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Examples — Sharpening Portraits

My usual way of sharpening might be too crisp for portraiture. This page looks at the qualitative aspects of varying the amount of sharpening.

My usual way of sharpening also emphasizes noise, creating a slightly graininess (which is not necessarily a negative, at least not if kept within bounds).

Dialing down the sharpening is appropriate for a variety of purposes, including portraiture, or a “master image” intended to be sharpened more later, e.g., prior to printing.

Some sharpening is needed for digital

The idea of using no sharpening for RAW conversion is a faulty premise; the digital capture means that natural accutance (edge sharpness) is lost; some of that must be restored for a proper result. Film has this built-in; digital has discrete sampling which blurs edges.

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Since 2006, Diglloyd Advanced Photography is the authoritative review and reference for DSLRs and their lenses: Canon and Nikon primarily, but also Pentax and some medium format. Reviews of key DSLRs are included, but the primary focus is on lens performance. Also included is a wealth of technique and workflow approaches.

DAP includes thousands of pages of exclusive coverage and high resolution Retina-grade examples detailing Canon and Nikon DSLR bodies and their lenses, with in-depth analysis of sharpness and contrast, color, bokeh, vignetting, distortion, MTF, and flare, behavioral and practical usage.

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