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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 that we have a couple of layers in our document, as a matter of fact I've saved this document in a specific folder if you go ahead and step inside your Exercise folder, you'll see a folder called "Works in Progress". Now I'm going to go ahead and open this. But the first thing I want you to do is go ahead and open "O3_O1 Rembrandt", and this is actually a PhotoShop document. Any PhotoShop document that you open up that has layers will automatically open up with layers. I'm going to simply select it and then open it up in the Layers module.
I don't want to add this as a layer. I'm going to edit a copy because I want to work with just this file. I don't want to layer this file on top of another file. I'm going to say "Edit a Copy". I'll click OK and as you see we have our texture on top of our image. Now there's a lot wrong with this. First of all we can't see the person, and second of all it's actually not the right size. The first thing I want to do is select the texture that I've laid on top, and I'm going to go to one of my tools, this is the Transform tool, and I will select it.
And at this point I can actually make this bigger or smaller so I can go ahead and grab the corner, and you'll notice that as I make it bigger or smaller it actually changes the aspect ratio. Now I'm going to go ahead and press the Escape key and go back to the original layer, and this time if I hold the Shift key down you'll notice if I make it smaller or bigger it maintains the aspect ratio. So whenever scaling an image always hold down the Shift key so you don't make the person shorter and wider or too tall and too thin.
Another thing I could've done is instead of grabbing the corner, once I've selected the Transform tool, I can go over here and click on the Fill button. And this is going to scale this image to fit my entire canvas. Once we finish scaling our image we can simply press the Apply button and now we're out of the Transform tool and we're ready to modify our picture. I'm going to grab the Rembrandt image and put it on top of my background, and all I have to do is click on the layer that I want to move and drag it to the position that I want it to be.
Now I have this image on top of the background, and I can start using a lot of the tools within the Layer mode to blend these images together. One way I could do that is to use the Opacity slider, and that's to make the top layer a little more transparent or translucent and we can see the background. Another way I can blend layers together is to go to this Blending mode, and if I click on this there's a variety of choices that I can work with. Now if you've worked in other photo applications such as PhotoShop these may be familiar to you.
One thing I really like about the Perfect Photo Suite is that I don't have to select and make a decision on my blending modes, I can simply move my cursor on top of each blending mode and see exactly how it's going to look before I commit. For instance, if I wanted to see what soft light looks like or if I wanted to see how an overlay would work I can see how the two images would blend together. Now in this case the linear dodge gives me kind of a cool look. Let me go ahead and select that. I want to point out that you can combine your blending modes with your opacity to get a different look and feel for your image.
I think this image looks kind of cool but it's not really what we originally set out to do, so let me go ahead and bring the opacity full. I'm going to switch back to my normal mode and move the image behind our textured layer. Now I can go ahead and lower the opacity and change the blending mode. You'll notice nothing has changed. This is something I want you to be very careful about. Whatever layer is selected is the layer you are affecting, so I actually made the bottom layer more transparent.
I'm going to go ahead and press this little eyeball and that's going to turn off the top layer, and we can see that the layer below is no longer opaque. Let me go ahead and make that solid again, turn on the texture and select it, and now with that selected I can go ahead and make it more translucent and then add a blending mode to get the look that I want. You can use the Up and Down arrow keys to quickly step through all your different blending modes to see one that works for you.
I think lighter color works perfectly because now it looks more like a backgroud as opposed to an overlay. Blending modes and opacity is only part of what's really cool about working with layers. There's a lot of tools in Perfect Photo Suite that will allow you to bring your image to the next level.
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