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Focused color adjustment

From: Quick Fixes with Photoshop Elements 10

Video: Focused color adjustment

I really like the vibrant colors in this image, and I also like that we have complimentary colors here. The purple flowers are relatively close to a magenta color, and the foliage is relatively green. And magenta and green happen to be opposite colors, and so they work pretty well together. But I feel that the foliage could use a little bit of work. In other words, I want to change the appearance of the green values within the image. In this lesson, I'll show you how the Hue Saturation Adjustment can be used to apply an adjustment to a specific range of colors.

Focused color adjustment

I really like the vibrant colors in this image, and I also like that we have complimentary colors here. The purple flowers are relatively close to a magenta color, and the foliage is relatively green. And magenta and green happen to be opposite colors, and so they work pretty well together. But I feel that the foliage could use a little bit of work. In other words, I want to change the appearance of the green values within the image. In this lesson, I'll show you how the Hue Saturation Adjustment can be used to apply an adjustment to a specific range of colors.

I'll get started by choosing Enhance and then Adjust Color followed by Adjust Hue Saturation. This will bring up the Hue Saturation dialog and if we were to apply adjustments now, we would be effecting the entire image. But I just want to effect the foliage, and so I'll leave the Saturation here at 0. And then from the popup, instead of Master, I'm going to choose Greens because I want to adjust the greens within the image. Adjusting the Saturation slider now, you might notice that there's not really a very significant adjustment happening in the image.

And that's because the foliage actually is not exactly green. The foliage contains a lot of yellow, and so when I specify greens, I'm not really getting much of an effect. And you can see which colors are being adjusted at the bottom of Hue Saturation. The vertical bars indicate the range of colors that are being completely affected by the adjustment. That adjustment then tapers off through the range of colors until it reaches the trapezoid outside of the vertical bars. If I want to change the range of colors, I can simply change the position of these controls.

Here, I want to move the left vertical bar over to the left. But I want to maintain that Tapering effect, so instead of moving the vertical bar, I'll point my mouse in between the vertical bar and the trapezoid and drag that Construct over to the left. As I do so, you can see that the reduction in Saturation that I applied for the greens is now expanding into other colors. Specifically, the yellows that are also found out in that foliage. I can continue to refine the range of colors, adjusting both ends as needed until I've defined exactly the range that I want to work with. For this image, I don't think I really want to reduce the saturation for the greens.

In fact, I might even increase Saturation just a little bit. Rather, I think I need to shift the colors just a little bit. The foliage here looks a little too yellow, and so I'm going to, in effect, change the Color Balance of just the greens. I'll do that by adjusting the Hue. If I shift the Hue, because I'm working on the greens channel, in this case, of course, having expanded greens to include the yellows as well, I can change the color appearance of just that range of colors.

You can see that the purple flowers, for example, are completely unaffected. I can fine tune the Hue, adjusting it to a point that I think looks a little bit better. I think that shift in Hue looks much better, but actually now that I look at the image a little more closely, I think I'd like to reduce the saturation of those greens just a little bit. I feel like the foliage is competing with the flowers. So there, I've set it to minus 21, a relatively modest reduction in Saturation. So, I've shifted the Hue, changing the color value just a little bit for the greens, and then also tone down the Saturation.

And I think in this case, that produces a much better result. As you can see, with Hue Saturation, I'm able to apply color adjustments that only affect a specific range of colors. I can continue working on as many of the different color values as I'd like, fine tuning the definition of those colors along the way. Once I'm happy with the final result, I'll go ahead and click OK. And I think I've got much better color in this photo now.

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Quick Fixes with Photoshop Elements 10

35 video lessons · 467 viewers

Tim Grey
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