5 Replies Latest reply on Jan 7, 2008 8:30 PM by (Jeff_Schewe)

    Presets sought for fine-tuning skin tones

      Are presets available to fine tune skin tones in Camera Raw, perhaps by tweaking colors and hue/saturation/luminance settings in the HSL/Grayscale menu?

      I like almost everything about ACR except how the default settings render skin tones on my 5D's CR2 files. I bought a copy of Margulis' 'Professional Photoshop' and now can consistently "fix" what I didn't like, but I suspect as much or more could be accomplished with knowledgeable tweaking in the HSL menu.

      I found one preset, after visiting this adobe forums thread:

      http://www.adobeforums.com/webx/.3bbed80a/1

      ... but that's all. I think they'd be a snap for an expert retoucher to create -- e.g., warm_with_pink.xmp, warm_with_yellow.xmp, presets for skin tones of different ethnicities, etc.

      Of course, I've tried to do it myself, by nudging orange, red, yellow and magenta sliders, but ... with limited success, to put it mildly. I'd much rather start out with tweak-the-skin-tones presets from an expert, and then adjust to taste. If I can find 'em.
        • 1. Re: Presets sought for fine-tuning skin tones
          John MacLean Level 1
          Timoteo,

          The settings are device dependent, IOW your specific camera requires its own calibration to reproduce as accurately as it can.

          http://fors.net/chromoholics/
          http://www.creativepro.com/story/howto/21351.html
          • 2. Re: Presets sought for fine-tuning skin tones
            Level 1
            Thanks for the links to chromoholics and creativepro. My last experience with creating a custom camera profile wasn't that successful, but that was a long time ago, and I probably shouldn't let that discourage me from trying again. If that's the ultimate solution, you've told me what I need to know.

            For whatever it's worth, though, I've shot with two 5Ds, and can't tell the CR2s they produce apart. ACR at default settings yields the same (to me) objectionable, pale apricot skin tone from the CR2s of both cameras.

            I would fix this in ACR, if I knew how. I don't; I'm not that good with the HSL sliders; I have to do it in Photoshop. But because the 5D is a popular and fairly high end camera, I guessed, or hoped, that professional wedding or fashion photographers who live and die by nuances of skin tone might have sub-directories full of presets to nudge 5D skin tones ... and, further, that they'd generously share said preset collection with the world.
            • 3. Re: Presets sought for fine-tuning skin tones
              John MacLean Level 1
              In addition to cameras being different, although yours apparently are similar, the HSL adjustments are IMO image dependent. Varying lighting, WB, and skin tone of each person will require unique adjustments.

              The images come into ACR flat for a reason, so that they're not overly contrasty and saturated, and so the user can dial it in to whatever "look" they want. With a bit of learning and trying, you'll be cruising through it!

              On the note of the Macbeth card for the calibration, make sure you get a new one, and keep it CLEAN.

              To learn about ACR, I highly suggest this book:

              http://www.peachpit.com/title/0321518675
              • 4. Re: Presets sought for fine-tuning skin tones
                Level 1
                Thanks again for taking the time to write. If I get a Macbeth card, I'll make sure to keep it spotless!

                I do have Mr. Schewe's very valuable book. (And as I know that he's a regular here, I'll add: congratulations, Jeff Schewe, on a job well done.)
                • 5. Re: Presets sought for fine-tuning skin tones
                  Level 1
                  >(And as I know that he's a regular here, I'll add: congratulations, Jeff Schewe, on a job well done.)

                  Thanks for the kind words...