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Adjusting the behavior of luminance effects

From: Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery

Video: Adjusting the behavior of luminance effects

I've saved my progress as Tenuous planet.psd, found inside the 28_blending folder. Now because every modification we've made so far, hinges on making luminance levels either transparent or forcing through other ones, any future changes that we make to the luminance levels of these layers will affect their Transparency or Opacity as well. So, let's say, for example, that we want to go ahead and firm up some the edges around the sparks on this lightning ball layer. Now you may recall that we went ahead and instructed Photoshop to make the darkest colors on this layer, transparent using the This layer settings right there.

Adjusting the behavior of luminance effects

I've saved my progress as Tenuous planet.psd, found inside the 28_blending folder. Now because every modification we've made so far, hinges on making luminance levels either transparent or forcing through other ones, any future changes that we make to the luminance levels of these layers will affect their Transparency or Opacity as well. So, let's say, for example, that we want to go ahead and firm up some the edges around the sparks on this lightning ball layer. Now you may recall that we went ahead and instructed Photoshop to make the darkest colors on this layer, transparent using the This layer settings right there.

So if we make the layer darker still, we're going to drop out more colors. I'll do so using a static adjustment just because I don't feel like dealing with an Adjustment layer here. So I'll press Ctrl+L or Command+L on the Mac and that brings up the Levels dialog box and you can see that this lightning ball layer is quite light, there is a ton of highlights over here on the right-hand side, there's a bunch of midtones, really no shadows at all. So I am going to go ahead and drag this black point up to 30 and notice as I do, I am dropping out more of lightning ball layers.

So I am forcing more pixels to transparency, and I'm also going to reduce the Gamma value here, I am going to take that down to 0.7. Now, this is a static adjustment; quite by contrast is the parametric adjustments that we applied in the previous exercise. However, I am comfortable with it. I am going to click OK in order to accept that change and now, I'll show you; this is the before, we applied levels, this is the after. So we're revealing more blackness, we're tightening up those details; I think it's a better effect. Now then, I was telling you that I want to get rid of this weird edge along the moon.

That shouldn't be there. So I am going to click on the Background layer. This time I am going to paint with black, in order to paint that edge away. However, I'm not going to paint directly on the Background layer. I am not feeling that cavalier. So I'll press Ctrl+Shift+N or Command+Shift+N on the Mac and I'll go ahead and name this layer, blackness, and then I'll click OK in order to accept the new layer. Let's grab the Brush tool which you can get, of course, by pressing the B key and I've got a pretty big brush going. Notice that the Size is 400 pixels, the Hardness, by the way, is 0% that's important for this effect.

I want to paint with black, so for some reason right now, my foreground color is white. I'll press the X key to make it black and I don't want to see the CMYK slider bars anymore. So I'll switch them back to HSB here in the Color panel. I'll paint like so, just go ahead and paint along this edge here. Nothing is happening because I've left my mode set to Clear. That's no good. So I'll undo that modification; I'll press Shift+Alt+N or Shift+Option+N on the Mac to change the mode to Normal, and then I'll paint again, like so.

Notice as I'm painting, I am not getting rid of the edge of the moon. I'm just allowing those tendrils of lightning or sparks or whatever they are, to fly through this region. Now, how in the world does that make any sense? Here I am painting black on the moon. You would think I'd be wiping out moon details. Well, I am, where there not this upper moon layer as well. So if I turn off upper moon then I suppose I would reveal that blackness if only I could see it, it's getting just wildly covered up by the lightning ball layer.

If I turn it off then you can see that's the big area that I've cleaved out of the moon, temporarily, of course, because it's an independent layer. But that's the damage that I've done. But thanks to all this luminance mixing, it ends up going pretty well unnoticed here. So this blackness layer is just serving as a kind of masking layer. So this is what the composition looks like without it; notice how we are seeing this edge right there, cut through the tendrils of lightening and this is what the composition looks like with it, which I would say, is better.

Anyway, I want to paint a little more right there, I think, to draw forth even more lightening and that ends up working out pretty nicely for me. All right, a couple of other things; I am not too happy with here, for one, I don't think this black area of the upper moon layer should be covering up as much as it is. If I turn off upper moon, you can see there're all sorts of glow details here that are getting covered up by the moon. I don't want that to happen; I just want the interior area to be covered up by this moon layer. So I'm going to turn that layer back on, upper moon that is.

I am going to the click on it to make it active and I am going to drop down to this Add layer mask icon and I'm going to Ctrl+click on it or Command+click on it on the Mac. What I've done is I've added a vector mask to this layer. Now, I'm going to grab my Ellipse tool right here, and I'm going to draw a vector into that mask. So I'll just go ahead and surround the moon like so and I'll press the Shift key because this moon turns out to be pretty darn circular, so that will help me out. I am using the Spacebar to adjust the positioning of my marquee, and now I am making a bigger and now we have a shape that looks like it surrounds the moon quite accurately.

I'll release and look at that. Now that's what I'm talking about. I think this looks a lot better. Now, I want a little bit of softness; I'll press Ctrl+H or Command+H on the Mac so I can evaluate these edges. They look a little sharp to me. To soften them up, I'll bring up my Mask panel, and my vector mask is selected, so I can increase the Feather value and I'm going to take that Feather value up to 10 pixels, let's say, in order to soften the edge of the moon. All right, that looks good to me. I'll go and hide that Mask panel now. Now then, problem; I'll go ahead and zoom in here so I can show it to you.

This edge of the moon is just no good; it should cover up the tendrils of lightening, it shouldn't slightly reveal them like that. So I need to mask this lightening ball layer just a little bit and here's what I'm going to do. I'll select the lightening ball layer; I'll Ctrl-click or Command-click on that vector mask in order to load that circle as a selection outline. So you can double purpose masks like this inside Photoshop very easily. Next, I'll go ahead and get my Lasso tool by pressing the L key and I'll press the Shift and Alt keys at the same time.

This would be Shift and Option on the Mac and I'll drag around this edge, like so. This is the area that I want to mask out and I just have a little bit of a sliver of an edge. We're not trying to be accurate on the right-hand side, just the left-hand side. Now with the lightning ball layer active, yet another keyboard trick folks; bear in mind, we want to mask away the area inside the selection and keep everything outside the selection. That's exactly the opposite way that converting a selection outline to a layer mask usually works, because if I just click on Add layer mask, we're going to just keep that area inside the selection. That's no good.

So I'll undo that modification; Ctrl+Z, Command+Z on the Mac. To exclude the selection from layer mask, Alt+click or Option+click on that Add layer mask icon and we'll get this effect right here, which makes that edge once again opaque. All right, we're almost done; I'll go ahead and zoom out here, so that we can center the image. The one last effect I want to apply here is such a fudge. This is the drop shadow of space effects and that's a Lens Flare, but what we going to do it anyway. So I'll select the upper moon layer here and I am going to create a new layer of black by pressing Ctrl+Shift+N or Command+Shift+N on the Mac, and we'll call this lens flare because that's what it will ultimately be.

Click OK, and then fill it with black. Black is my foreground color, so I'll press Alt+Backspace or Option+Delete on the Mac to just fill the entire layer with black, that's it. All right, now I'll go up to the Filter menu, choose Render and choose Lens Flare and Lens Flare allows you to apply a variety of different lens type. So basically, the idea is light is entering the lens elements and bouncing around and you get this hideous effect right here which everybody tries to avoid in real photography. But when we are creating space effects, we add it right back in.

I've gone ahead and click to this location here; you have this tiny little itsy-bitsy preview that really isn't the least bit satisfactory at all. The way you want to do to set the center of the effect is click. So I want you to click where you see that cross. I have raised the Brightness to 165%, my Lens Type is 50 to 300 mm zoom, whatever, click OK and we end up getting this effect right here. Of course, it doesn't look right at all. So, I'll go up the Image menu, I want to get rid of all this weird color. I'll choose Adjustments and I'll choose Desaturate.

So we just have Gray values. I've also got this nice gradient map layer that I've created for you in advance. So go ahead and turn it on, and I want you to Alt-click or Option-click on the horizontal line between the two layers in order to clip this gradient map adjustment layer to the lens flare layer below so it's only effecting the lens flare layer. And then finally, I am going to set the Blend mode to once again Screen because we're dropping out the blackness and we end up getting this effect here. Now one last thing I am going to do is just go ahead and drop out some of the darker colors here, and I'll do that by double-clicking on that lens flare layer to bring up for the final time the layer Style dialog box, at least the final time in this chapter, and then I'm going to go ahead in drag.

Notice that, not this side. That is completely the wrong thing to do because when I am dragging the white slider triangle, I am making a hole in the Lens Flare effect. I am going to go ahead and reset that back to where it was. This is the guy I want to drag back like so, and I am going to drag it up pretty high. So I am dragging the black slider triangle over to the right, and I am going to release when I see a value of 205. So anything darker than 205 is currently opaque and then I'll Alt-drag or Option-drag the left half of that slider triangle way back to 0, so that we are creating a very soft transition from transparency to opacity here and then I'll go ahead and click OK.

That is my final effect, folks, with the moon just blown apart, accomplished almost entirely, using luminance blending inside of Photoshop, just a tiny bit of masking here and there; nothing complicated at all. It's just proof that there is an amazing amount of power in blending inside a Photoshop.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery
Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery

192 video lessons · 43985 viewers

Deke McClelland
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 40m 45s
    1. Welcome
      2m 45s
    2. Making Photoshop your default image editor
      7m 43s
    3. Installing the dekeKeys keyboard shortcuts
      8m 10s
    4. Remapping OS shortcuts
      7m 37s
    5. Installing the Best Workflow color settings
      4m 31s
    6. The color settings explained
      6m 54s
    7. Loading the CS5 color settings in Bridge
      3m 5s
  2. 1h 11m
    1. Your creative range continues to expand
      1m 46s
    2. The Avatar project so far
      2m 38s
    3. Painting on a photograph
      7m 50s
    4. Adding texture and depth
      6m 14s
    5. Simulating chalky white paint
      7m 23s
    6. Masking and placing an image
      7m 20s
    7. Upsampling and Lens Blur
      5m 9s
    8. Blending blurry elements
      3m 48s
    9. Making a Smart Object
      6m 46s
    10. Placing an image as a Smart Object
      3m 22s
    11. Blending away a background
      5m 56s
    12. Applying Smart Filters
      4m 34s
    13. Creating a glow with Lens Flare
      3m 45s
    14. Blending and masking a glow
      5m 3s
  3. 1h 26m
    1. Using the image to select itself
      1m 53s
    2. Introducing masking
      6m 32s
    3. Making an alpha channel
      6m 54s
    4. Using the Calculations command
      6m 48s
    5. Add, Subtract, Offset, and Scale
      5m 54s
    6. Prepping an image with the Dodge tool
      6m 55s
    7. Fixing mistakes before they get too big
      6m 32s
    8. Painting in the Overlay mode
      5m 51s
    9. Exaggerating and selecting flesh tones
      7m 39s
    10. Smudge, Median, and the Blur tool
      6m 59s
    11. Masking low-contrast details
      6m 7s
    12. Creating a flesh-and-clothing mask
      5m 45s
    13. Masking and compositing the foreground
      5m 27s
    14. Finessing the final composition
      7m 39s
  4. 2h 24m
    1. Connecting the dots
      1m 40s
    2. The Pen tool and the Paths panel
      6m 32s
    3. Drawing a straight-sided outline
      6m 25s
    4. Editing a path outline
      6m 36s
    5. Adding and editing smooth points
      5m 35s
    6. Creating vector masks with the shape tools
      4m 59s
    7. Building a complex outline from shapes
      4m 26s
    8. Subtracting and transforming shapes
      6m 45s
    9. Cloning, flipping, and combining shapes
      8m 58s
    10. Roughing in non-symmetrical paths
      7m 41s
    11. Finessing a complex outline
      9m 15s
    12. Masking a layer effect
      8m 26s
    13. Isolating an image element
      6m 8s
    14. Smooth points and control handles
      9m 3s
    15. Stretching curved segments
      7m 49s
    16. Using the Rubber Band option
      9m 33s
    17. Drawing smooth points with the Pen tool
      6m 59s
    18. Shading an isolated object
      3m 45s
    19. Drawing cusp points
      7m 14s
    20. Setting points in the pasteboard
      9m 57s
    21. Using the Convert Point tool
      6m 42s
  5. 2h 57m
    1. Everything you need to know about blending
      1m 45s
    2. Photoshop CS5's blend modes
      7m 21s
    3. Cycling between blend modes
      6m 15s
    4. Darken and Lighten and their derivatives
      6m 3s
    5. The blend mode shortcuts
      8m 6s
    6. The Multiply and Burn modes
      4m 28s
    7. The Screen and Dodge modes
      6m 0s
    8. How opposite blend modes work
      8m 24s
    9. Why Multiply darkens and Divide lightens
      5m 23s
    10. Cleaning up a client's bad art
      5m 3s
    11. Dropping out a white background
      5m 56s
    12. Blending inside blend modes
      8m 3s
    13. Overlay, Soft Light, and Hard Light
      6m 26s
    14. Vivid, Linear, and Pin Light (and Hard Mix)
      6m 35s
    15. Difference, Exclusion, Subtract, and Divide
      7m 34s
    16. Great uses for the Difference mode
      6m 18s
    17. Promising uses for the Divide mode
      9m 6s
    18. Hue, Saturation, Color, and Luminosity
      7m 0s
    19. Blending an inverted layer
      3m 32s
    20. The "Fill Opacity Eight"
      7m 25s
    21. Making bad blend modes good
      5m 16s
    22. Making a knockout layer
      6m 53s
    23. Blending in the CMYK mode
      8m 3s
    24. Overprinting black text
      8m 29s
    25. Using the Luminance slider
      5m 24s
    26. Parametric luminance masking
      6m 21s
    27. Adjusting the behavior of luminance effects
      10m 8s
  6. 2h 2m
    1. Smart Objects = protective containers
      1m 35s
    2. Placing an Illustrator graphic
      6m 30s
    3. Vector copy and paste options
      6m 56s
    4. Applying Puppet Warp to vectors
      8m 9s
    5. "Gluing" vector art for Puppet Warp
      5m 50s
    6. Warping art onto the surface of an image
      8m 7s
    7. Blending a Smart Object
      4m 30s
    8. Blurring and blending a Smart Object
      6m 8s
    9. Making changes in Illustrator
      5m 57s
    10. Creating "true clones"
      7m 18s
    11. Double-flipping text
      4m 44s
    12. Applying effects to multiple layers
      3m 24s
    13. Updating true clones in one operation
      7m 36s
    14. Editing JPEGs as Camera Raw objects
      5m 49s
    15. Creating a double-exposure effect
      7m 15s
    16. Masking and shading transitions
      7m 47s
    17. Applying and repeating Camera Raw edits
      6m 9s
    18. Copying vs. cloning a Smart Object
      5m 18s
    19. Flipping a Smart Object and its mask
      3m 42s
    20. Adjusting multiple Camera Raw clones
      3m 53s
    21. Text that inverts everything behind it
      5m 34s
  7. 1h 59m
    1. This time, "smart" means dynamic
      1m 37s
    2. Introducing Smart Filters
      6m 28s
    3. Traditional High Pass sharpening
      5m 17s
    4. Smart High Pass in the Lab mode
      7m 57s
    5. Sharpening a high-frequency image
      7m 46s
    6. Retroactively reducing noise
      7m 31s
    7. Which filters are Smart Filters?
      6m 20s
    8. Shadows/Highlights as a Smart Filter
      4m 37s
    9. Nesting one Smart Object inside another
      7m 11s
    10. Drawing a mask from a nested Smart Object
      8m 7s
    11. Better Shadows/Highlights inside Lab
      9m 16s
    12. Tempering saturation values in Lab
      7m 0s
    13. Filtering live, editable text
      9m 2s
    14. Enhancing filters with layer effects
      4m 33s
    15. Applying a filter multiple times
      5m 0s
    16. Creating a synthetic star field
      7m 7s
    17. Making a stucco or drywall pattern
      6m 28s
    18. Land, sea, and clouds
      8m 30s
  8. 2h 50m
    1. Photoshop's advanced painting tools
      2m 3s
    2. Canvas texture and brush libraries
      6m 40s
    3. Painting with a predefined custom brush
      9m 21s
    4. Dissecting a custom brush
      11m 9s
    5. Designing and using a custom brush
      4m 54s
    6. Saving and loading brush presets
      5m 27s
    7. The ten styles of bristle brushes
      9m 47s
    8. Size, Spacing, and Angle
      7m 2s
    9. Using the Bristle Brush preview
      7m 53s
    10. Bristles, Length, Thickness, and Stiffness
      6m 53s
    11. Stylus tilt and mouse behavior
      5m 25s
    12. Stroking a path outline with a brush
      4m 0s
    13. Troubleshooting a stylus
      5m 49s
    14. Introducing the Mixer Brush
      7m 22s
    15. The Load, Mix, and Wet values
      5m 1s
    16. Cleaning and loading a brush
      6m 26s
    17. Shading a piece of graphic art
      6m 34s
    18. Shading with color
      7m 53s
    19. Mixing a photographic portrait
      6m 11s
    20. Tracing the fine details in an image
      5m 52s
    21. Crosshatching and brush size
      5m 53s
    22. Covering up and augmenting details
      7m 36s
    23. Painting in hair and fabric
      5m 54s
    24. Painting and scaling very fine hairs
      8m 7s
    25. Adding texture with the Emboss filter
      8m 31s
    26. Exploiting a "happy accident"
      2m 46s
  9. 1h 40m
    1. Artificial intelligence that works
      1m 22s
    2. The Auto-Align Layers command
      7m 25s
    3. The Auto-Blend Layers command
      3m 54s
    4. Masking auto-aligned layers
      4m 50s
    5. The Geometric Distortion setting
      6m 44s
    6. The Seamless Tones and Colors checkbox
      4m 8s
    7. Creating the best possible layer mask
      9m 18s
    8. Auto-blending depths of field
      5m 54s
    9. Finessing masks, accepting imperfections
      6m 29s
    10. Shooting and downsampling panorama images
      5m 54s
    11. Introducing the Photomerge command
      6m 40s
    12. Evaluating the Layout settings
      6m 47s
    13. Loading, aligning, and blending with Photomerge
      5m 36s
    14. Tracing and extracting seams
      7m 18s
    15. Adding a masked element into a panorama
      5m 55s
    16. Simplifying and correcting a panorama
      5m 58s
    17. Smart Filters and nondestructive cropping
      6m 43s
  10. 1h 18m
    1. The most mysterious of mysterious topics
      2m 29s
    2. Introducing HDR Toning
      6m 43s
    3. Reigning in clipped highlights
      5m 54s
    4. The Local Adaptation options
      9m 5s
    5. Nondestructive editing with HDR Toning
      8m 22s
    6. Using the HDR Toning Curve
      7m 2s
    7. HDR Toning vs. Shadows/Highlights
      6m 0s
    8. Merging multiple exposures
      7m 14s
    9. A first look at HDR Pro
      6m 24s
    10. Removing ghosts, correcting backlighting
      7m 11s
    11. Generating and editing an HDR comp
      7m 0s
    12. HDR rendered to completion
      5m 19s
  11. 1h 27m
    1. Processing hundreds of files in no time
      1m 43s
    2. Creating an action set
      6m 37s
    3. Making an action
      7m 7s
    4. Stop, Delete, and Record
      7m 12s
    5. Add, Undo, and Rerecord
      6m 40s
    6. Playing and testing an action
      6m 31s
    7. Playing and editing a specific operation
      6m 39s
    8. Permitting the user to change settings
      4m 58s
    9. Explaining an action with a custom stop
      5m 0s
    10. Batch-processing multiple images
      7m 22s
    11. Adding a Save As operation
      6m 34s
    12. Creating an action to save web graphics
      7m 59s
    13. Batching two actions into one
      7m 15s
    14. Saving and loading actions
      5m 30s
  12. 1m 19s
    1. See ya
      1m 19s

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