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2 hours ago, Annie Nova said:

Here is a completely raw shot, totally unedited, not even cropped and only Nam's Optimal Skin and Prim Windlight

Below the first one is cropped, with some messing with brightness and temperture.

 

raw shot_001.png

cropped.jpg

 

Damn, dat hair! ❤️

Here's a case where the vibrancy of the raw image didn't bother me, really.

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took this at my forest.. can't remember the windlight.. something foggy. No post edit and no makeup.. yikes!

To start us out, I rummaged around to find some recent shots that haven't been posted elsewhere. I found these. I was exploring and not paying attention and this animated sculpture scared the carp out

Ok, the final version of this has already been posted on the "How does your avatar look" thread, but I want to help get this rolling, so I'll post before and after shots here. Ordinarily, when I

Posted Images

Now, I didn't wanna ask inside my reply to Annie, but wouldn't hurt actually to ask anyway, at the start of this raw thread anyway. So, how do all y'all manage to get these perfect, non-jagged edges screenshots? I have a GTX 1080Ti, still a very modern card. But all screenies are always jagged. Even taking a highres screenshot, in-game, and then scaled back, I never get it as delightfully crisp and pristine as Annie did. At least not with a small Gaussian blur.

So, can someone please let me in on the secret too? :)

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1 hour ago, kiramanell said:

Now, I didn't wanna ask inside my reply to Annie, but wouldn't hurt actually to ask anyway, at the start of this raw thread anyway. So, how do all y'all manage to get these perfect, non-jagged edges screenshots? I have a GTX 1080Ti, still a very modern card. But all screenies are always jagged. Even taking a highres screenshot, in-game, and then scaled back, I never get it as delightfully crisp and pristine as Annie did. At least not with a small Gaussian blur.

So, can someone please let me in on the secret too? :)

I'm not entirely sure what you mean by jagged edges - do you have an example we could see?

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I suck at editing. 

I therefore focus my efforts on making the base shot as good as it can be, and my editing is focused largely around "nudging" the photo to crisp it up and give it a little more life. I also take shots with identical sun angles but different windlight settings, to layer with low opacities to bring out different complexions from the original shot. I find this can give a nicer finish than simply tweaking the colour balance in editing... although I do that much too, even if only minor tweaks. If I remember/can be assed, I'll do a small amount of touchups to fix graphical issues, but I don't have the skill needed to rebuild an elbow or something, so often I'll just leave the problem and make a sarky comment on flickr instead.

I tend to save a midpoint snapshot once I've gotten my windlight layering sorted, so I can do a before - during - after comparison. I'm not sure if it will interest anyone, but I'll post a couple of recent ones to demonstrate what I mean... in different posts, as I'm fairly sure there's a cap on images per post.

And yes, I use Black Dragon for photos. It can be tricky at times, as some lazy creators use shortcuts and gimmicks that are exposed by Black Dragon's rendering engine... but when it works, it really works.

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1 hour ago, kiramanell said:

Now, I didn't wanna ask inside my reply to Annie, but wouldn't hurt actually to ask anyway, at the start of this raw thread anyway. So, how do all y'all manage to get these perfect, non-jagged edges screenshots? I have a GTX 1080Ti, still a very modern card. But all screenies are always jagged. Even taking a highres screenshot, in-game, and then scaled back, I never get it as delightfully crisp and pristine as Annie did. At least not with a small Gaussian blur.

So, can someone please let me in on the secret too? :)

maybe you mean the anti-aliasing? 

in my viewer (Singularity) it's in graphics on the hardware settings - it smoothes out the outlines

Emma :) 

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1 hour ago, kiramanell said:

So, how do all y'all manage to get these perfect, non-jagged edges screenshots? I have a GTX 1080Ti, still a very modern card. But all screenies are always jagged. Even taking a highres screenshot, in-game, and then scaled back, I never get it as delightfully crisp and pristine as Annie did. At least not with a small Gaussian blur.

How high a resolution are you using, and what is your antialiasing set to in the viewer's graphics prefs? With a 1080Ti you should have no problem getting crisp edges (my GPU is a GTX 1060, so it's a lower spec than yours and I always get crisp results). Set your viewer's antialiasing to a minimum of 4x but with that GPU you should easily be able to push it to 16x, which is what I use.

Aim to save to disk in PNG format at approximately 5000px width, which - when scaling down in your graphics editor of choice - you can subsequently save as a high quality JPG (quality of approx 11 or 12) using an optimised 'baseline' quality format if your editor gives you multiple scaling options.

I always run Firestorm's graphics prefs on the setting between High and Ultra, with all avatar-related settings maxed (avatar cloth is always off, as it only affects system pants). Here are screenshots of my graphics prefs and hardware prefs, to use as examples.

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With this one, the extra layers intentionally don't do too much to my appearance. They've made the colours of my outfit a little bolder (if beige can ever be bold), and more vibrant... but the main goal was to try and help hide the problematic background. For some reason, the sim next door (part of the same wider sim) did not load in at all, and may have even been missing entirely. Having an ocean visible doesn't work with the photo, so I derendered the water and tried to hide the transition with haze. Once that was done, there was just one or two minor touchups needed and a colour nudge.

2020_05_04_005b.thumb.png.014a547527c9a3a4819cf61dfbe08842.png

2020_05_04_005b.thumb.png.3cd647259a6fc83cef6bd4875f402dbe.png

2020_05_04_005ab.thumb.png.4e5d196f9eb90f9dbd3243022a5d6239.png

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1 hour ago, kiramanell said:

Now, I didn't wanna ask inside my reply to Annie, but wouldn't hurt actually to ask anyway, at the start of this raw thread anyway. So, how do all y'all manage to get these perfect, non-jagged edges screenshots? I have a GTX 1080Ti, still a very modern card. But all screenies are always jagged. Even taking a highres screenshot, in-game, and then scaled back, I never get it as delightfully crisp and pristine as Annie did. At least not with a small Gaussian blur.

So, can someone please let me in on the secret too? :)

As Emma said, you may be talking about anti-aliasing. I have mine as high up as it will go in Firestorm, and I think (won't swear to it) that in Black Dragon it is either on or off and I assume if on it is high. Also, taking shots at high resolution, like 2000 pixels, will help the photos look smoother when seen posted online. Some people shoot very high, like 6000, but that can make your computer scream (or die). For my shots here, like on pg 1, for posting on the Feed I *will* take the photo to Windows Paint and if the original png is over 2000 then I will reduce the size by 50% and then save it as a jpg and then post it to the feed. That way I can post a couple of photos in one comment frame. I don't consider changing size and format to be editing (although it is done in an editing program). I also shoot in png, which as I understand it has more info in it than a jpg. When I post to Flickr I post pngs.

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Squee! We've made it to two pages! And no one has flamed anyone! Yay! 😄

And we're already doing a mix of chat and photos and hopefully everyone knows that if your reaction to wordy words is "eek" that scroll button on your mouse is really nifty. :)

I know I've already learned stuff. ouch. And before coffee! 

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This one taken in a previous incarnation of Drune illustrates another technique I tend to use - layering with inworld lighting on and off. Projected light in SL is often terrible, particularly lights placed by sim creators. It's overpowering, and burns everything it touches with it's crass glare. I dislike it. However, by layering a shot with the projected light on and off, you can tone it all down and create some pretty neat effects. This must of course be repeated for every windlight layer I take, and given that I already duplicate each shot for the alpha overlap layering trick, I can quite often end up with dozens of shots to condense down into one.

Other than that - and the unfortunate slice of translucent blue that exists because... not sure why - I've once again let the viewer do the heavy lifting, and just applied a thin layer of polish afterwards. And not just because I suck at editing, either :P but because I genuinely like the way my shots turn out.

2019_11_10_002b.thumb.png.3b4af0061963602c52350db77cd2f97f.png

2019_11_10_004b.thumb.png.5f703414b3f3b08a42a39104bf2db51f.png

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2019_11_10_002ab.thumb.png.c64da7b8b01f983d64e774651a42093b.png

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Find ANY photo of Dano and Jenna on here and bam! = "raw shot", lol. 
I don't have photo shop, I do have GIMP but it hurts my head as soon as I open it and don't yet have the patience to watch all the youtube vid's about it! I can load Black Dragon....but that's it! I can't move or open anything after that (really crap PC here). So, "raw" is always what you get. I don't even screen shot and then crop, just use the basic firestorm camera stuff, whack the graphics to "ultimate" and try to take the shot in the 10 seconds before everything freezes! (Fml).

Posting here to help this thread get off the ground....and if I'm honest, because I always feel extremely inferior if posting elsewhere going up against Scylla, Seicher, Victoria, Conall and numerous others, who I deem the "real artists"! 
Most pic's I post are usually of my alt-Jenna. Why? Well because girls are a LOT easier to play and spend time on IMO, and most things are a hell of a lot cheaper than for guys. For example: I recently made a 'big sister' for Jenna - Danae. Again, why? Because free head, body and everything else!...so why not? 🙂
I've added her pic' because I got a bit "technical" and used the built-in 'spotlight' filter! Woooo...go me! 
Anyhow, sorry for rambling on, as many people know, I tend to try to over explain things, lol. Sorry.  Best of luck with this new thread Seicher and everyone.

Edit: Danae's wearing tights (pantyhose) btw. It's not any tactical editing with shadows etc! lol

Snapshot_028.png

Snapshot_030.png

Edited by Dano Seale
context of subject.
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I primarily use an image editor called ON1 Photo 10 (now sadly no longer available in that format, although you can still buy the Effects section of the program, which is the bit that I mostly use). It allows me to layer tons of different filters, edit and tweak each filter to the enth degree (like @momomoonusagi, I enjoy doing that kind of post-processing work; it's another part of the creative process for me, and I treat it as an extension to my inworld photography in the same way as setting up the pose, background, and lighting/Windlight), and then I save each new/tweaked combination of filters as a preset. I have a large collection of self-made presets that I (somewhat lazily!) keep going back to - the one named 'Heavy Fire' now has multiple tweaked variants and is my most frequently used preset - but I still create new ones now and then. Here's a quick video showing a scroll through some of my saved presets to show how each one affects a single image.

I edit according to the mood I want to set for the image, be that a bright and almost blinding high-key effect when I want sharp focus, or something more shadowed and nuanced. Always I have to bear in mind that for many of my shots I'm promoting creators' products, so my images need to be clear and show those products without too much over-editing.

Some examples of how filters affect one recent image, with descriptions beneath:

photoedit00.thumb.jpg.cabd20d81880bb955d4ef6023a1e521b.jpg

  1. This is the raw inworld shot, taken using projected lighting and whichever Windlight suited the mood best (I honestly don't remember which one!)
  2. This one uses one of the 'Heavy Fire' presets. Heavy Fire comprises: glow, HDR, bleach bypass, and vignette filters
  3. This one is more stylised and complex and uses the 'Syd Deep 01' preset, which comprises: glow, HDR, colour enhancer, two lens flares, another colour enhancer, tone enhancer, bleach bypass, and vignette. Video here showing before and after.
  4. This one is again stylised and uses the 'Vaporwave' preset, which is overblown and highly-lit. This preset comprises: glow, HDR, cross process, adjustable gradient, polarizer, 'sunshine', and gradient. For posting above I edited the filter a bit, reducing the cross process opacity by half. Video here showing before adjustment, after it, plus the original.

If I were re-editing that shot to post it again I would probaby opt for some tweaks to No.3 because I love the way that one has some hints of red and yellow tones to it that really counter the pastel pink in the image. It's slightly surreal and really catches the eye, so that makes it a winner. Below - for better comparison (and behind a spoiler tag, so I don't take up half the thread!) - are larger versions of the original and that No.3 shot:

original.thumb.jpg.3e6e606ef68f60c1dc309e990d05f90c.jpg

edit.thumb.jpg.544342505b88a2ddab8f988a0d85dfe3.jpg

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6 hours ago, Scylla Rhiadra said:

Weird. So do I. I really enjoy futzing around in Photoshop. I have no idea why, but it is relaxing. Sometimes I suspect I mess around with pics from BD entirely unnecessary, adding barely noticeable effects, just so I work in PS!

The glow you've added in this is a really cool touch.

Personally, I enjoy post far more than taking the actual picture. Even with RL photos, mostly, but IRL I love messing with lighting and all that, if I can find a model (almost impossible, which is why I gave up RL photography). I have even thought of buying stock images and doing compositing, but to make it really work right you have to have the right perspectives and lighting in the original pics, it seems.

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46 minutes ago, Seicher Rae said:

Squee! We've made it to two pages! And no one has flamed anyone! Yay! 😄

And we're already doing a mix of chat and photos and hopefully everyone knows that if your reaction to wordy words is "eek" that scroll button on your mouse is really nifty. :)

I know I've already learned stuff. ouch. And before coffee! 

I think as long as you stay out of what other people see as their sandbox you are usually ok. :)

I have to say I still hesitate to post anything, and feel stressed waiting for the lectures, just based on my experience with the other thread. I hope this one continues to be more friendly and casual, with discussion around SL photography and other stuff accepted, and not policed as just a pure photostream.

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1 hour ago, Emma Krokus said:

maybe you mean the anti-aliasing? 

in my viewer (Singularity) it's in graphics on the hardware settings - it smoothes out the outlines

Emma :) 

 

Thanks for your reply, Emma. 🥰

Yes, in-game I have everything maxed out, AA,. 16x anisotropic filtering, 2.3 shadow quality, the works. But AA (or any other post-processing) does not show up in the screengrab. The latter simply looks llke no AA post-processing took place at all. :( Very weird.

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24 minutes ago, kiramanell said:

 

Thanks for your reply, Emma. 🥰

Yes, in-game I have everything maxed out, AA,. 16x anisotropic filtering, 2.3 shadow quality, the works. But AA (or any other post-processing) does not show up in the screengrab. The latter simply looks llke no AA post-processing took place at all. :( Very weird.

I am sure one of the techy people here will know the answer... it may be useful to know which viewer you use and whether you experience it using another viewer too.

(the other setting i am wondering about since you mentioned it is the post-processing effects - it's on a slider in my viewer... is that maxed out too?)

Emma :) 

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Fun idea, Seicher! I LOVE working in PS and other editing programs so my photos will always be post-processed, but I can do before/after.  Like others have said, I think I enjoy the editing as much, if not more than the inworld photo process.

My most recent before/after.

Snapshot_623resize.thumb.png.491f37aecd5b4c73aa4246a4df7a1ecc.png

I can feel a kick down in my soul...

 

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1 hour ago, CaerolleClaudel said:

I think as long as you stay out of what other people see as their sandbox you are usually ok. :)

I have to say I still hesitate to post anything, and feel stressed waiting for the lectures, just based on my experience with the other thread. I hope this one continues to be more friendly and casual, with discussion around SL photography and other stuff accepted, and not policed as just a pure photostream.

Here's my "too many words for the day" post. ♡

This isn't meant to be directed at you specifically, Caerolle, but this comment did sort of inspire me to want to say: I personally hope that more people who take pics in SL find courage to post here regardless of their "photography level".

To me, images are meant to be seen. Pictures are taken so that they can be shown to someone--maybe that was just for you to see, who knows. But (to me) it's not vain to want to show the world that you did a thing and try and talk about it. It's just part of our human nature. That's how arts and crafts were born. People did things and showed other people.

And not every image needs to fall into the category of "art"; some will just be moments in time--and that's what photography was originally made for: to capture a moment in time.

What's fun about this sort of thread idea is that, no matter what you post, you're more free and welcome to tell a story about your image here then, I feel, any of the other picture threads. For that, I think I'm personally going to exclusively post my pictures here. I do want to show others that a post process has to start somewhere and hopefully that's encouraging to people who want to give post processing a go rather than something for them to envy, be ashamed, or be mad about. Or to encourage them to do one better than me, using just a viewer, and inspiring me to maybe do even more work on what a viewer alone can achieve. 

But in this thread, regardless on if it was impromptu or thought out detail by detail, it's OK--talk if you wanna. Sometimes images will speak for themselves and other times an accompanying story to a quick shot can be just as enticing as a "high quality" image.

But you will probably get criticism and you will probably be hurt by someone's words, because it is encouraged to talk here. People will have their opinions and they cannot be known until they get the opportunity to say them.

As long as people aren't actively trying to be hurtful towards each other (which, if they are, it'll be obvious), just try and take what's stated and learn and grow from it. Or don't and just carry on with yo bad self.

Just enjoy your process.

K, thanks for the ramble opportunity. >>

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2 hours ago, Skell Dagger said:

How high a resolution are you using, and what is your antialiasing set to in the viewer's graphics prefs? With a 1080Ti you should have no problem getting crisp edges (my GPU is a GTX 1060, so it's a lower spec than yours and I always get crisp results). Set your viewer's antialiasing to a minimum of 4x but with that GPU you should easily be able to push it to 16x, which is what I use.

Aim to save to disk in PNG format at approximately 5000px width, which - when scaling down in your graphics editor of choice - you can subsequently save as a high quality JPG (quality of approx 11 or 12) using an optimised 'baseline' quality format if your editor gives you multiple scaling options.

I always run Firestorm's graphics prefs on the setting between High and Ultra, with all avatar-related settings maxed (avatar cloth is always off, as it only affects system pants). Here are screenshots of my graphics prefs and hardware prefs, to use as examples.

 

Thanks for taking your time for me. :) Here are my settings:

 

settings.thumb.jpg.e696abf8b53805da6413126d0d20bbc1.jpg

 

I'm preparing something right now to show you. 

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2 minutes ago, momomoonusagi said:

Here's my "too many words for the day" post. ♡

This isn't meant to be directed at you specifically, Caerolle, but this comment did sort of inspire me to want to say: I personally hope that more people who take pics in SL find courage to post here regardless of their "photography level".

To me, images are meant to be seen. Pictures are taken so that they can be shown to someone--maybe that was just for you to see, who knows. But (to me) it's not vain to want to show the world that you did a thing and try and talk about it. It's just part of our human nature. That's how arts and crafts were born. People did things and showed other people.

And not every image needs to fall into the category of "art"; some will just be moments in time--and that's what photography was originally made for: to capture a moment in time.

What's fun about this sort of thread idea is that, no matter what you post, you're more free and welcome to tell a story about your image here then, I feel, any of the other picture threads. For that, I think I'm personally going to exclusively post my pictures here. I do want to show others that a post process has to start somewhere and hopefully that's encouraging to people who want to give post processing a go rather than something for them to envy, be ashamed, or be mad about. Or to encourage them to do one better than me, using just a viewer, and inspiring me to maybe do even more work on what a viewer alone can achieve. 

But in this thread, regardless on if it was impromptu or thought out detail by detail, it's OK--talk if you wanna. Sometimes images will speak for themselves and other times an accompanying story to a quick shot can be just as enticing as a "high quality" image.

But you will probably get criticism and you will probably be hurt by someone's words, because it is encouraged to talk here. People will have their opinions and they cannot be known until they get the opportunity to say them.

As long as people aren't actively trying to be hurtful towards each other (which, if they are, it'll be obvious), just try and take what's stated and learn and grow from it. Or don't and just carry on with yo bad self.

Just enjoy your process.

K, thanks for the ramble opportunity. >>

 

I'm really enjoying your enthusiam, support, and positive outlook on this thread. Thank you already for this contribution! :) 👍

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@kiramanell: My immediate suggestion would be to drastically reduce your draw distance. With it set that high (624m) you're rendering things that are up to three regions away. If you're not going for extreme distance shots, you can pull that way down for avatar photography. I very rarely go above 96m for mine, but 128m would safely show anything reasonably distant in a background.

In addition: I assume you have High-res Snapshots selected in your viewer's Advanced menu?

Addendum: I've just noticed that you mention antialiasing does not appear in the eventual screenshot. Have a dig around in the NVIDIA Control Panel to ensure you have your antialiasing set to use advanced 3D settings (image here) then click that 'take me there' link, select Firestorm in the list on the Program Settings tab, and make sure that 'Antialiasing - Mode' is set to 'Use global setting (Application-controlled)' as in this image.

Edited by Skell Dagger
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2 hours ago, Skell Dagger said:

I always run Firestorm's graphics prefs on the setting between High and Ultra, with all avatar-related settings maxed (avatar cloth is always off, as it only affects system pants).

I've never worried too much about the avatar settings, because I've tended to assume that they only impact on system avatars and clothing. I'm wrong about that? I'd have thought that, if you're fully meshed-up, even system layers and appliers on a mesh body and head would be "read" by the viewer as mesh objects and textures, rather than part of an "avatar" (i.e., it's the LOD setting rather than the avatar ones that would affect these).

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