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This course 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. This week, we're going to take this photograph of my girlfriend Colleen, which is okay insofar as it goes, in that it has a nice composition, but she's not really a Smurf, so we're going to adjust the colors in order to produce this really great version of the photo, which makes it look like I'm an actual photographer, especially when I print it at poster size like this right here. And we're going to do so using the Camera Raw filter in Photoshop CC.
But here's the thing: if you're clever enough, you could make this same technique work in an older version of Photoshop or even Lightroom. Here, let me show you exactly how it works. All right, here is where we're going to start and here is where we'll end up, just so you have a chance to see the effect on screen. I've already developed this image and saved it off as a jpeg file. Now, we want to modify the image using the Camera Raw filter here inside Photoshop CC. If we want to apply Camera Raw nondestructively, then we need to convert the image to a smart object.
I'll first double-click in the background here inside the layers panel, in order to convert this to an independent layer. I'll name the layer Colleen, after the subject of the photograph. Then, I'll right click inside the image window with the rectangular marquee tool, and I'll choose Convert to Smart Object. Now, we're going to apply two passes of the Camera Raw filter, one of which converts the image to a custom black and white photograph, and the other, which reinstates some color. We'll start by going up to the filter menu and choosing Camera Raw filter, which, as you can see, has a keyboard shortcut of control shift a, or command shift a on the Mac.
That will bring up the big Camera Raw screen that you see here. I'm going to zoom in slightly by pressing control plus, or command plus on the Mac, and then I'll switch over to the hsl grayscale panel I'll turn on the Convert to Grayscale checkbox. And that's it. I'm not going to make any changes to these settings. The automatic settings are just fine. Then, I'll go ahead and switch back to the basic panel and click inside the contrast value. I'll press shift up arrow a total of five times in order to increase that contrast value to plus 50.
Whenever you're converting an image to grayscale inside Camera Raw ... and this goes for Lightroom, as well ... you can modify the balance of colors, not only using those color sliders that we ignored just a moment ago, but also using the temperature and tint sliders. So I'm going to brighten things up by warming up the original image. I'll do that by raising the temperature value to plus 20, like so. You can see the difference. This is without the temperature adjustment. It's a little darker. And then, this is with the temperature adjustment.
Now, having made all the changes I want to this time around, I'll go ahead and click the okay button in order to apply my changes. Now, I want to tidy up my layers panel a little bit. So I'm going to right click inside this white filter mask thumbnail, and I'll choose Delete Filter Mask, because, after all, I don't need it. All right, now we want to restore some color to the image. I'm going to create a copy of this layer, along with its Camera Raw smart filter, by pressing control j, or command j on the Mac.
That just goes ahead and jumps the layer. Now we can modify our Camera Raw settings just by double-clicking on the words Camera Raw Filter below the top layer inside the layers panel. That will, once again, bring up the Camera Raw window. Now what I'm going to do is, take the contrast value down to zero, just so that all of the basic settings are zeroed out, with the exception of temperature, which is still plus 20. We'll come back to that in a moment. But first what we need to do is, click on hsl grayscale to switch to that panel, and then turn off Convert to Grayscale in order to restore our original colors.
Now I want to remove a lot of the saturation from the image, so I'm going to switch to the saturation sub-panel right here by clicking on this saturation tab, and then I'll go ahead and select the targeted adjustment tool, up here in the horizontal toolbar. Because the saturation subpanel is available to me, this tool will automatically increase or reduce the saturation. What I want to do is, take the saturation out of the rock completely, like so. I just dragged all the way over to the left.
As a result, I reduce both my reds and oranges values to negative 100. I actually don't want to do that big of a number on the reds, so I'm going to take the reds value back to zero here and leave the oranges set to negative 100. I'm also going to reduce the saturation, all the way, of the yellows, greens, and aquas. You can see, oranges, yellows, greens and aquas are now set to negative 100. Now I want to take out some of the blue. You can see that Collen's jacket is showing up very blue.
So is her hair. I don't want nearly that much saturation, so I'll just go ahead and take that blues value down to negative 50. Then, I'll take both the purples and the magentas value down to negative 25. I'm going to zoom in a little bit, as well, so I can get a better handle on my scene. Now, to my eye, what remains, that is to say, the reds, the purples, and the magentas, are looking too purple overall. I'll go ahead and switch over to my hue tab right there, and I'm going to take the purples value all the way up to plus 100, which is going to rotate those purples more or less magenta, and then I'm going to take the magentas value all the way to plus 100, as well, which is going to rotate them into the reds.
So we have some reddish-looking ground right here, and we also have better coloring in Coleen's face. Then, just to make the remaining blues inside of her jacket and hair look a little more steely, I'm going to take the blues value down to negative 50, which, as you can see, infuses a little bit of cyan into those colors. It helps to neutralize the effect of the blues ever so slightly. Notice that we've got some awfully pink and purple action going on here.
If I were to switch over to saturation for a moment and reduce the purples value all the way to negative 100, notice what happens. We loose the saturation in her forehead and nose, which is not what I want. So I'll just go ahead and reinstate that guy to negative 25. What I do need to do is warm up the image a little bit. Of course I can do that using the temperature setting. So I'll go ahead and switch back to the basic panel here. Then I'll click inside the temperature value, and I'll press shift up arrow twice in order to increase the saturation value to plus 40.
Problem now is, if I go ahead and zoom in once again, we have some very low saturation areas, almost gray, under her cheekbones right there and along her jawline. So what I want to do is, reinstate some of those colors. I can do that by blurring the colors slightly. You accomplish that inside Camera Raw by switching to the detail panel right there. Make sure the sharpening amount value is zero; should be by default. And then, what you want to do is, drop down to the noise reduction options and increase the color value all the way to plus 100, and sew how that goes ahead and smooths out the colors and restores some degree of color below her cheekbones, below the jaw, and so forth.
You can experiment with color detail and color smoothness if you like, but in my case, I'm just going to leave them alone. But before I leave the dialog box, I want to take in the entire image by pressing control zero, or command zero on the Mac. At t^his point, it's looking pretty good, although a little bit light. To take care of that, I'll just go ahead and click on the okay button in order to apply that change. Then, here inside the layers panel, I'll change my blend mode from normal to color. That way, we're keeping the colors that we're seeing on screen right now, but we're blending them with the luminance levels of that grayscale layer below.
All right, now I'm going to press control one, or command one on the Mac, in order to zoom into 100 percent and check out this tree and rock action down here. I want to emphasize that as much as possible. I'm going to do so by sharpening the image. But I need to sharpen the luminance layer, not the color layer. So I'll switch back to that bottom layer right there and I'll double-click on its Camera Raw filter in order to bring up the grayscale version of the image. I'll press control alt zero, or command option zero on the Mac, to zoom in to 100 percent.
So a slightly different keyboard shortcut here inside Camera Raw. Go ahead and scroll down to the bark and rock and so forth. Then, I'll switch over to my detail panel. I'm going to take my amount value all the way up, for the moment, to 150, which is a little too high, but it allows me to see that I have some kind of termite action going on in the wood. That's a function of detail. You may or may not like it. I don't particularly care for it, so I'm going to go ahead and take the detail value down to zero. A radiance value of 1.0 is just fine, but the amount is too high, as I say.
So I'll just go ahead and take it down to 100, like so, and then I'll click okay in order to apply that change. And we get a little bit of extra sharpening to call out this wonderful detail in the foreground portion of the image. That's it. I'll go ahead and press the f key couple of times to switch to the full screen mode. Then I'll go ahead and zoom out from my image so I can take in, more or less, the entire thing. Just so you can see how far we've come in the last few minutes, I'll press the F12 key in order to revert the image to its original appearance.
So this is the before image that we started with at the outset of the movie, and then, if I press control z, or command z on the Mac, this is the low-color final, achieved entirely using a couple of non-destructive passes of the Camera Raw filter, here inside Photoshop CC. If you're a member of the Lynda.com online training library, I have two follow-up movies. In the first one, I show you how to achieve an effect very similar to this using adjustment layers. The great thing about adjustment layers is, A, you can apply them in any version of Photoshop, of course, and B, they're much more nimble.
What we just saw, applying Camera Raw as a smart filter, that produces a file, in our case, that is 80 ... eight zero ... megabytes, whereas, with adjustment layers, we get a file that's just 18 megabytes, so a quarter of the size. And then, in the second movie, I'll show you how to save those adjustment layers as a color look-up table that you can apply to any other photograph you like. If you're waiting for next week's free movie, I'm going to show you how to take a photograph of a painting that you capture ... and out-of-copyright painting, by the way ...
and rip that painting out of its frame and produce your own print of that out-of-copyright image. Deke's Techniques, each and every week. Keep watching.
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