Photoshop question - background color

Discussion in 'Graphic Design' started by bigcougar, Apr 19, 2011.

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  1. bigcougar

    bigcougar New Member

    Messages:
    45
    I have a few pencil drawings that are part of my website. The problem is, I do not know how to make them merge with the selected page color.

    I used the gradient tool, I adjusted the brightness and contrast etc,but there are always darker spots somewhere. (I took pictures of the the drawings rather than scanning them)

    This is a sample page with drawings - #2 and #3 illustrate the problem
    http://www.troutsalmonchar.com//Pages/FLY_MAIN_Rods.php

    Do you have any suggestions on a fast and easy way to get only the pencil image out of the drawings?
     
  2. d a v e

    d a v e New Member

    Messages:
    671
    you can either try and delete the bits you don't want using a magic wand/eraser/quick mask or you could use a large soft brush and erase it like in my screenshot (you would need to start with a slightly larger image so you don't erase any trees like i have)

    this was just quick one so it looks a bit unbalanced but with some care it could look good. nice drawings btw :)
    [​IMG]
     
  3. ronaldroe

    ronaldroe Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    1,223
    I photograph a lot of this stuff. It's actually better to photograph than scan it. Here's what I do for pencil:

    Using artist's tape or Elmer's tack, mount the drawing to a piece of white foam core. Go outside about midday when it's mostly sunny. You want it to be bright, but not too intense. Set up the foam core on an easel or have someone hold it angled up, not with the sun shining directly on it.. Make sure there are no shadows cast on it. Shoot without the flash.

    In Photoshop, depending on your version, either turn it black and white or desaturate it (same area of the menu, just slightly different functions). Then, hit auto levels.

    That should give you a good starting point with few dark spots to work from. Hope that helps!
     
  4. d a v e

    d a v e New Member

    Messages:
    671
    good advice from Ronald Roe!
     
  5. bigcougar

    bigcougar New Member

    Messages:
    45
    Thank you Dave and Ronald !
    I have never used the softbrush before.

    What I do is very similar to the steps Ronald described.

    I too shoot at midday out on the balcony:) Then I do "Autocolor correction", then "Adjust brightness and contrast". This last one may erase the light pensil strokes, if I increase both the brightness and contrast.

    The mistake I made with the images on the page shown was I had them exposed to the sun. I will have to retake the shots. Then it should be easier.


    Maybe the paper I use matters too; so many variables.
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2011
  6. ronaldroe

    ronaldroe Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    1,223
    Also, making sure the paper is perfectly flat on the foam core will help. I've had to re-shoot/retouch a lot of images because the tack was pushing up a corner and I didn't realize it.

    I suggested auto-levels before because it was easier than tracking down the article that I learned it manually from (shame on me). But, here's the article: http://www.digital-photography-school.com/rescuing-poorly-exposed-photos-with-photoshop-levels

    Once you have a good grasp on that, try bringing the highlight slider in just a little past the edge of the histogram, and it will make those whites a good bit whiter, which should help with your edges.
     

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