Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Fighting With Photoshop CS6's Adaptive Wide Angle Filter

Okay, guess what?  The Adobe Photoshop CS6's Adaptive Wide Angle Filter (Filter/Adaptive Wide Angle) won.  What a shock!  Okay, maybe not so much.  It's new in CS6, I was playing with a pano and selected the Panorama option in the dropdown asking "what type of image are you working on".

Today's image is a five shot panorama.  The shots were taken vertically to get me the most of a very dramatic sky.  As is usual when shooting this type of pano, the wall in front was bowed,  It looked a lot like the landscape was smiling.  Made, what could be, a fairly serious landscape shot look rather comical.  The corn field at the crest of the hill appeared to be a crewcut hairstyle.  All that would have been needed was a couple of eyes to produce a landscape "smiley face".

The Fix:

Since the shot is made up of four images, CS6 couldn't figure out what (single) lens was used.  Once multiple shots are combined, CS6 drops the lens info from the meta data that goes along with a single shot.  Seems logical.  The computer can't keep track of if the combined image comes from a cohesive sets of shots (as in today's image) or if it's made from a combination of unrelated shots.  I chose to do the pano, as I have to live with that limitation.

It's a pano!  CS6's new Adaptive Wide Angle Filter has several choices when it wants information about what you're trying to do.  The dropdown is titled "Correction".  What you do is draw a line along the curve you'd like to straighten.  When click the dropdown and you see "Fisheye", "Perspective", "Panorama"  and "Full Spherical" to pick from.  Well I made a pano, so naturally I picked Panorama.  It turned the broad smile into a sly grin.  Not exactly what I was looked for.  That when the fighting started.  I tried anything I could think of.  I came to the conclusion that I just didn't get it.   I finally left it with its "sly grin" and thought I was asking too much of the Adaptive Wide Angle Filter (AWAF).

After a night's rest I thought I'd look at it again.  I'm a big fan of NAPP's Photoshop Guys.  One thing they all advocate is pushing buttons.  Sure, that's what it's "supposed to do" , but what happens if you try ....  What the heck, there's four choices and I'd been fighting with the one that seemed reasonable.  After all, I shot a pano and the AWAF had a panorama choice.  I couldn't "hurt" anything by pushing buttons.  I figured "it's not a Fisheye, it's a pano".  What's the worst that could happen if I selected Fisheye?  Make the grin back into another "big smile"?  Nope!  The wall instantly became straight as an arrow.  Just what I was fighting for. 

The "Morale":

If any version of Photoshop gives you choices, try them all.  You can't screw things up too bad.  You may get the effect you were trying for.  And, if nothing else, you'll learn a little more about Photoshop.