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The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic ...
  
 
nolaguy
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


Generally speaking, I hesitate to consider overly simplified / automated skin retouching solutions – e.g. Portrait Pro or Imagenomic Portraiture… or others – but what’s your experience and opinion?

A couple of years ago I did purchase Portrait Professional just to get some perspective on how such software behaves and what it does but I only used it for three or four very simple tests. I was pretty amazed at the speed but the default effect was over the top and not at all what I’d want to export… then again, I never tried to discern the nuance of the software or if adjusting the settings might make it a useful tool.

I’m wondering if I’m missing something and in my zeal to retain a natural, un-retouched look, if I’m overlooking solutions that could save hours but still stay true to my preferred handling of portraits.

Regarding Imagenomic (I’m just now becoming aware of them via Thorsten Ott’s (zeroplusplus1’s) generous video series thread), how many of you have experience with Imagenomic’s Portraiture (and/or their other plugins for that matter) and what are your thoughts, likes, dislikes – opinions on capabilities and limitations – advantages and pitfalls?


It occurred to me a comprehensive discussion of portraiture plugins might be of use beyond my specific curiosities, thus the thread title. Additional questions may come up – feel free to hijack the thread and let’s see where it goes.

Regards,

Chuck




Mar 01, 2014 at 08:56 PM
Achilles2010
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


I use all of Imagenomic's plugins: Portraiture, Realgrain, Noiseware and they are awesome! I highly recommend them to anyone who wants to save time in post and preserve reality.

Best,

Arthur



Mar 01, 2014 at 09:32 PM
dmacmillan
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


Chuck,
You might want to consider Portrait Pro again. I imagine they've refined the product. You do have to make adjustments from what it does. You can get benefit and still see skin texture, etc.

I also find the dynamic skin softener in NIK Color Efex Pro works well. It creates a layer and you can go a little strong, then adjust opacity.

Another one to look at on a trial basis is the OneOne Perfect Photo Suite8, including Perfect portrait. It is similar to Portrait Pro in that it also can do facial structure changes. It also has to be adjusted to keep it from over-retouching.

Still, I do a lot just in Photoshop. I haven't tried the inverted high pass method, but the examples I've seen look great. It takes a lot of work, though.

I've heard good things about Imagenomic and would probably get it to use as well if I did more work or did it professionally. In the meantime, I'll limp by...



Mar 01, 2014 at 11:05 PM
tonyfield
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


On the whole, I don't like plugin solutions to skin manipulation. I have played with Portrait Pro (which seems quite flexible) and I have NIK. In both cases, I did not like the result because of what the plugins do NOT do. You basically have to do a reasonably good job of skin editing BEFORE you pass your images to the plugins.

My preference is to do ALL of the skin processing by use of Frequency Separation which preserves fine detail. This places colour in one layer and detail texture in another layer. The detail texture layer is "almost" a B&W layer (not quite, but for practical purposes, this is a reasonable approximation). Effectively, you can independently edit colour/tone and detail. Because of how the colour lays is created it can be easily used to "move shadows around" and avoid the saturation issued when you do any form of burn/dodge with the tools or on a soft light layer.

I posted my initial experience with Frequency Separation a while ago in:

http://www.fredmiranda.com/forum/topic/1259466/0#11990493

If additional "softening" (i.e. some form of detail blur) is needed, this can be easily done with standard blur-softening techniques or actions. For this, I happen to use the Totally Rad skin softener - this is now very rare for me ... I prefer retaining fine skin detail but there are some images in which blur-softening seems appropriate.




Mar 02, 2014 at 04:32 AM
Bifurcator
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


I like pretty much every skin and portrait effect I've ever seen - If it's done right.

As a hobbyist I don't do much portraiture though - so I don't have a lot of call for employing those effects. I know some hobby guys who go out and rent models just so they can photograph them - in fact I think that's fairly common (isn't it?). To me it's mostly just embarrassing tho. <shrug> It might be different if I were trying to build a portfolio in order to get work or something.

But maybe that's only /one kind of/ portraiture? What technically constitutes a portrait in your opinion? (anyone)

Is it pretty much anything with a person in it?
Is it anything where the subject is striking a pose "portraying" some action or feeling?
If so how about natural poses - like a fisherman fishing or a BB player swinging the bat?
Do candids count? How about street photography when your presence is known?

I have an idea what it is to me but I dunno if that jives with any of your ideas - nor if it's in line with some technical definition - if indeed there is one to compare with. What are your (whoever reads this) ideas?

How come there's no photos in here yet anyway? Here, I think this is a type portraiture - but probably not one which would call for a portraiture type plug-in.






"Portrait of a Boatman"




Mar 02, 2014 at 07:39 AM
dlabrecque
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


I've found Portrait Professional's default settings to be pretty heavy handed, but I've learned to dial back those settings to something that's a lot more satisfactory. Haven't used it in the last month or two, but the current version still has one important misalignment bug when editing multiple faces in a picture. You can work around it, but the last time I tried to tell them about it, their response was something like, "Really? must be something you're not doing right." Not bad software, but software support leaves something to be desired.


Mar 02, 2014 at 01:12 PM
nolaguy
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


Listening closely, reading and rereading, researching and mentally processing (half a pun intended) the responses so far. Thanks all, very much. No doubt, comments and questions to come.

Whether successful or not at it, I tend to be a purist and prefer longhand when it comes to "art". But for whatever reason, it suddenly occurred to me that preliminary, settings-based retouching, presumably way-dialed-down may save a lot of time with little or no compromise to the final result. I know I'm repeating myself a bit but I'm hoping more will chime in with their own experiences and anecdotes.

I have this very nagging sense that a lot of us may be turning our noses up at useful tools because the marketing efforts of the respective software companies ARE too heavy-handed and consequently, turn some of us off.

Looking forward to more thoughts and opinions.




Mar 03, 2014 at 12:39 AM
 

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cadman342001
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


I have Portrait Pro and Portraiture and yes, you have to dial them back some, particularly PPro.

Have not been doing portraits/people long, I think it's like when you start doing landscapes - beginners tend to be very heavy handed with their processing and go a bit over the top because their pic wasn't that good to start with. You then go back some months later and realise how bad a job you did ! Unfortunately, that's the stage I'm at with portraits right now As with all photography, it's all about the light - the best landscapes have good light and the processing is minimal, the same in portraits, if you get the light right then the image already looks great and just needs a tweak here and there.

I use LR5 and have been watching videos how to process with that - you can apply lots of adjustments with the adjustment brush tool.

Here's one from Terry White - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iYxu17-R_wQ

Different strokes for different folks, I like processing portraits but not if I have loads and loads to pp and can have software do some of the heavy lifting for me.

Andy



Mar 03, 2014 at 01:28 AM
Bifurcator
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins







"Portrait of a Painter"




Mar 03, 2014 at 02:42 PM
nolaguy
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


Thanks to all for sharing your experience, opinions and insights. Good food for thought.

Regards,

Chuck



Mar 09, 2014 at 10:43 PM
Bieg
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


My trick with Portraiture is to duplicate the subject layer and apply the Portraiture effect to that, then dial back the transparency to where it looks natural. Works well IMHO.


Mar 15, 2014 at 03:37 AM
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


Many of them suggest doing just that when you read their manuals.



Mar 15, 2014 at 09:04 PM
nolaguy
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


Reading the manual?

People do that ? ? ?




Mar 16, 2014 at 12:46 AM
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · The semi-official PORTRAITURE PLUGIN thread - Imagenomic Portraiture and similar plugins


So far I've found that in general, people who buy software usually do RTM and people using crackz and serialz generally do not. I dunno how wide-ranging this observation applies but it's just something I've noticed over the years. I guess it's close to 90% accurate tho.






Mar 17, 2014 at 01:01 AM





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