How would you mask this background?

@Soundchasr I mostley use desaturation at max which turns color in to grey.
(there is a button which does the same by masking but i alway forget which because holding down a button wile painting is much more difficult then just push once a slider to max.)
But somethimes plain grey is not distinquest enough and then i use exposure(more towards white or black) or blur.
It’s easy and simple to find a working setting and when you done painting and erazing, hit reset before starting adjusting.

Don’t get me wrong Peter, I m certainly not a moderator - I just wanted to point out that the help asked for was apparently for how to do something in PL and @Soundchasr hadn’t indicated that he even owned Lr :wink:

It might be more work but, if someone doesn’t pay the “Adobe tax”, it is very useful to know what can be done to achieve the best results with the tools at hand :slightly_smiling_face:

What is desaturation?

Saturation slider in color. Just slide it to 0
All color is gone. (look at the image search for the pointer)

You realize there are more choices than just Adobe. Some free and even online editors can handle tasks that PL5 is just not equipped to perform. PL5 has some great features but why waste your time when it’s so much easier to export the image and make your edits in a proper application that was designed with the proper tools. In other threads it was clearly stated by others that PL5 is just one application used in their workflow. This masking scenario is just one example of where PL5 falls short.

What other apps do you suggest that can handle issues like this? I often run into this problem where I need to fix my background.

I find that the use of the Auto-Masking tool in PL5 is easy and very accurate. In fact I would say that IMO it is the most accurate such tool that I have ever tried. IMO the people who say it “doesn’t work”, simply do not know how to use it and are unwilling to take the time to learn.

1 Like

Is there a tutorial that you recommend that explains it well for those that want to learn? :slightly_smiling_face:

Capture One has a superb auto mask feature!

in the bases there are two kinds of editors:
1 rawdevelopers
2 pixeleditors

lightroom is rawdeveloper and photoshop is pixeleditor.

most rawdevelopers have a list of tools what can replace pixels : cloning and repair.
some things as blur and sharpening, creative vignetting, adding frames and colortaste filters and even “film emulations” are in DxOPL
All other are colordriven RGBG (from raw and floating WB before demosiacing) or RGB (like Tiff and set WB, after demosiacing)
luminance is a brightning same as exposure.

So things as replacing sky or move a head from one image in to an other (merging) or mirror a building to the other side that’s pixel editor area.(after demosiacing.)

Luminair has a v4 free offer but latest AI version seems much better (hence the free version i think)
i didn’t installed it yet don’t know if i will in the end. (i don’t like a draw full of tools and use all to less to master.)

So changing colors in the back ground? some cloning and cloaking and repairing? => DxOPL elite can handle that.
replacing sky or backgrounds? nope. => you need a pixel editor.


I’m not looking to replace anything. Usually it’s just cleaning up a busy/distracting background. Maybe adding some blue.

Then some negative vibrance and a unsharping or blurring to get some artificial bokeh.
Rubbing the detail of so to speak. Best to do when taking the image but i am with you.
It’s hard to nail the exact DoF. And a half subject in focus is even worse then to much in focus.

Try combinations of local adjustmends.
Fiddle with chroma and luminance to select as precize as posible.
I can’t say how i decide which and how i select parts of an image.
It’s often a feeling and trail and error.

1 look at the scene, is it luminance or color that’s selectable?
2 look at the scene and think what’s bugging me?
3 look at the scene which colors you don’t want to touch if they are also in the part you want to touch(and you can’t undo effects by carefull selection) then applying “negatives” or copy invert and contra adjust in order to avoid bleeding.
4 think outside the box.

It’s often a few layers and fine tuning that’s does the trick.
You image grass is much more “yellow” then most people thinks so the deer is effected by that, brown has also “yellow”.

So you need atleast 2 layers.
One for the surrounding and one for de subject.

I think use a gradient control line.
Fiddle the chroma and luminace selection as close as posible, move the eyedropper abit around until the desired effect is most in view. (use “m” to see the mask.
White is much effect black is no effect.)
Then if the deer is grey-isch , effected, use a controlpoint same layer and press ALT or ctrl, any way get a (-) in view and darken the deer as much you can without bleeding too much in the grass.
Second layer.
New control point or smart brush, paint or select the deer, use “m” by controlpoint to fine tune selection.
Then carefully pulldown layer one and enhance layer to. (name them to aviod mistakes)
Then look at it. And search for crossovers , create a vc and use that to see if it’s adjustable by selection of the layers. If so copy paste to master if not delete vc.
Think of what does it need.
Contrast? Saturation?
Vibrance? (dehaze)
A third layer for touchup?

It’s like building a house.
Brick by brick wall for wall.

And don’t forget, enjoy.:grin:

Definiatly controlline and vibrance. :blush:

I would venture to say you have never used the masking tools available in Capture One, Photoshop, or Luminar.
There is absolutely no comparison to the level of single pixel accuracy of these applications and PL5. No matter how much time you spend “learning” how to use the auto mask feature inPL5, the results will never be as good or as easy to accomplish using other software. Your own attempt here with this photo proves my point. Like I said, DXO is good but falls short in many areas.

What is your workflow when using something like Capture One and DXO? I assume you use them together?

I only use Photolab on Canon high iso images for noise reduction and lens correction on raw files. I save it as a DNG and send to Adobe Camera Raw/Photoshop for final editing. Photolab is unsatisfactory for Fuji Raf files in my opinion. For those I use Capture One.

You are welcome to use whatever tools you wish but I have found the only time I need to use tools other than PL is for stacking or assembling panoramas.

As Mark (@rrblint) says, it is a matter of learning. The latest tool that has made selective edits so much easier is the Control Lines tool, but it has taken a lot of learning to get to the point that it is now as easy and as fast to use as any other.

1 Like

You are very welcome to your opinion. I stand by what I wrote.

1 Like

Maybe it is, don’t know never used Photoshop as hobby user. same as C1 i think
too expensive and too steap learning curve i remember correctly.
Could it be that certain tool userinterfaces are certified and they can “copy” them in DxOPL?
So they have to create a “new” way of the same thing.
Like bowling on a very sticky floor: if you drop the ball right to the centre of wanted place to be no other can drop his on the same way.(first to develop is owner of that tool unless you can show it’s working different.)
DxOPL is not a pixel editor and has also not the tools be wanting one like Photoshop is. (i believe Photoshop is shelling itself around ACR and use that rawdeveloper to get a demosiaced image to work on.)
DxO is in 5 years from a luxurious optical module and RAWdeveloper as plugin for for instance Photoshop and Lightroom grown to this point. quite an achievement imho.
Not “THERE” yet but in many ways on edge.

The more we try to work in here the better we help to improve is my opinion.

From this discussion I see the need to improve PL ability to isolate and separate elements. Different technologies do exist and it is preferred that future PL includes a good tool for that. I will be glad to pay for the new version as I have done since the beginning of DxO software.
Masking with DxO is well done and way better compare with other software but I will be happy to isolate and/or cut off parts of the image, save them and use them combined with other elements or backgrounds.


What you stated is exactly the point I was making. Photolab is a good Raw developer but it is not a pixel editor. The tools in ACR are comparable to what DXO offers but for detailed editing, everything happens in Photoshop. There are “Fanboy” responses all over this forum whenever someone criticizes or comments negatively. This to me seems counter productive as there will be no new developments in the software if members cannot be realistic about the programs shortcomings. Posting that an application that can control single pixels (Photoshop) is just as good as Photolab’s auto mask or control line tool is naive at best. DXO works well but some of the editing tools are rudimentary when compared to full fledged editors. Even free on-line have the ability to use layers which would be a great feature to incorporate into PL5. Having an honest discussion like we are having now is the key.
Thank you