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I think I just 'discovered' a new star size reduction method


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Posted (edited)

Hello,

Researching astrophotography and post-processing made me experiment with different techniques on sample images I found on the internet (I have yet to take a deep space image myself since I'm still waiting to complete my rig).
As far as star size is concerned, I noticed that every photographer out there struggled with this issue at first, especially if your gear is not high-end and your photos will result in blurry objects/big stars. Even with focus off by a few microns, it becomes more and more noticeable.
I've seen many people trying out different softwares for automated star size reduction, or using Photoshop and playing out with masks and levels. But I have not seen a single person online trying out the Liquify tool to manually reduce the size of the stars (doesn't mean I am the only one to ever try this out but seems nobody posts about it). I used that feature in the past for different funny edits and it struck me how well that'd work on this topic so I decided to try it out. Of course, the entire process is manual, you have to go over and shrink every star in your photo with a mouse press, but as far as I can see, it's getting far better results than any software or AI that does that for you. I uploaded a sample shot and a grid to show the amount of shrink that I manually painted over every star. 
Evidently, it will be a pretty hard and long-lasting work to go and shrink every single star in your image but the red grid will help know which stars you've already shrinked. I let you be the judge of these results and if you think the effort pays off.

BIG DISCLAIMER: The sample image as I mentioned before is NOT MINE, I was looking for a random image on Astrobin.com to only test my little discovery and just as random, stumbled upon this extraordinary shot. The entire credit of this image goes to Bert Moyaers / https://www.astrobin.com/7pxliz/?q=EXOS-2 PMC-8 .

4mU3atzB65W-_2560x0_-dRLHGyA.png

Screenshot at May 12 08-42-06.png

Edited by Radu Marinescu
Typo in sentence
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