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Abba Shapiro introduces Perfect Photo Suite, eight powerful modules that allow you to enhance photos, add effects, swap backgrounds, retouch portraits, and convert color photos to evocative black-and-white images. Perfect Photo Suite can be used as both a standalone application and integrated with Aperture, Lightroom, and Photoshop. Abba covers both workflows, and delivers three different adjustment challenges, which help you test your skills.
This is an introductory course produced by RHED Pixel to help both beginner and seasoned photographers quickly realize the benefits of Perfect Photo Suite 8. We are honored to host this training in our library.
Now we've learned how to do some basic masking in the Layers module. But if you really want to take your masking to the next level, you need to step into the Masking module, and there's a whole lot of tools that you can work with. Let's go ahead and work with the same image that we did earlier, which is the Add Skies image of the U.S. capitol. And we'll select it, and we'll choose the Mask module. Once again, we want to make sure that we use Layers, so I'll simply say OK. When you first switch into the Mask module, the Mask Drop Brush is automatically selected.
And the beauty of this is that Perfect Photo Suite assumes you want to remove part of your image as soon as you enter this module. You know I can make my brush bigger or smaller again with the left and right bracket keys. And all I'm going to do is brush out the basic area that I want to remove. And usually this is the case where you might have similar colors. But what you want to do is you just want to show the areas that you want to remove. You don't have to be really precise. You don't have to go right to the edges. And then, as soon as you select those areas, it's going to analyze and refine the mask.
As you see, it did an amazing job of removing the sky. Now, let's go ahead and zoom in so you can see the edges of the capitol dome. And you can see it did a really good job. I have really clean edges, I may want to tweak it a little bit. As a matter of fact it did such a good job, that I can actually see through one of the columns. Now if I really want to see what my mask looks like to make sure that it's perfect, I can go down to the All Layers drop-down area. I'll click on that, and I have a lot of choices here. I can look at it before I applied the mask.
I can look at all layers, which I have now. So if I had a background, I would see what it would like against a background. But I can also look at it against a white, dark, gray scale or with a red overlay. A lot of times I switch over to a white mask. Instead of a checkered background it shows me at against a white background and I can see some parts of this image that seem to be a little bit more translucent. And I really don't want a translucent capitol dome. Continuing on this idea if I switched over to say the dark. Again it's a black background, and I can see where it's trying to figure out where the edges are.
The last area that I want to show you is, sometimes it's nice to work with a red overlay, and it again this tells me what stays and what goes. Going back to our nice white mask, I'm going to switch from our Drop tool to the tool above it and that is the Keep Brush tool. I'm going to shrink that down, and I can simply paint over the areas that may have been accidentally removed when it did its best guess. And as I paint over the little areas, I can let go of my mouse and we'll slowly bring these elements back in.
Now, it does its best job, but if you notice, there's a blending here between the sky and the blue in the capitol dome. And it just put back in all the sky that I removed. So let me go ahead and hit Undo. And use yet a third brush which helps refine that fine line between what goes away and what stays. And that's your Refine Brush tool. If I select that, and I'm going to shrink it down so I can just paint out the edges. I can tell Perfect Photo Suite where the edges are, so it can really do a much better guess.
So I'm simply going to paint over this one area, and you'll notice the colors are different. We have red for go away, we have green for stay, and we have blue for that intermediate step. And now it knows it can start refining these edges. I'm going to go back to the Add Area. And I'm going to go ahead and make sure that I have a much harder brush, so I'll press the shift key on the left bracket and make it small, and I can go ahead and paint in these elements. But sometimes it's going to be a hard guess, and I'm going to turn on Auto Expand.
And now, when I go to the edges, I can just make little selections. And you see it's expanding the edges. And I don't have to worry about getting my whole sky back. And I can go through my entire image and just start tweaking these little areas. Just to make sure that everything is shown. Now, this maybe a little bit time consuming, but to get a really nice mask takes a little bit of time. Now, let's go ahead and look at it full screen. I'm going to go ahead and bring this back into my Layers tab, and again bring in a background.
Let's go ahead switch from Files to Extras. Our onOne Extras we have our backgrounds we can choose our skies, and let's go for something a little more dramatic. Maybe this sunset. I want to add this as a layer. I'll hit OK. Move my clouds behind the capitol. Grab the image. Go to my Transform tool. Move it a little bit above. And now I have this dramatic sunset behind the capitol.
You may be saying to yourself, this doesn't look that realistic. And that's because the lighting in the foreground and the lighting in the background are completely different. So let me go ahead and simply make a duplicate of this layer. And now with a duplicate, I can throw those clouds on the front. Let me stretch them out with my Transform tool. And now what I want to do is simply blend it over the top using both opacity as well as different blend modes. And in this case, let's try simply Overlay or Soft Light.
And as you see, now I'm getting some of that color in my foreground so it does look more natural. If I were to take this to the next step, I might bring it into the Effects module and blur that foreground, so really I'm just getting a wash of color, of the sunset over my entire image.
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