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Main Photography Discussion
Green Screen Wizard Software
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Page: 1 2 next>>
Dec 1, 2012 00:45:16   #
Mike77
 
Has anyone used the Green Screen Wizard software and accompanying DVD with the different backdrops. Was it easy to use, and what was the quality like? Thanks in advance.

Mike
 
Dec 2, 2012 07:47:13   #
nikonshooter (a regular here)
 
Mike77 wrote:
Has anyone used the Green Screen Wizard software and accompanying DVD with the different backdrops. Was it easy to use, and what was the quality like? Thanks in advance.

Mike


I have Photokey 5 Pro and it works ok, not great. However, you can do the same thing in photoshop (I assume this is for portraiture work) better and quicker just using a solid background - any color.
Dec 2, 2012 13:01:49   #
billybob40
 
Mike check out my web site its 90% Green Screen Wizard.
www.bbnpb.com
Dec 2, 2012 14:39:01   #
expressphotos
 
Yes, I use Greenscreen wizard for both my PC and Mac (which was released earlier this year) It is very user friendly. I also use express digital darkroom for my fast paced events; but for slower events I prefer greenscreen wizard. It does pretty good with subjects that are wearing green; although you'll have to play with the settings. it takes 3-10 seconds for the software to extract the background. The speed of your processor determines how fast this happens.
Dec 3, 2012 10:49:38   #
marcomarks
 
Mike77 wrote:
Has anyone used the Green Screen Wizard software and accompanying DVD with the different backdrops. Was it easy to use, and what was the quality like? Thanks in advance.

Mike


I've had GSW for about a year and a half. It's so easy a child could use it yet it has tools to fine tune your combination when the auto mode isn't absolutely perfect (although it is perfect almost all the time). It has a couple things that can irritate you after you own it for a while but not because it doesn't work right. It's just user interface simplicities that I'd like to have the option of changing but there doesn't seem to be a way to do so.

By the way, always keep your subject at least 3 feet from the screen so reflection of the green doesn't leak onto the subject and you'll be quite happy. You also want to light the green screen very bright and evenly with a set of lights that do nothing but light the screen. They can be just four clamp-on metal work light bowls with cheap 150-watt equivalent daylight-temperature fluorescent curly-q bulbs from Home Depot.

The backgrounds on the DVD are very good quality but it's a limited selection compared to other disks available on the market. Make your decision based on the ease and quality of the GSW software not on the value of the DVD. It's more of a bonus to sweeten the deal.

It's a nice companion disk to get you started but you'll be looking for more backgrounds soon. Fortunately you can shoot your own backgrounds too. I personally bought a package from PhotoBacks for $100 that has several hundred backgrounds and I shot a few of my own as well. Now that I've moved to Florida I should shoot some more of my own.

A huge muslin green screen can be purchased on eBay for about $50 if you don't need stands. Mine is 10 feet wide so I could do small groups but there are smaller ones. Other packages are also on eBay with some flimsy stands for low prices as well. If you're going to do this in a studio situation, I'd just get a long fat round wooden pole (Home Depot again) and mount it in some curtain holders or other make-shift clips up near the ceiling. Staple your green screen to the pole with a sturdy staple gun and roll it up. When you want to use it, roll it down and stick pin the muslin to the wall at the bottom instead of using stands.

PM me if you want to discuss GSW further. I've included 3 examples done with GSW. Yeah, I know, the flash is a bit much on my son but it's hard keeping a 1 year old still for more than a couple minutes and it was just an experiment at the time.
My wife shot indoors with a local background I created

My son at 1 year old with a PhotoBack background

A dating site pix for a friend with a GSW stairs background

Dec 3, 2012 17:34:21   #
Mike77
 
Wow, thanks for all the replies! Macromarks, those are pretty impressive shots. Thanks for writing such an in depth reply. I know what I will be doing tonight. Searching for a backdrop and checking out the sites you mentioned. Thanks, again for the replies

Mike
 
Dec 3, 2012 17:34:21   #
Mike77
 
Wow, thanks for all the replies! Macromarks, those are pretty impressive shots. Thanks for writing such an in depth reply. I know what I will be doing tonight. Searching for a backdrop and checking out the sites you mentioned. Thanks, again for the replies

Mike
Dec 3, 2012 17:45:32   #
CaptainC
 
marcomarks wrote:
Mike77 wrote:
Has anyone used the Green Screen Wizard software and accompanying DVD with the different backdrops. Was it easy to use, and what was the quality like? Thanks in advance.

Mike


I've had GSW for about a year and a half. It's so easy a child could use it yet it has tools to fine tune your combination when the auto mode isn't absolutely perfect (although it is perfect almost all the time). It has a couple things that can irritate you after you own it for a while but not because it doesn't work right. It's just user interface simplicities that I'd like to have the option of changing but there doesn't seem to be a way to do so.

By the way, always keep your subject at least 3 feet from the screen so reflection of the green doesn't leak onto the subject and you'll be quite happy. You also want to light the green screen very bright and evenly with a set of lights that do nothing but light the screen. They can be just four clamp-on metal work light bowls with cheap 150-watt equivalent daylight-temperature fluorescent curly-q bulbs from Home Depot.

The backgrounds on the DVD are very good quality but it's a limited selection compared to other disks available on the market. Make your decision based on the ease and quality of the GSW software not on the value of the DVD. It's more of a bonus to sweeten the deal.

It's a nice companion disk to get you started but you'll be looking for more backgrounds soon. Fortunately you can shoot your own backgrounds too. I personally bought a package from PhotoBacks for $100 that has several hundred backgrounds and I shot a few of my own as well. Now that I've moved to Florida I should shoot some more of my own.

A huge muslin green screen can be purchased on eBay for about $50 if you don't need stands. Mine is 10 feet wide so I could do small groups but there are smaller ones. Other packages are also on eBay with some flimsy stands for low prices as well. If you're going to do this in a studio situation, I'd just get a long fat round wooden pole (Home Depot again) and mount it in some curtain holders or other make-shift clips up near the ceiling. Staple your green screen to the pole with a sturdy staple gun and roll it up. When you want to use it, roll it down and stick pin the muslin to the wall at the bottom instead of using stands.

PM me if you want to discuss GSW further. I've included 3 examples done with GSW. Yeah, I know, the flash is a bit much on my son but it's hard keeping a 1 year old still for more than a couple minutes and it was just an experiment at the time.
quote=Mike77 Has anyone used the Green Screen Wiz... (show quote)


Those are good examples of the technique, but the giveaway that they are drop-in backgrounds is that (in #1 and #3) the background is as sharp as the subject. In fact in #3, the background is sharper. Just the opposite of the way a real image would look.
Dec 4, 2012 09:12:40   #
marcomarks
 
CaptainC wrote:
marcomarks wrote:
Mike77 wrote:
Has anyone used the Green Screen Wizard software and accompanying DVD with the different backdrops. Was it easy to use, and what was the quality like? Thanks in advance.

Mike


I've had GSW for about a year and a half. It's so easy a child could use it yet it has tools to fine tune your combination when the auto mode isn't absolutely perfect (although it is perfect almost all the time). It has a couple things that can irritate you after you own it for a while but not because it doesn't work right. It's just user interface simplicities that I'd like to have the option of changing but there doesn't seem to be a way to do so.

By the way, always keep your subject at least 3 feet from the screen so reflection of the green doesn't leak onto the subject and you'll be quite happy. You also want to light the green screen very bright and evenly with a set of lights that do nothing but light the screen. They can be just four clamp-on metal work light bowls with cheap 150-watt equivalent daylight-temperature fluorescent curly-q bulbs from Home Depot.

The backgrounds on the DVD are very good quality but it's a limited selection compared to other disks available on the market. Make your decision based on the ease and quality of the GSW software not on the value of the DVD. It's more of a bonus to sweeten the deal.

It's a nice companion disk to get you started but you'll be looking for more backgrounds soon. Fortunately you can shoot your own backgrounds too. I personally bought a package from PhotoBacks for $100 that has several hundred backgrounds and I shot a few of my own as well. Now that I've moved to Florida I should shoot some more of my own.

A huge muslin green screen can be purchased on eBay for about $50 if you don't need stands. Mine is 10 feet wide so I could do small groups but there are smaller ones. Other packages are also on eBay with some flimsy stands for low prices as well. If you're going to do this in a studio situation, I'd just get a long fat round wooden pole (Home Depot again) and mount it in some curtain holders or other make-shift clips up near the ceiling. Staple your green screen to the pole with a sturdy staple gun and roll it up. When you want to use it, roll it down and stick pin the muslin to the wall at the bottom instead of using stands.

PM me if you want to discuss GSW further. I've included 3 examples done with GSW. Yeah, I know, the flash is a bit much on my son but it's hard keeping a 1 year old still for more than a couple minutes and it was just an experiment at the time.
quote=Mike77 Has anyone used the Green Screen Wiz... (show quote)


Those are good examples of the technique, but the giveaway that they are drop-in backgrounds is that (in #1 and #3) the background is as sharp as the subject. In fact in #3, the background is sharper. Just the opposite of the way a real image would look.
quote=marcomarks quote=Mike77 Has anyone used th... (show quote)


They're also from the very first time I used GSW. I agree with you about #3. He was shot with not enough light so I ended up with a shutter speed below 1/60th and he isn't tack sharp - probably from subject movement. I was using a tripod. Since that time I have started slightly softening backgrounds and playing around with background exposure. Sometimes a little darker is better.

I can't agree though that a background and subject can never both be sharp. While it's desirable most times for the background to be not as sharp there's no rule that it has to be that way. Yes, if you are setting up a classic portrait shoot you would strive for that goal but if one is casually shooting outdoors on a bright day with f/11 or higher, it's quite possible for it to happen.
Dec 4, 2012 23:20:44   #
wjdonahue
 
Had a good friend who used GSW, a watching him set up for the shoot was mind blowing.....green screen? His results though were pretty good, and for someone who didn't have much software for post processing, I could say they were great results. My problems with GSW are two fold. 1 all of the setup and the requirement for an indoor shoot, and 2 it really does a lousy job with things like blowing hair, veils or gauzy clothing where the shoot backgrouns actually shows throug.
I do a lot of the same kind of things, but without the green screen or GSW. I take any shot (inside, outside, any background - even the city dump) and post process it for any needed corrections. I then use Topaz Remask to cut the background completely away (whatever the backgroud is) and then overlay it on the background of my choice. Does a remarkable job on Bridal veils (where the new background actually shows through the veil), smoke, unruly hair where strands stick out) and other things that GSW just cannot handle.
You could do the same thing in Photoshop using a black mask, but it would be very time consuming. I just love what I can accomplish in recomposing photos, but then I have all the fancy bells and whistles to do it with. (grin)
Here is an example of recomposing with Remask taken from the Topaz website. I don't think they would mind since i'M plugging their product (Grin)
weddingad

Dec 5, 2012 10:04:03   #
marcomarks
 
wjdonahue wrote:
Had a good friend who used GSW, a watching him set up for the shoot was mind blowing.....green screen? His results though were pretty good, and for someone who didn't have much software for post processing, I could say they were great results. My problems with GSW are two fold. 1 all of the setup and the requirement for an indoor shoot, and 2 it really does a lousy job with things like blowing hair, veils or gauzy clothing where the shoot backgrouns actually shows throug.
I do a lot of the same kind of things, but without the green screen or GSW. I take any shot (inside, outside, any background - even the city dump) and post process it for any needed corrections. I then use Topaz Remask to cut the background completely away (whatever the backgroud is) and then overlay it on the background of my choice. Does a remarkable job on Bridal veils (where the new background actually shows through the veil), smoke, unruly hair where strands stick out) and other things that GSW just cannot handle.
You could do the same thing in Photoshop using a black mask, but it would be very time consuming. I just love what I can accomplish in recomposing photos, but then I have all the fancy bells and whistles to do it with. (grin)
Here is an example of recomposing with Remask taken from the Topaz website. I don't think they would mind since i'M plugging their product (Grin)
Had a good friend who used GSW, a watching him set... (show quote)


I'm surprised that you say your friend's GSW did a lousy job with hair, veils, and gauzy material. He must not have been good at using it. Also, the green screen needs to be lit very bright so the software can easily differentiate between the background and the subject(s). GSW usually does a very good job automatically with those materials and virtually no green is left. There are also editng brushes to stroke the hair, veils, and materials with to remove any minor green artifacts and other brushes to remove reflection of green from shoulders and other surfaces. One editing brush is specifically for working with hair. If a bride is holding flowers with green leaves, there is a restore brush to put them back in because GSW took them out too. When zoomed in on some of my GSW compositions every single stray hair is typically pulled out of the green background without being lost.

When you create a "recompose" with Topaz Remask, how long does it take to achieve the result you expect, similar to the Topaz example you attached to your post? Do you have an example of something you've done with it?
 
Dec 5, 2012 12:07:30   #
wjdonahue
 
Remax takes about 2-3 minutes to completely eliminate a background...any background. Quick and extremely effective. The basic reason that I like remask is that it can take ANY photo and remove the background, not just photos shot in a studio condition with a green screen background. The photo I uploaded from their website shows quite dramatically what I'm talking about. This photo was shot against a brick wall......yet the recomposition shows it as if it were photograped outside.
Since most of what I have is weddings where the subjects were shot against an drab outside landscape or in an unattractive indoor background, the changes are dramatic and result in additional high dollar sales. Unfortunately, here in Missouri, these photographs are not owned by me, and I can't upload any of them without the written permission of the contract owner. Wish the contract could say that I own them, but not in this state.
I'll look through my catalog to see If I can find a coulple that aren't covered by contract.
To see just how powerful Remask is, go onto the Topazlabs website and navigate to the plugin Remask. There are some great tutorials that show what it can do.
Dec 5, 2012 12:35:48   #
marcomarks
 
wjdonahue wrote:
Remax takes about 2-3 minutes to completely eliminate a background...any background. Quick and extremely effective. The basic reason that I like remask is that it can take ANY photo and remove the background, not just photos shot in a studio condition with a green screen background. The photo I uploaded from their website shows quite dramatically what I'm talking about. This photo was shot against a brick wall......yet the recomposition shows it as if it were photograped outside.
Since most of what I have is weddings where the subjects were shot against an drab outside landscape or in an unattractive indoor background, the changes are dramatic and result in additional high dollar sales. Unfortunately, here in Missouri, these photographs are not owned by me, and I can't upload any of them without the written permission of the contract owner. Wish the contract could say that I own them, but not in this state.
I'll look through my catalog to see If I can find a coulple that aren't covered by contract.
To see just how powerful Remask is, go onto the Topazlabs website and navigate to the plugin Remask. There are some great tutorials that show what it can do.
Remax takes about 2-3 minutes to completely elimin... (show quote)


I'll do that. I am always looking for better, faster, easier ways to do so something. I'm wondering if it will take the sky out of a scene with 2/3 of the scene being a home and surrounding landscaping and let me replace it with another stock blue sky with puffy white clouds I would have. It's hard to do believably when there are tree leaves with sky behind them as well.
Dec 5, 2012 16:12:06   #
wjdonahue
 
It will mask out anything from any photo. If you go to the website you will see a lot of examples of just what you were talking about, removing buildings, new skies.....In fact you can cut out anything and replace it with anything. What is really nice, by creating multiple masks for multiple houses, for example, and then drop them into an entirely different scene. Doesn't do anything that you can't already do in photoshop, just does it more accurately and quicker. They claim that a simple cut out takes 9.2 seconds.
Dec 5, 2012 16:59:19   #
marcomarks
 
wjdonahue wrote:
It will mask out anything from any photo. If you go to the website you will see a lot of examples of just what you were talking about, removing buildings, new skies.....In fact you can cut out anything and replace it with anything. What is really nice, by creating multiple masks for multiple houses, for example, and then drop them into an entirely different scene. Doesn't do anything that you can't already do in photoshop, just does it more accurately and quicker. They claim that a simple cut out takes 9.2 seconds.
It will mask out anything from any photo. If you ... (show quote)


Accurate and quick is what I like and I don't use PhotoShop, so this is a good thing. I'll check it out. Thanks.
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