A journal following the history, design, construction and operation of Bernard Kempinski's O Scale model railroad depicting the U. S. Military Railroad (USMRR) Aquia-Falmouth line in 1863, and other model railroad projects.
©Bernard Kempinski All text and images, except as noted, on this blog are copyrighted by the author and may not be used without permission.

January 10, 2023

What's up with all DeNoise?

Danica the Cyborg - rescuing a old picture with Topaz Aps

The year has started out very busy with no work on the Aquia Line but lots of other fun projects and distractions. I spent a good part of the week working on some track plans that will be published later this year. In between that I have been doing some birdwatching and learning more about how to use photoshop. 

I recently purchased the Topaz AI suite of products for photo enhancements. These products aren't that useful for model railroad photography as we can usually shoot those images in ideal condtions with low ISO. But if you are doing any action photography such as wildlife, or even fast moving trains in low light where you use high ISO,  you might be interested in the aps. I was skeptical of them at first as they use social media to advertise. But I watched enough Youtube videos to think they might be worthwhile. They allow you to freely download their products to evaluate them, you just can't save until you purchase or activate them. So I was able to give them a good test before buying. And I was very pleased to see they really work. I find that the DeNoise program is the best as it consistently gives good results. I find the sharpen function to be less in demand, but it is useful when it is needed. They also offer an all-in-one application that will analyze your image and suggest denoise, sharpen, and even upscaling.  It works well too. 

Here is an example of a high iso image that I processed thorough Topaz applications. I shot the cardinal on my Canon R7 at 3200 ISO, but after Topaz DeNoise there is practically zero noise in the image.  That is pretty amazing given the high ISO I used on a compact sensor camera. 

Old snapshot that I cleaned up with Topaz AI
The Topaz aps work best with RAW images, but they are also useful when taking older images and cleaning them up. Here is an example where I took an old snap shot of my daughter at one of her modeling shoots.  I used Topaz AI to clean it up, sharpen and upsample. 

Since she doesn't normally wear her hair and makeup like that, I decided to manipulate the photo for a new effect. She reminded me of Pris from the original Blade Runner movie. 

I used Photoshop to convert her into a cyborg warrior. This was an exercise in using many of the features in  Photoshop including layer masks, blending modes, etc. There are over 30 layers, including adjustment layers and masks.  I think it came out pretty well. My daughter suggested some weathering on the arm and vest. So she liked it too.

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