Smart Sharpen Tutorial : Warning, huge image links.


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Feb 4, 2003
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#1
Was at the library the other day, and happen to come across an excellent photo retouching book by a famous photographer cum photoshop guru Katrin Eismann.

The Book is titled "Photoshop Restoration & Retouching" published by Que Publishing.

Came across this excellent sharpening tutorial which is really good for those who're often plague by the "over-sharpening" unsharp mask syndrom.

I've used a picture i took the other day, not an excellent photo, but it's mainly just for reference.

Without further ado, let's begin. ;)
(Tutorial extracted from book, for those fortunate enough to loan it, its located at Chapter 8, Page 191)

Step 1:
Open your selected image in Photoshop, and duplicate it once.
Go to your channels and duplicate the channel with the highest image contrast.
Here i duplicated the Blue Channel which is usually the one with the highest contrast.

http://www.pbase.com/image/14532369

Step 2:
Select filter -> stylize -> find edges.

http://www.pbase.com/image/14532370

Step 3:
Invert the channel , (Ctrl + I)

http://www.pbase.com/image/14532371

Step 4:
Select filter -> noise -> median and use a value of 2 to accentuate the edge lines.

http://www.pbase.com/image/14532372

Step 5:
Select filter -> other -> maximum and use a value of 4 to spread the edge lines even more.

http://www.pbase.com/image/14532373

Step 6:
Select filter -> blur -> gaussian blur and apply a value of 4.

http://www.pbase.com/image/14532374

Step 7:
Return to the composite view , (Ctrl + ~) in the channels palette and load the channel mask, (Ctrl + Alt + 4)

Apply the unsharp mask filter to sharpen just the edges of the subject while avoiding sharpening noise and grain.
Settings may vary. Just use whatever settins that suits you.

http://www.pbase.com/image/14532375



This is a before and after shot of the image, before and after sharpening.

http://www.pbase.com/image/14532376

Good or bad?
Up to you to decide. ;)

Enjoy!
 

thoa_rs

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Jan 10, 2003
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#3
tried it with a macro shot, didn't really see any difference even when i increased the percentage amount of usm.
 

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Did you previously USM your image?
It's actually quite a subtle yet effective sharpening effect.
Can show me the before and after image?

btw, its not just the percentage, the radius and threshold plays a part too. ;)

If there's no difference, you might have missed a step or did some mistake. :D
 

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sriram

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Mar 10, 2002
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Yes I had to buy Fred's actions, but if you are into a lot of image editing and processing, believe me, this is one action you will love, and use all the time. I have no regrets buying it.
 

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