TonyREAL - Tone Cloner

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A plug-in for the camera RAW image processing program Bibble.
Author: Sean Puckett (

Bibble 5 note: This is a Bibble 4 plug-in. It does not work with Bibble 5.

What does TonyREAL do?

TonyREAL is a tool for B&W photographers that allows you to reproduce the toning gradient (e.g. sepia) of another B&W image. Using TonyREAL is as simple as finding a picture with a toning you like, placing it in the source directory and selecting its filename from a list. TonyREAL scans the source image, extracts the full gradient of tone changes present, then applies them to your Bibble image.

Purchase TonyREAL Professional Version Now

Windows, Linux and Mac versions included in the same download. TonyREAL now available for Windows, Macintosh (Intel and PPC), and Linux.

TonyREAL: $10 USD

Already purchased, but need an upgrade? Click Here.

If you purchase this plug-in, you do so knowing it is not compatible with Bibble 5. I do not provide installation support for Bibble 4 plug-ins, and in purchasing them you do so at your own risk. Further, I do not guarantee that any Bibble 4 plug-in will be available for Bibble 5.

Sample Output

This is our starter image, a simple portrait with a wide range of tones and texture. This B&W conversion was made with AndyPRO using TechPan 25 Technidol 7min / Fortezo Soft, Full Range

Untoned Starter Image Info

Now let's see how we can apply real-world tones to this rather flat looking image.

Silver Gelatine Toning -- warmer

Source Image (scanned silver gelatine print)

Orthodox Frisbee Info

Used under terms of a creative commons license.  (C) Camil Tulcan
(C) Camil Tulcan
Silver Gelatine Toning in Bibble with TonyREAL -- using above image as tone reference. You can use this same image in TonyREAL to get the same tone.

TonyREAL Silver Gelatine Info

Silver Gelatine Toning -- Cooler

Source image.

oh my... Info

Used under the terms of a creative commons license.  (C) Camil Tulcan
(C) Camil Tulcan
TonyREAL result. Again -- you can use the above tone source image directly to tone your own images.

TonyREAL Silver Gelatine (cool) Info

Newspaper Toning

Newspaper Sample Image (taken with cheap P&S Digital). I loaded the original image in Bibble then saved it immediately into my TonyREAL source directory (no edits).

Newspaper Tone Source Info

Newspaper Toning via TonyREAL using the above image as a tone source.

TonyREAL Newspaper Output Info

Selenium Toning

Selenium Sample Image (found on Flickr with "selenium" and open source license). Saved with my browser into the TonyREAL source directory, then selected within Bibble as my TonyREAL source.

Selenium Sample Info

Selenium Toning via TonyREAL using the above image as tone source.

Selenium Output Info

User Interface

TonyREAL 1.0 Info

Enabled Checkbox

Controls whether TonyREAL affects the image.

Reset Button

Turns TonyREAL off and clears the sliders. It doesn't clear the currently analyzed tone, however.

? Button

Displays version number and author contact information.

Tone Source Group

These settings allow you to locate and analyze the toning colours used in an image.

File List

Shows the list of files in the TonyREAL source directory (see below). Choose one from the list, then click the Load Tone from File button to analyze its tonality.

Refresh Button

Refreshes the list of files shown from the TonyREAL directory, and also shows you which directory is used in a popup.

Load Tone from File Button

Loads the file highlighted in the file list, analyzes the tonality applied, and creates a tone gradient. The gradient is stored in the .bib file, so you don't need to worry about your tone source files getting lost or stale, and as long as your .bib file is saved, your toning will always be intact.

Tone Application Group

These settings control how the toning gradient is applied to the current Bibble image.

Luma Limit Checkbox

When checked, rescales the Bibble image so that no luminance value falls outside the luminance values found in the source tone. Keep in mind that this isn't an autolevels function; it scales the full black-white range (not what is actually found in your image). If you use Luma Limit, make sure your Bibble image is reasonably well exposed.

If you don't use Luma Limit, your toning gradient might look bad in the highligths and shadows because there isn't any similar tone data in your source file. In that case, adjust your image shadows/highlights accordingly. (Or turn off Andy's Full Range checkbox.)

Filename Reminder Text Box

This just reminds you of the name of the source toning file. Changing it will only confuse you later.

Saturation Slider

Adjusts the overall saturation of the entire toning gradient. See note below if you generally use a Bibble working space other than sRGB or AdobeRGB.

Hue Shift Slider

Shifts the toning gradient around the colour wheel. Can gently shove a toning to something more desirable or completely alter its character.

Centre Slider

Adjusts the toning gradient to favour tones found in darker or lighter colours. For example, you may have noticed that many real-world chemical tones have heavily saturated dark tones. With this slider, you can pull these tones up towards the lighter luminance areas of your image, or push them further toward the blacks.

Fade Slider

Mixes part of the original, untoned image back into the output. Useful for doing "semi-tones" even if you're not a musician.


Tone Source Image Directory

TonyREAL presents the list of image files stored in a directory named "tonyreal" in your Bibble user directory. The first time that TonyREAL is launched within Bibble, this directory is created for you. It's also easy to verify the location of the directory by pressing the "refresh" button within the TonyREAL window -- you're notified of the exact directory location scanned.

Since all files are shown in the list (due to filename and filetype issues), do not put non-image files in this directory as they will clutter up your list.

Use Bibble to edit/save your Tone Files

If you're using Bibble Pro, set up an output batch file that points to your TonyREAL directory. Ste the output to JPG at about 800 pixels or so. Now you can use Bibble to browse any folder on your hard drive and crop/colour correct any image to create your TonyREAL source tone file.

Here's an idea: Use your camera to take a picture of a fine art photograph you like. White balance and colour correct it, then save to your TonyREAL folder with this batch. Now you can reproduce any toning you find in real life very simply and easily. I've created tones from pictures of wood, grass, newspaper photos... even my cat.

Unfortunately, it seems that sometimes you may have to exit and reopen Bibble to use the files you save in this fashion, because Bibble holds the output files open so that TonyREAL can't read them. Oh well.

File Loading Issues

TonyREAL can load most JPG and PNG images as long as those images are not "progressive" or "interlaced." If you're having trouble reading a file, load it into your favorite image editor and save it out again in the simplest form of JPG or PNG available.

Source File Size

There's no real need to have a source file much larger than a few hundred pixels on a side -- we're reading the tonality from the image, nothing more.

Toning Looks Wrong

If you're using a Bibble colour workspace other than sRGB or AdobeRGB, you've probably noticed that TonyREAL's toning is applied too heavily. That's because most source JPG and PNG images use the sRGB colourspace. Since TonyREAL doesn't know how to convert colourspaces, you'll have to back off the TonyREAL saturation slider to approximate the saturation differential between sRGB and your working space.

Or, you could just use the sRGB image space for your toned images. If you're doing toned black/white images, you probably don't get any benefit at all from using a huge working gamut. In fact, you're liable to get banding on 8 bit output. Choose your working space wisely, and remember that using the same one all the time may not be in your best interest.

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