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Photoshop is the tool of choice for most creative professionals and has quickly become household name synonymous with computer art and image manipulation. In Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: Beyond the Basics, internationally renowned Photoshop guru Deke McClelland teaches such digital-age wonders as masking, filters, layers, blend modes, Liquify, Vanishing Point, and vector-based type. Along the way, Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details, smoothing over wrinkles and imperfections, trimming away jowls and fat, and wrapping one image around the surface of another. Plus, the training teaches how to construct and organize the elements in a composition so you can edit them easily in the future. Exercise files accompany the tutorial.
Ready for more Photoshop CS3 training with Deke? Check out Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: Advanced Techniques.
Note: Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: The Essentials is a recommended prerequisite to Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: Beyond the Basics.
Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts for Photoshop from the Exercise Files tab.
Our last task in this project is to add a big dark vignette around the entire frame and the image here and we are going to do that by adding a new layer by creating a layer of darkness essentially, a layer of faded blackness and I want to add this layer on the very top of the stack and that gives me the opportunity to show you yet another way that you can switch layers here inside Photoshop. Notice when I have got the Move tool active right here if I were to right click inside of the face that I will see a list of layers that intersect my right click position and if you are working on a Macintosh computer and you don't have a right mouse button then you would Control Click with the Move tool.
If some other tool is active like let's say I have the Brush tool active then you would Ctrl+Right Click here on the PC or Command Right Click on the Mac and if you don't have a right mouse button then you would Command Control Click on the Mac and then choose whichever layer you want to make active so if I choose my face it automatically becomes the active layer. And the great thing about that is you can switch layers very easily, very conveniently just by right clicking with that Move tool or by Control or Command right clicking with some other tool so long as you have taken the time to name your layers because if you don't name your layers then you are not going to know what layer it is that you want to choose from the list because Photoshop is always going to show you multiple layers to choose from, at least one layer in the background layer as it turns out.
And this selects similar layers, it allows you to select for example all pixel based layers or all text layers or all vector shaped layers or all adjustment layers or all smart objects that kind of thing all layers that have a certain functional similarity to them. Anyway in my case I just control right clicked on the picture frame and I will now choose Frame in order to make it active because it's the top layer in the stack. Now I am going to go ahead and grab the elliptical marquee tool because I am going to use this tool in order to create my vignette but as I say I need to create the vignette on an independent layer so I want to add a layer to my composition.
I can do that in a few ways. One is I can click on the Create New Layer icon here right next to the trashcan at the bottom of the Layers palette. If you do that however you are going to create a generically named layer like this one here. It's just going to be called Layer1. I don't want that for the exact reason I just showed you. Now if I press the Control key and right click there is a chance that I am going to see Layer1 listed in the Pop-up menu and I don't want to see Layer1 because I won't know what that means so I want to make sure to name the layers as I make them so I will undo the addition of the generic Layer1 layer and instead if you want to name a layer as you make it you have two options.
One is to Alt Click or Option Click on this little page icon. That brings up the new layer dialog box. The other way is you can take advantage of a keyboard shortcut. This is the way I work anyway. You can press Ctrl+Shift+N or Command+Shift+N on the Mac for the new layer command. Then go ahead and name this layer Vignette and press a Return key or the Enter key in order to create this new Vignette layer. Alright now we are ready to fill the Vignette layer with a Vignette of course.
I am going to Alt Drag or Option Drag from the approximate center of this painting outward and what I want to have happen here I want the arcs, the centers of the arcs of my elliptical marquee to exactly intersect the corners of the interior of the frame. Do you see what I am talking about? So this would be the corner right there, one of the corners that I am trying to intersect and I want to make sure all the corners for that matter intersect the elliptical marquees so that may mean a little bit of spacebar dragging on your part but in any case keep that alt key down or that option key down until you release the mouse button then you can release the alter option key since we are dragging from the center outward.
Alright now we need to create a little bit of a feather here so that we have a soft selection outline and we are going to do that by up out the select menu, choosing modify and choosing the feather command. This is the first time we have gone here in this series and notice inside Photoshop CS3 the Feather command has been tucked into the modify sub-menu used to be loose. Actually it used to be where refine edge is right now and now it's been tucked away so anyway go ahead and choose the Feather command or you can take advantage of that keyboard shortcut there and I am going to use a feather radius value of 30 pixels which I have pre-entered and click OK in order to accept that modification now.
It's not going to look any different on screen because the marching ends can't really represent a soft edge selection outline. Now I want to fill the area outside the selection, not the area inside the selection so I am going to go up to the Select menu and I am going to choose the Inverse command to find the inverse of the current selection so I am reversing the selection, selecting the area outside the marquee. This looks great. I can tell that the right area is selected now because the marching adds around the parameter of the image and I am going to fill the selection with black, with the foreground color and you can do that in one of two ways.
You can go up to the Edit menu and choose the Fill command. This is a really tedious way in my opinion but you can choose the Fill command and then you can say you want to use foreground colors set to normal in 100% opacity. Make sure Preserve Transparency is turned off and then you would click OK in order to fill the selection with a foreground color. Alright that may seem pretty straightforward. I am going to undo that but there is such an easier way to work and here it is. All you got to do is press for the foreground color you press Alt Backspace. For the background color you press Control Backspace.
On the Macintosh side you would press Option Delete for the foreground color or you would press Control Delete for the background color. I am going to go ahead and press Alt Backspace because I am working on Windows here. You Macintosh users press Option Delete in order to fill the selection with the foreground color. We are done my friends. Go ahead and press Ctrl+D or Command+D on the Mac in order to accept that modification. This portrait was later set against a black background on a webpage so it blended in perfectly with that black background.
It worked out just duckily. If that is indeed an authentic adverb and in order to see how wonderful this finished composition looks I am going to change the piece board color to black by switching to the Paint Bucket tool here and with black as my foreground color I am going to Shift Click inside the piece board. Then I am going to tab away my palettetes. I am going to press the F key to switch to the full screen without Menu Bar Mode and I am going to press Ctrl+ a couple of times so that we can take in the image set against the black background.
This is the final composition substituting my face for that of St. Sebastian's I now look officially like I was painted by Rafael. I feel very privileged in that regard. Thanks to the monumental power of layers inside of Photoshop.
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