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Photoshop Smart Objects explores the creation and use of Smart Objects, one of the most technically demanding tools in Photoshop. Deke McClelland walks through the four primary purposes of Smart Objects, and focuses on one of their most practical advantages, non-destructive transformations. This feature allows any object to be manipulated in any way, while still maintaining its original pixel information. Finally, Deke shows how to crop compositions without affecting a single pixel, even in masks. Exercise files accompany this course.
Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts and color settings for Photoshop from the Exercise Files tab.
All right, again, now that we've gone ahead and switched out these pixel based Smart Objects with ACR based Smart Objects, we can now modify them inside of Adobe Camera Raw Raw. So, we can change the color balance of this image, using Camera Raw Raw straight forward controls, which I absolutely love and that's what we're going to do in this very simple exercise, as you'll see. I have gone ahead and saved my progress as Base ACR composition.psd, found inside the 02_ACR_and_illustrator folder. These images, as you may recall, both the background and foreground come to us from image vendor Fotolia about, which you can learn more at http://www.fotolia.com/deke.
Here's what you want to do. Double-click an either of the thumbnails for the lady layers here, either for the layer called Smart Object or the one called multiply because they're both linked to the exact same Smart Object. I am going to go ahead and double- click on one for multiply because that will give you an even better sense. You'll see this one update and you will know that they're both linked to the same darn ACR file. When I say a file, by the way, I should say object because it's an embedded image. Its part of the larger composition. I want you to bear this in mind. This is not some separate Camera Raw image on disk.
We are not linked to that Camera Raw coif.dng file on disk, instead the file was just taken in the Camera Raw coif.dng file and placed inside of the larger composition. So it's an embedded file. You can move these files around anyplace you want without fear of losing the link. All right, so you go over here to the multiply layer. Double-click on its thumbnail. That will bring up the Camera Raw window. And incidentally if you want the window to fill the entire screen as ideal so that you're not seeing a bunch of background folderal, then you can click on this icon right there to toggle the full screen mode and you can press F, for full screen, and that will make the window nice and big, like so.
You'll still see all the information you saw before. It'll just be transferred to a different location. For example, the fact that it's a JPEG image, or that it started off as a JPEG image, will be listed down here, underneath the image instead of above in the title bar. Now the reason that's important is we're seeing relative settings here, inside of the basic panel as well as the other panels. Instead of absolute settings, which we would see if this image had started out as a raw digital camera image. The reason being that we're not converting this image from one bit depth, to another bit depth or from one image base to a different image base.
We're not going through all the weird stuff that Camera Raw has to go through, when developing a raw image file. Anyway, what that means is, by default, all our values are starting off at zeroes. What I am going to do is I am going to change this Temperature value to +20. Let's say like so, and that's going to warm up the image, quite a bit, actually, and I think it looks quite a bit better. As a result I'll go ahead and zoom in there. So this was the image as it appeared originally, when it was little bit cool, in my opinion, that is a little bit bluish.
I want to warm it up, give it more blood, if you will, by entering a value of 20 and that's going to infuse the image with yellow/orange which will make the image rosier, potentially more appealing. Now you don't want to go too far with it. If I was to crank this value up to 70 or something like that, she would look like she was on a surface of the sun or something horrible like that. Let's just take it up a little bit. So 20 is working up pretty nicely. Now that does also appear to brighten the image. So let's go ahead and sink the brightness by clicking on this Brightness value right there and changing it to -20.
So I'll go ahead and take that down by pressing Shift+down arrow a couple of times. And I mentioned this before, but that doesn't affect the highlights. So the whites remain white, and it doesn't affect the shadows so the blacks remain black and the dark shadows remain visible. What we are doing here is we are just sinking the mid-tones, that is we're darkening the middle luminance levels inside of the image. And you can see that reflected in the histogram if you were to look at that. And then finally, I want to restore some Saturation. So, I am going to click on the Vibrance value right there in order to make it active, and I am going to take that Vibrance value up to + 30 like so.
So just to give you a sense of how far we've come, where this image is concerned, I'll go and turn off the Preview checkbox. So this is what the image look like originally. So it's just a little bit cooler really, overall and this is what it looks like now. If I turn the Preview checkbox back on. And incidentally, you can invoke Preview from the keyboard by pressing the P key, P turns it off, P turns it back on. An interesting thing when working with Camera Raw preview is you're just previewing the settings in the current panels. So if you switch to a different panel like Tone Curve or Detail or one of those guys, then turning on and off Preview just affects the settings in that panel.
These settings that we're seeing right would remain in effect. So just I am going to bear in mind. All right we're done. That's it. That's all I want to do, very subtle modification here. Click OK, in order to update the layers inside of the larger composition and notice both the multiply layer which you wouldn't be able to see very well, because it's in the background and it's darkening up the Background layer, and then a Smart Object layer that's covering it up which is set to the Normal blend mode. They both updated in kind. So this is before ,the before version of the image, I'll press Ctrl+Z, Command+Z on the Mac, to undo the change and then Ctrl+Z or Command+Z again, will reapply the change and we get a warmer version of our model.
Thanks to the changes that we applied so simply and elegantly in Camera Raw.
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