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Kirk Gittings
26-Jul-2012, 12:39
I have always done it at 100% of the maximum archived file size (360dpi, 30x40 inches), but that is brutal when you have allot of dust and a bit pointless when you know you are never going to print that large.

What do you guys do?

Noah A
26-Jul-2012, 13:36
I'd like to do what you do, spot an otherwise untouched scan (with full info from the scanner and no clipping) and archive that, then size and tone the photo when I need it for prints or publication.

In practice I end up archiving the huge 4000dpi drum scan, spots and all. I make a downsized copy of the files at around 20x24in. at 300dpi and spot those to give to my agency, use for portfolio prints and small exhibition prints. I've only been spotting the huge files if I need to make a large print for an exhibition.

But really, I wish I had time to archive spotted files. Bravo to you for doing things right! My way means that I may have to spot a photo twice, but of course the smaller ones take less time.

One nice thing about drum scans is there isn't so much really fine dust and fine scratches don't show up due to the wet mounting. So I'm just looking for bubbles (which rarely happen since I switched to Kami fluid) and small bits and hairs that got into the wet mount because my work space isn't clean enough. But it beats spotting Imacon/Hasselblad scans, they're a nightmare.

Ken Lee
26-Jul-2012, 13:44
I only do the ones I intend to print :cool: but I do them once at original size and then they're done.

Kirk Gittings
26-Jul-2012, 13:57
I do some test corrections on an image to decide if I am likely to ever print it (I am not likely to bother even doing a real scan of it either) before I bother with spotting.

timparkin
26-Jul-2012, 14:32
I try to avoid getting any dust in the first place. I went this route when I started shooting neg which shows up dust 10x as much. It now takes me about 5 mins to spot a typical 4000dpi scan at 100%. Here's my process..

- clean equipment
- VERY bright light at a shallow angle to the film
- Brush film with antistatic brush, brush backward on tough spot
- clean film
- use sensor brush to pick off last specks
- use Aztek mylar which has no embedded dust.
- check inside of drum and pick off larger specks with brush
- brush outside of drum once mounted (clean the insides of scannner thoroughly once in a while)
- oh, and build a dust booth

http://cheapdrumscanning.com/why-drum-scan/dust/

As for spotting - I mostly scan my images at 2000dpi unless I know it's going to be a 'good one' and then I do a 4000. I tend to quick spot my 2000dpi's at 100% and my 4000's at 50%. Generally enough to get a nice 24x30.

Tim

Kirk Gittings
26-Jul-2012, 15:17
On this batch of negatives the filter in my homemade dryer got cockeyed and wasn't doing its job. I didn't discover it till I started doing some test scans after developing and drying nearly 100 sheets of film that way-almost an entire project. Worst dust I have ever seen.........

vinny
26-Jul-2012, 16:18
I do them at 100% if I plan to print it. I don't drum scan it unless I plan to print it. Somehow cleaning the film makes more of a mess for me to start with (I know that makes no sense). I spent about 3 hrs on an aweful scan this week which was snow and open sky, the dust had nowhere to hide.

Keith S. Walklet
26-Jul-2012, 16:57
Much like Tim, with these steps:


- clean equipment
- VERY bright light at a shallow angle to the film
- Brush film with antistatic brush, brush backward on tough spot
- clean film
- use sensor brush to pick off last specks
- use Aztek mylar which has no embedded dust.

But, I spot every file I scan at 100%, and I always scan at full resolution (4000 spi with the Nikon 8000 and 6400 spi with the Epson). The wet mount prep takes too long to bother with a lower resolution scan.

I still prefer spotting with PS rather than LR, which I find to be more of a pain than helpful. The newer versions of the Healing Brush and Stamp tools make the job much easier and the results much better. I just pulled a 72-hour spotting marathon, not so much because my film was dirty, but I've been working on some older, more challenging film that I can rescue with LR4 and discovered that my 1/2 neutral density filters often were thick with near-invisible grit that had adhered to the resin due to static.

These days, it is possible to quickly determine whether the file has potential via LR4, so, I might play with it quickly to see if it will fly before investing the time in spotting.

megapickle1
26-Jul-2012, 23:40
Oh yes! I know it too good how you suffer.

Im doing the same for the last 4 weeks and for the next 4 weeks. Every evening from 9 p.m. to 12 p.m. It takes me 3 hours to dust spot one picture with PS, no breaks. My eyes are getting a square look after.
Ive tried everything to avoid dust at the very beginning. But somehow there are a lot of spots in the scans, some are black (dust on film) some are white (dust on the scanner) and you can see everything like drying marks or faint scrathes and fingerprints. It is a very boring process.

George

Robert Hall
27-Jul-2012, 06:39
I pour a small Scotch and dig in at 100%. Less painful with a glass of something that took years to create. It makes me put things in perspective. :)

Brian Ellis
27-Jul-2012, 08:23
I spot everything I'm going to save - not necessarily print, just save on DVD and external hard drive - at 100%. I used to spot only keep those photographs that I thought were worthy of printing. But some years ago I changed, now I keep any photograph that I like even though it may never be printed. Most of my work is digital these days so spotting isn't anywhere near as time-consuming as it is with film.

biedron
27-Jul-2012, 10:01
I still prefer spotting with PS rather than LR, which I find to be more of a pain than helpful.

This may be a well known LR tip, but perhaps someone could benefit: When spotting in LR, zoom into whatever ratio you want (I usually use 1:1), and place the zoom box in the upper left-hand corner. Do your dust spotting in that tiny section. When done, still zoomed in, hit the page-down key. That will move the zoom box down vertically, by the precise height of the zoom box. Now do your spotting in that section. Repeat, repeat... when you get to the bottom, the next page-gown will move back up to the top, but shifted over by the width of the zoom box. Eventually you will end up at the lower right-hand corner and you are done. Page-up goes in the opposite direction in case you want to go back to the previous section. This has made my spotting work in LR2 and LR3 a lot easier for me; I haven't upgraded yet to LR4, but I assume it will work the same way there.

Bob

Bruce Watson
27-Jul-2012, 11:11
I have always done it at 100% of the maximum archived file size (360dpi, 30x40 inches), but that is brutal when you have allot of dust and a bit pointless when you know you are never going to print that large.

What do you guys do?

Just exactly what you described.

I had a mess once, some screwup in processing that I'm too embarrassed to describe. But I managed to gunk up an entire trip's worth of film, close to 100 sheets. It was, shall we say, a learning experience. :(

What I found is that you don't have to treat all dust the same. Dust in clear skies is the worst -- gotta do that at 100% or see it in the final print. But dust in amongst a field of grasses is a completely different animal.

I do have one print from that trip that I enlarged to 125 x 100 cm (roughly 50 x 40 inches) that had a fair amount of sky and water in it. Took me the better part of a day to do the dust spotting. Nice headache, that one. But a big beautiful print that's right now hanging in my bedroom where I see it first thing every morning. Yes, I really like that print. :D

And... since that time my processing has become obsessively clean, to the point of using steam distilled water for everything, and all chemistry one shot, including fixer. If it all makes a noticeable difference, I do it. Got my spotting time for a 5x4 scanned at 11x enlargement down well under 30 minutes, and almost all that time is spent searching for dust -- not fixing it.

You can, of course, cut down on the work just by scanning to a smaller level of enlargement. If "you know you are never going to print that large". Tough prediction to make, that. At least for me.

timparkin
28-Jul-2012, 03:11
You can, of course, cut down on the work just by scanning to a smaller level of enlargement. If "you know you are never going to print that large". Tough prediction to make, that. At least for me.

And that would mean spotting twice - which is why I try to scan at high res for all images that warrant it (i.e. I don't bother for f/32 or more images as the detail isn't really there to compensate for working on 2Gb files)!!

timparkin
28-Jul-2012, 03:12
You can, of course, cut down on the work just by scanning to a smaller level of enlargement. If "you know you are never going to print that large". Tough prediction to make, that. At least for me.

And that would mean spotting twice - which is why I try to scan at high res for all images that warrant it (i.e. I don't bother for f/32 or more images as the detail isn't really there to compensate for working on 2Gb files)!!

Bill Koechling
28-Jul-2012, 08:06
Kirk - We are in the thick of it right now. I've changed stock agencies recently and have scanned all images (several hundred at this point) to 7000 pixels @ 300 ppi for the new agency. These files are not as large as yours but my wife (a very high-skilled retoucher) and I have taken turns at doing the same thing. We also do this at 100%. It's brutal but as Brian Wilson says, "That's Why God Made the Radio."

Kirk Gittings
28-Jul-2012, 08:45
I should have said that I have rarely printed that large-twice in my adult career.I have one yearly museum show that has been asking me to put in one large print every year at 30x40, but frankly I think few of my images work at that size. Who knows what the future will bring? Hence why I try to cover all potentialities.

bob carnie
28-Jul-2012, 09:06
I have always hand spotted my prints as I know you have Kirk. You can still do it if one spot is missed.

At 100% I believe is overkill... What I do is go one or two mags up from final print size and spot ... Basically spotting is all about camouflage , so I tend to spot the way I did in the past.
For clients I will hire a youngster with better vision and patience than me and make my client pay them to spot.





I should have said that I have rarely printed that large-twice in my adult career.I have one yearly museum show that has been asking me to put in one large print every year at 30x40, but frankly I think few of my images work at that size. Who knows what the future will bring? Hence why I try to cover all potentialities.

MisterPrinter
29-Jul-2012, 12:59
I'm spotting with Photoshop 7.01 ( I know, I'm a Dinosaur ), I find it simple and fast. In your opinion are the spotting / healing / filter tools in later versions worth the cost ?

Has anyone done a side-by-side comparison ? I did have the latest evaluation copy, but unfortunately, being in the middle of a complicated house move, I neglected to do the comparison and now my trial has expired.

Any spotting / dust removal tips / links appreciated.

Kirk Gittings
29-Jul-2012, 13:15
Yes I am using CS5 IMO the Spot healing tool is better than earlier versions and the Content Aware Fill solves problem that nothing else can as well.

Michael Graves
30-Jul-2012, 04:56
"That's Why God Made the Radio."

I prefer the manual turntable while I do something tedious like spotting. It forces me to get up and stretch while turning the LP over.

mandoman7
30-Jul-2012, 10:55
The spot healing brush is a wonderful tool, used in concert with the stamp thing. If there's major spotting needed. there's a technique where you create a slightly blurred, spot free layer that's under a sharp layer and you can apply the history eraser to selected areas then in a much looser and quicker fashion than with the other 2 tools mentioned.

SergeiR
30-Jul-2012, 13:04
The spot healing brush is a wonderful tool, used in concert with the stamp thing. If there's major spotting needed. there's a technique where you create a slightly blurred, spot free layer that's under a sharp layer and you can apply the history eraser to selected areas then in a much looser and quicker fashion than with the other 2 tools mentioned.

Unfortunately it kills grain structure and gradients.

SergeiR
30-Jul-2012, 13:09
PS: when i am spotting, it depends on subject and needs.

I will check corners first, b/c thats where most of issues are , then move to main subject. Zoom will go from about 27% to 70% to 100% when retouching will be involved (24 inch monitor, 8x10 scan at 2400 dpi, or 4x5 at 3200.. Dont even want to do anything higher, as photoshop wont handle it - i use 16 bit gray DNG for all the scans (except for colour of course), and at about 2G ACR cant recognize it anymore.. 6400dpi of b&w produces 4.2G file btw, if anyone curious).


I keep hoping that infrared cleaning would help, but reality is harsh mistress.. :(

Peter De Smidt
30-Jul-2012, 13:33
Unfortunately it kills grain structure and gradients.

Yeah, I've tried a number of the "quicker" methods than the spot healing brush and clone tool, but I've not found one that does a good job with grain. Mind you, I only print 16x20 and smaller, and so I'm probably just kidding myself by spotting at 100%.

Kirk Gittings
30-Jul-2012, 13:37
Yeah, I've tried a number of the "quicker" methods than the spot healing brush and clone tool, but I've not found one that does a good job with grain.

Ditto

mandoman7
30-Jul-2012, 14:38
Unfortunately it kills grain structure and gradients.

Agreed, all of the broadly applied treatments will compromise your image quality. The method I'm talking about (and don't use that often, really) allows spot specific treatment a little more quickly than the healing brush, that's all. The user selects the where softness is applied and the broadness. Basically, however, this thread is a testament to the importance of clean negs and scans.

Lenny Eiger
31-Jul-2012, 10:51
Kirk,

I doubt that for a reasonable size print, 20x30 or so that you would see the spots at larger than 50%. I usually spot at 66% for all my scan clients - this is a free part of the service. I am guilty of doing the 100% for my best images, or things that will go to 32x40 and larger.

Hope this helps,

Lenny

Zaitz
31-Jul-2012, 11:27
For images I will print I do:
Duplicate the image
Filter - noise - dust and scratches
Open the history window - click the history brush icon next to dust & scratches and then click back on the original layer.
Now just go through using the history brush in either darken or lighten mode depending on if the spots are dark or light.

Here is a terrible example from small sand and dust that got in my holder. As you can see I am quite good at keeping my holders spotless.......

File (after editing):
http://img12.imageshack.us/img12/9473/gsdnp11x14.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/zboumeester/6819966069/in/set-72157627814468368)

@ 75% before:
http://img443.imageshack.us/img443/1325/54632734rsl.jpg

After:
http://img201.imageshack.us/img201/9052/58332848.jpg

Obviously not a quick method but very accurate and nearly flawless.

bob carnie
31-Jul-2012, 11:45
How does this method work on sharp objects, any softening effect???
the example you show is on soft sky and I will use a somewhat same method for out of focus areas of the image but not areas that are to be tack sharp..

For images I will print I do:
Duplicate the image
Filter - noise - dust and scratches
Open the history window - click the history brush icon next to dust & scratches and then click back on the original layer.
Now just go through using the history brush in either darken or lighten mode depending on if the spots are dark or light.

Here is a terrible example from small sand and dust that got in my holder. As you can see I am quite good at keeping my holders spotless.......

File (after editing):
http://img12.imageshack.us/img12/9473/gsdnp11x14.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/zboumeester/6819966069/in/set-72157627814468368)

@ 75% before:
http://img443.imageshack.us/img443/1325/54632734rsl.jpg

After:
http://img201.imageshack.us/img201/9052/58332848.jpg

Obviously not a quick method but very accurate and nearly flawless.

Zaitz
31-Jul-2012, 12:52
I'll try and pull up an example later but I thought it did pretty well with a few detailed images last time I used it. Since it is only applying the dust and scratches (smudge) layer to the precise places where dust and scratches are it doesn't seem to hurt detail much in my experience. At 100% you can tell by comparing it to the source image but at 24x30 prints I cannot come close to seeing any smudge action going on. But I'll try and get an example. Just for clarification, it isn't a global dust and scratches application. You are going back in and 'brushing' where the dust is so the effect is local to the spots.

bob carnie
31-Jul-2012, 13:09
Well I would be interested as global dust and scratches is only an option in soft out of focus areas in my experience.
If you are only attacking the spots themselves then this is a really nice method as global detail would not be affected and that is what I think you are saying happens .


I'll try and pull up an example later but I thought it did pretty well with a few detailed images last time I used it. Since it is only applying the dust and scratches (smudge) layer to the precise places where dust and scratches are it doesn't seem to hurt detail much in my experience. At 100% you can tell by comparing it to the source image but at 24x30 prints I cannot come close to seeing any smudge action going on. But I'll try and get an example. Just for clarification, it isn't a global dust and scratches application. You are going back in and 'brushing' where the dust is so the effect is local to the spots.

Sylvester Graham
31-Jul-2012, 20:20
I worked briefly at an image lab. We used dust and scratches method with two layers as described in combination with healing brush, on scans from a creo. Used this method on an extremely large print of a painting, I forget what it was enlarged to, 10 feet across or something.

If youre enlarging to 50"x60" and handing out loupes at the gallery opening, yeah, you might notice some funky grain splotches. Otherwise try it and challenge your friends to find dust, or where a dust speck was in the scan.

Peter De Smidt
31-Jul-2012, 20:56
There's also the Polaroid Dust and Scratch remover that could be used in the same way as the Photoshop tool. I haven't compared them.
http://web.archive.org/web/20080821225815/http://www.polaroid.com/service/software/poladsr/poladsr.html
I don't know if it's 64 bit compatible. It got some good reviews back then.

mortensen
1-Aug-2012, 14:47
But it beats spotting Imacon/Hasselblad scans, they're a nightmare.

... tell me about it - I've spottet 160 4x5's this summer @ 100%. Shaolin training is probably rougher for both body and soul, but this must come close :p

womble
2-Aug-2012, 12:08
This may be a well known LR tip...

Thanks for that tip, very helpful. Works like that in my ancient Lightroom 1.4 so must be the same in subsequent versions. Kris.

Kirk Gittings
20-Aug-2012, 08:01
With the overwhelming amount of spotting I am currently faced with, I have refined my current practice to doing all the spotting on a layer (as always) with the full size image, but just doing the spotting at a screen size that reflects what will be visible at the size I am currently printing (say 50% when printing a 16x20 from a 30x40 file). If, in the future, I need to print it at larger sizes I can simply go back and refine the spotting to look good at that new larger size. Works for me and isn't so daunting in the short run.

bob carnie
20-Aug-2012, 08:25
50% is where I am at with my work, make a print and go back in if there are hanger ons.


With the overwhelming amount of spotting I am currently faced with, I have refined my current practice to doing all the spotting on a layer (as always) with the full size image, but just doing the spotting at a screen size that reflects what will be visible at the size I am currently printing (say 50% when printing a 16x20 from a 30x40 file). If, in the future, I need to print it at larger sizes I can simply go back and refine the spotting to look good at that new larger size. Works for me and isn't so daunting in the short run.

sanking
20-Aug-2012, 11:53
My procedure is to spot first at 50%, then again at 100%, and one final time at 200%.

Goes a lot faster with digital files than negatives!

Sandy

Greg Miller
20-Aug-2012, 13:21
For images I will print I do:
Duplicate the image
Filter - noise - dust and scratches
Open the history window - click the history brush icon next to dust & scratches and then click back on the original layer.
Now just go through using the history brush in either darken or lighten mode depending on if the spots are dark or light.

Here is a terrible example from small sand and dust that got in my holder. As you can see I am quite good at keeping my holders spotless.......

File (after editing):
http://img12.imageshack.us/img12/9473/gsdnp11x14.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/zboumeester/6819966069/in/set-72157627814468368)

@ 75% before:
http://img443.imageshack.us/img443/1325/54632734rsl.jpg

After:
http://img201.imageshack.us/img201/9052/58332848.jpg

Obviously not a quick method but very accurate and nearly flawless.

I would suggest putting a layer mask on the "dust & scratch" layer and the painting in/out on the layer mask (instead of using the history brush). The end result and time is identical but the layer mask will stay with the file and will be adjustable forever (unlike the history brush).

Kirk Gittings
20-Aug-2012, 14:15
Curious. Why would I want it to be adjustable forever? I primarily use the spot healing brush. Once the dust is gone its gone.

Greg Miller
20-Aug-2012, 14:30
Curious. Why would I want it to be adjustable forever? I primarily use the spot healing brush. Once the dust is gone its gone.

Maybe you missed a spot, and don't discover it until later (happens a lot to people if they later add contrast and barely noticeable spots become very noticeable). Or maybe later on your realize you did a crappy job in a spot (happens to me). Or maybe the spot is in a really tricky place, and some later version of Photoshop makes it easier (or your skills get better).

But in general, using a layer mask produces identical results as the history brush in a virtually identical manner (just paint away the effect with a paint brush), but has none of the drawbacks. So I think it is better to get in the habit of just using a layer mask.

Greg Miller
20-Aug-2012, 14:34
Curious. Why would I want it to be adjustable forever? I primarily use the spot healing brush. Once the dust is gone its gone.

My normal process is to create an empty layer above the background layer. And use the spot healing brush (and occassionaly other tools like the close tool or healing brush) on the empty layer. That way the spotting is in its own layer and can be redone at any time if necessary. No original pixels are changed.

Kirk Gittings
20-Aug-2012, 14:39
Ok I am lost. That is exactly what I do and have said so above. I thought you were saying something different.

Greg Miller
20-Aug-2012, 14:49
Ok I am lost. That is exactly what I do and have said so above. I thought you were saying something different.

My original post in this thread was to Zaitz, who stated that he/she creates a new layer, apply dust and scratch filter to it, and then uses the history brush. So I was suggesting using a layer mask instead of the history brush. Same result, same amount of time, but none of the possible pitfalls.

Kirk Gittings
20-Aug-2012, 14:51
Sorry I get the flow of conversation now.

Greg Miller
20-Aug-2012, 14:55
Sorry I get the flow of conversation now.

We need a history brush for this thread ;)

Kirk Gittings
20-Aug-2012, 15:09
need one for my brain.......

bob carnie
20-Aug-2012, 15:37
using the overlay blending mode is key to his method, I am still trying to get this right but could be quite significant for me,