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As an adjunct to the Tangents blog, the intention with this forum is to answer any questions, and allow a diverse discussion of topics related photography. With that, see it as an open invitation to just climb in and start threads and to respond to any threads.

Is this color banding?

Is this section of wavy pink lines in this man's collar color banding? More important, how am I going to fix it? This recent Tangents entry from NVN suggests color banding can be prevented by switching camera profile from Camera Standard back to Adobe Standard. But my setting is already Adobe Standard. So that's not it. http://neilvn.com/tangents/post-processing-workflow-removing-color-banding-in-photos/#comments.

Not sure it's color banding anyway. Another NVN Tangents lesson says to reduce this effect by opening in TIFF after processing in ACR. I tried that and it looks the same. 

Now what? Clone tool? Ugh. Any suggestions? 



  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    Dropbox me the raw file?
  • OK will do. Thanks Neil. 
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    Yup, it's there in the RAW file.
    Check this tutorial to see if would help?

  • SkipperlangeSkipperlange Member
    edited October 2014
    Thanks Neil, I'm going to try this later, there are a lot of steps. But from reading the first graph it sounds like I should start using the D800 I got as it supposedly eliminates moire. I haven't been using it because my old computer can't handle the large files. I used D700 for this (as you probably saw in the RAW file). The only trouble is the guy's jacket in that tutorial doesn't look that great in the 'after' photo at the end. But certainly better than the 'before' photo. Hopefully in my small collar area it won't look so bad. And it suggests doing this with a RAW file, not jpeg so that may improve it as well. 

    Thanks very much Neil!

    PS: Is the forum set to Greenwich mean time?
  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited October 2014

    Those steps are pretty much what I do if I have to remove Moire.

    I have attached a PSD file for you to look at, to see the layers also to see the Hue/Saturation settings I applied to remove as much of the pattern I could.

    Also I put the shirt colour layer back to 85% Opacity to reveal 'some' of the Black/White layer below so the colours aren't so artificial.

    This was a quick lasso selection as I normally am very accurate with a Pen Tool (years of practice cutting out bloody cars/motorbikes for adverts hones one's Pen Tool skills for sure but it's time consuming).

    Click on file, choose 'Save' to wherever you normally go.

  • Oh wow, nice job Trev. Thank you. That is encouraging. I will try to follow those steps in Neil's linked tutorial then hopefully what you did will make more sense. Your shirt collar looks much better than the blazer in the tutorial.
  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited October 2014

    Here is another artical.


    Also if you want to 'see' my defined outline of the shirt, select the 'shirt colour' layer, then just Ctrl Click on the Mask you see in there and you will then see my selection. To turn off, just go Ctrl D (Mac, use the Cmd Key)

  • Thank you Trev. 

    Back to the first tutorial, in NVN's link, I'm still trying to understand the first step -- removing the color from the waves. (The second step is removing the waves). In this first step, as you can see from my attached screenshot, it says the blending mode is set to 'color.' But in the picture it's set to 'normal' so how is it set to color?

    One problem I've always had with the 'fill' feature under 'edit' is that regardless of the opacity set the fill fills like throwing paint on something. All pattern and texture is lost, regardless of the type of surface (hair, landscape, clothing…). So if were to try to fill my collar with the proper color it would look like I colored it in with magic marker.  
  • TrevTrev Moderator


    Both the layer with the shirt colour, and the layer when you fill it with white, are changed to Blend Mode Color on the Layers Palette.

    As seen in this screenshot.

    So just do the selection/new layer, fill with a sample colour from shirt, then change Blend Mode to 'Color' under the Layers Palette, then turn off the shirt layer, do a new layer and make that selection again as described, fill with white and change that Blend Mode also to Color.

  • Thanks Trev, I'll try that, but why would I fill a blue shirt color with white?
  • Ok! Step one went well. Wow, that was a surprise. Color is gone! Thanks Trev, I didn't know to change mode to 'color' in layers palette. Up next: Wavy lines. 
  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited October 2014

    You are not filling a blue shirt with white, the very first step is to use eye-dropper tool to take a 'blue' colour sample, fill the selection you initially created with that blue, change blend mode to Color.

    The blue fill will replace the wrong colour in the shirt.

    Now turn off that layer, click back on background layer, create new layer, then as described in the article get the selection back and then on 'that' layer inside the selection you fill that with white, change that layer's blend mode to Color, now *that* layer, with the filled white selection now becomes the layer that will help hide the pattern.

    That layer and the selection inside that with the white fill will be made into black and white, it's temporary, it's just there to help get the proper pattern, as the very first layer you did with the blue fill, is the layer that will hide the colour cast, in this case the red/magenta.

    Then you click back on background layer, then do a Hue/Saturation Adjustment Layer and play with the Hue and Saturation sliders under the Pattern is diminished then, and only then you now turn back on the very first layer (the one with the blue fill) and it will now return the colour back to the shirt.


  • Thanks again Trev. That actually went well. When I re-activated the original layer at the end the blue indeed popped back but it was way too light, and some texture was lost. I was able to darken it but the texture was an issue. Still, I think with a few more trys I might have this down. Thanks for taking the time to walk me thru this. It was a huge help. 
  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited October 2014

    That is better, but on the 'white filled' layer I can see parts of the BW image as if the blue layer was brushed over to reveal that white filled layer?

    Open my PSD file again, then do a Ctrl/Click (hold Ctrl key down) and click on the blue shirt layer's fill - make sure you click on the actual blue fill and not in a blank area in the Layer's Palette -  to see where/how my selection was made.

    (to stop just do a Ctrl/D - deselect)

    Selection I initially did on the Blue Shirt Layer: (colour is not good as my screenshot program is not colour calibrated)


    Now you can see the 'White Fill Layer' selection which is precisely the same as the first selection and the shirt is now in BW because you need that to do the Hue/Saturation to remove the distorted pattern (Moire) from the image and as you now know once the Blue Shirt Layer is turned back on it will cover the BW, but in your case somehow you revealed part of the BW layer below it.


    Here is how the Hue/Saturation 'mask' looks: (to always 'see' a mask's Alpha Channel, just Alt/Click on the Mask you want to 'see' on the image, then Alt/Click back on the Mask again to go back to the RGB mode or click on any layer.


    Finally, to see my settings on that Hue Saturation Layer that I used, just double click on that Layer's little Icon to bring up the Hue/Saturation's Properties Dialogue Palette:

  • Thanks Trev, yes I think that was because I made mistake of selecting the area twice rather than keeping the initial selection selected. Thanks for your charts, those are helpful, this is all a foreign language and as much as I'd love to say I'm getting some of it, it's more like I'm learning a few as-needed phrases from a Berlitz book. I'm surprised there isn't a faster, better and more reliable fix for moire since it sounds like it can affect everyone of all expertise levels and most camera models.
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