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Analog Efex Pro, part of the Nik Collection from Google, is focused on adding various film and wet plate effects, enabling you to import a sense of age and a unique look to any digital photo. In this course you'll learn all about the many creative effects you can apply in Analog Efex Pro, such as lens distortion, vignettes, bokeh, and imitated dust and scratches.
Once you're happy with the final effect you've applied in Analog Efex Pro, in most cases, you'll simply want to click the OK button down at the bottom right, in order to apply the effect. In other words, to finalize the filter effect that you've set for the image. If, for any reason, you're not happy with the result, of course, you could just click the Cancel button. But generally, you would click OK, in order to continue working. The specific result will vary depending on how you got started with Analog Efex Pro.
If you launched Analog Efex Pro as a stand alone application, and then opened an image. Clicking OK, will apply the changes to that image. If you sent a photo from Lightroom, over to Analog Efex Pro, then clicking OK will save the derivative image. You'll still have your original, unmodified image, and so you can continue managing both the original, plus your creative effect applied with Analog Efex Pro, as to individual files within your Lightroom catalogue. If you opened Analog Efex Pro from Photoshop, then the effect will be applied as a separate layer.
And so, you have your background image layer, for example, preserved, so you can always get back to the original image. But you also have a new layer, that will reflect the adjustments that you've applied, the creative effects. In Analog Efex Pro. But, if you open the image from Photoshop, as I've done here, then you also have one additional option that's available to you, and that is, the brush option. In many respects, clicking the brush button, is exactly the same as clicking the OK button.
It's just that when you choose the brush option. There will be a few additional steps applied, that enable you to make the creative effect you've added to the image, only visible in certain areas of the photo. So, again, it's very similar to clicking OK, with just a couple of extra features. I'll go ahead and click the Brush button, and that will process the image, applying my creative effect from Analog Efex Pro, to a duplicate image layer. You'll notice, that a new layer has been created, in this case called Nik Collection.
It's essentially a duplicate of my background image layer. But as you can see from the thumbnail, it also has a creative effect from Analog Efex Pro, applied to it. And yet you're not able to see the actual effect within the image. And that's because, a layer mask was also added. The layer mask was added because I clicked the brush button, rather than the OK button, and that layer mask has also been filled with black. In the context of a layer mask, black blocks, and white reveals. And so, the entirety of my creative effect, is currently being blocked.
In addition to creating this layer with a layer mask. Analog Efex Pro has also enabled the brush for me, and made sure that the colors are set to their default. So I have white as the foreground color, and black as the background color, in the context of a layer mask. And you'll see that I have a control dialog here. That allows me to make some adjustments, and ultimately apply the final result. The idea here, is that I've hidden the entire effect, because I used that brush option, but now I can paint the effect in, to specific areas of the photo.
So, I'll go ahead and adjust the brush size as needed. Using the left square bracket key to reduce the size of the brush, and the right square bracket key on the keyboard, to increase the size of the brush, I can then go ahead and paint onto the image. I'm actually painting on the layer mask, not on the actual image itself, so I'm not painting white pixels onto the image. But rather, I'm painting white pixels onto the layer mask. And so, I'm revealing portions of my creative effect.
In addition to painting with black to block portions of the creative effect, or painting with white to reveal portions of that creative effect, I can also use selections as the basis of a layer mask. Let's take a look at how that might work. I'll go ahead and close out from working with Analog Efex Pro. By clicking the Apply button, that will finalize the effect. I'll go ahead then and close my Google window here. And now, I can just continue working with my image layer and layer mask as I see fit. I'll go ahead and start off actually by deleting this layer mask, so that I can essentially just start over.
I'll just drag the layer mask thumbnail down to the trash can icon at the bottom of the layers panel. And then I'll click the Delete button in the confirmation dialog. And now, I'm back to where I would have originally been, had I just clicked the OK button, instead of the brush button. But, I still have that flexibility, because I'm working in Photoshop, with layers and layer masks at my disposal, I can still continue working with all of the control. And, in fact, even more control, than was available by choosing that brush option. In this case, I'll use a selection as the basis of my layer mask, for example.
So I'll go ahead and choose the Rectangular Marquee Tool from the Menu bar. And then I'll just click and drag to draw a selection, I won't worry about getting it exactly perfectly precise in this case. Just for demonstration purposes, but the idea here is that perhaps I want to see the creative effect, only for the area outside the window. In that case, I actually need the opposite of the selection that I created here, and so I'll go to the Select menu, and then choose Inverse, to reverse the selection.
Now, I have the area outside the window in my image selected, and so I am ready to add a layer mask, based on the selection, with the selection active, and with my Analog Efex Pro layer active, I'll just go ahead and click the Add Layer Mask button, the circle inside of a square icon, at the bottom of Layers panel. And as you can see, that has added a layer mask, and the layer mask is black, in the area that was not selected, in the area of the window. And is white in the areas that were selected.
The wall around the window essentially, and so now I see the effect. Only in that area. And so, because I am using Photoshop to work with Analog Efex Pro, I have the very powerful layer masking features at my disposal. This provides, just a little bit of extra power, to really make the most of the creative effects you might apply, with Analog Efex Pro.
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