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So as we dig in to this masking challenge, lets go ahead and step into Perfect Photo Suite and combine these six images and make them look like one. The first thing I want to do is I want to bring all six of these images in to a single layer. So I'm going to select them all. I'll simply hold down my Cmd key and select all the images I want to work with. You can also do a Select All option. And now I'm going to go to the Layers mode. It's going to ask me do I want to work with all these six files.
It's, it's just trying to keep me honest, and, and I do, so I'll say Yes. And the trick here is to make sure that instead of choosing Edit a Copy or Edit Original, which you never want to do, you choose Add as a layer. If you choose Edit a Copy, you'll end up with six separate images to work with as opposed to six stacked images. So I'm going to add them as a layer. Make sure this is Photoshop because that supports layers. 16 bit, I want a lot of material to work with, a lot of color space, and I'm simply going to press OK.
And as you can see, all of these images came in in a single series of layers. It did put the first picture, number one, at the bottom, so I want to go ahead and move that to the top. So now they're in fully numerical order. Now at first blush, you may think oh, well we're doing masking, so we need to step into the Masking mode, but that's not the case. We're going to be able do this entire process in our Layers mode. I want to turn off all my layers and work with them individually. So, let's take a look at what's on the very bottom, my background layer, layer 6, and Instead of clicking on the upper five eyeballs, I can hold down the option key and click on the layer that I want to just view, and it turns off all of the other layers.
And that tells me I have a really good background to work with, and I'm going to go ahead and start painting her in from each of the images. Let's start with our very first layer, with layer one, that's the left most image. And when I turn that on, it blocks out everything below it. And I want to go, and I want to paint her in, which means I want to paint everything else out. So I'm going to switch to the Brush mode. I'm going to hit the b key. And if I start painting on her, what you'll notice is that she's actually disappearing.
It seems like I'm doing the exact opposite of what I want to be doing. But this is the trick. Once I've painted her out, you can take a look at my mask on the right side. And what's white, I see, and what's black is invisible. So if I invert the mask, and I can do that very easily underneath the Mask drop down menu. On a Mac, it's Cmd+I, and on a PC, it's Ctrl+I. So I'll be using that keyboard shortcut for the rest of this lesson.
And as soon as I click Invert, I now see her in my image. I'm going to go ahead and do the same thing with layers two, three, four, and five. So let's go ahead. We'll select layer two. If we want, we can turn off layer one, and make sure layer two is turned on. With this layer selected, we're going to go ahead and paint her out. So I can very quickly switch between paint in and paint out with the X key.
And now, I will paint her out. Cmd+I, to do an inverse, and she's done. And we're going to go ahead and do the same things for the rest of the images. In the case of this image, I really want to get her shadow in. So, let me make this a little bit bigger, a little bit softer, and I'll make sure I paint this background in nice. Cmd+I, and go down and do the last image. Now let's turn on all of our layers and we're going to try to blend together the areas where the colors or the images may not perfectly match.
So right now I have all six versions of her. If I take a closer look, I'm in pretty good shape except for the very bottom here. And I want this to blend together a little bit better. So let's zoom into our first area. I'm going to go ahead. I can hit the Z key or the button. Select the range that I want to refine. Once we've zoomed in, I can go ahead and I want to paint this area back in. So, I can see that it's, Layer 1 that's blocking it. So I'm going to make sure Layer 1 is selected. And I want to go ahead and paint out that area.
So we switch to our Brush tool. Hit the X key for painting out. Make it nice and small, and nice and sharp. And I can start painting out the area on layer one so we see the entire model that's on layer two. And if I wanted to, if I overdo it, and I'm going to intentionally overdo it, I just simply hit the X key, and I can bring her back in. Now the last area that we want to fix is over to the right. And I can get there very quickly while staying zoomed in by going over to my Navigator and dragging this area over, so I can focus right on where the model is standing, and where the model as the photographer is.
And I'll zoom out just a little bit. And I want to make sure this is nice and smooth. So the key is I have to make sure I pick the right area to work on. So she's either in five as the photographer or four as the model. So we'll start with the photographer, we'll go over this area. If we paint it in, we're actually getting this dark shadow here, which is a change of color. So that may be too much, and we want to soften our brush. So I'm going to go ahead, make the brush a little bit bigger. I'm going to hold down Shift key, make it a little bit softer by using the right bracket.
Once again, hit the X key to do a painting out. And we're going to gently paint out some of her shadow just so it's very subtle. And if I wanted to make that blend even better, I could go up here and change the opacity of this brush and I could switch it between 10% to 100%. A great keyboard shortcut when you're in this brush mode is to press Option and then the numerical value of the percentage. So Option+3 would be 30%, Option+4 would be an opacity of 40%, and so on.
Let's go back to 30%, and I'm going to just paint over this. It gives me a lot more subtlety for my blend, and I'm in pretty good shape. If I want to be really aggressive I could just paint this out, and the more I paint the more it goes away. As a matter of fact, whenever you're blending, and you don't want a really hard transition, use a very translucent or lightly opaque brush, 20 to 30%. You can always paint over it. Let's take a look at this full screen, Cmd+0.
So I have my shot. I really like it. I think the last thing I want to do is simply a crop. So I'm going to go over to the cropping tool. And I want to make this more of a wide shot, loose a lot of that ceiling, so I'll draw that around. I think that's pretty good, maybe give a little bit more head room. Hit Return, and I think we have our final image.
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