Speaking of sharpening 2 - this post includes a Photoshop action file

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Postby -default » Sat May 13, 2006 5:37 am

This method of sharpening was first brought to my attention by a Finnish gentleman named Timo Autiokari.  He's an interesting guy - very thoughtful, and prone to come up with ideas on the fringes of color science, ideas that ruffle the feathers of the conventional authorities.  When Timo is right about something, Christmas lights light up!  This is one of those times!

Anyway, this sharpening method is super.  It's become an important method of sharpening for me.  Ready?  Here's the recipe.

  • resize the image to 200%

  • use Filter>Sharpen>Unsharp Mask with a radius of .5, and maxxed out at 500%

  • resize the image to 50%

  • blammo - there's your sharpened image.

The advantage of this method of sharpening is simple: it looks great.  Most USM manipulations leave just a hint of white or black halo around objects, giving them a metallic or greasy sheen.  The use of the small .5 radius eliminated the halo, and leaves your image with that fresh, clean, sharp and zesty feeling!

You may want to duplicate the image you are sharpening to a new layer before sharpening.  Then you can alter the transparency, erase areas that are noisy or contain details I don't want sharpened.

In some cases you may get a better result converting to Lab, and sharpening only the Lightness channel.  I've included two actions in the attached atn file, one that stays in RGB for the sharpening operation, and another one that does the Lab trick.


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