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Author Topic: too feathered or too rough rejection  (Read 7722 times)

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« on: March 29, 2008, 08:37 »
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Anyone have any suggestions on how much to feather an image for Istock to either avoid this rejection or to edit an isolation for a resubmit?  Does the size of the object come into play for example a macro type shot or a full sized item?

Lee


« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2008, 08:40 »
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too much of busting balls maybe?  there is no formula for Istock isolation just a matter of luck.

DanP68

« Reply #2 on: March 29, 2008, 09:00 »
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There isn't anything you can do.  I've followed their instructions to a T, and it was never good enough for the inspectors.  I've followed suggestions on the message boards, but again no luck.  Tried relying more on Dodge tool - again not good enough.  I just don't know what they want.

I've even had studio isolations rejected for "edges being too rough."  I almost never go to Scout with a complaint, but that time I had to, and they did reverse the decision.

Photoshop Isolations are tedious, slow, and take way too much time on my part.  If I am going to do them at all, I submit them everywhere except iStock.  I see no point in wasting the uploading time, nor cutting into my weekly limit, for something they will reject 4 out of 5 times.

Here is one of my most successful images on Shutterstock:



Edges were "too blurry or too sharp" for iStock.  Which is it?  Who knows?  Who cares.

Here is another successful image at Shutterstock:



Again, the edges didn't meet iStock criteria. 


Honestly it no longer upsets me.  It is what it is.  But Earnings are what they are, too.  And Shutterstock, partly because they are more concerned with what will sell than with absolute perfection, makes me far more money than iStock.  iStock has been losing ground to Shutterstock for 5 months straight in my portfolio, and right now Dreamstime is sneaking up on iStock for the #2 spot as more of my images hit Level 2 and Level 3.  So I say - don't worry about it.  Provided your work is good enough for the other agencies, then the money will flow from those other agencies. 
« Last Edit: March 29, 2008, 09:09 by DanP68 »

« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2008, 09:48 »
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If you make effective use of the pen tool and do the job properly then it will get through. Thousands of these sorts of images accepted at iStock without any problem.

I find that is often useful to have two windows open viewing the same image on different screens. Say - 1600% for the actual pen tool work and the other view at actual pixel size. The regular view helps me remember where I am in the image and hiow it looks overall.

Zero feathering is the right amount. Careful use of gaussian blur on a small selection (say 1 pixel either side of the line of isolation) can be useful if you have an edge which you don't like even though you have done it properly. I make an arbitrary rule to always downsample the image to about 2/3 if I have softened an edge after isolating.

Some people recommend using the 'bicubic sharpen' option when downsamping. I don't think that is always the best option. If you are downsampling then compare very closely the results from 'bicubic sharpen' and regular 'bicubic'. You don't want anything which looks anything like edge enhancement in that situation.

Using the pen tool is rather like drawing. Certainly more like drawing than cutting out. There isn't always a right and a wrong place to position the line. If you are going around a highlight for example. It's a question of making it look natural.

« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2008, 11:34 »
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Well, I have recently (1 month) ago up-graded from Elements to photoshop CS3 and agree the using the pen tool is the way to go, much better than the "1 shot methods" that I was using in Elements.

DanP68 I agree that SS is much more realistic about isolations, and if they are rejected and I feel strongly enough about them, they can be edited slightly and re-submitted.  The ones that get thru on IS often do well for my limited portfolio.


Zero feathering is the right amount. Careful use of gaussian blur on a small selection (say 1 pixel either side of the line of isolation) can be useful if you have an edge which you don't like even though you have done it properly. I make an arbitrary rule to always downsample the image to about 2/3 if I have softened an edge after isolating.


I have never heard of using zero feathering, but it may be worth a shot.

DanP68

« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2008, 12:58 »
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I use the pen tool for all my isolations, often working at 300% or closer when needed.  My work simply isn't good enough for iStock, and quite frankly, it's too tedious to deal with for them.  It's one thing to isolate straight line objects which were shot over white.  It's quite another to grab 2 football players in motion out of a field of play.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2008, 13:01 by DanP68 »

« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2008, 13:33 »
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The pen tool might be good, the best to isolate, but imo if gives too much sharp edges.

Consider this, when you photograph over whte (studio setup conditions) the edges will look smoot/natural.
Using the pen tool gives too sharp/unnatural looking edges.
Better to have it straight in camere, work a bit longer on background/light setup and then in photoshop use the dodge tool at about 30 %... looks 100 % better.

Patrick.

« Reply #7 on: March 29, 2008, 15:25 »
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I use a feather of 2 pixels in sharper areas, largers in out-of-focus areas.  I don't do many isolations, but I haven't had much problem with them even in IS.  StockXpert taught me to test the background for pure white, and that was an important step.

Regards,
Adelaide

DanP68

« Reply #8 on: May 23, 2008, 04:26 »
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If you make effective use of the pen tool and do the job properly then it will get through. Thousands of these sorts of images accepted at iStock without any problem.

<snip>

Zero feathering is the right amount.

I use a feather of 2 pixels in sharper areas, largers in out-of-focus areas.  I don't do many isolations, but I haven't had much problem with them even in IS.


See, this is the thing.  Even on their own message boards, nobody agrees on the method yet they all claim their method works at IS.  I've never (and I mean never) had an isolation accepted at IS when using the pen tool.

A few days ago I sent them an isolation of an object with straight edges.  I zoomed in at 300%, spent about half an hour getting the outline just right, deleted the background, and voila...

rejected.

This time I used a feather of 0.5 pixels, which was recommended to me on the IS boards.  So I've tried 0, 0.5, 2.0, nothing works.  I've even followed their own instructions to a T, and they always reject.  It's too frustrating to deal with anymore.

« Last Edit: May 23, 2008, 04:42 by DanP68 »

« Reply #9 on: May 23, 2008, 04:51 »
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I wouldn't waste time worrying about it.

I shot a whole sequence of holly leaves against a pure, blown white background. Camera, lights, the lot, all stayed in the same position, same settings. All I did was take one bunch of holly out of the holder and replace it with another.

All accepted on SS, and elsewhere. About 50% rejected at IS for 'poor isolation'.

I think some of their inspectors have eyesight problems.

RT


« Reply #10 on: May 23, 2008, 05:05 »
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Saving a well isolated shot as a jpeg causes rough edges because of jpeg compression, it's not a problem to designers because they can just raise their threshold to 1 instead of 0, I contacted Adobe a while ago when I was having this problem and they confirmed that if your edges are too well isolated this will happen, the only way round it is to actually degrade the isolation by feathering.
Most of the iStock inspectors understand this and won't reject when it's clear a shot is on a pure white background, however there are still some who can't understand this.
The process of feathering the isolation actually renders it harder for a designer to use, but in order to get them past some inspectors at iStock you have to make the choice.
Personally if I get a rejection like this I stick it back in and hope to get one of the better educated inspectors next time.
The thing that always makes me laugh is when they reject an isolation with a clipping path for 'rough edges' - HELLO - it's got a clipping path!!!!



DanP68

« Reply #11 on: May 23, 2008, 05:11 »
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LOL, just had to tell you Richard that my isolation had a clipping path.  Ahh well, not much I can do.

Bateleur,

Thanks for the post.  I didn't realize you were "Kalulu" on iStock.  Good stuff!  I suppose if someone with your skills is running into similar rejections, then there isn't much point in me trying to reinvent the wheel...err isolate the wheel?   8)

RT -

Funny how you mention over-feathering getting images past inspectors, but not being as useful to designers.  The few isolations IS accepts from me tend to be subjects shot against white, with Selective Color used to get a pure white background.  I know a lot of people like to use Levels to get the background pure white, but without masking, levels affects the entire image.

Provided the subject doesn't have a lot of white in it, Selective Color works well for me.  I choose Selective Color -> "White", and then I pull out the black component.  Bingo - white background.  The key is you have to be close to begin with.

What this does is create a somewhat softer transition to the white background.  Again, IS inspectors have taken these from me (I'll say 40-50% acceptance rate).  But as you say, they are not as useful to designers.  Irony!
« Last Edit: May 23, 2008, 07:06 by DanP68 »

« Reply #12 on: May 23, 2008, 07:57 »
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I have the same problem too.
Almouts all my isolations are rejectd at istock.
But the other day i try again and voil.
This one manage to pass.
I make the path and them i use 1 pixel to feathering the image


RT


« Reply #13 on: May 23, 2008, 09:08 »
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I have the same problem too.
Almouts all my isolations are rejectd at istock.
But the other day i try again and voil.
This one manage to pass.
I make the path and them i use 1 pixel to feathering the image




Good shot and nice job with the shadow.

« Reply #14 on: May 24, 2008, 00:11 »
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Saving a well isolated shot as a jpeg causes rough edges because of jpeg compression, it's not a problem to designers because they can just raise their threshold to 1 instead of 0, I contacted Adobe a while ago when I was having this problem and they confirmed that if your edges are too well isolated this will happen, the only way round it is to actually degrade the isolation by feathering.
Most of the iStock inspectors understand this and won't reject when it's clear a shot is on a pure white background, however there are still some who can't understand this.
The process of feathering the isolation actually renders it harder for a designer to use, but in order to get them past some inspectors at iStock you have to make the choice.
Personally if I get a rejection like this I stick it back in and hope to get one of the better educated inspectors next time.
The thing that always makes me laugh is when they reject an isolation with a clipping path for 'rough edges' - HELLO - it's got a clipping path!!!!






THANKYOU! Been pullling my hair out trying to get this message across to so many people for sooo long!

I do mostly isolation work and I've given up uploading to iStock for the time being. The gallery I have there has been very successful but I still can't get much past inspection without re submitting to Scout and it takes WEEKS!

Got the attitude now of why bother with them? Waiting to see what their new sub model brings, then maybe I will make the effort to start uploading there again ... but I agree that they need to educate their reviewers on this issue.


« Reply #15 on: May 25, 2008, 04:32 »
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Quote
Good shot and nice job with the shadow.

Thank you  :)

« Reply #16 on: May 25, 2008, 04:54 »
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I'm quite new to Photoshop (had it about a year) and though I find it second to none for cloning, particularly with a tablet, there's a particular brush in Corel Photopaint (which I have used for 12 years) that is simply the best for isolation, and one that I can't find an equivalent for in PS. So it's brush rather than pen for me. And I don't feather at all.

However it does take a lot of work, but then iStock do accept most of them.
« Last Edit: May 25, 2008, 04:57 by Jimi King »

« Reply #17 on: May 25, 2008, 06:22 »
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I don't worry about isolating anything that wasn't originally shot to be isolated.  It's just too much trouble, and I don't know if it is worth the return.

« Reply #18 on: May 25, 2008, 10:52 »
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The pen tool might be good, the best to isolate, but imo if gives too much sharp edges.

Consider this, when you photograph over whte (studio setup conditions) the edges will look smoot/natural.
Using the pen tool gives too sharp/unnatural looking edges.
Better to have it straight in camere, work a bit longer on background/light setup and then in photoshop use the dodge tool at about 30 %... looks 100 % better.

Patrick.

If you are isolating with pen , after you are done try to use a bit of blur on the white area and you will have smooth natural edges , how smooth , well it depends of blur amount .

« Reply #19 on: May 25, 2008, 15:58 »
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Quote
If you are isolating with pen , after you are done try to use a bit of blur on the white area and you will have smooth natural edges , how smooth , well it depends of blur amount .

Does anyone use the "Refine Edge" feature in Photoshop CS3? I draw the path with the pen tool then make the path a selection and use Refine Edge. Many options available.

« Reply #20 on: May 26, 2008, 19:34 »
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In my language iSTOC(k)a means Cattle, so I treat they like they treat me.
Small vermin bugs which are constantly making my percentage lower and lower.
See the new inspectors
http://www.istockphoto.com/article_view.php?ID=147&Page=3
if that kind of inspector will be soon or shes roll on iStock, for profesional state of view it is absolutely nonsense,
but it is good for Us submiters, she will accept enough images to by 2 pairs of shoes in week.
Others are soo boring but also more pain in the ass. (Because of shoes)
WHATS UP THERE ON iStock?????
Are they really belive that they can make employee of every creature who are not havent nothig to do and pick it from bus, railway or other station?????

« Reply #21 on: May 26, 2008, 21:12 »
0
In my language iSTOC(k)a means Cattle, so I treat they like they treat me.
Small vermin bugs which are constantly making my percentage lower and lower.
See the new inspectors
http://www.istockphoto.com/article_view.php?ID=147&Page=3
if that kind of inspector will be soon or shes roll on iStock, for profesional state of view it is absolutely nonsense,
but it is good for Us submiters, she will accept enough images to by 2 pairs of shoes in week.
Others are soo boring but also more pain in the ass. (Because of shoes)
WHATS UP THERE ON iStock?????
Are they really belive that they can make employee of every creature who are not havent nothig to do and pick it from bus, railway or other station?????



Oh ... errr .... um ..... oh dear ....  :-\


 

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