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Hradcany

Obtaining a clear copy of a postmark

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I have to collect clear black and white images of thousands of postmarks, black on a white (or transparent) background, taken from cancelled stamps. I have tried to do this on PhotoPlus 8 but have failed.  The interface here is far more complex and I have no idea where to start. A sample of what I have to work with is attached. The resulting images should only be the black postmark with no image of the stamp at all.

Please remember I have no experience with Affinity Photo at all.

Thanks,

Mark

200h-I-100.jpg

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One way:

Use the Flood Select tool. Untick the Contiguous box. Click on the white part, then delete, Click on the blue parts, then delete. You may have to go in close to see any bits left over, click on them until you only have the black part left. You may need to try adjusting the Tolerance setting to get the cleanest removal of unwanted areas. To get rid of the black borders you can use the Erase brush.

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22 minutes ago, Hradcany said:

I have tried to do this on PhotoPlus [X8] but have failed.

I saw your thread about this on CommunityPlus and have just suggested there that you look into layer blend modes, but Affinity Photo has more options in this area. Maybe someone with the appropriate level of expertise will be able to provide step-by-step instructions.

 


Alfred online2long.gif
Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher for Windows 1.9.1 • Windows 10 Home (4th gen Core i3 CPU)
Affinity Photo for iPad 1.9.1 • Designer for iPad 1.9.1 • iPadOS 14.4.2 (iPad Air 2)

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Hi Alfred,

I regret to say I have no idea what a layer blend mode is or how to produce one. My skill and information levels are rather low. What I have used PP X8 for is producing a composite image by applying layers of flaws found on different stamps to a single master as an index of variations. That is about it. Can you be a bit more specific?

You can see what I do know here, on page 16: https://czechout.org/test2/dove-10.html

Mark

 

Edited by Hradcany
added info

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I have another recipe:

Step 1: add a Black&White-Adjustment-Layer and tweak the blue/cyan-sliders to change the blue tones to light grey.

step_1.jpg.329f2f0bde7fcd2105db4b95dd4b8d14.jpg

Step 2:

Add a Levels-Adjustment-Layer. Switch to LAB-Mode and adjust the white and black-Level to get rid of the grey-tones.

step_2.jpg.f2e4045fc5b0e1aef4bf64db6ad3ce6e.jpg

Step 3:

With Layer/Merge Visible (or cmd+alt+shift+E) make a cumulative layer. You need this to apply Filter/Colors/Erase white paper.

step_3.jpg.6db3d8abf0799484439b10e65fca3860.jpg

Step 4: Crop to taste and export as PNG to keep the transparent background.

step_4.png.42dffc9c19ba491e8a610c75aebe89c0.png

I hope this is not too advanced, but give it a try.

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That  looks beautiful! I will try it. Thanks especially for the screen shots as I have never used Affinity Photo (working with the Trial to see if I can master it enough to be useful.

 

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Oh yes, the method with the blended ranges also looks/work fine, thumbs up to PaulEC. What I've had forgotten to mention is that there is also a little Eraser-Tool work left, e.g. in the left picture of the stamps.

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@PaulEC’s method is nice and easy, and it yields a great result. If you want to make the postmark darker, simply duplicate the layer.


Alfred online2long.gif
Affinity Designer/Photo/Publisher for Windows 1.9.1 • Windows 10 Home (4th gen Core i3 CPU)
Affinity Photo for iPad 1.9.1 • Designer for iPad 1.9.1 • iPadOS 14.4.2 (iPad Air 2)

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Looking at the stamps and postmark, I would suggest a Threshold adjustment as a first pass. Levels > Adjustments > Threshold (right at the  bottom). Choose a  threshold on the slider that will render the postmarks black and the rest white.

John


Windows 10, Affinity Photo 1.9.2 Designer 1.9.2 and Publisher 1.9.2 (mainly Photo), now ex-Adobe CC

CPU: AMD A6-3670. RAM: 16 GB DDR3 @ 666MHz, Graphics: 2047MB NVIDIA GeForce GT 630

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