but its obvious that the over exposure has spoilt the natural
look
by making everything brighter, i.e th sky, mountain and foreground).

I don't know a whole lot about tools like gimp, photoshop, etc
but I HAVE used all of these and played around with their features for
hours seeing what a great difference can be made if one knows what
he/she's
doing. But I am no pro. I can make the jpeg look better but somehow its

not as natural.

Primarily, I simply want the mountain to stand out looking more
visible, defined and
prominent, like the way it was when I saw it..i.e slight darker than
the
background greyish white sky. I'm not so worried about the foreground.

I'll follow any instructions that you may post out here using any of
the relevant tools on both windows or linux. Sorry if it sounds like
I'm asking for a
tutorial, but I just need advise/instructions on what I should do to
the JPEG?
Or with the background in the JPEG?

I guess I can't do anything with the negative. ?

I finally want to take another print of the photo

Thanks very much

 
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John Falstaff
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Posts: n/a
 
      04-07-2006

<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) oups.com...
> Hi All,
>
> How do I undo the effects of over exposing a photograph?
>
> I recently took a photo with my 35mm Film SLR camera where I
> unfortunately
> over-exposed the photograph using EV Compensation to about 1/2 or maybe
>
> even 1
> full stop.
>
> I took the pictures for development and asked for prints and CD
> storage,
> and so I have 1 negative, 1 developed positive and 1 JPEG of the photo
> on CD
>
> The scene was that of a rocky snow mountain in the distance against a
> greyish
> white sky, but with a darker foreground (evening). I remember I focused
>
> on the mountain
> instead of the foreground but increased the exposure
> in order to brighten the foreground, but that has resulted in the rocky
>
> snow
> mountain looking a bit washed out. It almost blends with the greyish
> white
> sky, obviously, because it is snowy ( not completely though, it can be
> seen, but its obvious that the over exposure has spoilt the natural
> look
> by making everything brighter, i.e th sky, mountain and foreground).
>
> I don't know a whole lot about tools like gimp, photoshop, etc
> but I HAVE used all of these and played around with their features for
> hours seeing what a great difference can be made if one knows what
> he/she's
> doing. But I am no pro. I can make the jpeg look better but somehow its
>
> not as natural.
>
> Primarily, I simply want the mountain to stand out looking more
> visible, defined and
> prominent, like the way it was when I saw it..i.e slight darker than
> the
> background greyish white sky. I'm not so worried about the foreground.
>
> I'll follow any instructions that you may post out here using any of
> the relevant tools on both windows or linux. Sorry if it sounds like
> I'm asking for a
> tutorial, but I just need advise/instructions on what I should do to
> the JPEG?
> Or with the background in the JPEG?
>
> I guess I can't do anything with the negative. ?


The negative almost certainly has substantially greater exposure latitude
(contains more information in both highlight and shadow areas) than the JPEG
you're working with. If your overexposure was just 1/2 or 1 stop as you say,
that shouldn't make it hopeless as far as the negative is concerned. It
should be possible to rescan the negative to produce a better JPEG.

If you can't do that or have it done for you, then your best bet is to learn
more about using whatever software you have on the existing JPEG. As you
describe the problem, it sounds like you need to adjust brightness and
contrast to get a better result. Play around with it, and/or get a book on
the subject if your software manual isn't enough help (which may well be the
case). See what your local library has.


 
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dmedhora@gmail.com
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      04-07-2006
Dear John,
Thanks for your reply,

But, what does "rescan the negative" mean?
Sorry for being a newbie about this.

Thanks

 
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Marvin
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      04-07-2006
John Falstaff wrote:
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:(E-Mail Removed) oups.com...
>
>>Hi All,
>>
>>How do I undo the effects of over exposing a photograph?
>>
>>I recently took a photo with my 35mm Film SLR camera where I
>>unfortunately
>>over-exposed the photograph using EV Compensation to about 1/2 or maybe
>>
>>even 1
>>full stop.
>>
>>I took the pictures for development and asked for prints and CD
>>storage,
>>and so I have 1 negative, 1 developed positive and 1 JPEG of the photo
>>on CD
>>
>>The scene was that of a rocky snow mountain in the distance against a
>>greyish
>>white sky, but with a darker foreground (evening). I remember I focused
>>
>>on the mountain
>>instead of the foreground but increased the exposure
>>in order to brighten the foreground, but that has resulted in the rocky
>>
>>snow
>>mountain looking a bit washed out. It almost blends with the greyish
>>white
>>sky, obviously, because it is snowy ( not completely though, it can be
>>seen, but its obvious that the over exposure has spoilt the natural
>>look
>>by making everything brighter, i.e th sky, mountain and foreground).
>>
>>I don't know a whole lot about tools like gimp, photoshop, etc
>>but I HAVE used all of these and played around with their features for
>>hours seeing what a great difference can be made if one knows what
>>he/she's
>>doing. But I am no pro. I can make the jpeg look better but somehow its
>>
>>not as natural.
>>
>>Primarily, I simply want the mountain to stand out looking more
>>visible, defined and
>>prominent, like the way it was when I saw it..i.e slight darker than
>>the
>>background greyish white sky. I'm not so worried about the foreground.
>>
>>I'll follow any instructions that you may post out here using any of
>>the relevant tools on both windows or linux. Sorry if it sounds like
>>I'm asking for a
>>tutorial, but I just need advise/instructions on what I should do to
>>the JPEG?
>>Or with the background in the JPEG?
>>
>>I guess I can't do anything with the negative. ?

>
>
> The negative almost certainly has substantially greater exposure latitude
> (contains more information in both highlight and shadow areas) than the JPEG
> you're working with. If your overexposure was just 1/2 or 1 stop as you say,
> that shouldn't make it hopeless as far as the negative is concerned. It
> should be possible to rescan the negative to produce a better JPEG.
>
> If you can't do that or have it done for you, then your best bet is to learn
> more about using whatever software you have on the existing JPEG. As you
> describe the problem, it sounds like you need to adjust brightness and
> contrast to get a better result. Play around with it, and/or get a book on
> the subject if your software manual isn't enough help (which may well be the
> case). See what your local library has.
>
>

If the jpeg was properly made from a scan of the negative,
it will have all of the information on the negative. But it
isn't a certainty that the scans were well made. It depends
on who developed the film and made the scan. If the jpeg is
only a Mp or so in size, it doesn't have all the resolution.
It may still have the full color depth.
 
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Craig
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      04-07-2006

<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote...

> Dear John,
> Thanks for your reply,
>
> But, what does "rescan the negative" mean?


Assuming that you don't have a good-quality negative/slide scanner (most
folks don't), it means a search through your Yellow Pages for a photo
processor nearby that can scan the negative and give you a digital image on
CD, by email or whatever. In the event that no processors can be found
nearby you, check online for a service that will let you mail the negative
to them and get a digital scan back. If this is an important image for you,
finding a professional scanning service who can give you a tiff file or
very-high-quality jpg will give you much more to work with in your photo
imaging software's Levels or Curves (a better way than just adjusting
Brightness or Contrast). Good luck.

Craig


 
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John Falstaff
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      04-07-2006

<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed) oups.com...
> Dear John,
> Thanks for your reply,
>
> But, what does "rescan the negative" mean?
> Sorry for being a newbie about this.


No problem. We were all newbies once.

When you sent the film in to be processed and requested a CD along with the
prints, they had to scan the negatives (with some sort of digital film or
slide scanner) in order to get a digital file for each frame, which they
then put on the CD. It may be that they did not make the best possible scan
from the frame you're concerned with, and someone may be able to make a
better scan specifically for that frame. That will be an additional expense,
of course, which may or may not be worth it to you. It's also possible that
after going to that additional expense you still wouldn't get a satisfactory
final result, so I would try more experimenting with whatever software
you're using to see what you can do with the JPEG you've got.

Many kinds of image editing software are likely to be very intimidating for
the beginner, so even if you do have a manual for the software you may need
another book to help you with it. There are books covering most of the
popular brands and versions, like Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, Paint Shop
Pro, and so on. Photoshop and its offspring are pretty much the professional
or serious amateur standards, but have quite a steep learning curve. Many
users agree that Paint Shop Pro is easier to use and still will do
practically anything you are likely to want to do with Photoshop, and if you
don't already have it you should be able to pick up a recent version fairly
cheap on eBay or maybe even Amazon, and books for it there too if your local
library doesn't have any.

A good image editing program (and learning to use it) won't be a waste,
since there's about a 99% probability that sooner or later you'll get into
digital photography and you'll want all that anyway.

Jack


 
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Hunt
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      04-07-2006
In article <(E-Mail Removed) .com>,
http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed) says...
>
>Hi All,
>
>How do I undo the effects of over exposing a photograph?
>
>I recently took a photo with my 35mm Film SLR camera where I
>unfortunately
>over-exposed the photograph using EV Compensation to about 1/2 or maybe
>
>even 1
>full stop.
>
>I took the pictures for development and asked for prints and CD
>storage,
>and so I have 1 negative, 1 developed positive and 1 JPEG of the photo
>on CD
>
>The scene was that of a rocky snow mountain in the distance against a
>greyish
>white sky, but with a darker foreground (evening). I remember I focused
>
>on the mountain
>instead of the foreground but increased the exposure
>in order to brighten the foreground, but that has resulted in the rocky
>
>snow
>mountain looking a bit washed out. It almost blends with the greyish
>white
>sky, obviously, because it is snowy ( not completely though, it can be
>seen, but its obvious that the over exposure has spoilt the natural
>look
>by making everything brighter, i.e th sky, mountain and foreground).
>
>I don't know a whole lot about tools like gimp, photoshop, etc
>but I HAVE used all of these and played around with their features for
>hours seeing what a great difference can be made if one knows what
>he/she's
>doing. But I am no pro. I can make the jpeg look better but somehow its
>
>not as natural.
>
>Primarily, I simply want the mountain to stand out looking more
>visible, defined and
>prominent, like the way it was when I saw it..i.e slight darker than
>the
>background greyish white sky. I'm not so worried about the foreground.
>
>I'll follow any instructions that you may post out here using any of
>the relevant tools on both windows or linux. Sorry if it sounds like
>I'm asking for a
>tutorial, but I just need advise/instructions on what I should do to
>the JPEG?
>Or with the background in the JPEG?
>
>I guess I can't do anything with the negative. ?
>
>I finally want to take another print of the photo
>
>Thanks very much


As John, and others, have pointed out, a professional scan of the original
negative will probably be the best bet. I'd also suggest that when this is
done, that the output NOT be JPG, especially as you will be doing work on it.
Choose to have the lab give you a CD with the scan in TIFF format. Photoshop
(and other programs) will allow infinite adjustment to the image - you will be
amazed! In Photoshop, Save_As PSD, when you are working on the image. Once you
have what you want, you can Save the final, then Save_As JPG, or whatever, for
final output.

In PS CS/CS2, the Image>Adjustment>Highlight & Shadow, would be a good
starting point. Personally, I'd first Duplicate your Background (italics)
Layer (Ctrl-J), run Highlight & Shadow on the Dupe Layer, then experiment with
Opacity. Also Adjustment Layers, and their Layer Masks can work wonders.

Since you shot negative film, you are ahead of the game. A badly overexposed
bit of transparency film is a LOT more difficult to work with.

Good luck,
Hunt

--
NewsGuy.Com 30Gb $9.95 Carry Forward and On Demand Bandwidth
 
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John Falstaff
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Posts: n/a
 
      04-07-2006

"Craig" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:OXvZf.69444$(E-Mail Removed)...
[ . . . ]
> finding a professional scanning service who can give you a tiff file or
> very-high-quality jpg will give you much more to work with in your photo
> imaging software's Levels or Curves (a better way than just adjusting
> Brightness or Contrast).


A tool can only be "better" if it's a) available and b) manageable. The OP
is a self-described newbie who has evidently tried a number of image editing
programs and not gotten the results he wants. The software he ends up using
may not even have Levels and Curves tools, which are just much more
sophisticated means of adjusting brightness, contrast, etc. anyway.


 
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dmedhora@gmail.com
Guest
Posts: n/a
 
      04-07-2006
Thank you all,

I will follow all your instructions and I'm sure it will work for me.
In fact I've already played around with gimp using the jpeg and now I'm
looking
forward to start from scratch after reading your input.

The jpeg is less than 1 Meg, just 700K or so, so I'm sure another
professional
scan into a tif file will help me to manipulate it.

I'm sure I didn't over expose it more than 1 stop. Therefore its just a
matter of
time now for me to get this going.

Appreciate all your valuable input. Thanks again.

 
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