Old 05-25-2007, 03:46 PM   #1
fairmont
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Default Oversharpened questions

I had a shot rejected for being oversharpened. I did not alter the photo other than to resize it to make it submittable. Would resizing the photo contribute to the this problem. Please bear with my limited technical skills, I am trying to improve and I thought this would be a good chance to learn.

Thanks for any help you provide.

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...d=374130&key=0

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Old 05-25-2007, 04:04 PM   #2
alan-crotty
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Default Over sharpened

Hi,

I'll need a little more information from you before I can try and help.

What camera are you using?

Are you shooting .jpg or RAW?

If RAW, what post processing are you carrying out?

If .jpg, what sharpening setting have you got set in you camera?

When you resized your shot, did you allow your image editor to resample the image?



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Old 05-25-2007, 04:06 PM   #3
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I don't have the greatest monitor here, but it doesn't look oversharpened to me. It doesn't look great to me, however. It looks like the resizing wasn't of great quality - lots of jaggies and missing segments in the power lines seen in the sky near the left edge. If anything, it is also a bit undersharpened.

And certainly any image coming directly out of a DSLR generally needs some sharpening.

BTW, being nit-picky, but you should say "ex" C&O Mountain sub. More importantly, I believe it was the C&O Piedmont sub, with the Mountain sub being the next sub to the west. I'm no C&O expert, but I just found http://www.piedmontsub.com/
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Old 05-25-2007, 04:08 PM   #4
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The camera is a Sony DSC-H1. 5 mega pixel. I use .jpg files.
I am not sure about the sharpen setting on the camera, I have never accessed that in the menu. As far as the image editor, I am using a basic one until I can get a copy of Photoshop, which hopefully is on the way.

I don't know if the program will resample. I will look and try to find out if it will do that.
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Old 05-25-2007, 04:10 PM   #5
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If money is an issue, Photoshop Elements is an excellent alternative. Basically a de-featured version of PS, same underlying engine.
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Old 05-25-2007, 04:16 PM   #6
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Well, I am certainly no expert, just reusing terms that I have heard railroaders use over the years. I will refrain from using that term any more. I guess I will try to get a basic photoshop and try to become more professional. It seems that some of my shots come out pretty good and some of them do not.

What should I be trying in order to get rid of the issue with the powerlines being jagged.

I used to use the sharpening feature very sparingly, but I found that I had better luck getting photos accepted when I didn't use that feature. When you say the resizing isnt of good quality, is that a problem with the editing software, or something else?
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Old 05-25-2007, 04:21 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fairmont
Well, I am certainly no expert, just reusing terms that I have heard railroaders use over the years. I will refrain from using that term any more. I guess I will try to get a basic photoshop and try to become more professional. It seems that some of my shots come out pretty good and some of them do not.
I'm not sure what you are referring to. If you mean "photoshop," then yes, I for one would suggest you not use that term unless that is the specific software you are using. For one, because you can end up getting a lot of program-specific advice you can't use!

Just let us know what program you are using, and maybe we can help.

Quote:
What should I be trying in order to get rid of the issue with the powerlines being jagged.
I think this is the same issue as the "resampling" issue Alan raised. If your program offers it, a common resampling choice is "bicubic."

Quote:
I used to use the sharpening feature very sparingly, but I found that I had better luck getting photos accepted when I didn't use that feature. When you say the resizing isnt of good quality, is that a problem with the editing software, or something else?
Re sharpening, I am surprised with your luck, unless you are using a really basic program that simply does not sharpen well. Or you are doing it at the wrong time - it should generally be done after resizing and usually as the last step. Although I and others do a partial sharpening earlier and another as the last step.

As for resizing, see above (resampling is done during the resizing process), and yes it is a problem with the software although obviously if your camera is capturing a poor quality image there is not much you can do. I don't know your camera but there are lots of accepted shots with a 5mp digicam and I presume it is fine.
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Old 05-25-2007, 04:24 PM   #8
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Quote:
When you say the resizing isnt of good quality, is that a problem with the editing software, or something else?
It certainly could be the editor you're using, or it could be the way in which the camera is recording the image. You'll have to get in the camera's menu and make sure you're shooting the highest resolution you can (usually it's a setting like 'Large' or 'Fine'), that way there will be less compression when the image is saved to the card (and in turn, more to work with when you're processing onthe editor).
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Old 05-25-2007, 04:28 PM   #9
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Thanks, Chris, I forgot about the in-camera quality settings! JCease, look for quality settings in two dimensions:

resolution or number of pixels (a camera will give you the alternatives, say, of 3072x2048 and 1536x1024 - choose the bigger) and

quality or extent of compression (for the same number of pixels, some cameras offer both a "fine" and a "normal", maybe with different names assigned, where the former is a larger file with more detail - for the same number of pixels - and the latter is smaller and less detail).
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Old 05-25-2007, 04:55 PM   #10
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Thank you all for the advice. I am capturing the photos on the highest setting "5M"

The software is a basic editor that came with the camera from Sony, I think it is called "Picture Package". I also have Kodak Easy Share which I have used with some success, but I try not to alter the photos. I try to always submit the ones that look the best.

I have a version of Photoshop coming from a fellow picture taker, but I am not sure anything about the version number etc.

I am still a little confused on the "resampling" term/process. Can you explain further?

Thanks for the suggestions, like I mentioned before I am pretty much an amateur and based on that I don't get to spend as much time as I would like to trackside. Plus, there seems to be few locations that are good for shooting at because of the sunlight/angles/shadows etc.
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Old 05-25-2007, 05:29 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fairmont
Thank you all for the advice. I am capturing the photos on the highest setting "5M"

The software is a basic editor that came with the camera from Sony, I think it is called "Picture Package". I also have Kodak Easy Share which I have used with some success, but I try not to alter the photos. I try to always submit the ones that look the best.

I have a version of Photoshop coming from a fellow picture taker, but I am not sure anything about the version number etc.
I've heard but do not know from personal experience that Google's free program Picasa is pretty good.

Quote:
I am still a little confused on the "resampling" term/process. Can you explain further?
Basically (and I don't have the ability to go much further! ), a mathematical algorithm is used to determine the color and brightness of each pixel in the downsized file. Bicubic is one alternative algorithm/formula.

Quote:
Thanks for the suggestions, like I mentioned before I am pretty much an amateur and based on that I don't get to spend as much time as I would like to trackside. Plus, there seems to be few locations that are good for shooting at because of the sunlight/angles/shadows etc.
Believe me when I say we are ALL (or most, I suppose!) in the same boat. Certainly with respect to time and with respect to being amateurs. With respect to locations and light, there isn't much difference between Richmond and up here in DC! We all do the best we can. Your stuff at RP looks fine.
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Old 05-25-2007, 07:20 PM   #12
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i have the same problems with my photos although i am using nikon D50 and settings are 3008x2000 pixels (3:2) and fine detail. the photo editor i am using is microsoft picture it 9. when i resize photos from 3000x2000 or cropped size to 1023x682 for railpictures i get those jagged lines and rails. it is possibly how the photo editor processes the information when resizing the image. here is what i do to fix the problem:

prepare the photo for railpictures
resize to 2400x1600, save in full detail setting, close file
open, resize to 1800x1200, save in full detail setting, close file
open, resize to 1200x900, save in full detail setting, close file
open, resize to 1023x682, save in full detail setting, close file and upload to railpictures

i decrease the image size steps instead of 3000x2000 directly to 1023x682, which removes the jagged lines affect.

you could try the same thing with your files (guessing that your 5mp camera saves images at 2576x1932, 4:3 ratio):
2576x1932 to 2000x1500 to 1500x1125 to 1024x768

the point is to reduce the image size in steps, no matter what size or ratio your camera takes photos at.
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Old 05-25-2007, 07:51 PM   #13
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Quote:
prepare the photo for railpictures
resize to 2400x1600, save in full detail setting, close file
open, resize to 1800x1200, save in full detail setting, close file
open, resize to 1200x900, save in full detail setting, close file
open, resize to 1023x682, save in full detail setting, close file and upload to railpictures
To each , his own, but based on my experience, this couldn't be any more incorrect! Each time you save a JPEG, close, and then re-open, you've just lost image data/information. But here's the real problem, as far as I can tell:

Quote:
the photo editor i am using is microsoft picture it 9
See this thread here:
http://www.railpictures.net/forums/s...ead.php?t=5298

Specifically, this post:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Me
In digital photography, post-processing is almost as important as capturing the image itself.

I think you're really limiting/hamstringing the capabilities of your Digital Rebel, Bob, with the software you're using (assuming you're only using the Microsoft one for your processing). Your Digital Rebel should have come with bundled software (ArcSoft Photo Studio and/or Digital Photo Professional) which is far better than what the Microsoft program offers.

If you don't have those, I'd go to Best Buy and get PS Elements or something equivalent stat! Otherwise processing your photos with Microsoft image software is like buying a Corvette with an automatic transmission, putting touring tires on it (probably with white walls), installing a car seat, and using 85 Octane gas...you have the necessary hardware, but you're limiting it's effectiveness...
It's a shame for folks to have quality dSLRs and limit their potential by the way the images are post-processed...
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Old 05-25-2007, 11:06 PM   #14
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So, if I am understanding the above threads, I need to work on using a sharpening feature on the software, and try to make the corrections there?

I will try to rework this photo a little and see if I can get it submitted with the limited software that I have now. If that doesn't work, I guess I can try to get something with Photoshop.

Another question:

A photo taken in the morning hours with the train headed almost directly into the sun is rejected for high sun.....any thoughts on that?

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...&key=999053795

thanks again for all of the help!
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Old 05-25-2007, 11:41 PM   #15
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Quote:
A photo taken in the morning hours with the train headed almost directly into the sun is rejected for high sun.....any thoughts on that?
Depends on when it was taken. But, I've noticed that near-direct-nose-light situation can be knee-jerked into an automatic High Sun rejection. Now when I upload, I make an entry in the Comments to Screeners area that says, "Not High Sun; photo taken at 1830L" or whatever the time was...
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Old 05-25-2007, 11:58 PM   #16
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I sharpened it up a little bit and it looked pretty nice......i will try to resubmit it and see if they will take it. would you be interested in contacting me off line?

jccease@comcast.net

thanks

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Old 05-26-2007, 12:28 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fairmont

Another question:

A photo taken in the morning hours with the train headed almost directly into the sun is rejected for high sun.....any thoughts on that?

http://www.railpictures.net/viewreje...&key=999053795

thanks again for all of the help!
That's definitely NOT high sun. If it were high sun, the majority of the plow would not be fully illuminated like it is. I agree with Ween, probably a knee-jerk reaction. However, the image quality at the front of the loco isn't that great, so even if you resubmit, it might still get rejected for that.

And speaking of resubmitting, if you somehow find a way to improve the quality on the first shot you uploaded, you may still get a rejecting for the image being unlevel. It needs to be rotated clockwise slightly.
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