I'm in the midst of a project where I have to correct both the color and contrast of several hundred cover scans over the next few months (possibly over a 1,000 by the time I'm done). There are two main issues I'm noticing with these images. First is that the color is either oversaturated or undersaturated (usually too much red in the flesh tones or not enough vibrancy overall). The second is the contrast is often way to dark and needs lightened up in the shadows and a bit of pop added to the contrast.
I've found that doing it by hand garners the results I want, but is far too time consuming per cover and requires to many steps. The Auto Color/Auto Contrast/Auto Levels options in Photoshop do virtually nothing when applied. My question is this:
What is the best plug in for Photoshop or a better stand-alone application I can switch to that will sample the image and pretty much auto correct all these issues in a one-two steps? It doesn't have to be a one-button press solution (although that would be nice), but something that will only take a few seconds per cover.
Any thoughts/suggestion? Help is much appreciated!
Sounds like you're better off manually selecting which corrections to do. To speed up the process, you could record a number of actions that do the same thing you would do manually and assign them to function keys, so that you would have "lighten shadows", "desaturate" "saturate", "fix skin tones" etc as actions that you can call with the F keys. Then the actual corrections would take no time, you'd just do the ones that were needed based on a visual inspection of each image and running the needed actions.