Blender to Photoshop EXR Workflow Help

As far as I understand Blender outputs files in Standard color space when saved as full Multi Layred EXR. Where standart is a sRGB display family color space profile.

I initially though Blender was saving files in Linear here but after some digging and testing turned out it was Standard profile.

I then open files in in Photoshop for further post production. What I can do to match the colors in Blender viewport? There is no lut available as far as I could find to use in Photoshop to match the Blender viewport look.

What is your workflow here?

When you export to srgb, “there is no lut”.
You need to export on FILMIC to get more color range:

Basically you need to export .exr (single or multi layer) from the formats option to 16 bit float.
And you’ll get the beauty of Blender.

I may also recommend a 2017 blender and aces google search. That will “introduce” the “FILM” profile concept which now we have activated by default. ACES is still a big thing for compositing that I consider, hasn’t been receiving much attention from the community. But compers like us that have set their eyes on it, have gotten pretty amazing results from renders.
Cheers.

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Thank for your reply.

You need to export on FILMIC to get more color range.

I have it set the same.

Basically you need to export .exr (single or multi layer) from the formats option to 16 bit float.
And you’ll get the beauty of Blender.

I tried both. Half float(16bit) and Full float(32bit). The output file in Photoshop differs from what is rendered in Blender. It doesn’t match Filmic view. It matches Standard view. I don’t know if it is supposed to work like that or if it’s a bug.

When saved as a PNG everything looks correct. The image in Photoshop matches the render in Blender with Filmic view transform.

I found a somewhat working work around for the issue but I’d prefer not to deal with it or have a more streamlined workflow.

ACES is still a big thing for compositing that I consider, hasn’t been receiving much attention from the community. But compers like us that have set their eyes on it, have gotten pretty amazing results from renders.

Yes, I’d love it to be fully implemented in Blender too. A much need feature to produce content with less hustle.

The .exr format doesn’t ‘save’ any view transform on it. With Photoshop you can’t do what you want if I’m not wrong. There’s a workflow with Affinity Photo that works, you can load the .exr and apply the filmic view transform with the contrast you choose.

Here’s a link with a how to: Colour Science (Was: Blender Filmic)

Hope that helps!

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The .exr format doesn’t ‘save’ any view transform on it.

Yes, this is what I thought.

With Photoshop you can’t do what you want if I’m not wrong. There’s a workflow with Affinity Photo that works, you can load the .exr and apply the filmic view transform with the contrast you choose.

It looks like I might be able to. There is a plugin to open EXR in Photoshop and also another plugin from OpenColorIO I used to transform colors to the Filmic view in Photoshop. There are too many steps to my taste but it’s doable.

I’ll read the Color Science forum. Thank you for the link.

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Could you please share a link where I can find this plugin and steps to do it in Photoshop? I’ve tried such workflow in the past but failed.

Alexey, thank you for proof testing the filimic .exr render. Please render your image. In the window (F12 render) or image viewer, press T, and navigate to the SCOPES tab. Screen capture it. I am pretty much sure all your 16 bit float value ranges are in there. If not: save the .exr, and THEN open it using the image viewer and screen capture the scope. Sounds like Blender is WRITING a color curve when it saves 16 bit float which SHOULD NOT happen. Hopefully we’ve found a bug to fix. Also, are u on 2.81? If your’re testing 2.82, let us know.
Thanks!

I use Blender 2.81a.

Let me know if you need the rest or if this is enough to troubleshoot this issue.

If not: save the .exr, and THEN open it using the image viewer and screen capture the scope. Sounds like Blender is WRITING a color curve when it saves 16 bit float which SHOULD NOT happen. Hopefully we’ve found a bug to fix.

Exr-IO for opening EXR multi-layered images in Photoshop. Including decent support for Cryptomatte.

And a plugin to manage OpenColorIO in Photoshop.

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In photoshop. WHen you set the mode to 8 bit from 16 bit you get a window where you can edit the highlights and shadows. I think it does that.

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From this picture all your colors are there. So the problem is not the .exr generated in B3d, but the reading in PS.
Have you tried to import the .exr in after effects? use Extractor plugin to extract your channels, then open the vectorscope on AE. It should be identilcal.

There’s also the option to use Davinci Resolve (Fusion). You just import your 32bit fullfloat .exr, load up your OCIO filmic color config file (simple node setup) and you pretty much get the same result as in Blender Filmic.

You’re probably right.

I need this workflow Blender to Photoshop work for me so I’ll investigate further.

I tested today’s 2.82 beta version and have the same result:


PNG on the left matches the Filmic view in Blender. EXR on the right doesn’t.

The is a video explaining the Blender to Photoshop workflow. I don’t see the author to have the issue I expirience.

Here are the screenshots from the video. Image on the left is Blender vieport and on the right the rendered multi-layerd exr file open in the Photoshop.

Thank you. I don’t have AE to test the image as David suggested but I have Davinci Resolve. Can you maybe recommend a good video explaining the process in Davinci?

I tested the process with 2.80. Getting the same result. Haven’t tested Davinci Resolve yet but I’m leaning toward Photoshop being the issue here.

Hi Alexey, Blender special forces Ops here. :slight_smile:
I am testing what you mention on Davinci as well.
Let me work with Blender 2.83 (available at blender.org/downloads -click the rocket for experimental versions, download blender 2.83 from the next page).
I see you’re still on 2.80 that might be the issue. Also, we are on 2.81a (official) which solved a lot of bugs. So if anything, please install that version.
I’ll upload things comparing from PS to B3D in a snappy.
Thank you for your persistance! Your workflow is important to us.
Thank you for calling 1800 I love blender :smiley:

(EDIT)
I reviewed it on my photoshop CS6. Both exr and png. Look the same. I explain the light issue here: https://streamable.com/jyxi2

This was tested on 2.81 official.
No extra data was written. I am using I/O exr importer version 2 which was updated just this past 20th of Jan. (yeah, it picked up in CS6!)

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Blender’s colour management is a display transform. You can save .png with the transform ‘baked in’, but this is not desirable for .exr. For the .exr to display the same way in Photoshop you need to put it through the same display transform.

Photoshop doesn’t support it.

You can try the fnordware OpenColorIO plugin for Photoshop, but as others have already suggested, a better approach is do the post processing with an application that properly supports OCIO, such as Fusion standalone or Nuke. I’m sure there are others . . . Or you can save 16 bit .tif from Blender if you really want to use Photoshop.

Here’s another reason to ditch Adobe - https://twitter.com/jkierbel/status/1210235542404775945

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Here’s one i found. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nJYVIKjYkO8

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Thanks guys for helping me out with this. I really appreciate it. It’s a weird case. I know Photoshop sucks with modern color management process. Unfortunately I’m very effeccient with it and would like to build Blender to Photoshop solid pipeline with minimum friction. I moved to Blender 2.8 and really love a lot about it but some things require tinkering to make things work.

I have a good understand of color theory and color science but at some point it gets a little bit too complex how colors transforms between apps ect.

Still it’s very important for me to get predictable results every time.

No, I’m on 2.81a. And I first discovered the issue with EXR in my workflow on this version. I was testing 2.80 final and 2.82 beta to see if I get different results. Nope, same issue. I tried to load images with in Photoshop 2018 and latest 2020. With plugin and without. Same issue. I also opened the image in Affinity Photo. The same issue occurred as with Photoshop which suggests that Blender must be outputting it that way. I haven’t tested it in Davinci Resolve yet.

Have you tested it on vanilla version? I have a suspicion that some addons might interfere somehow. Haven’t tested the issue on vanilla Blender yet.

Anyway, I haven’t pinpointed the issues yet and will keep trying different scenarios. I’ll also research the offered solutions to see what might work for me and if I can figure out what causing my specific issue.

Really appreciate the help!

Same issue. I also opened the image in Affinity Photo.

Please ignore this statement. Once I applied proper color management the image looked correct in Affinity Photo. I used this video as a guide:

Yes, at the moment it seems like the only viable solution if I want to use Photoshop. I tested it. 16 bit TIFFs look as expected.

I really wounder though how you manged to open it correctly there. :thinking:

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