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FORVM`s Classical Numismatics Discussion Board  |  Numismatic and History Discussions  |  Coin Photography, Conservation and Storage  |  Topic: How do you crop and overlay pictures of coins 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: How do you crop and overlay pictures of coins  (Read 4268 times)
Bacchus
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« on: August 28, 2008, 01:16:47 pm »

What I am really asking is how do you get those collage images where it appears one coin is partially lying on top of another (even though they really arn't)?  I use paint shop pro for most of my image work but can't seem to locate that magic button that would let me do this.

It's the sort of image that you see on the cover of some of the major auction houses catalogues - if I can locate one I'll add it to this message

many thanks for any tips

Malcolm
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maridvnvm
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« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2008, 01:28:06 pm »

Layers would work, where a coin is cropped onto a transparent background on each layer and a white background used overall. You can then move coin up and down by moving the layers up and down.
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Martin
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Bacchus
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« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2008, 01:52:09 pm »

Hi - Martin,

Yes - I think I knew it was layers ok - but I just couldn't see how to get just the image of the coin - with none of the surrounding "background"  Any cropping I have done seems to be based around a square or rectangle -- I just haven;t figured how to crop around the coin alone.

thanks

Malcolm
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moonmoth
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« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2008, 02:39:11 pm »

I don't know current versions of Paint Shop Pro, but what I do in Photoshop is use a brush of nearly the same size as the coin - just a bit smaller works best - and use that to paint out the coin, by dotting it so that the edge of the brush coincides with the edge of the coin, then delete everything else.  Obviously, you would need to use layers to make this work, so that you can reveal the coin again afterwards. 

In Photoshop, I use quick mask mode, which automatically selects or deselects the painted area. Use a hard-edged brush (a PSP user once said that a softer edge works better in PSP). You can alter the brush size in Photoshop using the square brackets keys.

Bill
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RomaVictor
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« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2008, 03:00:39 pm »

Hi Malcolm,

I use Paint Shop Pro too to work with the photo's i make of my coins.
There is indeed a button with which you can select only the coin from a photo you have made.

First, make sure you open the "Tool Palette" toolbar (in the menu, select View => Toolbars => then select Tool Pallete"). In the toolbar that shows up then, there is one button which looks like a lasso (called "Freehand"). Thats the button you need to make a freehand selection from a photo, for example a coin. When you select this button, make sure the settings in the Tool Options are set on "Point to Point". You can now precisely click along the edge of your coin in the photograph and when you rightclick, your freehand selection (coin) will be available for use as a layer/image.

Thats how i was able to make the imagefile you see below.

If you need some screenshots to visualise my explanation, PM me your emailadres and i'll send them.
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Bacchus
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« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2008, 11:21:23 pm »

That's a great help - thanks to all who have pointed me in the right direction.  I will have a go tonight and see what I can come up with.

best regards
Malcolm
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PeterD
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« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2008, 05:34:16 am »

Using the "freehand" tool requires quite a steady hand. If you have a photo of the coin on a plain background you can do the following:
Choose the "magic wand" tool (drop down on the same button as "freehand"), click on the background of the photo. Then invert the selection from the "Selections" menu. Then copy and paste as before.
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Peter, London

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cmcdon0923
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« Reply #7 on: August 29, 2008, 07:29:57 pm »

Or you can just dump all your coins onto a big pile and shoot the image that way  !!!!    <grin>
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Bacchus
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« Reply #8 on: October 17, 2008, 01:40:51 pm »

Thanks to all (especially RomaVictor - instructions were spot on) for help with this.  It is fiddley and time consuming though.

Malcolm
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maridvnvm
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« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2008, 12:43:31 pm »

I have a relatively quick way to do this that works for me.
Give it a try and see if you can get it to work for you.
I use the magic wand and select the background (rather than select the coin). If you have a white background and a silver coin this can lead to some automatic selection of small areas of the coin but this can be eliminated by lowering the tolerance on the magic wand. With PaintShopPro you can now go to the selections menu and select invert, with Adobe Photoshop you can do a similar selection with the wand and then right click to be able to invert the selection. This is the quickest way I have found to select the coin. Now you can use the other techniques with layers....
Regards,
Martin
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maridvnvm
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« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2008, 06:42:06 am »

Has anyone tried my suggestion? Does it work for them? I am able to select the coin in just a few clicks with this method.....
Martin
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moonmoth
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« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2008, 07:14:29 am »

Hi, Martin -

I use a variant of that technique all the time, as shown here using Photoshop.  My page also shows examples of when it doen't quite work, and what to do about it.  My aim here is to make the background white, but it is a short step from there to selecting and deleting that background.

http://www.forumancientcoins.com/moonmoth/photo_coins06.html

Bill

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maridvnvm
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« Reply #12 on: October 20, 2008, 02:55:55 am »

Bill,
I must admit that I use it to make the background white too but wanted to point out the simple step from there to inverting the selection to being the coin rather than the background. If you try to do it by selecting the coin then it begomes quite laborious.
Regards,
Martin
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PeterD
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« Reply #13 on: October 20, 2008, 04:43:04 am »

Martin, I thought I had already mentioned that method of selection a few posts back.  azn

What would really make the coins stand out in some of the pictures above would be a bit of shadow. I must admit that I have only ever tried it on single coins -example below- but it should be possible, with a bit of patience, to create a shadow for each individual coin in a multiple image. In Paintshop Pro, this would be the way to do it:

Select an image of a coin as described above paste it into a new picture, with it's own layer.
Create a duplicate of that layer and temporarily turn off the new layer.
On the original (lower) layer, change the image to greyscale, blur it considerablly and move it slightly down and to the right.
Turn down the opacity, i.e. make it semi-transparent.
Turn the top layer back on and you have a picture of a coin with a shadow.

You would then need to create extra layers to do the same thing with more coins, though off course you probably only need to do the operation once with the 'underneath' coins and again with the 'top' coins.
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Peter, London

Historia: A collection of coins with their historical context http://www.forumancientcoins.com/historia
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