View Full Version : Picture adjustments for granite

John W. Love
12-14-2009, 10:48 PM
I thought I had gotten pretty good at adjusting pictures for engraving on granite...but I just can't seem to get this one where it looks right. I've tried several different levels of contrast/brightness/intensity and the picture either looks washed out (too light) or too dark and hard to see the features. The original picture itself looks a little grainy, so I'm wondering if the issue is the photo quality or if I just need to adjust it differently somehow... I've got to get this piece done for a co-worker by this weekend around my insane work schedule for the next week and I don't know how I should adjust the picture so it will engrave well. I refuse to let anything leave our hands unless it is of the highest quality since word of mouth is our only advertising. Anyone have any suggestions on how to make this picture look good, or should I tell the client that the picture is not high enough quality for engraving? As always, any help or suggestions would be MOST appreciated!


Dan Hintz
12-15-2009, 6:53 AM
If it's an issue of not enough detail in different areas with different settings, you need to modify those areas separately. Time to learn how to use the lasso and selection tools.

The image itself is quite grainy, and too small for me to consider putting it on anything other than a pendant.

John W. Love
12-15-2009, 11:41 PM
In the past when I have used small pictures I have simply upped the dpi and enlarged them and it has worked quite well. I did make the pictures smaller so I could post them but when I originally loaded them into photopaint I think the dimension was still pretty small, like about 1.5 inches or so on the height...

So...if I understand what you are saying I can lighten and darken areas of the photo separately? Because the issue I'm getting is that when I use the lighter photo it looks overexposed but when I darken it the right side of her face just disappears...

Tom Bull
12-15-2009, 11:57 PM
Yes, I think that's what he's saying, it sounds correct to me. I have recently fixed a photo that I had to work over in that way. Use photo paint to lasso out different areas and adjust them separately. The one I worked over was a bride and groom photo taken in bright sunlight, him in black tux, she blond, fair skinned, and in white. Pic was amazingly flat in tonal range. Ended up losing some detail in the clothes, but managed to get the faces and hair looking good. I have best success adjusting in color and then convert to grayscale.
When I do masks with the lasso tool I save a lot intermediate steps because it is such a pain to carefully draw a mask and I have found myself wishing I had that mask available for further use later on.
Bear in mind that if there is no detail to start with you won't be able to enhance it out of there. I have resorted to using photo paint to draw in details where needed. The clone tool can really be useful for that.
The whole thing is quite time-consuming (at least at my skill level.)

John W. Love
12-16-2009, 12:05 AM
Thank you for the advice! I will work with that tool and learn to use it...didn't even know you could do that! I did know about the clone tool (LOVE that thing!) :)