TRADE SECRET #2 Realistic Representation of Lume With Base Watch Image.
© 2011 neophoto & Gear Ninja Style - Exclusively for Watchtalk Forums
So anyone with knowledge of HDR can perform this technique automatically as the principles are the same. Before 'HDR' was an automated 'API' or software filter, this had to be done 'a mano' or by hand. Indeed, some of us are old enough to remember doing this without software at all ( don't ask- you don't want to hear about it- trust me).
To simultaneously convey the visual experience of viewing GID (weather chemical lume or Tritium) without totally obscuring the details inherit in the watch face.
Take two or more photographs in precise register* that capture the separate visual effects to be composted in register in software later so as to convey a combined image that is a base watch face, plus requisite glow color with glow edges.
1) Tripod mount camera and prevent movement of either the subject or the camera.
2)Capture an image of just the glow of the lume after exposing the face to bright light for a typical duration. Bracket exposures. This typically entails timed exposures in total or near total darkness.
3) Capture images of the watch using ambient illumination or ambient plus artificial light.Bracket exposures.
4) import the selected best images into photoshop layers . They should then therefore be in precise register to each other.
5) using photoshop Blending Options, combine the Lume captures with the 'straight' images of the watch to create the desired combination.
6) Add glow effect to cloned Lume shots using whatever API's or filter you have.
7) use layer masking to selectively block unwanted regions from appearing in the composite image.
NOTES: I use PS V6 and CS5. This recipe is for PS V6. I'm sure it's the same under CS5.
*Register= Registration. this is a term derived from both cell animation as well as lithographic printing. It simply means exactly matching the positioning of 'layers' so that edges that are combined or blended together appear congruent with no 'double images' (which would indicate off registration)
This is a very basic recipe. I use this technique on thousands of images.
What's the most time consuming part? Strangely, it's spotting out all the dust. NEVER use a PS filter as that will affect part of your base image even as it's supposed to only attack dust and scratches. I sometimes send files to India, where legions of people do nothing but make selections and spot images for cheap and fast!