Ok we shot an interview and the usual cam op was sick so we used the backup op. Now he was not too familiar with dslr so i walked him through it all remotely. Now the footage has been shot but focus is slightly off. It seems he forgot to reset it when the subject sat down. If you see http://bit.ly/xMaTfx you will notice its focused more on the back ledge. Now im wondering what i can do to either restore the balance or make remove the focus of the ledge. I am told by some to use sharpen plug ins? Any help is much appreciated
Hmmm... not sure if there's anything you can do to make it work.
You could try an unsharp mask filter with quite a high value (about 200) and a high radius (something between 3 and 6). But be shure to do some noise reduction before or the sharpening will increase the noise even further.
You could try to mask the talent out and just sharpen him. Sharpening of the whole picture will sharpen the background even more. Maybe add a bit of blur to the background as well.
But - as written - not sure if you'd be happy with the outcome...
"Tragedy is a close-up; comedy, a long shot." - Buster Keaton
Thanks for your advise the unsharp did give a good results combined with the Colin McQuillan's advise to use oft edge elliptical mask i might have just have made it slightly more usable
I set a elliptical mask but shaped it around the subjects face, i did try using the 200 value which did work well and gave me a look of http://bit.ly/yV1U4O however it did not see natural. So i mask and used the unsharp on the talent at 89 and 6 as the radius which gave me http://bit.ly/yoaVHs or http://bit.ly/yRTPqQ(Raw file 54mb) which shows the talent but with a very faint line around where the 2 images overlap.
If you can think anything else that may help please feel free to suggest. Makes me wish i was there to stop this disaster as the subject was an actor and flew over so we were only going to get one chance at it.
I like Noise Industries sharpen edge filter. Another trick may be to duplicate layers - add a soft edge elliptical mask around your subject on the top layer and use a Gaussian blur to soften the BG on the bottom layer.
Because DSLRs are an inexpensive piece of equipment doesn't mean they're easy to use. In fact done properly they're as complex as operating and shooting with a 35mm film camera.
Their shallow depth of field properties make them difficult to focus, indeed even on a simple interview when shooting at a wide f stop it's necessary to continually track focus (on the interviewee's eyes). This process is made even more difficult by the poor quality LCD viewfinders that are standard on these cameras.
Sounds like your operator wasn't up to the task, in that he wasn't familiar enough with the equipment, nor experienced enough to know how to handle the focus tracking. You probably then need to ask yourself why he was given the job, because elementary focus issues are something very difficult to overcome in post.