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Processing product shots requires a slightly different set of skills than retouching portraits. But with Photoshop and the techniques shown in this course, you can take raw photos of any product—jewelry or electronics—and turn them into ad-ready images. Follow along with Kevin Stohlmeyer, as he color corrects and retouches photos and then makes them pop off the screen with silhouettes, realistic highlights and shadows, and vibrant color. He also shares a series of Photoshop actions and other automation techniques he uses to speed up his workflow.
Adjusting exposure and color correcting in Photoshop can bring more detail and pop to your images. Learning how to adjust both black and white or grayscale in color images will help bring the best starting image to your repair. We're going to take a look at two pictures today, a grayscale and a color picture. In the grayscale image, if I want to make an adjustment, again, I'm going to work non-destructively using my adjustment layers. And I have four options to work with tonal corrections. Brightness and contrast, levels, curves, and exposure.
We'll take a look at each one of these. Brightness and contrast is good for subtle adjustments. I can use my brightness slider to increase or decrease the brightness, and the contrast to add or remove detail. This is fine for subtle adjustments, but with something like this it's not really going to give me the range that I need for this lower right hand corner which has a blown out corner. I want to concentrate on that area and adjust this appropriately. Levels allows me to go on and adjust based on a histogram. I have my shadows on the left, highlight on the right and a mid tone in the center.
This histogram allows me to adjust my images, and as I go through, I can adjust my highlights, shadows and mid tones until I get to the range that I'm looking for. The best part about using an adjustment layer is I have a layer mask built in, so I don't have to worry about the rest of the image. I can concentrate on the area that needs repair and then mask out the rest later on. Curves gives me a similar adjustment. I have an s curve here in the middle. And I have the same histogram readout. Highlights are on the left this time. And shadows are on the right.
All I have to do is grab the line in the middle and create an s curve to adjust. As I go higher in the range, the darker the color gets. And as I pull down and I go towards the bottom, the lighter the range gets. So I can adjust using curves to get a little more precise range compared to levels or brightness contrast. Finally, I have exposure. And exposure allows me to go in and adjust my exposure as if were shooting with my camera. And when I get into gamma correction, gamma correction is actually the correction levels.
So, as I go through, I change my exposure. And you can see, as I increase my gamma correction, the darker the image gets. And as I pull to the left, the lighter the image gets, so I can go through and adjust for this, and again, concentrating only on the areas that need adjustment and not worrying about the rest because I can mask those out. So, this looks pretty good. I've got a good tonal range here. So, here's before. Here's the after. And I'll be able to blend this in very easily later on using layer masks. For my color image, I want to adjust the screen on this mobile device.
So, I'm going to start by creating a selection. And there are many, many more adjustments that I can make regarding color, but I'm going to concentrate on one. Color Balance allows me to go in and make subtle color changes using a balance method. Cyan and red, magenta and green, and yellow and blue are set up as opposites. As I go in and adjust, I can effect the image and change the color range and the best part is, at the very bottom is a check box that says preserve luminosity. That's going to keep my tonal range, or my ink levels if you will, at the same adjustment area.
Up above, I have tone, shadows, and then tones and highlights. Shadows and highlights will adjust either one of those independently, but most of the color adjustment that you're going to be doing is actually in your mid-tones range. The shadows and highlights kind of fall into place as you're going along. S, I can go in, and I can intensify the purple of this flower very easily using Color Balance. In the next movie, we'll go through and talk about actual color correction using levels. And it's using the same method of Color Balance to adjust our colors.
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