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Photoshop Elements 11 Essentials: 02 Editing and Retouching Photos

Removing blemishes


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Photoshop Elements 11 Essentials: 02 Editing and Retouching Photos

with Jan Kabili

Video: Removing blemishes

One of the easiest ways to make someone look good in a photo is to take a minute to cover up any blemishes using the Spot Healing Brush Tool in the Expert edit workspace, which is tailor-made for just that job. In the Toolbar I'll click on the Spot Healing Brush Tool, making sure in the Options bar for this tool that I do have the Spot Healing Brush and not the Healing Brush this time, their icons look very much the same. So I want that Band-Aid icon with the little dots over it. I like to do my retouching on a separate layer whenever possible for maximum editing flexibility.
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  1. 6m 14s
    1. Welcome
      1m 10s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 30s
    3. Overview of the editing workspaces
      3m 34s
  2. 43m 14s
    1. Touring the interface
      4m 21s
    2. Making the most of Elements' tools
      4m 6s
    3. Arranging the panels
      4m 32s
    4. Zooming and panning
      4m 3s
    5. Viewing multiple photos
      3m 51s
    6. Undoing
      5m 15s
    7. Cropping
      3m 46s
    8. Resizing
      7m 18s
    9. Saving images and examining formats
      6m 2s
  3. 19m 23s
    1. Understanding layers
      7m 59s
    2. Managing layers in the Layers panel
      4m 33s
    3. Creating new layers
      6m 51s
  4. 38m 28s
    1. Why use selections?
      4m 20s
    2. Selecting with the marquee tools
      3m 56s
    3. Selecting with the lasso tools
      6m 40s
    4. Selecting by color and tone
      6m 22s
    5. Refining a selection
      4m 51s
    6. Selecting hair
      5m 42s
    7. Hiding content with a layer mask
      6m 37s
  5. 46m 54s
    1. Why use adjustment layers?
      5m 15s
    2. Adjusting color with a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer
      4m 32s
    3. Correcting lighting with a Levels adjustment layer
      3m 32s
    4. Adjusting part of an image with an adjustment layer
      5m 19s
    5. Exploring auto adjustments
      3m 55s
    6. Improving shadows and highlights
      2m 14s
    7. Removing a color cast
      1m 47s
    8. Fine-tuning with Color Curves
      3m 16s
    9. Converting to black and white
      2m 26s
    10. Correcting camera distortion
      5m 32s
    11. Reducing noise
      2m 56s
    12. Sharpening
      6m 10s
  6. 20m 51s
    1. Creating a panorama
      5m 6s
    2. Merging bracketed exposures
      6m 0s
    3. Removing people from a scene
      5m 25s
    4. Combining group shots
      4m 20s
  7. 29m 24s
    1. Removing blemishes
      3m 42s
    2. Reducing wrinkles and circles
      4m 16s
    3. Enhancing eyes
      5m 19s
    4. Removing red-eye
      3m 15s
    5. Adjusting skin tone
      2m 21s
    6. Removing dust spots
      4m 7s
    7. Removing content
      6m 24s
  8. 52m 36s
    1. What is Camera Raw?
      5m 18s
    2. Using the latest Camera Raw controls
      3m 16s
    3. Camera Raw basics
      6m 22s
    4. Making use of the histogram
      3m 45s
    5. Setting white balance
      3m 44s
    6. Adjusting lighting
      4m 28s
    7. Adjusting color saturation
      2m 9s
    8. Cropping and straightening
      3m 58s
    9. Reducing noise
      3m 33s
    10. Sharpening
      3m 38s
    11. Synchronizing edits to multiple photos
      3m 36s
    12. Outputting from Camera Raw
      6m 14s
    13. Using Camera Raw with JPEGs
      2m 35s
  9. 48s
    1. Next steps
      48s

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Photoshop Elements 11 Essentials: 02 Editing and Retouching Photos
4h 17m Beginner Nov 07, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Go beyond the automatic editing features in Adobe Photoshop Elements and find out how to make sophisticated edits using the program's Expert Edit mode. In this course, author, teacher, and photographer Jan Kabili explores the core features of the Expert Edit mode, from making exposure adjustments, retouching, and compositing images, to adding text. The course also takes a close look at adjusting photos with Adobe Camera Raw, included with Elements 11.

Topics include:
  • Arranging the panels and interface
  • Cropping and resizing photos
  • Creating new layers
  • Refining selections
  • Hiding content with a layer mask
  • Using adjustment layers
  • Correcting color, lighting, and contrast
  • Converting a color photo to black and white
  • Creating a panorama from multiple photos
  • Retouching blemishes and wrinkles
  • Making adjustments in Camera Raw
Subjects:
Photography Retouching
Software:
Photoshop Elements Elements
Author:
Jan Kabili

Removing blemishes

One of the easiest ways to make someone look good in a photo is to take a minute to cover up any blemishes using the Spot Healing Brush Tool in the Expert edit workspace, which is tailor-made for just that job. In the Toolbar I'll click on the Spot Healing Brush Tool, making sure in the Options bar for this tool that I do have the Spot Healing Brush and not the Healing Brush this time, their icons look very much the same. So I want that Band-Aid icon with the little dots over it. I like to do my retouching on a separate layer whenever possible for maximum editing flexibility.

So I'm going to start by making a new layer in the Layers Panel, clicking the Create New Layer button and naming the new layer by double-clicking its default name. I'll call it heal, and press Enter or Return. With that new blank layer selected, I'll go down to the Options Bar for the Spot Healing Brush Tool, and I also want to make sure that Sample All Layers is checked. If it isn't I'll add a checkmark there. I'm also going to make sure that the Content Aware button is selected in the Type menu here. This gives me the best chance of getting a good blend between the healing pixels that I'll use to be covering the blemishes on this girl's face and the rest of the photo.

Using this tool is as simple as coming into the image, and holding the tool over a blemish, and sizing the tool, so that it's just a little bit bigger than the blemish that you want to remove. In this case, I think it needs to be a bit bigger, so I'll go to the Size slider and I'll drag to the right. Then all I have to do to cover this blemish is click on top of it, and it's gone. What the Spot Healing Brush Tool does is look for good, unblemished pixels nearby, sample those, and then place them on top of the blemish, blending them in with the color texture and lighting of the surrounding skin, and it often does just this good a job.

I'll quickly continue, removing some of the other spots on her face, like this one, and I'll come up here. Now here I want to be sure that my brush tip is small, because I don't want to run into her eyebrow or I may end up covering the blemish with some dark pixels by mistake. So I'll make my Brush Tool a little bit smaller, either by going down to the Size slider in the Options Bar, or I can use the left bracket on my keyboard, that's the key just to right of the P key. And then I'll click with this brush tip and that blemish is gone too, and I see a small blemish over here, I'll remove that one as well.

Now let's take a look at the Layers Panel. The reason that I used that separate layer for healing is so that I would have more flexibility if I didn't like the results. If I turn off the background layer that contains the photo for a moment you'll see that all the little healing pixels have been laid down on the heal layer. If I turn the photo back on and turn the heal layer off by clicking its icon, you can see that on the photo those blemishes were still there, I haven't directly impacted the photo, all of my retouching is done on the heal layer. I'm going to turn that layer on one more time, so that I can show you what I would do if I didn't like these results.

One thing I could do is take the whole heal layer and drag it to the layer trash, but I'm not going to do that because I really do like the results in this case. But if I just wanted to erase some of the healing patches that I'd added, what I would do is go to the Opacity slider at the top of the Layers Panel and drag it to the left until I can just barely see the blemishes on the layer below. And then I would get the Eraser Tool in the toolbar and move into the image, and if I wanted to bring back this particular beauty mark, I would click and drag over the healing patch that I'd added on the heal layer, to erase the patch and bring the blemish back into view.

Hiding blemishes like these is quick and easy using the Spot Healing Brush Tool. But if you have a larger flaw that you'd like to hide or reduce, like the circles that you often see under a subject's eyes, then you might try the related Healing Brush Tool, which I'll show you how to use in the next movie.

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