Back Modifications (6)
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Tiger 2

By DaveRyder  
I've further processed this image from the one immediately prior in my gallery.
I think I've made improvements but concerned I've over done it.
Looking for some comments on my application of PS in relation to original.
I feel I've brought out the patterns in the Tigers coat but the background has come with it.
Unfortunately the branch from the right is what it is.
As always thanks for taking the time to look and comment.

Tags: Cat Tiger Big cat Wildlife and nature

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This photo is here for critique. Please only comment constructively and with suggestions on how to improve it.


dudler Plus
14 711 1361 England
12 Aug 2017 9:14PM
OK: there are three things I want to talk about (apart from the excellence of the basic image - you should be very pleased with it indeed, with or without the branch!)

First, I think - in some senses, at least - you have overdone it. You don't say what you did, but I'm guessing sharpening, contrast, maybe vibrance. The deepest blacks in this are blocked - only quite small areas, but off the scale. They don't come right by brightening a little, though they aren't very noticeable unless you look at the histogram.

Second, settings... Auto white balance and program mode are not great creative choices, in general. Having said that, though, the mode has done decently, and the IS system has played a blinder, giving a really sharp image at the equivalent of 300mm on full frame, at only 1/250 second. Your hands must be steadier than mine! The ISO is relatively high for an MFT camera, and I'm quite surprised that the noise isn't more obvious - a good job there, anyway. It's only the white balance that's let things down with a distinct blue tinge, which I've corrected in both my mods.

Finally, the crop. The head's central, and I have tried two different crops. One is square, and the head dead centre as near as I can make it. Regal: the centre of attention. The second crops the top and right for a conventional off-centre look, more dynamic than a central composition.

One thing - it would be helpful if we could see the original, completely unprocessed version - that may suggest more about processing than the finished article, as might details of what you did and why. You can upload it as your own modification to this post.

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banehawi Plus
14 1.8k 3902 Canada
12 Aug 2017 9:27PM
Hi Dave.

Ive looked at the first version, - this perhaps has a little more "pop" such as contrast and saturation.

Ive just uploaded a mod, and as I type dudlers feedback is above mine, and I can echo most of what he is saying. The biggest issue by far for me is that a Tiger does not have blue fur where the white bits are!

This is a very common occurrence is photography, due largely to the use of Auto White Balance; in addition, and it could be a factor here, shooting through glass will cause a colour cast. Try setting your white balance to the actual conditions, likely sunny, daylight or fine weather here.

Theres a very basic easy to understand reason that Auto White Blance does this; its designed to REMOVE a colour cast that affects what the camera "decides" is neutral grey or white; as you might guess, in Sunny weather, that old Sun applie a yellow colour cast, and AWB does as its told and removes it; since to remove or cancel yellow, you add blue (the colour wheel), you get blue.

Its easy to correct.

Apart from that, theres the crop dudler mentions that I included in the mod. Very little else has been touched as white balance alone makes a remarkable difference.


DaveRyder Plus
4 2.5k 1 United Kingdom
12 Aug 2017 9:39PM
I've uploaded original jpeg.
Added complication - it was through glass. IS was edge of hand of glass stabilisation.
Also to focus past some marks on the glass.

White balance isn't something I've played with in camera and only occasionally on post processing.

Over the years the critique I sought has always been helpful and I hope those that have input can take heart from Dudlers 1st paragraph that I have improved with all your help.

Jestertheclown 9 7.8k 252 England
12 Aug 2017 9:45PM
I've arrived late here, having spent a little while producing a mod. and everyone's turned up and beaten me to it!
As has already been suggested, I've cropped it, partly to push the tiger over a bit and partly to lose some of the background.
My feedback re. the colouring simply echoes Willie's and Dudler's, although I think my mod's a different colour altogether.
I simply used "auto tone" and "auto colour" in CS6 with a curves adjustment, then an application of a sunny filter, at low opacity.
The biggest alteration that I've made was to remove the branch.
To get rid of the it I used the spot healing tool.
Then, to repair the damage, the whiskers and the bit beneath the chin, on the right, are actually the same bits as on the left, lifted, and flipped, and cloned (etc.) to fit.
Finally, I turned up the brightness a little.
Hope this helps.

dark_lord Plus
14 2.2k 542 England
12 Aug 2017 10:13PM
The branch is best removed (good work by Bren) but it does frame the face.

It's the colour balance agjustment that makes the biggest difference to me. Your brightness and contrast adjustments from the original are fine but they exaggerate the colour cast so always get the colour balance sorted first (at least as much as you can, you can tweak if necessary) before other adjustments.

Looking closely on the original, the eyes are just slightly soft compared to the whiskers. Focusing at longer focal lenghts and especially at shorter distances does require some care. It's easy for the camera to refocus when you recompose without it necesarrily being noticed, if you use a single focus point. If you use more than one focus point the camera may well not select the best one. Somethign to watch for.
dudler Plus
14 711 1361 England
13 Aug 2017 7:19AM
Bren's doen painstaking work, and it has paid off.

A comment on the original - you did a basic and important thing in corecting hte tilt in yrou edit. It's amazing how many people don't look at a shot and think 'need to rotate that FIRST of all...'

Thanks for the original - I shall have a play with it, I think, but it seems to confirm that the contrast can be a little lower, and blacks can retain detail, starting from there.

Through glass... Interesting: and, again, if it's there, using it to stabilise things is a fine idea (and gets the lens closer to the surface to avoid reflections and throw marks out of focus. One time I might (if the marks were obvious and strong) remove my lens hood.
Jestertheclown 9 7.8k 252 England
13 Aug 2017 8:47AM
I reslly don't like those one-size-fits-all rubber lens hoods but if you're shooting through glass they're just the job.
Press the end against the glass and inot only will it keep everything firmly planted
but no light can get past it, hence, no reflections..
It works particularly well shooting through the glass in aquariums where there's little light.
DaveRyder Plus
4 2.5k 1 United Kingdom
13 Aug 2017 9:15AM
Blown away by both comments and work put into mods... Especially at a weekend. Many thanks again, and as usual you've given me much to work on.

Jesters work on removing the branch.. Even down to the line of the whiskers. Wish I had half the skill and patience.

Incidentally, I don't use lens hoods. The one on this lens (tamron 14-150) i keep on in reverse position only to aid holding only.
dudler Plus
14 711 1361 England
15 Aug 2017 9:56AM
Always, always, always use a lens hood, the right way round.

You don't need a filter to protect the lens, you do need a hood. And it improves the technical quality if you are anywhere near shooting into the light.

I keep hoods permanently fitted to every lens I own, and store them hood-down in my camera bag.

As they say in the States, Technical 101.
DaveRyder Plus
4 2.5k 1 United Kingdom
15 Aug 2017 6:38PM

Quote:Always, always, always use a lens hood, the right way round.

As they say in the States, Technical 101.

I will apply advice - no point asking if I won't listen and learn Smile
dudler Plus
14 711 1361 England
16 Aug 2017 8:26PM
I use a variety of lenses fairly regularly, the oldest being a prewar Leitz standard lens, from before the days of coating. The lens hood that came with it is beautifully designed and made (a precision that makes a petal hood on a zoom seem very low-tech) and absolutely necessary - the lens has no antireflection coating, and suffers from awful flare.

That conditions me... Modern glass has multi-layer coating to reduce flare, but a lenshood is always going to produce a result with less stray light bouncing around!

Low contrast, bright patches in random places, and hexagonal highlights are all risks. Yes, sometimes you can use them creatively, but it's good to be able to count on not having them if you don't want them!

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