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Let's learn about the different color adjustment nodes in Blender that we can use to adjust and manipulate all of the colors in an image. First up let's go ahead and press F12. That should pull in this image of my daughter here and we are going to go ahead and adjust the colors a little bit. So let's get started with one of the simpler nodes, the Brightness/Contrast node. To thread that in let's click on the Image Input node and Add > Color > Brightness/Contrast and then we are going thread this output of the Brightness/Contrast node to our SplitViewer.
Just grab on a node header to drag it around. The Brightness/Contrast node works just by increasing the Brightness of one image and/or the Contrast. You can type the images input here or you can feed them through the Value node or a Mask node or anything else you want to use to automate the values that are placed in this node. That's what the Brightness/Contrast node does. The idea behind all of these nodes is that you have very simple computing unit and then you string all of these together.
The Inversion node takes the output of whatever threaded node is and inverts the values. This produces a negative of the image, go ahead and scale this down a little bit by pressing Ctrl and the middle mouse button. You can adjust the negatives of the RGB as well as the Alpha value of whatever is fed in. You can see here that this is actually a premultiplied Alpha PNG image with a transparent background. You often use the Inversion node to invert the Alpha channel, so when you are working with an image and you want to switch over the RGB Alpha channel, you can do that.
The Gamma Correction node takes the input image and does a Gamma correction. Usually you go to like 2.2 or something like that to do a complete Gamma correction that lifts all of the values in the image and/or darkens them depending on the value that you put in. I'm going to go ahead and compare the before and after images and that's obviously like a way too much Gamma correction depending on the monitor that you are using and your output format and everything you can do a little Gamma lift to bring out the flesh tones.
The RGB Curve is a really cool curve and it has this Curves Widget again that we can use to adjust the overall color. So if I wanted to, let's say bring out the highs and bring down the lows, basically increasing the contrast we can do that. I'm going to go ahead and slide this over a little bit. There we go. So, you can see what's going on down here. We posterized her colors. This is very similar to Photoshop and all those other packages that do that kind of manipulation.
We can also work on each individual channel. The Red channel here, I'm going to pop- up the Red's and maybe bring down the Green's a little bit and accentuate the Blue's.Let's say we want to knock all of the blues down by half and so, now we have done this very bright yellow, red color. She is on fire. We can also remap the bottom, what we call Black to be any kind of color or any shade of gray. So just by clicking on a preset here, I'm going to just pick a shade of gray.
Now I have brought down the overall blacks to what would be a medium gray on the input side is now actually black on the output side. So I can remap my dynamic range of brightness just by changing the black and the white levels. Next up we have the HSV node, which changes the Hue/Saturation and Value of an image, so we can just do Hue Adjustment and Image Adjustment here. I'm going to just go ahead and delete this, do a little housekeeping here, so you can see when I'm done. All right, so the Hue/Saturation and Value, we can shift the hues of an image, we can increase the saturation and we can decrease the overall values to make it darker, don't like that too much, maybe just touch a little bit.
So this is the way you can do adjustments. Now this has a Factor Input, so we can feed a Mask here and then apply this change to any portion of the image identified by the mask. Let's say if I want to bring out her blue eyes, I could just create a blue for the mask and then adjust the hue for her eyes. So that's the essential Color Adjustment nodes of how we can work on either the entire image or a portion of the image to adjust the color in pretty much anyway that we want.
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