M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones

Started 2 months ago | Discussions
thinkinginimages
thinkinginimages Contributing Member • Posts: 850
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones
1

Dexter75 wrote:

In the past, I’ve owned the Panasonic GX7, GX8 and GX85 and all have suffered from terrible skin tones. Blotchy red spots on faces, chests, even arms. This seems to happen both in natural light and really bad with flash or strobe lighting. I have really been wanting to get an Olympus EM 10 iii because of the great deals and I love a few of the Olympus portrait lenses. However, looking at samples of different Olympus cameras online, seems they suffer this same problem with blotchy red skin. It’s pretty bad, makes people look like they have some kind of skin disorder. I could never deliver photos like that to a client. Why is this? Is this a M43 thing? is there a way to correct this with different settings? Here are some examples of what I’m talking about from both Panasonic and Olympus cameras.

I'm not seeing it, but what I am seeing is slightly high color contrast in most of the images.

I own Panasonic cameras and have used them for years. JPEG and "Vivid" can be a bit too punchy and unpredictable for my taste. I'll do that selectively in post if I need to.

If you're using Adobe watch out for their auto corrections. For whatever reason "auto" over does it and punches up everything, blowing out the nuances. Well, at least to my taste.

It could also be your display/monitor is not calibrated properly. Calibrated for photo work makes a display look a little dull and dim for anything else.

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James Stirling
James Stirling Senior Member • Posts: 6,415
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones
6

Dexter75 wrote:

Ruairi wrote:

Ah, something isn't right about this...

Golden hour does not occur during sunset - there is a significant difference: 'In photography, the golden hour is the period of daytime shortly after sunrise or before sunset, during which daylight is redder and softer than when the Sun is higher in the sky.'.

Those skin tones I showed at sunset, and the examples you gave, were definitely orange/red - not 'pink/red'. What monitor model are you using? Mine is a calibrated Dell 2516D, a well regarded unit.

Many photographers prefer Canon colours over anything else, so you wouldn't be alone to go with Canon. I note a more green tint to Canon skintones, also commonly recognised.

One final try...

Example in controlled studio lighting, 5600k

I like this example here, very nice. Yea, I know golden hour isnt technically sunset but Ive always known it to be the last hour the sun is up. Yes, orange/red is probably more accurate. Im on a 27 inch iMac, non 5k. Photos look the same on my iPad Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max too, so not my monitor. We all have different preferences when it comes to skin tones and you are right, many do prefer Canon skin tones, which is why so many portrait shooters use Canon. There is no right or wrong really, just personal preferences. Like I said, Im tempted to grab an Olympus and shoot it side by side with my Canon now. Id really like to use a few of those fantastic Olympus portrait lenses again,

Speaking as a former wedding shooter overcast days are far far better for generating flattering portraits. Blazing sun is a nightmare , fortunately living and working in Scotland the former is rather more common On the overcast days the sky in effect becomes a massive softbox giving a lovely soft gentle light

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Ruairi
Ruairi Contributing Member • Posts: 520
Aah!
3

That's some impressive editing (sorry about off focus) - and a good way to illustrate the point. Even if I am now unfamiliar with the glamorous lady in the photo!

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James Stirling
James Stirling Senior Member • Posts: 6,415
Re: Aah!
6

Ruairi wrote:

That's some impressive editing (sorry about off focus) - and a good way to illustrate the point. Even if I am now unfamiliar with the glamorous lady in the photo!

It is a fine line between depicting reality and how the subject sees themselves. I one retouched , what I thought was a food stain on a wee girls face. Turned out to be a small birthmark that later faded away . I had done a few weddings for that family god bless Mr and Mrs Whiteford and their six daughters

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Jim Stirling:
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OP Dexter75 Senior Member • Posts: 2,891
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones

James Stirling wrote:

Dexter75 wrote:

Ruairi wrote:

Ah, something isn't right about this...

Golden hour does not occur during sunset - there is a significant difference: 'In photography, the golden hour is the period of daytime shortly after sunrise or before sunset, during which daylight is redder and softer than when the Sun is higher in the sky.'.

Those skin tones I showed at sunset, and the examples you gave, were definitely orange/red - not 'pink/red'. What monitor model are you using? Mine is a calibrated Dell 2516D, a well regarded unit.

Many photographers prefer Canon colours over anything else, so you wouldn't be alone to go with Canon. I note a more green tint to Canon skintones, also commonly recognised.

One final try...

Example in controlled studio lighting, 5600k

I like this example here, very nice. Yea, I know golden hour isnt technically sunset but Ive always known it to be the last hour the sun is up. Yes, orange/red is probably more accurate. Im on a 27 inch iMac, non 5k. Photos look the same on my iPad Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max too, so not my monitor. We all have different preferences when it comes to skin tones and you are right, many do prefer Canon skin tones, which is why so many portrait shooters use Canon. There is no right or wrong really, just personal preferences. Like I said, Im tempted to grab an Olympus and shoot it side by side with my Canon now. Id really like to use a few of those fantastic Olympus portrait lenses again,

Speaking as a former wedding shooter overcast days are far far better for generating flattering portraits. Blazing sun is a nightmare , fortunately living and working in Scotland the former is rather more common On the overcast days the sky in effect becomes a massive softbox giving a lovely soft gentle light

As someone who’s made a living off my fashion/glamour photography for the past 15 years, I strongly disagree. Overcast weather is the nightmare as it’s flat lighting that always requires flash or strobe lighting to get any pop. If sunlight is a nightmare for you, learn how to use natural light in your photos. There are plenty of great modifiers like diffusers available to control sunlight, it’s impossible to re-produce sunlight with any flash.

OP Dexter75 Senior Member • Posts: 2,891
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones
4

There has been some confusion regarding the photos I had posted to start this thread. Those are not my photos, just photos I found online searching for portraits taken with Panasonic and Olympus cameras. Here are some of mine and examples of problems I was having...

Here are two taken with the GX85 with different WB settings, both look terrible

Here is the same model under much worse indoor lighting conditions with my 6D and even this looks a ton better than above

Finally, here is how those shots on the white background above should look. Same light set up...

Maybe its user error and I should have had the GX85 set to something other than the Standard profile, but the standard profile on any other camera Ive used seems to work just fine and doesn't produce those terrible skin tones.

OP Dexter75 Senior Member • Posts: 2,891
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones
4

Additionally, here is the same model on the same light setup. Not the same day, or even the same year but Ive shot here for years with different cameras and her skin never looked as bad as it did on the GX8 here. So it wasn't just the cheaper GX85 I had issues with. Even the old 5D produced much better skin tones and lighting here, minus that little lens flare on her.

James Stirling
James Stirling Senior Member • Posts: 6,415
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones
4

Dexter75 wrote:

James Stirling wrote:

Dexter75 wrote:

Ruairi wrote:

Ah, something isn't right about this...

Golden hour does not occur during sunset - there is a significant difference: 'In photography, the golden hour is the period of daytime shortly after sunrise or before sunset, during which daylight is redder and softer than when the Sun is higher in the sky.'.

Those skin tones I showed at sunset, and the examples you gave, were definitely orange/red - not 'pink/red'. What monitor model are you using? Mine is a calibrated Dell 2516D, a well regarded unit.

Many photographers prefer Canon colours over anything else, so you wouldn't be alone to go with Canon. I note a more green tint to Canon skintones, also commonly recognised.

One final try...

Example in controlled studio lighting, 5600k

I like this example here, very nice. Yea, I know golden hour isnt technically sunset but Ive always known it to be the last hour the sun is up. Yes, orange/red is probably more accurate. Im on a 27 inch iMac, non 5k. Photos look the same on my iPad Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max too, so not my monitor. We all have different preferences when it comes to skin tones and you are right, many do prefer Canon skin tones, which is why so many portrait shooters use Canon. There is no right or wrong really, just personal preferences. Like I said, Im tempted to grab an Olympus and shoot it side by side with my Canon now. Id really like to use a few of those fantastic Olympus portrait lenses again,

Speaking as a former wedding shooter overcast days are far far better for generating flattering portraits. Blazing sun is a nightmare , fortunately living and working in Scotland the former is rather more common On the overcast days the sky in effect becomes a massive softbox giving a lovely soft gentle light

As someone who’s made a living off my fashion/glamour photography for the past 15 years, I strongly disagree. Overcast weather is the nightmare as it’s flat lighting that always requires flash or strobe lighting to get any pop. If sunlight is a nightmare for you, learn how to use natural light in your photos. There are plenty of great modifiers like diffusers available to control sunlight, it’s impossible to re-produce sunlight with any flash.

You do know how the principals of diffuse light work ?Perhaps give it a go

https://www.thephoblographer.com/2019/03/30/an-introduction-to-shooting-portraits-in-natural-light/

I am sorry but if you think the images you posted in the thread linked below are an example of good flash work you really should consider trying natural light with some reflectors and the like . I would be quite unhappy with images like these , they look incredibly amateurish

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/63527698

Also quite interesting that apart from the images having been taken 4 and half years apart the chips on the paint on the door and the marks on the wall are identical . What are the chances eh ? I think you are having a laugh and as such I will add you to the comedy relief gang.

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OP Dexter75 Senior Member • Posts: 2,891
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones

James Stirling wrote:

Dexter75 wrote:

James Stirling wrote:

Dexter75 wrote:

Ruairi wrote:

Ah, something isn't right about this...

Golden hour does not occur during sunset - there is a significant difference: 'In photography, the golden hour is the period of daytime shortly after sunrise or before sunset, during which daylight is redder and softer than when the Sun is higher in the sky.'.

Those skin tones I showed at sunset, and the examples you gave, were definitely orange/red - not 'pink/red'. What monitor model are you using? Mine is a calibrated Dell 2516D, a well regarded unit.

Many photographers prefer Canon colours over anything else, so you wouldn't be alone to go with Canon. I note a more green tint to Canon skintones, also commonly recognised.

One final try...

Example in controlled studio lighting, 5600k

I like this example here, very nice. Yea, I know golden hour isnt technically sunset but Ive always known it to be the last hour the sun is up. Yes, orange/red is probably more accurate. Im on a 27 inch iMac, non 5k. Photos look the same on my iPad Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max too, so not my monitor. We all have different preferences when it comes to skin tones and you are right, many do prefer Canon skin tones, which is why so many portrait shooters use Canon. There is no right or wrong really, just personal preferences. Like I said, Im tempted to grab an Olympus and shoot it side by side with my Canon now. Id really like to use a few of those fantastic Olympus portrait lenses again,

Speaking as a former wedding shooter overcast days are far far better for generating flattering portraits. Blazing sun is a nightmare , fortunately living and working in Scotland the former is rather more common On the overcast days the sky in effect becomes a massive softbox giving a lovely soft gentle light

As someone who’s made a living off my fashion/glamour photography for the past 15 years, I strongly disagree. Overcast weather is the nightmare as it’s flat lighting that always requires flash or strobe lighting to get any pop. If sunlight is a nightmare for you, learn how to use natural light in your photos. There are plenty of great modifiers like diffusers available to control sunlight, it’s impossible to re-produce sunlight with any flash.

You do know how the principals of diffuse light work ?Perhaps give it a go

https://www.thephoblographer.com/2019/03/30/an-introduction-to-shooting-portraits-in-natural-light/

I am sorry but if you think the images you posted in the thread linked below are an example of good flash work you really should consider trying natural light with some reflectors and the like . I would be quite unhappy with images like these , they look incredibly amateurish

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/63527698

Also quite interesting that apart from the images having been taken 4 and half years apart the chips on the paint on the door and the marks on the wall are identical . What are the chances eh ? I think you are having a laugh and as such I will add you to the comedy relief gang.

..and this is why I didn't want to post any photos here. It turns into a sh*tshow with randoms like you spouting off about things you know nothing about. My work has been published around the globe and seen by more people than yours ever will be, so I couldn't care less what you think of my photos and these weren't meant to be critiqued. Im out there shooting professionally and being published in major publications and having ads in stores around the world while you are taking photos of plants for your Flickr. See the difference? Go troll somewhere else.

cpt kent Contributing Member • Posts: 522
If you go looking for something....
7

So you’ve posted photos you ‘found’ of a problem you think exists?

You have no idea of the conditions they were taken under, the settings used, or the nature of the original subject, and yet you use them to argue that M43 has a problem?

sounds solid to me.

OP Dexter75 Senior Member • Posts: 2,891
Re: If you go looking for something....

cpt kent wrote:

So you’ve posted photos you ‘found’ of a problem you think exists?

You have no idea of the conditions they were taken under, the settings used, or the nature of the original subject, and yet you use them to argue that M43 has a problem?

sounds solid to me.

See my post a couple above yours...

cpt kent Contributing Member • Posts: 522
Re: If you go looking for something....
2

I did.

My original point stands. Your OP used selective photos to make a point. I can search for photos of a UFO if you want, to prove they exist?

And your post above, probably should have been tagged NSFW.

Thats all from me. Handing it back to everyone else.

James Stirling
James Stirling Senior Member • Posts: 6,415
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones
13

Dexter75 wrote:

James Stirling wrote:

Dexter75 wrote:

James Stirling wrote:

Dexter75 wrote:

Ruairi wrote:

Ah, something isn't right about this...

Golden hour does not occur during sunset - there is a significant difference: 'In photography, the golden hour is the period of daytime shortly after sunrise or before sunset, during which daylight is redder and softer than when the Sun is higher in the sky.'.

Those skin tones I showed at sunset, and the examples you gave, were definitely orange/red - not 'pink/red'. What monitor model are you using? Mine is a calibrated Dell 2516D, a well regarded unit.

Many photographers prefer Canon colours over anything else, so you wouldn't be alone to go with Canon. I note a more green tint to Canon skintones, also commonly recognised.

One final try...

Example in controlled studio lighting, 5600k

I like this example here, very nice. Yea, I know golden hour isnt technically sunset but Ive always known it to be the last hour the sun is up. Yes, orange/red is probably more accurate. Im on a 27 inch iMac, non 5k. Photos look the same on my iPad Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max too, so not my monitor. We all have different preferences when it comes to skin tones and you are right, many do prefer Canon skin tones, which is why so many portrait shooters use Canon. There is no right or wrong really, just personal preferences. Like I said, Im tempted to grab an Olympus and shoot it side by side with my Canon now. Id really like to use a few of those fantastic Olympus portrait lenses again,

Speaking as a former wedding shooter overcast days are far far better for generating flattering portraits. Blazing sun is a nightmare , fortunately living and working in Scotland the former is rather more common On the overcast days the sky in effect becomes a massive softbox giving a lovely soft gentle light

As someone who’s made a living off my fashion/glamour photography for the past 15 years, I strongly disagree. Overcast weather is the nightmare as it’s flat lighting that always requires flash or strobe lighting to get any pop. If sunlight is a nightmare for you, learn how to use natural light in your photos. There are plenty of great modifiers like diffusers available to control sunlight, it’s impossible to re-produce sunlight with any flash.

You do know how the principals of diffuse light work ?Perhaps give it a go

https://www.thephoblographer.com/2019/03/30/an-introduction-to-shooting-portraits-in-natural-light/

I am sorry but if you think the images you posted in the thread linked below are an example of good flash work you really should consider trying natural light with some reflectors and the like . I would be quite unhappy with images like these , they look incredibly amateurish

https://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/63527698

Also quite interesting that apart from the images having been taken 4 and half years apart the chips on the paint on the door and the marks on the wall are identical . What are the chances eh ? I think you are having a laugh and as such I will add you to the comedy relief gang.

My work has been published around the globe and seen by more people than yours ever will be, so I couldn't care less what you think of my photos and these weren't meant to be critiqued. Im out there shooting professionally and being published in major publications and having ads in stores around the world while you are taking photos of plants for your Flickr. See the difference? Go troll somewhere else.

Please your posts and questions in this thread are at the level of a beginner , making moronic claims does not change this it just digs a bigger hole . If you post crap images after declaring yourself a pro with 15yrs of world wide acclaim you better believe critiques are coming your way. Perhaps you could spend a few bucks on some paint.Then it will not look like the images have been taken in the same time span

You sound like another forum comedian Tommi KI who regaled everyone with tales of his "pro work" with nary a photo of his own posted. He also liked posting other folks work as examples . There is nothing in this thread, your attitude , your knowledge { or lack thereof } , your images that gives  the slightest sign of you being professional . I think your village will be missing you , ignored

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Jim Stirling:
It is not reason which is the guide of life, but custom. David Hume

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TwoMetreBill Senior Member • Posts: 1,730
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones
2

Stop shooting jpegs and learn how to use a good photo editing tool. If you insist on shooting jpegs then use a high end smartphone as the best of them have much better jpeg algorithms than any camera at any price.

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Bill

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Henry Richardson Forum Pro • Posts: 17,331
Re: Jpegs? Raw?
3

Pete_W wrote:

Dexter75 wrote:

Henry Richardson wrote:

Shooting jpegs or raw? Are you saying that shooting jpegs you are having these skin rendition problems?

If you are shooting Panasonic jpegs then which Recording Mode are you using? You should be using Portrait or possibly Natural. Not Standard, Vivid, or Scenery.

Note that with Olympus you should use Portrait or Muted.

Thanks. With the Panasonic cameras shooting JPEG, I was using Standard.

Hang on!

Didn't you say before that the photos you posted were not your own? But now you say you were shooting JPEG?

Let me guess.  You didn't even read his first post, the one I replied to.

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Henry Richardson Forum Pro • Posts: 17,331
Re: Jpegs? Raw?
4

Dexter75 wrote:

Well that probably explains it then. I never thought to change the picture profile, only tried changing the WB settings to no avail. Even custom WB didn't work but if Standard is that aggressive with contrast and saturation, that would explain it. The photos did look better when shot in vintage and black and white filters though.

The default jpeg profile for different cameras usually aims to be a good balance while giving punchier shots, which are what most people are looking for.  Canon and maybe others are known for pretty good skin tones even with their default profile, but even Canon, I think, has a Portrait profile which is probably even better.  I used to shoot with 3 Canon DSLRs, but I usually shot raw so I do not recall what the jpeg profiles were.

Do you still have a Panasonic body?  If so, I suggest you experiment with the different profiles and saturation/contrast settings.  If you don't then maybe you can borrow one?

Same with an Olympus body so you can find out if they can produce results you like.

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kcdogger Senior Member • Posts: 2,641
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones

I edited out a few stray hairs, but that's all. Natural light. Not seeing th blotchiness you mentioned.

Peace.

John

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OP Dexter75 Senior Member • Posts: 2,891
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones
2

TwoMetreBill wrote:

Stop shooting jpegs and learn how to use a good photo editing tool. If you insist on shooting jpegs then use a high end smartphone as the best of them have much better jpeg algorithms than any camera at any price.

Thanks for the advice but Ive been shooting JPEG the entire 15 years Ive been shooting professionally and Ive never once had a complaint from any client, art director or editor on the images Ive delivered. I know how to shoot and process RAW in 3 different editors but for what I do, RAW is a waste of time and only slows down and complicates my workflow.

thinkinginimages
thinkinginimages Contributing Member • Posts: 850
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones
1

Dexter75 wrote:

There has been some confusion regarding the photos I had posted to start this thread. Those are not my photos, just photos I found online searching for portraits taken with Panasonic and Olympus cameras. Here are some of mine and examples of problems I was having...

Here are two taken with the GX85 with different WB settings, both look terrible

Here is the same model under much worse indoor lighting conditions with my 6D and even this looks a ton better than above

Finally, here is how those shots on the white background above should look. Same light set up...

Maybe its user error and I should have had the GX85 set to something other than the Standard profile, but the standard profile on any other camera Ive used seems to work just fine and doesn't produce those terrible skin tones.

OK, this is going to be interesting since there's a lot to work with. What I'm seeing now is low color contrast in the Panasonic shots. Purely my opinion, but I always felt the the reds or skin tones to be a bit dull with a Panasonic. (On the other hand, I prefer it that way.) Red is more "Canon". Since you're working in JPEG, there's a bit too much "smoothing" for my taste.

So, this can be solved. Try the Vivid setting. It's not my favorite but it's worth a try if you're shooting JPEG. You didn't mention what software you're using for post, but you'd want to tweak the red (magenta/yellow) contrast curve.

I can't comment on Sony, since I haven't worked with a Sony in a while.

Skin tones are "tough" because each camera maker dials them in slightly differently. I noticed the "red thing" because I bounced between my Panasonic's and the office or crew's  Canon or Nikon (I work with whatever I have in my hand.)

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OP Dexter75 Senior Member • Posts: 2,891
Re: M43 cameras and blotchy red skin tones

thinkinginimages wrote:

Dexter75 wrote:

There has been some confusion regarding the photos I had posted to start this thread. Those are not my photos, just photos I found online searching for portraits taken with Panasonic and Olympus cameras. Here are some of mine and examples of problems I was having...

Here are two taken with the GX85 with different WB settings, both look terrible

Here is the same model under much worse indoor lighting conditions with my 6D and even this looks a ton better than above

Finally, here is how those shots on the white background above should look. Same light set up...

Maybe its user error and I should have had the GX85 set to something other than the Standard profile, but the standard profile on any other camera Ive used seems to work just fine and doesn't produce those terrible skin tones.

OK, this is going to be interesting since there's a lot to work with. What I'm seeing now is low color contrast in the Panasonic shots. Purely my opinion, but I always felt the the reds or skin tones to be a bit dull with a Panasonic. (On the other hand, I prefer it that way.) Red is more "Canon". Since you're working in JPEG, there's a bit too much "smoothing" for my taste.

So, this can be solved. Try the Vivid setting. It's not my favorite but it's worth a try if you're shooting JPEG. You didn't mention what software you're using for post, but you'd want to tweak the red (magenta/yellow) contrast curve.

I can't comment on Sony, since I haven't worked with a Sony in a while.

Skin tones are "tough" because each camera maker dials them in slightly differently. I noticed the "red thing" because I bounced between my Panasonic's and the office or crew's Canon or Nikon (I work with whatever I have in my hand.)

Thank you, this is the kind of feedback I was looking for from those with more experience with these cameras. I use Photoshop for me post processing.

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