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Thread: Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?

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    Default Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?



    Hello,

    I'm new to using stacker programs, and I'm amazed at what can be done with them. I have a question concerning color in the final image when using DeepSkyStacker though...

    As an example, I took several photos of the Orion Nebula the other day, and every photo showed color in the nebula. But after stacking them in DeepSkyStacker the resulting image lost all it's color. It looks like a black and white photo now!

    Could somebody please tell me why all my stacked images are losing all of their color, and is there anything I can do to preserve the original color?

    I'd appreciate any help you can give me on this matter.

    Thank you,

    Mark :0)

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    Default Re: Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?

    Don't sweat it, stretch it in gimp or photoshop (or any other image processing software) and the colours will be back!
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    Default Re: Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?

    Hi Andy,

    Thanks for the reply...But what do you mean "Stretch It"? I went through all the pull down menus in Photoshop and can't find any "Stretch" command or menu.

    Sorry if my newbiness is showing...This is all new to me.

    Mark :0)

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    Default Re: Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?

    After opening the picture up in Photoshop, convert it to 16 bit, then choose "custom" from the drop-down menu, then choose "Exposure and Gamma". Now you'll be able to use all of the features like Curves, Filters, etc.

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    Default Re: Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?

    Thanks for help. I'm not only new to this type of astrophotography, but also quite new to most of the photo editing properties in Photoshop and Lightroom.

    ...I tried playing around with some of the settings you suggested, but none of them seem to get me back to the original colors that show up in the original photos (before stacking). I'll play around with it more later tonight when I got more time.

    Mark :0)

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    Default Re: Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?

    When you save an image in DSS select the option "changes embedded" not "changes applied."

    Stretching: Do what Dan said. There are several ways to do this. Here is one. Use the curve command. Lower the right hand point of the curve about five mouse arrow widths then pull up the curve until is almost touches the top of the frame about 66% towards the right hand margin of the frame. Repeat several times until you are happy with the result then do a level command to restore your black.
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    Default Re: Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?

    Thanks for the reply...But what do you mean "Stretch It"? I went through all the pull down menus in Photoshop and can't find any "Stretch" command or menu.
    Neither can I...! Stretch is a slang term used to describe the function of moving a bar in Levels and in Curves in PS.

    Rather than bore you with a long disertation on how to do it, here's an excellent resource for you to get your feet wet and make you feel like you're actually accomplishing something... ----> Astrophotography: Basic Processing in Photoshop. Part 1 - Initial Steps and The Histogram - YouTube

    That's part 1, watch all the video tutorials as you get time, and you'll be up and running with a minimal of hassles.

    Hope the info helps, looking forward to more of your results...

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    Default Re: Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?

    Paul is spot on. Youtube is definitely a tremendous resource for learning AP. There are tons of great tutorials out there.

    To expand on what these guys already wrote, it is normal for the stacked image to "apparently" lose color info. Trust me, it is still there. As you "stretch" the histogram through levels and curves adjustments you will start to see the details pop out but you will also want to increase saturation. There are several ways to do this. You might be tempted to just crank up the Saturation slider but there are better ways. The method I prefer, which gives really great results is as follows:

    1. Create 2 copies of your background layer
    2. Change the first copy's layer type from Normal to Soft Light.
    3. Change the 2nd copy to Luminosity
    4. Merge the 3 layers
    5. Repeat to taste (usually 2 or 3 times)
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    Default Re: Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?

    Paul,

    Thanks for your explanation and the video link...Funny story though, I already have the whole Doug German series of videos. I just haven't watched any of them yet lol. About a week ago, as I was just getting back into astronomy from a long hiatus, I spent some time on YouTube downloading any videos I found that I thought might be of some use. I downloaded all of Doug's videos, a whole bunch from a fellow named DugDog, as well as several others. I guess I should start watching some of them.

    sxinias,

    I think I understood your 'stretching' directions, but the results I got were pretty weird. Could you please look at the image I attached, and let me know if I moved the points, and stretched the curve correctly?

    Saving the DSS image with the data embedded instead of applied did preserve the color from the original images. But no amount of 'stretching' that I tried so far on the 'embedded' image gives me anywhere near the detail that I got in my image as when I saved it from DSS with the data 'applied'. Looks like I need a little more practice before I'll be good at this.

    Thank you,

    Mark :0)
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    Default Re: Why am I losing color in all my DeepSkyStacker final images?

    gbcarync,

    Thanks for the tip on how to quickly add some color to an otherwise colorless "in appearance" photo.

    Mark :0)

 

 
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