Saving a Photo

I recently purchased Topaz Sharpen AI, because influencers raved about how it improved an out-of-focus picture. I tried it on a few photos. I wasn’t that impressed. Most of the time it still looked like crap, and I kind of forgot about the program.

Recently, however, I took a picture of a squirrel at the lake one early morning that I ran through the program to see what would happen. I had no hopes it would be made usable, but I wanted to see how much improvement could be achieved. I paid $50 for that sucker, and so far, I felt like I’d thrown that money away.

Imagine my surprise when I saw the results. Blurry original on the left, final output on the right. Look at the eye, the nose and whiskers, the hair on the back of its head, and the paws holding a nut. Tell me that isn’t impressive! I mean, it’s not perfect by any means, but it is better, and I can work with it. To see pictures larger, right-click and “open in new tab.”

But the colors were off. Where did all that cyan come from? Look at his tail. Look at the grass. Ew. I didn’t like it at all. It’s noisy, too, so I’d also have to run it through Topaz DeNoise. Here’s the original.

Photoshop isn’t good at adjusting colors because it doesn’t separate blue from cyan or orange from red, so I used Luminar instead. It just gets me where I need to go faster than PS can.

You could call this another color grading, because I changed the overall feel of the picture, too. It took me longer than I thought to get it to where I was satisfied, but I love the result.

It took four different graphic programs to correct and process this photo: Photoshop (CS6, not CC, because I refuse to “rent” a program), Topaz Sharpen AI, Topaz DeNoise, and finally Luminar. I know a lot of people don’t want to mess with their pictures. They want to take the shot and send it immediately to social media or email it to friends. But I love photo editing as much as taking the shot. 🙂

It satisfies my need to be creative and appeals to my desire to make things as good as they can be. This applies to everything I do in life, except housekeeping. I hate housekeeping. 😉

See you next time.

About Fenraven

Fenraven happily lives in south Florida, where it is really hot most of the year. Find him on Twitter and Facebook by searching on 'fenraven'.
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4 Responses to Saving a Photo

  1. Shirley Ann Speakman says:

    Wow the difference is amazing!

    • Fenraven says:

      Topaz over-sharpened the hair on its arm, but I softened that in Luminar. Overall, however, it made the face and eye more defined, and that’s what I needed. Pretty cool what AI programs can do these days, isn’t it? 🙂

  2. Janet Ellinger says:

    Love that little patch of caramel-colored fur on his side.

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