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Understanding the uses of masking

From: Up and Running with Perfect Photo Suite 8

Video: Understanding the uses of masking

In the next lessons, we're going to explore masking. And you'll notice we now have an image, but in the layers' side, I With all three layers turned on, I'm going to begin to erase Once I have the brush selected, I do have some choices that I can work with.

Understanding the uses of masking

In the next lessons, we're going to explore masking. Now, masking seems kind of mysterious to a lot of folks. It's simply taking two images, layering them on top of each other, and then erasing or removing, part of the top image so you can see the image below. You can often do this with Chroma Key, where you take away the green background and put a new background on, or maybe you have a situation where you have two photographs and in one image one person has their eyes open and the next one they're closed. And you want to be able to take one head and put it next to a different head on the image.

All these are very powerful tools that you can use within perfect mask. So let's take a look at some basic masking on this first image, and I'm going to open up this image called Self_Portrait_Mask.psd, a layered Photoshop file. So, I'm going to select it and open it up in layers. Now, a couple things to keep in mind when opening up this image. Make sure that your file format is Photoshop because that way it will open up with all the layers intact so you can follow along, and everything else can be left at their defaults.

And as usual, I always edit a copy, never the original. And since I don't have any images open, I don't want to add this as a layer. And you'll notice we now have an image, but in the layers' side, I can see one's called Shadow, one's called Abba, and one is called the Wall. And what I did is I took a picture of me taking a picture of myself, and let me turn that off for a moment. Then I have me leaning against the wall, and then finally, I have the original shot, but I just slid it over to the right because what I want to do is remove this door so it's a nice solid image.

With all three layers turned on, I'm going to begin to erase part of the top layer, or mask out part of the top layer, so you can see me, and then I'm going to mask out the top two layers, so we can actually see the wall. And to do that, I'm going to use the Masking Brush tool. It's the B key, and I want you to realize that we're still in the layers module. We don't even need to step into the masking module to achieve what I want to, with these three images. Once I have the brush selected, I do have some choices that I can work with.

I can choose whether I'm painting in or out a layer. Of course, the size and softness of my brush, how opaque it is, and we've learned about opacity in earlier lessons. So if I want to brush something out slowly, and then there's the perfect brush tool, which, if I check this, it's really good for cleaning up edges and making sure that you have a nice, clean edge if you need to pull out a person from a background. I don't need to be that perfect. So I'm going to leave that off. Now, with this tool selected, I'm going to use the right bracket key.

Make it a little bit bigger. And I'm going to start erasing the area right above where I'm standing or leaning against the wall. You'll notice that as I started to do this erasing, I'm not seeing myself, and I want to point that out right here that I have the wrong layer selected. And this is one of those instances we need to make sure you have the right layer selected to make sure you're erasing the right area. Let me undo that. I'm going to hit Undo a couple of times: Cmd+z or Ctrl+z on Windows, and I'm going to click on the very top layer and start erasing from there.

And as I start erasing, not only do I start seeing myself start to appear, but as soon as I let go of my mouse, you'll notice that to the right of the image is a black and white element, and that is your mask. Anything that is white, I'm going to see, and anything that's black is going to become transparent, and I'll see what's below it. If I had changed my opacity, say to 50%, and I started erasing an area, it's actually translucent. So, you'll notice I see some of the wall behind me.

Now for this image, I want it to be 100%, and I'm going to simply erase the area on top so I see me leaning against the wall below. And I'm going to erase everything to the right because I want to make sure that I can see underneath both layers one, and layers two to that door that's below it. So now I'm going to click on layer two, and I'm going to use the same brush. But this time I'm going to erase the door, and you'll see that that wall that I move into place will appear.

Now this worked out pretty well. The images weren't quite lined up, and if I wanted to line the images up, I can simply switch to my Transform tool, grab the layer that I want, in this case the second layer, and just kind of line that up a little bit. And now we're in good shape. I could also load this layer into the Perfect Effects module or the Enhance module and make sure that the color and the luminance values all match. But to keep things simple, I'm just going to make a really soft brush.

So I'm going to switch back to my brush tool. Apply the transformer where I shifted it up and down, and now, holding down the Shift key, I can make a really soft edge, and just simply paint over it. It'll be more subtle here, and if I accidentally paint over too much, I simply go back up here under Mode, and I can switch back to Paint Back In, or the X key would be a quick toggle, and I can bring my foot back into place. If I hit the Perfect Brush tool, then when I start painting things in and out, it's going to try match the edge as well as possible.

And I often use that X key to toggle back and forth to get exactly the area painted in and painted out that I want. As you can see, it's easy blending images together using just the Masking Brush tool in the Layers module.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Up and Running with Perfect Photo Suite 8
Up and Running with Perfect Photo Suite 8

53 video lessons · 2176 viewers

Abba Shapiro
Author

 
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  1. 1m 10s
    1. Welcome
      29s
    2. What you should know to get the most from this course
      41s
  2. 4m 32s
    1. What is the Perfect Photo Suite 8?
      1m 39s
    2. What's new in Perfect Photo Suite 8?
      58s
    3. What's the right version of Perfect Photo Suite for you?
      1m 27s
    4. Installing the software
      28s
  3. 3m 7s
    1. Understanding preference settings
      1m 49s
    2. Getting to know the browser interface
      1m 18s
  4. 14m 1s
    1. Importing media into the Layers module
      5m 20s
    2. Organizing and transforming layers
      4m 56s
    3. Exploring tools
      3m 45s
  5. 9m 11s
    1. Quick fixes
      2m 48s
    2. Detailed adjustments
      4m 2s
    3. Understanding presets
      2m 21s
  6. 21m 32s
    1. Selecting faces
      2m 30s
    2. Working with faces
      2m 32s
    3. Removing blemishes
      2m 43s
    4. Adjusting skin tone
      8m 58s
    5. Blending
      55s
    6. Working with portrait presets
      3m 54s
  7. 33m 0s
    1. Effect presets
      2m 51s
    2. Modifying effect presets
      2m 52s
    3. Gradients
      3m 56s
    4. Adjustment brushes
      4m 26s
    5. Understanding filter stacks and mixing presets
      8m 6s
    6. Saving and using custom presets
      4m 53s
    7. Using lens blur to create bokeh, tilt-shift, and selective-focus effects
      5m 56s
  8. 26m 46s
    1. Creating a black-and-white image from a color image
      4m 25s
    2. Understanding tone and color response
      4m 25s
    3. The special brushes of the B&W module
      8m 1s
    4. Advanced Navigator adjustments
      5m 28s
    5. Presets
      4m 27s
  9. 35m 34s
    1. Understanding the uses of masking
      5m 58s
    2. Creating a simple mask in the Layers module
      4m 47s
    3. Creating a simple mask: The Keep, Drop, and Refine tools
      6m 19s
    4. The Remove Background button
      3m 55s
    5. Refining your mask
      6m 58s
    6. Working with transparency
      4m 46s
    7. Creating believable composites using the Effects module
      2m 51s
  10. 21m 54s
    1. Resizing images for the web and digital distribution
      5m 42s
    2. Preparing your images for print
      7m 29s
    3. Using Perfect Batch
      8m 43s
  11. 11m 21s
    1. Lightroom
      3m 47s
    2. Photoshop
      4m 40s
    3. Aperture
      1m 37s
    4. When to use Perfect Photo Suite 8
      1m 17s
  12. 38m 56s
    1. Challenge: Masking and blending multiple images into one
      2m 6s
    2. Solution: Masking and blending multiple images into one
      7m 33s
    3. Challenge: Creating a vintage postcard from a new image
      42s
    4. Solution: Creating a vintage postcard from a new image
      11m 34s
    5. Challenge: Creating an old-looking image from a new one
      56s
    6. Solution: Creating an old-looking image from a new one
      16m 5s
  13. 32s
    1. Next steps
      32s

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