Digital workflow - need some help please

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Paul Flackett, Aug 10, 2005.

  1. Hi all,

    I'm new here and relatively new to serious digital photography (ie SLR
    shooting RAW) and would be grateful for some advice.

    I've just started to use RawShooter Essentials as my RAW image
    processing software. It came out top in a review of such software in the
    UK magazine 'Amateur Photographer' (it is also free to download!). One
    of the things the reviewer liked about it were the sharpening
    facilities. However this has confused me greatly. I have always been led
    to believe that sharpening should be done as the very last step of your
    workflow and be specific to the size of the output (ie. any subsequent
    resizing should be performed on the unsharpened master and then
    re-sharpening done for that size). So under what circumstances would you
    want to sharpen at the RAW stage?

    Also I'm a great admirer of a guy called Steve Round, a fellow bird
    photographer here in the UK. Here's a link to his website:

    http://stevenround-birdphotography.com/

    Steve's lo-res images are stunning in their quality, ie. he doesn't seem
    to have lost much by downsizing from his 8MP RAW captures to <100k
    JPEG's. I have the same camera as Steve and a similar lens but my JPEG's
    don't look anywhere near as good. Any tips? My workflow goes from RAW to
    TIFF to JPEG. In PhotoShop I crop the TIFF and then reduce to 50% or
    25%, make any level adjustments and finally sharpen before saving as a
    JPEG. Am I missing something?

    Many thanks.
     
    Paul Flackett, Aug 10, 2005
    #1
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  2. How are you downsizing when your reduce? Are you using "bicubic"?


    ********************************************************

    "A nice man is a man of nasty ideas."

    _Introductions to History of the Reformation_
    Jonathan Swift
    1667-1745
     
    John A. Stovall, Aug 10, 2005
    #2
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  3. Paul Flackett

    CFB Guest

    Sharpen after you convert to jpeg. Trust me.
     
    CFB, Aug 11, 2005
    #3
  4. Paul Flackett

    JD Guest

    Not so according to the pros: it's proper to sharpen your RAW in RSE, AND to
    sharpen the TIFF/JPG again in Photoshop as the sharpening algorithm is
    different.

    It remains true that it should be done last, in both cases.

    Jean.
     
    JD, Aug 11, 2005
    #4
  5. Paul Flackett

    Mike Warren Guest

    That's what I do; a small amount of sharpening to compensate for
    the anti-aliasing filter during RAW conversion and final sharpening
    at the output stage.

    -Mike
     
    Mike Warren, Aug 11, 2005
    #5
  6. Paul Flackett

    CFB Guest

    I was talking about jpegs for web sites. I agree what you said above.

    And who are the "pro's" and why are you doing what they are?
     
    CFB, Aug 11, 2005
    #6
  7. Paul Flackett

    Bill Hilton Guest

    Paul Flackett writes ...
    Generally true, but ...
    Most of the digital gurus are recommending a two pass sharpening
    workflow with digital cameras (as opposed to film scans). The first
    light pass is to restore the sharpness lost with the anti-aliasing
    filter blur and is done when you first open the image, then after all
    the editing work and resizing is done you'd sharpen to taste for the
    final output size (as you already know how to do). For example, Canon
    recommends amt 300% radius 0.3 and threshold 0 as a first pass USM run
    for their 1D and 1Ds series bodies. The exact numbers will depend on
    your camera model and to some extent the image data, which is why I
    turn off the default sharpening on my RAW converters.

    So basically the default sharpening in programs like RSE and Capture
    One do this first step for you, though to my tastes RSE uses overly
    agressive default settings and I have it disabled, preferring to just
    run an action in Photoshop to clean up the AA filter blur.

    Bill
     
    Bill Hilton, Aug 11, 2005
    #7
  8. Paul Flackett

    JD Guest

    And who are the "pro's" and why are you doing what they are?

    I don't recall any names (never been good with names!) but I've read it in
    various serious publications and on some photographers' sites.

    Actually, read Bill Hilton's post in this thread, I think he's got it right.

    Jean.
     
    JD, Aug 11, 2005
    #8
  9. Paul Flackett

    CFB Guest

    I don't recall any names (never been good with names!) but I've read it in
    various serious publications and on some photographers' sites.

    Actually, read Bill Hilton's post in this thread, I think he's got it right.

    Jean.[/QUOTE]

    I think you missed the point.

    When do you turn a "pro"? And what are "serious publications"? I ask
    these things because it highlights your logical fallacies.

    Ad Hominem
    Appeal to Authority
    Appeal to Popularity

    http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/

    I am not saying you are wrong. Just that you are not making your point
    effectively.

    And if you do what the pro's do you will be doing what the pro's do.
     
    CFB, Aug 11, 2005
    #9
  10. Paul Flackett

    CFB Guest

    Generally true, but ...
    Most of the digital gurus [/QUOTE]

    Who are these digital "guru's". (Appeal to popularity)
    Opening the images changes it? Can someone help me out here?
     
    CFB, Aug 11, 2005
    #10
  11. Paul Flackett

    Bill Hilton Guest

    Bill wrote ...
    Bruce Fraser is one, co-author of such books as "Real World Photoshop"
    and "Real World Color Management". Chuck Westfall is another, Sr.
    Technical Marketing Manager for Canon USA. Deke McClelland is a third,
    author of "Photoshop Bible" and popular Photoshop training videos.

    Westfall gave the specific recommendation for pre-sharpening with Canon
    Pro bodies (300%, 0.3 radius, 0 threshold) in this PDF (it's about a MB
    so will take a while to download but it's worth it if you have a Canon
    Pro camera ... he discusses the USM settings in two places) ...
    http://www.photoworkshop.com/canon/EOS_Digital.pdf

    Fraser has a web article out describing the two pass sharpening
    workflow at
    http://www.creativepro.com/story/feature/12189.html?origin=story ... to
    quote a bit ... "Several years ago, I started playing with the notion
    of doing two separate sharpening passes. The first, pre-sharpening pass
    aims simply to restore the sharpness lost when turning the image into
    pixels, whether by scanning or direct digital capture. The second pass
    is then tailored to the particular printing process that will be used."

    You can read Deke's thoughts (which are similar) in his book(s) or
    videos if still not convinced.
    Uh, no ... shooting the image thru an anti-alias filter blurs it a bit
    so the first USM pass is aimed at restoring the sharpness lost from the
    filter. "Opening the images" has nothing to do with it. Then later on
    in the workflow, after all the digital edits and resizing are done, you
    sharpen more aggressively for the final output size.
    We're trying, but judging from your attacks on Roger Clark and your
    inability to grasp fairly simple concepts like two pass sharpening it
    appears to be a losing battle.

    Bill
     
    Bill Hilton, Aug 11, 2005
    #11
  12. Paul Flackett

    JD Guest

    I think you missed the point.
    Let's leave it there CFB. I'm trying to help someone, not to enter into a
    useless debate. Go and pick a fight with someone else.

    Cheers.

    Jean.
     
    JD, Aug 11, 2005
    #12
  13. <snip>

    Hey, you guys are seriously helpful. Thankyou all very much. I shall
    read all these articles and have a play, although that's all I seem to
    do just lately :) I'll report back on my progress.

    Could you just clarify one thing for me Bill. You mention the
    overly-aggressive default settings in RSE. I haven't used it in anger
    yet but the sharpening in my version (2005 1.1.3 build 15) seems to be
    via a slider and totally under user control, ie. no default ? There are
    however 7 'Appearance' starting points (eg. outdoor normal) which you
    may be referring to, but again these are optional, the default starting
    point being 'flat look'.

    Regards,
     
    Paul Flackett, Aug 11, 2005
    #13
  14. Paul Flackett

    Ed Ruf Guest

    You have to be cognizant that a zero setting in any of the sliders in RSE
    does not necessarily mean no alteration using the algorithm in question.
    IE, sharpening set to zero, does not mean no sharpening is applied.
     
    Ed Ruf, Aug 11, 2005
    #14
  15. Paul Flackett

    JD Guest

    Could you just clarify one thing for me Bill. You mention the
    Zero sharpening means default (minimum) sharpening. If you want no
    sharpening at all, you must move the slider all the way to the left.

    There is a help file (if my memory serves me right, I think you can download
    it from the RSE site). I found it pretty clear and well worth reading.

    Jean.
     
    JD, Aug 11, 2005
    #15
  16. Paul Flackett

    Bill Hilton Guest

    Paul Flackett writes ...
    Click the green button on top left of menu bar and then click
    'processing parameters' to bring up a group of pre-sets that are
    applied in addition to the slider in the task bar you mention. As Ed
    and JD mention, even at zero there's some sharpening going on so you
    need to set this to -50 to minimize it.
    These are color tonal curves.
    Glad to help.

    Bill
     
    Bill Hilton, Aug 12, 2005
    #16
  17. Paul Flackett

    Padme Guest

    Let's leave it there CFB. I'm trying to help someone, not to enter into a
    useless debate. Go and pick a fight with someone else.

    Cheers.

    Jean. [/QUOTE]

    He was trying to help someone too.
     
    Padme, Aug 12, 2005
    #17
  18. Paul Flackett

    CFB Guest

    Bruce Fraser is one, [/QUOTE]

    Hey! Look up there! There goes the point!
    Dude, I knew that. I was asking the OP to explain. But thanks for
    explaining it to him.
    http://www.datanation.com/fallacies/attack.htm
    http://www.datanation.com/fallacies/posthoc.htm

    (This is not an attack. If you read the link you might understand what I
    have been talking about. These guys might be, and probably are, very
    knowledgable, but what you write in support of them is poor.)
    Maybe you guys should read something more then photography books. I
    understand most digital techniques but you don't know what is good until
    you do it. And if you treat someone as a guru and attempt to copy you
    will never do anything new. See? Wait, maybe I'M a guru?

    Anyway, if digital is so great why do you have to do sharpening after
    you take the picture? :^P

    And ease up man, I'm not attacking, i'm lovin'.
     
    CFB, Aug 12, 2005
    #18
  19. Paul Flackett

    CFB Guest

    That's it. The world has just ended. :^P
     
    CFB, Aug 12, 2005
    #19
  20. Paul Flackett

    Ed Ruf Guest

    Really?

    From: Padme <>
    Newsgroups: rec.photo.digital
    Subject: Re: Digital workflow - need some help please
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    vs

    From: CFB <>
    Newsgroups: rec.photo.digital
    Subject: Re: Digital workflow - need some help please
    Message-ID: <>
    Lines: 31
    Date: Thu, 11 Aug 2005 19:43:55 GMT
    NNTP-Posting-Host: 66.57.11.186
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    and guess what one finds searching this IP on google? Do us all a favor
    and please just leave it be.
     
    Ed Ruf, Aug 12, 2005
    #20
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