View Full Version : Tips on improving image appearance?

10-18-2007, 07:35 PM
Could anyone give my guidance on making the attached image more appealing? Not sure what to experiment with. Can I make the people more clear by adjusting contrast, blurring the background, etc…


Thanks for any guidance!

10-18-2007, 08:44 PM
Don't know what the original photo looks like, but based on the gif this would help I'm guessing:
1. Open the original photo
2. Change image resolution to 72 dpi
3. Auto level
4. If original image is very large: sharpen
5. Resize to needed size
6. Save as jpg, minimum 60% quality, more if needed.

10-18-2007, 09:47 PM
Wow, Domedia, you're all over! Thanks.

the original file: http://cellocelli.com/School.jpg

Not a good start but I'll use your steps to resize and such. Can I isolate the contrast to the pale skin color. I think the dark background and pale skin color don't work well together. I should also read up on getting rid of her red-eye.

Thanks again.

10-19-2007, 11:02 AM
What version of PS are you using? If it's CS or above, try the shadow/highlight adjustment. Image>Adjustments>Shadow/Highlight (Shortcut = Ctl + / ). You can play around with the various adjustment sliders. Should do this on a copy of your original photo. You can then do your crop the get the size you want and then do a File>Save for Web. This way you now have a photo to use on the page and the adjusted photo saved in case you want to go back and make other adjustments.

For the red eye, use the lasso tool to select the red eye section. Next do a sample of the color you want with the eyedropper. Next use the paint bucket tool to fill the area you selected with the lasso. Or, use the paint brush to paint in the color. Do this before you save for web in case you it doesn't turn out quite right and you want to make further adjustments.


10-19-2007, 02:23 PM
These are great ideas, but the photo will need more than that if you really want it to look good. To bring out the color you need to isolate (mask) parts of the photo, like the purple shirt, and use the color balance tool to make it as bright and vibrant as you want. The laso / paint bucket idea was not to bad but by doing that your damaging the original picture. You should do that on a new layer and then drop the opacity a bit. The human eye has so much depth to it, even when it is shrunk to a small size. Filling it wilt just one color make the person look void of emotion and feelings.

You can also mask the background and blur it out with a simple gaussian blur. Using the masks will allow the original image to not be effected in case you mess up. To learn more on masks go over the DWT tutorial on cropping:


10-19-2007, 02:37 PM
Here is a quick sample. This was saved at a medium quality, 50% and dropped down to 72 dpi. Sharpened with the unsharpened mask, which keeps the faces soft but sharpens the edges. Blurred everything but the girl using a mask and Gaussian blurr

10-19-2007, 06:56 PM
Jittor is right on. One thing though, PS and all it's options like layers, masking, selection tools, blurs, blends etc. makes Dreamweaver look like a walk in the park. Following his advice will give you a much improved picture but be prepared to do some serious studying to get your desired results. Also, always be sure and work from a copy of you original. That way, if you screw up, (as I have done many times) you can always start over.

d a v e
10-21-2007, 01:37 PM
btw dpi (or rather ppi pixels per inch on screen - dpi dots per inch for print) is irrelevant for display in browsers where 1 pixel is 1 pixel and that's it. you save nothing by altering the 'dpi'

10-22-2007, 12:17 PM
btw dpi (or rather ppi pixels per inch on screen - dpi dots per inch for print) is irrelevant for display in browsers where 1 pixel is 1 pixel and that's it. you save nothing by altering the 'dpi' You save on filesize, bigtime if the image you're given is 300dpi. There's no need for the file to be larger and take longer to download when you can optimize it down to 72 dpi. (The dot being a pixel on monitors like you say)

d a v e
10-22-2007, 01:31 PM
the file size for web use is the same - try it ps and see! (i.e. export a jpeg from an original at 300ppi and one at 72 ppi and you'll see filesize is within a few bytes

see http://pp.kpnet.fi/prescott/stuff/leaves72.jpg
(jpeg saved at medium weighs in at 72.5kb)

and http://pp.kpnet.fi/prescott/stuff/leaves300.jpg (saved as medium qaulity) weighs in the same

save and open them in ps and you'll see they are 72ppi and 300 ppi respectively

incidentally saving for web (via image ready) defaults to 72ppi (for me at least ;)

10-22-2007, 02:20 PM
You're right.. the only thing that matters is the pixel dimensions.

d a v e
10-22-2007, 03:41 PM
it's kind of weird though :)