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Deke's Techniques is a collection of short Photoshop and Illustrator projects and creative effects that can be completed in ten minutes or less. The series is taught by computer graphics guru Deke McClelland, and presented in his signature step-by-step style. The intent is to reveal how various Photoshop and Illustrator features can be combined and leveraged in real-world examples so that they can be applied to creative projects right away.
Hey gang, this is Deke McClelland. Welcome to Deke's techniques. Now, you may recall a few weeks ago, I showed you how go to turn an image into a dot drawing inside Photoshop. The thing is, the results are a little bit impressionistic. So it got me thinking, I wonder if I can create more finely rendered dots? And the answer is no. (LAUGH) Just kidding. The answer is yes, and the good news is that this approach doubles the resolution of your image. The bad news is, this ceases to be a dynamic effect, and it becomes a static effect instead.
But hey, looks great in color and in black and white. Here. Let me show you exactly how it works. Just for the sake of comparison, here's a detail from my previous fully dynamic dot drawing technique. And here's that same detail rendered as a static technique. But as you can see, we get finer dots, and a higher resolution image as well. That looks really great. I'll go ahead and zoom out here, when taken as a whole. So, I'll switch back to the results of my previous technique, and that's Deke's Techniques, number 240, as I mentioned before.
What we want to do is turn off a couple of filters. First of all, you want to turn off Pointillize, because it's not really going to serve us any purpose with these finer dots. And you also want to turn off Reduce Noise because it's going to be our enemy. And then what you want to do is double-click on the top of the two filter galleries. And you make it an alert message, telling you that you're not going to see the results of reduced noise, which you wouldn't anyway because it's turned off. Just go ahead and click OK. And I'm going to scroll he image over a little bit, and notice that we have just the merest trace of these diagonal lines.
Let's get rid of it entirely by reducing the stroke link value from two to one, and we end up with just these dots as you can see. Problem is if I go ahead and zoom in. They are jagged dots. While this effect is analogous to Noise, it's not the same as what you'd get with Add Noise. It varies quite dramatically from a Diffusion Dither, if you know what that is, as well. So Graphic Pen really produces it's own special results. Now go ahead and click Okay in order to apply that change.
It may look good when we were zoomed out. But it's not going to look good if you're going to zoom in, and notice that actually they were getting almost nothing in way of colorization. Well. certainly not getting anything from this portrait layer that's set to the color mode. Now that's if I turn off this top portrait layer that's set to Hard Light, then we have no coloring at all, even though if I zoom back out it looks like we do. And that's because Photoshop just isn't doing a good job of resolving the image on the fly when it's zoomed out. The truth of the matter is that, it can't colorize this layer here, because all we have is blacks and whites.
This is effectively a bit map, in the RGB mode. So, what we need to do, is introduce a little bit of curvature to these squares right here. And we're going to do that by up sampling the image using the Image Size command. But if we do so with these dynamic smart filters, then the dots are just going to grow more numerous they're not going to grow larger, which is what we want. So, I'm going to click on this bottom portrait layer right there. And I'm going to do something pretty radical. Armed with my Rectangular Marquee Tool, I'm going to right click inside the Image window and choose Rasterize Smart Object. And that's going to rasterize all of those effects away. So this now becomes a static layer.
So that's the downside of working this one. But we get such a great effect in the long run, I think it's worth it. So the next thing you want to do, is go up to the Image menu and choose the Image Size command. And I'm working in Photoshop CC which includes a preview, as you can see right there. But you'll get the same results inside any version of Photoshop. Just make sure that the Resample check box is turned on and increase the width value to 200%. And assuming that you have the Proportion Constraint turned on, that'll change the height to 200% as well.
And notice, by the way, that I did change this setting to percent. That's very important. You can work with different resampling options. I'm going to go ahead and zoom in on this preview here, so you could see a little more closely. You can leave this set to Automatic, which in Photoshop CC is going to apply preserve details, which is going to kind of gum things up. Normally that's a really great option for up sampling, but in our case, it kind of creates some gummy details. You can experiment if you like. Prior to CC that would automatically apply Bicubic Smoother which gives us this effect here, a softened effect.
But, the best effect by far, the one that's going to give us the smoothest results is Bilinear. So, go ahead and choose that regardless of what version of Photoshop you're using, because this is the simplest averaging equation there is. And now go ahead and click OK in order to apply that affect. And obviously we are going to be up sampling all the layers, but the other ones don't have anything applied to them. And you know what, no sense in having them a smart object, because that's just going to increase the file size. So you might want to select each of them, right-click and choose rasterize for an object as well.
It's not going to hurt them at all, because they don't have any smart filters applied. Now, I am going to click on this top portrait layer after turning it on and right-click inside of it. And choose Rasterize Smart Object. We've kind of last track of where her eye is so rather than zoom out and zoom back in, I am going to zoom out to a 100%. Then, we appear to be looking at some kind of eye, it's hard to tell. I'm going to bring up my Navigator panel by going to the Window menu and choosing the Navigator command.
And, I don't use this panel a lot, but it is very useful when you get lost inside of a very large image. We happen to be right there. We want to be over here. So, I'll just click on this other eye, like so, in order to bring it into view, and then I'll close the Navigator panel. And finally, what we want to do, is round off the transitions a little bit more, and the filter inside Photoshop, which converts squares into circles, Albeit rather clumsily, but it's the best filter we have, is median.
So I'm going to go ahead and click on the Rear Portrait layer, the one that's set in black and white now, and I'll go up to the Filter menu. Notice I'm not converting the image to a smart object. I'm just working static, because, because we've made so many static modifications so far. What's another one? I'll go up to the Filter menu, choose Noise and i'll choose Median. You basically just want to set this radius to one pixel. No more, because you'd really gum up the works otherwise. I'll go and zoom into 200%.
Inside the dialog box, if I click that's the before view. If I release that's the after view. We're getting smoother transitions and we're getting results that look less like square pixels and more like truly circular dots. Now I'll Click OK in order to accept that effect. And I'll go ahead and zoom out. By pressing Ctrl+zero, or Cmd+zero on a Mac, so that we can take in the entire image. And just in case you watched those technique movies, they were numbers 239 and 240, I want you to see the difference between that profile shot.
So this is that original, dynamic, completely non-destructive technique. But it's a little bit impressionistic, as well. Whereas the new static technique results in these very tight dots. And I'm only seeing the image at 50% by virtue of the fact that we increase the images resolution. And one final thing I want to show you, it's really great that these images are rendered in color. But you might find the effect even more interesting in black and white, in which case, all you'd need to do is Alt+click or Option+click in front of that rearmost layer.
Now press the F key a couple of times in order to fill the screen with the image, so that we can take in that final effect. And that folks is how you create a more finely rendered dot drawing using a collection of Stannic Albeit Destructive modifications here inside Photoshop. I mean, isn't this just gorgeous. Next week I'll show you an alternate method for converting an RGB image to CMYK that's less destructive than the standard approach because it mains the original RGB data.
Dekes Techniques each and every week. Keep watching.
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