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In Fireworks CS5 Essential Training, author Jim Babbage gives a detailed overview of Fireworks CS5, Adobe's software for creating and optimizing web graphics and interactive prototypes. This course includes a detailed tour of the interface, the enhanced PNG format, and the image editing toolset in Fireworks. Critical concepts, such as prototyping for HTML applications and working with symbols, the heart of an efficient workflow in Fireworks, are covered in detail. Exercise files are included with this course.
Two of the Bitmap effects tools get their names from traditional photo darkroom techniques. If I move over to the Tools panel here, and click and hold on these set of tools that are in the lower-left section of the Bitmap tools, you'll see Dodge and Burn. The names of these two tools are basically taken from traditional darkroom techniques where dodging allowed you to selectively lighten part of an image that was too dark, and burning allowed you to selectively darken part of an image that was too light. We're going to use both of these tools in our cycling shot here to, again, improve the overall image a little bit.
So we'll start with our Dodge tool. Again, and again, look in the Properties panel. You'll see we've got some controls. I am going to change the Size of this brush to be a bit larger, about 22 pixels, 24, somewhere in that range. I want a nice, soft Edge to the brush, so we get nice, soft blending. I'm going to go with a Round brush. Now here is one that we haven't seen so far, Range. Now the idea behind dodging and burning is that you're going to affect a certain range of brightness in the scene. So we can choose between Shadows, Midtones and Highlights.
Typically, I tend to work mostly, when I'm dealing with the Dodge tool, with the Midtones. Sometimes you can lighten up Shadows, but there may not be enough information there to get anything other than kind of a muddy gray result. So the Midtones tend to be the range I want to work with. The last setting here is Exposure. Now this one is really important. I don't tend to use a very high value here. I like this effect to be subtle. So I usually start somewhere around 10 or 15 as an Exposure value. If it's not enough, I can always paint over the area again to make it a little bit lighter or darker.
So we're going to dodge a couple of areas here. You'll notice our two cyclists that are watching the one guy who is talking. Their faces are a bit in shadow. So we're going to use the Dodge tool to make those areas a little bit lighter, and I still need a slightly bigger brush. So I'll go in to about 40. That's good. We'll also zoom in a little bit, just so I can see things a bit better. So I'm all set. I've got a Size of 40 pixels for my brush. I've got a soft-edged brush. I'm working with the Midtones, and I've got a small Exposure value of 15.
I'm just going to start up by the top of his forehead and just paint. Keeping the mouse button held down, dragging around the midtone areas, around his face where it's in shadow, and just lightening things up in general. Now the effect may or may not be very obvious. The idea here is usually to be somewhat subtle. But if I press Ctrl+Z or Command+Z on the Mac, you'll see that we actually did produce quite a different effect. It's subtle, but we have lightened up that area.
There is still detail. We haven't washed it out and made it too bright, but we've certainly made it a little easier to see the face. Now our other cyclist here, who is sitting on his bike, we'll do the same thing with this fellow. Just go ahead and use the same settings, and just paint over the midtone areas, like so. I'm not going to worry about the bike helmet, just the face area. Again, if I undo that by pressing Ctrl+Z, there is the original. If I redo it by pressing Ctrl+Y on the PC, you can see that I've got a nice little subtle change.
Now our next tool is the Burn tool. The Burn tool does the exact opposite of the Dodge tool. It adds density. It makes things darker. So in our example here, we've got our one cyclist, his jersey is kind of washed out and over exposed in this area here, and our one fellow over here and his forehead is a bit bright. So we're going to change those two areas. We'll start with the jersey and work our way over. Now again, I want to adjust my brush Size and go to about 40 again.
I want to work with the same Midtone Range. I also want to make sure I reduce this Exposure value. I'm going to go down to about 10 on this. I don't want to have a really strong effect here. Now I think, you know what? I'm going to go to a larger brush after all, go to about 60. There we go. Because I've got a big area to cover. The same idea as the Dodge tool, just hold down the mouse button and drag, and you'll see that I'm getting a slightly darker version. Now it's not affecting the highlights as much because they're highlights and we're really set to affect the Midtones.
But you can see as we go through the arm and so on, we're getting a noticeably darker area. I'll Undo that just so you can see it. I'll Redo it. So a little bit extra density there. Now over here on this fellow's forehead, that's our last little stop on this retouching trip. I'm going to zoom in a little bit more, like so. Again, I'm going to select my Burn tool, and I think I'll start actually with his jersey.
It's a little bit washed out as well. So we'll see what we can do with this first. I'm not getting too much in that area. There are not too many midtones in that area. So I'm toning down a little bit, but not much. I can certainly let go the mouse and reapply it to see if I get a different effect. I'll just Undo. That's a very subtle change in that area, but better than it was, and his forehand is the next one. I'm going to need a smaller brush for this, and I think I might also increase my Exposure just a little bit, maybe go up to about 15.
Again, it's still not a very high number. We don't want to overdo it. There we go. Bring a little bit of detail back into his forehead. I'll Undo that and then Redo it. There is not really much a change there at all in that case. So I think we'll try two things here. We'll go ahead, and we'll increase the Exposure a bit more. I think that's going to do it for us, there.
Again, it's a subtle effect, but we're seeing a bit more detail in the forehead now. So it's not burning out and washing out quite so much. We might actually try that on the jersey too. See, we can burn in those elements a little bit more as well. Okay, go back out to a Full Screen. So I'll press Ctrl+0 or Command+0, brings you out to a Full Screen View, so you can see the entire image. We got a little bit of extra touchup done there.
So when you're working with these kinds of tools, like the Dodge and Burn tool, remember to keep them at low values and if you need to, apply the effect a second time. This way you've got much more control over the end result. And again, just a reminder, these are bitmap effects. They are permanently adjusting the pixel values of your image. So if you just starting out with these tools, it's always a good idea to work with a duplicate version of the image. That way, you don't permanently affect your original work.
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