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"Poor lighting setup, poor contrast, or incorrect exposure"

I would appreciate it if anyone could tell me how to examine these problems using the tools in Photoshop (I have CS4 if that is relevant). In other words, if a photo "looks fine" to the naked eye, where in Photoshop can you go to "see" and correct what you are obviously not seeing just by looking at the photo. I realize that this is a very basic question, but I do hope someone can provide some insight about this. Thanks a lot!
2.8 Macro, Canon 15 2.8 Fisheye, Canon 35 2.0, Canon 85 1.8...
Posted: 01/21/2011, 22:06:45 PM
That depends - it's difficult without knowing how proficient you are post-postprocessing. If your images are jpegs then try using photoshop "levels" - just play about with the different levels to see if you can make the image look "better". That's really basic so sorry if this is something you already do...You could also introduce new layers to either increase or decrease the light/dark in certain areas of an image.

If your images are Raw then there's a lot you can do either using the program that came with your camera or in PS - you can adjust most things in a raw image.

Sometimes there's not much you can do to remedy the situation....sometimes what we (contributors) see as acceptable lighting/contrast/exposure are not seen the same way by the reviewers. It's a hard life!

Try looking at some free online tutorials - there's a lot out there that will guide you step by step and you can learn a lot like this. Good luck.
Posted: 01/22/2011, 02:52:15 AM
Thanks for your response. I do post processing in Raw and save as a Jpeg as the final step. I don't change to 8 bits until the end as well. Images that look fine to me are being rejected and I am not sure how to prevent this since they look OK to me. I was just wondering if there is something specific that the reviewers look at, that I could look at ahead of time, that might be a more objective measure. Also, I am unable to resubmit since I do not know how to change them so that they will be accepted. Thanks again.
2.8 Macro, Canon 15 2.8 Fisheye, Canon 35 2.0, Canon 85 1.8...
Posted: 01/22/2011, 11:15:21 AM
You can send an email to support asking for more info re:the rejection I believe.
D700, 14-24mm, 24-70mm 2.8, 70-200mm VRII, 50mm 1.4, 105mm Macro
Posted: 01/22/2011, 11:26:32 AM
As Lauriey suggests, contact support for more info on the rejection reason - at least you will find out which reason (lighting, contrast or exposure) is the main reason for the rejection and you can work on amending and resubmitting from there....good luck!
Posted: 01/22/2011, 13:00:06 PM
It may be my monitor. I have a MacBook Pro. I have it calibrated, but other images (accepted images) look very light to me, so maybe my monitor's display is set too bright. I have darkened the display, so maybe that will help me to make images that look bright enough on other monitors. I think Mac monitors may be brighter than others. Thanks for your suggestions.
2.8 Macro, Canon 15 2.8 Fisheye, Canon 35 2.0, Canon 85 1.8...
Posted: 01/22/2011, 22:06:11 PM
The monitor thingy might be a good start, as when looking at your portfolio (with my calibrated monitor), all pictures, accept 2, are on the dark side.

So if they look too bright to you, then your monitor must be way too dark. Did you use calibration software or some online tutorial for Adobe Gamma calibration?

Posted: 01/24/2011, 17:20:25 PM
Diavata, Thanks so much for the information! My photos all look fine on my monitor but the others look too bright! If mine look dark on your calibrated monitor, something is definitely wrong. For a while I was using the EyeOne calibration system (with the hardware than sits on your screen and the software to go with it). More recently I have been using the internal calibration within the system commands for the MacBook Pro. But even the EyeOne seemed only to deal with the color, not so much with the brightness. Nothing I have used seems to deal with brightness; that is set on a slider under the Display settings. If I set it to medium I can hardly see the screen so I have had it set at about 3/4's of the maximum. Recently I have moved it down to the 1/2way point when editing though.

I did that when I re-edited my rejected photos and resubmitted them. Alas, they were rejected again for exactly the same reason. So, I have emailed support asking for further information so that, hopefully, I can avoid the same mistake in the future.

2.8 Macro, Canon 15 2.8 Fisheye, Canon 35 2.0, Canon 85 1.8...
Posted: 01/24/2011, 20:27:51 PM
I know this is an old thread but I am having the same issue. Many of my images are getting rejected due to poor color and lighting. To me, on my monitor (32" using HDMI input with NVIDIA graphics card), they look fine. Several questions:

1. If I rent a monitor calibrator will it calibrate for brightness as well as color?

2. Are editors and designers looking for "better than natural" colors?

3. Should I be increasing color and saturation to increase color intensity to get more images accepted?

4. Should I post an image in the feedback forum to get more information on what other people are seeing when they view it? In other words is this an appropriate use of the feedback forum?

Thanks in advance for your feedback.

Sony video camera Nikon D800e
Posted: 10/09/2013, 09:45:12 AM
1. You can buy a good monitor calibrator for around $100
2. Images that "pop" generally sell better
3. See #2
4. Search the database for best selling images similar to yours, how does your image compare?
Nikon D800, D100, Canon G15
Posted: 10/09/2013, 22:32:17 PM
Wisconsinart Thanks for the answers. I've looked at a couple of calibration tools is there one you recommend?
Sony video camera Nikon D800e
Posted: 10/10/2013, 06:52:22 AM
If the photo is poorly lit, you're not going to be able to fix that in Photoshop. You may have to re-shoot, and play with your lighting.
Nikon D70, standard lens
Posted: 10/10/2013, 09:09:13 AM
Therealderla Thanks. I looked at your portfolio and found it very interesting. The original intent of my post was to ask for ideas and feedback about monitors and claibration to be sure reviewers and I were seeing the same thing. Some of my work is purposely darker to create a moody feeling, however, I need to be more careful because pictures that "pop" are more accepted and sell in greater numbers. This has been a bit of education for me as "darker", when appropriate, is more accepted in the art vs. stock world.

You mention poorly lit can't be fixed. I'm interested to hear from you and others about this. The reviewer did give me the option of fixing and resubmitting. Since I shoot and edit in RAW format I do find there is some flexibility to "punch up" at least some of the images. BTW I use LR5 currently for my editing.
Sony video camera Nikon D800e
Posted: 10/11/2013, 08:06:41 AM

Originally posted by Nickspics534:
Quoted Message: Wisconsinart Thanks for the answers. I`ve looked at a couple of calibration tools is there one you recommend?

If you search on HUEY CALIBRATION you will see what I use. It's an older product and apparently no longer available. lists this as an equivalent: Amazon Link
Nikon D800, D100, Canon G15
Posted: 10/11/2013, 16:52:32 PM
Thanks again for your help. I'll take a look.
Sony video camera Nikon D800e
Posted: 10/12/2013, 07:24:36 AM