applying LUTs the easy way

LUTs are “look up tables” for colours. They’re useful in many many ways (for instance, a program I use to calibrate displays, QuickGamma, creates a LUT that loads with Windows). But for the sake of image editing, they can be used as “filters”.

Mjc posted links to a few interesting ones here in our 3Delight thread on the DAZ forums.

If you already have compositing software and know how to use it, you may have already tried to apply something of the sort to your renders. But if you aren’t a wannabe compositor, there’s an easier way to make use of them.

3Delight’s dedicated image viewer i-display supports LUTs and will export a JPEG of your image with the LUT applied. Just saving the image out won’t burn the LUT in, so make sure you use export as JPEG (Ctrl+J). The quality is good, but still, it’s lossy so you probably will want to apply LUT as the final stage of your postprocessing.

Choosing a LUT can be done via the menu (see screenshot) or with the Ctrl+U shortcut. Don’t forget to set colour profile to “custom” to see the LUT effect.

LUTload_idisplay

If you don’t have the free 3Delight Studio Pro, get it here. It’s the latest free version, so you can export your DS scenes to RIBs and render them via the standalone to leverage the latest improvements.

cathfreestuffLUTKodak Here’s an example quick render I made with Mec4D (Cath) birthday freebies (yeah that’s true, Cath gave the community several presents for her own birthday! Isn’t she awesome? Go check out her personal store and her DAZ store page).

The “clean” render is posted to Cath’s anniversary thread on the DAZ forums, so you can compare the effect of this particular LUT (the one whose name is shown in the i-display screenshot; I like it a lot).

Coloured vignettes in Paint.NET

I use this free app called Paint.NET for a frightening majority of whatever image processing tasks I may need to do. The real power of PdN lies in the amazing community, though: there are quite a few talented coders out there who keep on releasing mindblowing plugins.

There are hundreds of them, I believe, but this time I am just going to focus on a specific technique concerning vignettes.

I developed it before BoltBait’s Vignette Plus was released – a plugin that allows to create a coloured vignette with alpha; but I believe this method may still have value because, well, it offers a tad more options.

And, y’know, the whole educational effect.

What you need:

Paint.NET;
Ed Harvey Effects;
KrisVDM’s plugin pack.

// those pages will tell you how to install these plugins //

And an image – I will use one of my test renders, originally posted on the DAZ3D forums.

What I got:

gaia-bright-closeup_vignette_colourburn_146

If you want to learn how to do this, too, then please proceed under the cut for the how-to.

Continue reading Coloured vignettes in Paint.NET