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In Photoshop CS5: Creative Compositing, Chris Orwig demonstrates how to take photographs to the next creative level by combining images in Photoshop. This course covers multiple compositing scenarios, including portraits and architecture photos, from selecting the images, to blending photos with layer masks and blend modes, and resizing and sharpening the results. Chris also covers tips and tricks design to inspire and increase the drama and interest of photographs. Exercise files are included with this course.
The next thing that I'm interested in doing with this photograph is adding a bit of texture, and in order to add texture we're actually going to use an interesting filter. Let me show you what I mean. Well, let's copy everything to the top layer or merge everything to the top. We can do that by using a shortcut, Shift+Option+Command+E on a Mac, Shift+Alt+Ctrl+E on Windows. We'll go ahead and name this layer texture. The next thing that we want to do is actually build a mask. Now I want to build a mask based on one of the channels.
So here we'll go to the Channels panel and we'll click through our channels. We can just see these different brightness values. There is not a lot of variation, so let's start off with the red channel. Here you can Commandk or Ctrl+Click this channel, and then we'll turn on the visibility of all these channels. Target the RGB Composite and then go back to the Layers panel. Now here what we're going to do is click on the Add Layer Mask icon. This will then create a mask based on the luminance value of that channel. All right, so far so good. Next step, let's go into the Image layer and navigate to our Filter pull-down menu.
Here we're going to choose Render and then we're going to choose Fibers. What this will do is it will give us ability just to change this overall. You can see that we're bringing in these different fibers here across the image, and in regards to the variance in the strength, we want to have pretty strong fibers there, and we will click OK. Well now at this juncture you can see that the fibers are hidden just a little bit. If we zoom out, we can see that yeah, they are indeed hidden because of this mask. Yet because they are such even toned there, it's not really that strong. So what we want to do is first change our blending mode to Soft Light.
And once we do that, all of a sudden the fibers are adding an interesting texture. Next, click in your mask, the channel mask, the luminance value we just created there, based on the Red channel. Now what we want to do is apply an adjustment to this layer. So in order to do that, we're going to use Levels or Curves. You can apply Levels or Curves right to a mask by simply pressing a shortcut. Let's keep it simple. Let's use Levels. So in order to do that on a Mac, press Command+L, on Windows press Ctrl+L.
What you can do here is you can change the overall density of this mask. Now, as I do that, you're seeing that it's limiting these fibers in certain areas with a little bit more strength, so there is a little bit less here on the subject. Here we have that before and then after. You can see the mask is much stronger. You can also change the whites. If we want to bring in this into some of the highlight areas, we can do that as well. Go ahead and click OK. Well, the nice thing about using a mask is that it just helps us start to limit where these fibers are showing up.
Shift+Click your mask, and you can see the before and then after. So in this case, what I want to do is just lower the density there a bit on my mask, just a touch. Grab my Brush tool and I'll go ahead and paint with black with 100% opacity on few of these areas, in particular the face, also the shirt. I want these fibers just to be falling into the background. I want to affect that background there. I'll go to 60% opacity by pressing the 6 key and then I'll start to paint on the background as well. Again, I just want to bring in some of this texture into a few little areas of the photograph.
Press the X key and then go to 20% opacity, bring in a little bit of that texture across the subject, touch on the hat, and then I'm just going to go back and forth, kind of painting this in and out in different areas, trying to create a bit of texture on the image. Here's before and then after. Basically what we need to do is we need to change the way this looks. Sometimes it's helpful to even use Overlay. What Overlay will do is give you a bit more punch or snap. In this case, I think that's too strong. And keep in mind we have some more texture work to do, but all we want to do here is just bring this in, so that we have a little bit more texture, a little bit less even tone.
We want to interrupt things a bit. All right, well now that we've done that, I want to add even more texture to the photograph. So let's go ahead and take a look at how we can do that in the next movie.
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