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Matching up 2 different picture qualities


DoughD87

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I am trying to blend separate pictures together so they both look like they were taken at the same time in the same place. I don't have a particular set of pictures to show as example (although I can find some if need be).

I suppose the blend of hues to match up will pretty much just take practice (still need help with that too), but I need to know how to degrade the quality of one picture to match up with the other picture.

Say, I have an old picture of myself, taken 10 years ago and with a point and click camera. I want to insert a picture of a tiger I saw, but this tiger picture is very recent and the quality is great. I want to know how to degrade the tiger picture to match up with the quality of the 10 year old picture of myself. Also, any tip to try to match up hues as well to match them up as well. I'm just trying to make the 10 year old picture of me with the tiger look as real as possible. Like the tiger was actually there.
 

IamSam

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Hello. Images would help.

However, the "degradation" process will be highly specific to every set of images. The techniques used on one set of images may not apply to another. If you have specific images in mind, it would be best to post them, otherwise it could be a coin toss.
 

Tom Mann

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Unfortunately, with few exceptions, matching only two aspects of a pair of images won't even come close to making them look visually similar.

The human eye and brain are amazing at being able to discern differences and inconsistencies in images. People untrained in the vocabulary of the visual arts may not be able to articulate exactly why they think an image looks "fake" (eg, manipulated to look like another) but everyone has amazing capabilities to spot problems in matching two photos.

Here are just a few of the problem areas that we regularly see on this forum when people try to match images, say, to make a composite:

different white balance - either overall, or separately in the highlight and shadow areas

different lighting - point sources vs diffuse sources, single source or many sources, light sources of different colors, lighting angles different, etc.

Shadows missing or in the wrong place

Perspective problems (eg, one picture taken close, while the other taken from a distance)

Differences in depth of field

Differences in resolution / sharpness

Differences in grain / noise

Differences in image wide vs local contrast

Differences in contrast over the entire range of tones, as well as differences in contrast in the shadows, in the mid-tones, in the highlights

Differences in how overexposed parts of the images burn out, i.e., sharply (digital) vs gradually (film response curve)

Etc.

I'm sure others can add to this list, but as you can see it takes a lot more than matching just two qualities to get a believable overall match between images.

I hope this gave you some food for thought.

Cheers,

Tom M
 

DoughD87

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south-haven-township-mobile-home-fire-b.pngtiger-09.jpgYoung_People_in_Miramar_-_Havana_-_Cuba.jpgUS_Navy_080730-N-5277R-003_A_Commander,_Naval_Forces_Japan_firefighter_douses_a_fire_on_a_dummy_.jpg

Hello. Images would help.

However, the "degradation" process will be highly specific to every set of images. The techniques used on one set of images may not apply to another. If you have specific images in mind, it would be best to post them, otherwise it could be a coin toss.
Stuff like inserting the better quality firefighter in the last picture, to replace 1 of the guys in the first picture. Or placing the tiger at the feet of the people.


Unfortunately, with few exceptions, matching only two aspects of a pair of images won't even come close to making them look visually similar.

The human eye and brain are amazing at being able to discern differences and inconsistencies in images. People untrained in the vocabulary of the visual arts may not be able to articulate exactly why they think an image looks "fake" (eg, manipulated to look like another) but everyone has amazing capabilities to spot problems in matching two photos.

Here are just a few of the problem areas that we regularly see on this forum when people try to match images, say, to make a composite:

different white balance - either overall, or separately in the highlight and shadow areas

different lighting - point sources vs diffuse sources, single source or many sources, light sources of different colors, lighting angles different, etc.

Shadows missing or in the wrong place

Perspective problems (eg, one picture taken close, while the other taken from a distance)

Differences in depth of field

Differences in resolution / sharpness

Differences in grain / noise

Differences in image wide vs local contrast

Differences in contrast over the entire range of tones, as well as differences in contrast in the shadows, in the mid-tones, in the highlights

Differences in how overexposed parts of the images burn out, i.e., sharply (digital) vs gradually (film response curve)

Etc.

I'm sure others can add to this list, but as you can see it takes a lot more than matching just two qualities to get a believable overall match between images.

I hope this gave you some food for thought.

Cheers,

Tom M
Thanks for the advice. I see this is definitely not the simplest thing to do and to even make it somewhat close, I need to know how to do various things. Well, I guess I am happy enough if I can get it reasonably close. like it's obvious fake, but hopefully won't look crazy just cut and paste in MS Paint fake.

I just want it to be as close as possible, even if it is obviously fake.
 

Tom Mann

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...I just want it to be as close as possible, even if it is obviously fake.
Indeed, a very reasonable goal, and exactly what most of us wind up doing. The only caution would be that even getting this far takes more experience / practice than one might think (...as I know from sad experience, LOL).

Cheers,

Tom M
 
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The human eye and brain are amazing at being able to discern differences and inconsistencies in images. People untrained in the vocabulary of the visual arts may not be able to articulate exactly why they think an image looks "fake" (eg, manipulated to look like another) but everyone has amazing capabilities to spot problems in matching two photos...


Cheers,

Tom M
Tom,

How right you are. This very same ability is what enables my kids to pick out bugs in the exhibits at the zoo - the ability of the eye and brain to search, sift and sort through a camouflage melange and locate symmetry - a dead giveaway for almost ANY animal!

Agent
 

IamSam

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I would suggest that you do your research. Most folks don't realize just how large a Tiger is compared to we mere humans.

Screen Shot 2016-03-27 at 10.58.38 PM.png

Screen Shot 2016-03-27 at 11.01.43 PM.png

Screen Shot 2016-03-27 at 11.05.06 PM.png

So any image where you would combine humans with Tigers, you would need to have the right perspective.
 

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