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Image ProcessingImage Stacking.

Post-processing: Editing techniques, software, hardware and other resources. Chemical or digital.
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minniev
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Image Stacking.

Post by minniev »

At long last, I decided to try image stacking. This was an experiment, not a plan for a great image and I'm far from mastering it. I took 20 images in a bracket focus stack (handheld) and discarded about half that went too far past where I wanted it to stop. Dumped them into PS, auto aligned and auto blended, then fiddled a bit. I focused on the cat's nose, set the number of shots and the narrow/wide value which I don't fully understand but seems to have something to do with how much variance you expect to have between the focus points from one capture to the next. All the shots were at 2.8. The round things in the background are decorative plates, about 3 1/2 feet behind the doll inside a glass front cabinet.

The second one was an auto capture with 8 images but I stacked them in PS myself. I did try the auto stack/blend in-camera and it did a pretty good job but I think the range was too much (bright to dark) and that method lost some detail in the brights. When the camera does it, it also yields 8 raw images in addition to the final blended jpeg so you can give it ago yourself if you want.

Have you guys done this stuff? How do you go about it? What kinds of images have you used it with? If you've got an example I'd like to see!
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doll (1 of 1).jpg
dead rose (1 of 1)-2.jpg
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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Psjunkie
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Post by Psjunkie »

I have never done it..but I bet Piet knows all about it....I do see unfocused areas from both images though without zooming if that helps

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minniev
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Post by minniev »

Psjunkie wrote:
Wed May 27, 2020 9:36 pm
I have never done it..but I bet Piet knows all about it....I do see unfocused areas from both images though without zooming if that helps
Yep I did too. I fixed the worst one and if I do this more I’ll learn better how to do it. Each layer gets masked differently by the algorithm then you have to find a better layer and maneuver that.
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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Post by Psjunkie »

It is a good process to learn for sure......

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Post by PietFrancke »

I did a lot of stacking for macro images - I like what you have done here - looks very cool. There are some pieces of software that might be worth looking at if you maintain an interest in this (Zerene for example). I like the idea of doing this on still life scenes) I think ol Ansel would have loved the concept on his landscapes. In macro you would get multiple images by moving the camera forward a small increment on a rail - allowing the camera to use the same settings over and over without need to touch the camera. I would consider using a setting that gave you the greatest acceptable DOF per shot - or use the setting that lets your lens capture the sharpest of images and blend those (perhaps your 2.8 is that setting - but that setting seems "too thin" to me).

edit - also, very effective technique is to take multiple shots of exact same setting and blend - to reduce noise. Which may allow low light settings to produce richer images.

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minniev
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Post by minniev »

PietFrancke wrote:
Thu May 28, 2020 1:00 pm
I did a lot of stacking for macro images - I like what you have done here - looks very cool. There are some pieces of software that might be worth looking at if you maintain an interest in this (Zerene for example). I like the idea of doing this on still life scenes) I think ol Ansel would have loved the concept on his landscapes. In macro you would get multiple images by moving the camera forward a small increment on a rail - allowing the camera to use the same settings over and over without need to touch the camera. I would consider using a setting that gave you the greatest acceptable DOF per shot - or use the setting that lets your lens capture the sharpest of images and blend those (perhaps your 2.8 is that setting - but that setting seems "too thin" to me).

edit - also, very effective technique is to take multiple shots of exact same setting and blend - to reduce noise. Which may allow low light settings to produce richer images.
I clearly have a lot to learn, and since I lack your precision, I expect I'll stop short of a focusing rail and tripod, and try to figure the best strategies for handheld uses, then take it from there. My camera is a toy box. It does a decent job of blending the focus stack on its own, and I think that will be a good toy going forward once I learn how to use it, while letting it capture those separate files in case the camera screws it up and I want to hand blend them. Toy box also has a setting that takes many images and blends them (needs to be on tripod) then spits out an 80 MP file for you to fool with. The file has much more detail and much less noise than the usual Olympus 20 MP file.

I'm hoping to go to the country house this weekend. LOTS of bugs there for me to experiment on! And gnarlic.
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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