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Thread: Extracting a clean palette from an image using Photoshop

  1. #11
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    someonesane, i tried it in ms paint and it works just like you showed. i just kept coming up with almost the same colors. oh well, i guess i'll just have to use my imagination. jeez, i haven't done that in so long.
    and you should be happy with the results, that's an awesome apple. looks good enough to eat.

  2. #12
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    Yeah, like I said, It's not very precise. It's because the program is only calculating the best combination of colors it can use to represent the image at such a small size, then stretching those colors when it is enlarged again. If you have an image where there is a lot of one color, but then have a few areas with a completely other color, the dominate color of the image will likely take precedence. Take the following image for example:

    Name:  42-17174272.jpg
Views: 708
Size:  52.1 KB

    The entire background is made up of grayish blue hues and the skaters shirt, paints, and skin tone takes up less area. So when I shrink and expand this image I end up with the following:

    Name:  skaterIndex1.JPG
Views: 717
Size:  9.8 KB

    As you can see, the gray background color overtakes most of the other colors, so I don't get a good assortment of the skaters flesh tones. The few colors I get for the pants and shirt would probably work, but could be better.

    To fix this, I tried only stretching the image from right to left at first, which resulted in the following colors:

    Name:  skaterIndex1a.JPG
Views: 700
Size:  22.1 KB

    Now there are a lot more colors to choose from, but it's really a bit more then needed. So I stretch it again, this time from bottom to top. But I only squish the image to about three quarters of it's original size this time. This keeps enough of the colors in the image for them to blend together, without completely getting merged into the gray tones of the background and I end up with the following:

    Name:  skaterIndex1b.JPG
Views: 696
Size:  20.5 KB

    Now I should be left with enough colors to get the essential parts of the image done.
    Nothing is easy to the unwilling.

  3. #13
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    Thanks for that D'akey it took some careful reading, but it works!
    It also works in photoshop elements
    You can view all my other artwork here http://spookyjules.blogspot.co.uk/

  4. #14
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    Down a hole
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    HOHO!! Someonesane!!
    That's a brilliant shortcut to arrive at the essential colors...
    It works just great!!!
    I never thought of using it for color. I mean I've shrunk images before and enlarged them to use as references (so that there's some freedom and I don't get bound by the original) but to use it to generate a minimal palette is just sheer genius!!

    thanks a ton!
    ashy

  5. #15
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    Jul 2008
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    UK
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    Paintshop Pro

    Two quick ways to get the same result in Paintshop Pro:

    1) Effects > Distortion > Pixelate.
    This one is dead easy. You can vary block size depending on how many colours you want in the palette. Then just save the result as a new jpg with a different filename.

    2) Image > Decrease colour depth > X colours
    Again here pick a number that makes for a good balance, not too many or too few. I used 64 in this example (screenshot attached). You should be on the middle tab of the colour palette (in the top right part of the screen). Then take a screenshot, save it in a new file name, and reload it into PSP, and crop it down to just the palette section. You might want to enlarge it a bit before re-saving to be your reference image.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	palette howto.jpg 
Views:	163 
Size:	216.1 KB 
ID:	28648  
    Last edited by downtide; 06-07-2009 at 10:18 AM.

  6. #16
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    Downtide, will have to try this (I have Paintshop Pro). It seems brilliantly easy, will give it a shot.)

    Quote Originally Posted by downtide View Post
    Two quick ways to get the same result in Paintshop Pro:

    1) Effects > Distortion > Pixelate.
    This one is dead easy. You can vary block size depending on how many colours you want in the palette. Then just save the result as a new jpg with a different filename.

    2) Image > Decrease colour depth > X colours
    Again here pick a number that makes for a good balance, not too many or too few. I used 64 in this example (screenshot attached). You should be on the middle tab of the colour palette (in the top right part of the screen). Then take a screenshot, save it in a new file name, and reload it into PSP, and crop it down to just the palette section. You might want to enlarge it a bit before re-saving to be your reference image.
    // "Appreciation fosters well-being. Be well." - Byron
    //
    My ArtRage Paintings Here
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  7. #17
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    Downtide, this is unbelievably easy in Paintshop Pro, both versions as you've described. Makes a remarkbly clean pallet. I think I prefer the second method, but both are great.

    Do you know if there is a way from either version to quickly convert the pallet to place like color and shade blocks beside each other in order of gradation. That would be useful too.

    Terrific tip for those of us with Paintshop Pro.

    Thanks,
    Byron
    // "Appreciation fosters well-being. Be well." - Byron
    //
    My ArtRage Paintings Here
    // My Comprehensive AR4 & 3 Thread Here
    64 bit Win8Pro, 16GB Ram, Intel i7 Quad Core - 8 threads; Wacom Intuios 4

  8. #18
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    Sep 2006
    Location
    San Diego, CA USA
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    WOW your MS Paint trick is THE best ever!

    [QUOTE=Someonesane;164727]Well, it isn't as precise as D Akey's method, but I may have another way that could work. It requires the use of Microsoft Paint (which has always come free with every Windows operated system I've owned). It's pretty easy to do, but not so easy to discribe, so I made a video to demenstrate how to do it.

    That is the COOLEST simplification of grabbing a palette I have ever known. THANK YOU. This way I avoid loading my heavy PS and can grab palette and move into ArtRage (or anything) quickly. Wow!

    Happy happy.(I do a lot of palettes)

    I am SO glad I took the moment to watch this! Thanks again for sharing this.
    bbbOK

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbbOK View Post
    I am SO glad I took the moment to watch this! Thanks again for sharing this.
    No problem
    Nothing is easy to the unwilling.

  10. #20
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    Someonesane you are a genius! Just subscribed to your videos! What a terrific voice you have.

    Judith
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