Enterprise Astronomy & Photography | Release Notes

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Annie's Astro Actions (for Photoshop)

Version 7.0

Release Notes and Instructions

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Version 7.0

Released 25 March 2015

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New Actions since last release

Updates since last release

Actions Included in this Version

Instructions for Annie’s Astro Actions

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New Actions since last release:

• Ha-OIII BiColor Process

• HaRGB

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Updates since last release:

• Two new actions have been added

• “Create Mosaic” action has been removed from this action set. I was not getting

feedback that these particular actions were getting much use as there are much

more efficient and better mosaic programs for astrophotos.

• A few minor tweaks to make the actions run a little smoother have been made,

nothing that changes the outcome of the actions, though.

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Actions Included in this Version (Version 7.0):

• Channel Process

• LRGB Combine

• RGB Combine

• Hubble Palette Creation

• Ha-OIII BiColor Process

• HaRGB

• Simple Stretching

• Enhance Dust Lanes

• Dynamic Enhance

• Reduce Star Bloating

• Reduce Star Size - full photo

• Brighten Color & Sharpen

• Smooth Out Image

• Noise Reduction

• Boost Star Colors

• Create Watermark

• Remove "panda eyes"

• Remove Stars (Large Image)

• Remove Stars (Small Image)

• Create Mosaic (6 Panels)

• Create Mosaic (4 Panels)

• New Star Layer Separate (automatic)

• New Star Layer Separate (user assist)

• Reduce Vignetting 1

• Reduce Vignetting 2

• Gradient Reduction

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Instructions for Annie’s Astro Actions:

Channel Process: This action will process individual channels for you (to be combined later)

Within the action you will be able to stretch via curves and levels at the prompts:

- Open single channel file (ie Red)

- Play Action

- Curves Popup #1 is preset for DSO images that were taken in a light polluted area, to

customize this, drag off the 3 preselected points and create points at the following spots on your

image file: Bright point (ie a bright star), Dark point (empty background space), Dust of your

DSO (ie in your nebula or galaxy dust somewhere), Adjust curve upward until object brightens

and generally is recognizable, Click OK

- Levels Popup #1 is preset for a fairly wide histogram. To adjust for your object drag the

black point just to the left of the main left tower of the histogram, then drag the gamma adjust

(center arrow) to the right of the slope of the histogram, if it looks too bright slowly move the

gamma slider towards the center til it is the desired brightness, Click OK

- Curves Popup #2, same as #1, repeat those steps

- The action will then play for a while, be patient and let it run: it is sharpening and

increasing contrast to bring out the DSO

- Levels Popup #2: same as #1, repeat those steps, Click OK

- Curves Popup #3 is not the same as the other curves. This one is to increase contrast in

the center portion of your DSO (ie core of your galaxy or increase contrast in a nebula), the

default for this should suffice, however if you do want to change it I have given you that option.

Only move the curve downwards if you do adjust, Click OK

- The Action will finish running and you will have your processed channel file. Save the

result. Repeat these steps for all 4 channels (LRGB).

Create LRGB: This action will create a complete LRGB image for you from your individual

channel files.

Notes: This action is for already aligned channel files, it will not align for you! Also, I suggest

you balance the backgrounds of each channel file with the levels color sampler before you

activate this action)

- Ensure you have all images closed in Photoshop

- Play Action

- First Open: Select your Red File, Click OPEN

- If you wish to change the name of the final color image – do so in the next popup, Click

OK

- Next Open: Select your Green File, Click OPEN

- Next Open: Select your Blue File, Click OPEN

- Next Open: Select your Luminance File, Click OPEN

- Action will finish and your LRGB image will be displayed, Save or continuing

Processing

Create RGB: This action will create a complete RGB image for you from your individual

channel files.

Notes: Same as above - this will not align. Also, you may use this to create your Hubble Palette

image, though make sure you select the colors you wish to put in the R,G,B channels in that

order!

- Ensure you have all images closed in Photoshop

- Play Action

- First Open: Select your Red File, Click OPEN

- Next Open: Select your Green File, Click OPEN

- Next Open: Select your Blue File, Click OPEN

- Action will finish and your LRGB image will be displayed, Save or continuing

Processing

Hubble Palette Creation: This action will create the popular "Hubble Palette" (SHO) from your

processed Ha, SII, and OIII image files.

- Process and balance your SII, Ha, and OIII files first and save them as three separate files

- Ensure you have all images closed in Photoshop

- Play Action

- Select the appropriate files when prompted

- Balance your RGB histograms as best you can on the levels pop-up (generally your

image will still be greenish at this step due to the overwhelming nature of Ha in most nebulas.

This is normal and expected at this step. Once histograms are mostly balanced click OK on the

Levels popup to continue the action

- Action will finish and you should have the typical blues and ambers of the Hubble Palette

Ha-OIII BiColor Process: This action will take your H-alpha and OIII images and create a

complete Bi-Color image

- Process and balance your Ha and OIII files first and save as two separate files

- Ensure you have all images closed in Photoshop

- Play Action

- Select the appropriate files when prompted

- Click Continue when prompted

- Click OK to create the new Levels layer

- Balance the Red, Green, and Blue channels to even out the background of your image,

then click OK

- Action will finish and you should have a complete Bi-Color image

HaRGB: This action will take the H-alpha and incorporate it with your RGB image

- Process your Ha as well as your complete RGB file. Once you have the two files, save

them and close all images in Photoshop.

- Play Action, once you read the instructions that pop up, click Continue

- Select the appropriate files when prompted

- Click Continue when prompted

- Action will finish and you should have your HaRGB image

Simple Stretching: Walks you through basic levels and curves stretching

- Open the file with which you want to work

- Play

- Adjust your levels so your black point is to the left of your main histogram spike and

your gamma (central triangle) is to the right of your histogram curve

- Adjust curves - default level will help bring out the DSO, but feel free to change it

- Adjust curves2 - make small adjustments to start to enhance DSO

- Adjust curves3 - make more small adjustments to bring out your DSO

- Adjust levels - final levels adjustment to set black point and gamma

Enhance Dust Lanes: This action increases the contrast of galaxy dust trails to make them

stand out

Note: I have kept the effect of this fairly mild as to not overdo it with just one run-through. You

may use this action multiple times to slowly bump up the galaxy dust in respect to the rest of the

image

- Open the file you wish to work on

- Play Action

Dynamic Enhance: Used to quickly dynamically stretch and increase contrast in your image

- Open the file you wish to work on

- Play Action

Reduce Star Bloating: This action will help reduce star bloating that can occur when stretching

your image

- Open the file with which you want to work

- Play

Reduce Star Size - full photo: This action will help reduce star sizes throughout the entire

image

- Open the file with which you want to work

- Play

Brighten Color & Sharpen: This action increases the saturation of colors throughout your

image as well as makes edges crisper

- Open the file you wish to work on

- Play Action

Smooth Out Image: This action will help reduce the sharp edges that can appear throughout

the image during processing. Creates a "softer" overall appearance

- Open the file you wish to work on

- Play Action

Noise Reduction: Reduces the noise in your overall image

- Open the file you wish to work on

- Play Action

Inverse Image: Creates an inverse of your image used sometimes to search for faint galaxies

or nebulosity

- Open the file you wish to work on

- Play Action

Boost Star Colors: Helps to bring out the colors in your stars (mild effect, may need to play

multiple times depending on the strength of your star colors)

- Open the file you wish to work on

- Play Action

- Repeat if necessary

Create Watermark: This action will create a watermark across your image to protect your

images against copyright infringement

- Open the file with which you want to work.

- Play Action

- Input the text you want and click the Checkmark in your top tool bar

- Click "OK" to the Rasterize message

Remove "Panda Eyes": Removes dark rings that appear around stars often when over

sharpened.

- Open the file with which you want to work

- Play the action

Remove Stars (Large Image): This action will remove the stars from the image, leaving you

with only your DSO

Note: (The Large Image one is tailored for large-chip ccd images or DSLRs. The files

will be bigger and the same #s wont work for both this size and small chip images (hence 2

separate actions). Test out both with your camera's images to see which works best for you. )

- Open the file you wish to work on

- Play Action

Remove Stars (Small Image): Same as above but for small chip CCD (smaller image size)

images.

- Open the file you wish to work on

- Play Action

Star Layer Separate (automatic): This action will create 3 separate layers, one with your star

field, one with your DSO, and one with your original image. This way you can stretch and

process your DSO separately from your Stars to prevent star bloating and other issues.

- Open the file with which you want to work.

- Play Action

- Once it is complete you will have 3 layers, ready to be processed.

Star Layer Separate (user assist): Same as above but includes a prompt in the middle for the

user to use the clone tool to assist the process in removing all the stars, this will make the final

layers more accurate.

- Open the file with which you want to work.

- Play Action

- Once it is complete you will have 3 layers, ready to be processed.

Reduce Vignetting 1: This action is one of two methods I am providing that will help reduce

vignetting in your image (needed if you dont take flats) ... try both methods to determine which

will work best for your image

- Open the file with which you want to work

- Play Action

- Follow on-screen instructions

Reduce Vignetting 2: This is the second method for reducing vignetting. This one requires less

user interaction

- Open the file with which you want to work

- Play Action