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In Photoshop CS5 New Features, author Jan Kabili introduces new features and productivity enhancements that include reshaping images with Puppet Warp, turning photographs into paintings, and Content-Aware Fill options. The course examines CS5 enhancements to existing features include significant improvements to High Dynamic Range (HDR) photo processing, selection and mask edge refinement, and lens-related photo corrections. A brief overview of companion applications, Adobe Bridge CS5 and Adobe Camera Raw 6, is included. Exercise files are included with the course.
Camera Raw 6, which comes with Photoshop CS5, includes a brand-new feature that allows you to add natural film style grain to a photo. In the past, adding grain was something that you could do only inside of Photoshop using a combination of features that you just had to know one of those secret handshakes. Now with the addition of the grain feature in Camera Raw 6, you have a choice. To show you the grain feature, I am going to open an image into Camera Raw that is not a raw image but rather a JPEG. You can do this with a raw image but I like this JPEG because I have sepia toned it and I had to go out of Camera Raw to do that.
So to open a JPEG into Camera Raw, either in Mini Bridge or in the standalone Bridge CS5, I am going to right-click on the thumbnail of the image and I am going to choose Open in Camera Raw. So yes there is a JPEG open in Camera Raw 6 so that I can use any of the features here in Camera Raw to adjust it. I am going to go to a new tab in Camera Raw 6, the Effects tab and there I'll find the Grain sliders. To get a true sense of how the grain will look on this image, I am going to make sure that it is set to 100% view.
Then I will go over to the controls and I am going to start with the Amount control. As soon as I move that the tiniest bit, the Size and Roughness controls come into view. The Amount control determines how much grain I'm going to add to the image. The further I go to the right, the more grain I start to see inside of the image. As I pull the Amount slider to the right, I start to see more and more grain in the image. I am going to take that back a bit. I think that's a little too much for this image. Then I will move down to the other sliders.
Then I'll fine-tune the grain in the image using the Size and Roughness sliders. The Size slider controls how fine each piece of grain is. As I drag to the right, the grain starts to be a little blurrier looking. So I am going to take that back until it looks just right to me, about there. And then there is the Roughness slider. The Roughness slider is kind of like a contrast setting. At low numbers, you can see that the grain is very contrasting and shows up very well. If I want a little less obvious grain, I will drag the Roughness slider to the right until the grain is more subtle and to my liking.
Now if I have other similar photos that I would like to apply the same grain settings to, I can save these as a preset. To do that I will go to this panel menu on the Effects tab and I will choose Save Settings. Here I can choose which settings I want to save. I don't need to save all of them. So I am going to go into the Subset menu and I am going to choose Details. And then I'll uncheck everything except Grain, and I will click save. I can give this a name. So I could call this sepia grain and I will click Save.
Then with any image open, I can come back to that menu, choose Load Settings and go find my sepia grain settings. So why would I want to add grain to a photo? Several reasons come to mind. As you see it here, grain can be used to add a sort of an historical look to a photo, particularly a black and white or sepia toned photo. Another reason to add grain is to simulate a particular grainy film stock from back in the days of traditional film. And if your attempts to control noise reduction had made a photo look too smooth, then adding a little grain can bring back some truth and texture to the photo.
So Grain is a nice little additive effect for you play with in Adobe Camera Raw 6.
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