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Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Mastery
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Auto-Align plus Auto-Blend


From:

Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Mastery

with Deke McClelland

Video: Auto-Align plus Auto-Blend

All right, now for something a little more elaborate. I have these four photographs here, and I'm looking at these photographs inside the Bridge. They all exist inside the Cyclist sub- folder, which is found inside the 28 Auto-Align folder. And the four images come to us from photographer Chris Orwig, another trainer here at Lynda.com, and you may recall we are used to one of these I think, Stunt Cyclist 3, back when I was showing you cropping or some such feature in the Camera Raw chapter of this enormous series. But now we have all 4 of the photographs in the group and what I want to do is align the four photographs, because these are not tripoded shots. Chris is presumably on his belly shooting these images with a wide angle lens, and starts over here with this guy on this mound or whatever it is and then he lifts his front tire and then he hops over, so wish I could do that, and then he lands on the other side.
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  1. 21m 17s
    1. Welcome
      1m 21s
    2. Installing the DekeKeys keyboard shortcuts
      5m 38s
    3. Resetting the Function keys on a Mac
      3m 51s
    4. Installing the CS4 color settings
      4m 34s
    5. Setting up the CS4 color settings
      5m 53s
  2. 2h 31m
    1. Introduction to masking
      51s
    2. Introducing color range
      4m 22s
    3. Adding base colors and adjusting fuzziness
      4m 46s
    4. Localized color clusters
      6m 12s
    5. The Quick Mask mode
      7m 33s
    6. Viewing a quick mask by itself
      6m 40s
    7. Testing the quality of edges
      3m 55s
    8. Introducing the Masks palette
      7m 45s
    9. Editing a layer mask
      6m 18s
    10. Choking a mask with Gaussian Blur and Levels
      6m 44s
    11. Choking a mask with Mask Edge
      7m 43s
    12. Adding a Gradient Overlay shadow
      4m 23s
    13. Using live Density and Feather
      6m 12s
    14. Journeyman masking
      5m 44s
    15. Creating an alpha channel
      7m 6s
    16. Increasing contrast
      7m 15s
    17. Overlay painting
      8m 28s
    18. Cleaning up whites and blacks
      5m 48s
    19. Soft light painting
      5m 47s
    20. Selecting in style
      6m 55s
    21. Employing masks as selections
      5m 2s
    22. Scaling and compositing layers
      6m 30s
    23. Compositing glass
      5m 10s
    24. Selecting glass highlights
      8m 41s
    25. Working with found masks
      5m 46s
  3. 1h 34m
    1. Introduction to vector-based shapes
      1m 10s
    2. Vector-based type outlines
      7m 23s
    3. The benefits of vectors
      6m 27s
    4. Upsampling vs. nondestructive scaling
      7m 35s
    5. Vectors and effects
      8m 7s
    6. Fill Opacity and clipped layers
      4m 24s
    7. Basic shape creation
      3m 15s
    8. Drawing interacting shapes
      6m 21s
    9. Power-duplicating paths
      3m 12s
    10. Combining pixels and vector masks
      5m 19s
    11. Line tool and layer attributes
      7m 5s
    12. Copying and pasting path outlines
      3m 28s
    13. Drawing custom shapes
      3m 59s
    14. Drawing with the Pen tool
      7m 48s
    15. Creating cusp points
      7m 28s
    16. Defining a custom shape
      3m 34s
    17. Assigning a vector mask to an image
      2m 38s
    18. Adding a vector object to a composition
      5m 40s
  4. 1h 23m
    1. Introduction to Vanishing Point
      1m 11s
    2. Creating and saving the first plane
      8m 9s
    3. Creating perpendicular planes
      5m 16s
    4. Healing in perspective
      8m 47s
    5. Cloning and scaling in perspective
      8m 33s
    6. Patching an irregularly shaped area
      6m 59s
    7. Healing between planes
      3m 34s
    8. Importing an image into a 3D scene
      5m 45s
    9. Adding perspective type
      5m 37s
    10. Removing and matching perspective
      5m 36s
    11. Applying a reflection in perspective
      5m 1s
    12. Creating a perspective gradient
      6m 11s
    13. Converting a gradient to a mask
      2m 58s
    14. Swinging planes to custom angles
      4m 32s
    15. Wrapping art around multiple surfaces
      5m 49s
  5. 1h 15m
    1. Introduction to Smart Objects
      58s
    2. Placing a Smart Object
      5m 7s
    3. Saving a PDF-compatible AI file
      4m 27s
    4. Performing nondestructive transformations
      6m 7s
    5. Editing a Smart Object in Illustrator
      6m 50s
    6. Converting an image to a Smart Object
      6m 50s
    7. Cloning Smart Objects
      5m 24s
    8. Creating a multilayer Smart Object
      5m 51s
    9. Updating multiple instances at once
      2m 54s
    10. Creating a Camera Raw Smart Object
      4m 17s
    11. Editing a Camera Raw Smart Object
      3m 25s
    12. Assembling a layered ACR composition
      5m 54s
    13. Using an ACR Smart Object to effect
      3m 41s
    14. Blending multiple ACR portraits
      6m 56s
    15. Live type that inverts everything behind it
      6m 32s
  6. 1h 48m
    1. Introducing nondestructive Smart Filters
      46s
    2. Applying a Smart Filter
      4m 22s
    3. Adjusting filter and blend settings
      4m 25s
    4. Heaping on the Smart Filters
      5m 19s
    5. Smart Filter stacking order
      7m 23s
    6. Resolution and Smart Filter radius
      6m 12s
    7. Masking Smart Filters
      4m 41s
    8. Employing nested Smart Objects
      5m 5s
    9. Dragging and dropping Smart Filters
      6m 31s
    10. Using the Shadows/Highlights filter
      5m 53s
    11. Regaining access to the pixels
      7m 8s
    12. Parametric wonderland
      5m 52s
    13. Working with the Filter Gallery
      6m 28s
    14. Freeform filter jam
      5m 51s
    15. Swapping filters from the Filter Gallery
      3m 45s
    16. Mixing all varieties of parametric effects
      7m 30s
    17. Addressing a few Smart Filter bugs
      3m 11s
    18. Applying a Smart Filter to live type
      5m 30s
    19. Choking letters with Maximum
      3m 7s
    20. Duplicating a Smart Filter
      2m 38s
    21. Enhancing a filter with a layer effect
      6m 30s
  7. 1h 6m
    1. Introduction to Auto-Align, Auto-Blend, and Photomerge
      1m 2s
    2. Merging two shots into one
      3m 49s
    3. Applying Auto-Align layers
      3m 44s
    4. Masking images into a common scene
      1m 38s
    5. Auto-Align plus Auto-Blend
      8m 11s
    6. Assigning weighted Opacity values
      4m 7s
    7. Employing a Difference mask
      7m 17s
    8. Masking smarter, not harder
      3m 53s
    9. Capturing multiple depths of field
      3m 37s
    10. Auto-blending real focus
      8m 31s
    11. Creating a panorama with Photomerge
      7m 27s
    12. Correcting a seamless panorama
      4m 52s
    13. An altogether nondestructive Lab correction
      7m 59s
  8. 1h 44m
    1. Introduction to new CS4 technologies
      1m 1s
    2. Applying Content-Aware Scale
      7m 18s
    3. What works and what doesn't with Content-Aware Scale
      4m 19s
    4. Protecting areas with masks
      7m 31s
    5. Applying incremental edits
      7m 6s
    6. Protecting skin tones
      7m 12s
    7. Scaling around a model with TLC
      9m 0s
    8. Adjusting the scale threshold
      5m 22s
    9. When Content-Aware Scale fails
      4m 2s
    10. Creating a lens distortion effect
      8m 39s
    11. Layer masking the family
      11m 44s
    12. Installing the Pixel Bender
      3m 42s
    13. Introducing Pixel Bender kernels
      6m 50s
    14. Pixel Bender kernel roundup
      7m 24s
    15. Tube View and Ripple Blocks
      3m 58s
    16. Making a seamless pattern with Kaleidoscope
      6m 13s
    17. Introducing the Pixel Bender Toolkit
      3m 24s
  9. 1h 20m
    1. Introduction to actions
      42s
    2. Creating an action
      5m 45s
    3. Recording operations
      5m 12s
    4. Reviewing and editing an action
      4m 45s
    5. Playing an action (the Button Mode)
      4m 50s
    6. Saving and loading actions
      5m 0s
    7. Copying and modifying an action
      4m 8s
    8. Permitting the user to change settings
      5m 50s
    9. The Best Chrome Effect Ever II
      3m 41s
    10. Recording a fail-safe action
      7m 33s
    11. Rounding corners with a mask
      4m 33s
    12. Cleaning up layers
      3m 51s
    13. Automating layer effects
      7m 1s
    14. Applying chrome with Gradient Map
      6m 24s
    15. Action anomalies
      4m 11s
    16. Rendering effects to layers
      5m 1s
    17. Testing that it works
      2m 0s
  10. 1m 14s
    1. See ya
      1m 14s

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Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Mastery
13h 7m Advanced May 29, 2009

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Photoshop mastery can be elusive, but in Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Mastery, best-selling author and video trainer Deke McClelland teaches the most powerful, unconventional, and flexible features of the program. In this third and final installment of the popular and comprehensive series, Deke delves into the strongest features that Photoshop has to offer, including scalable vector graphics, Smart Objects, and Photomerge. Exercise files accompany the course.

Recommended prerequisites: Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals and Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Advanced, both part of the lynda.com Online Training Library®.

Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts and color settings for Photoshop from the Exercise Files tab.

Topics include:
  • Defining the essentials of masking
  • Resizing images with content-aware scaling
  • Adjusting perspective with Vanishing Point
  • Applying Smart Filters to create complex effects
  • Using the Auto-Align tool to build composite images
Subjects:
Design Photography
Software:
Photoshop
Author:
Deke McClelland

Auto-Align plus Auto-Blend

All right, now for something a little more elaborate. I have these four photographs here, and I'm looking at these photographs inside the Bridge. They all exist inside the Cyclist sub- folder, which is found inside the 28 Auto-Align folder. And the four images come to us from photographer Chris Orwig, another trainer here at Lynda.com, and you may recall we are used to one of these I think, Stunt Cyclist 3, back when I was showing you cropping or some such feature in the Camera Raw chapter of this enormous series. But now we have all 4 of the photographs in the group and what I want to do is align the four photographs, because these are not tripoded shots. Chris is presumably on his belly shooting these images with a wide angle lens, and starts over here with this guy on this mound or whatever it is and then he lifts his front tire and then he hops over, so wish I could do that, and then he lands on the other side.

And I want to create a progression of these images so that we see him move across the scene, and so what we're going to do is go ahead and select all of these images inside this folder by pressing Ctrl+A, Command+A on the Mac. Then go up to the Tools menu and then go here to Photoshop, which allows you access to a few Photoshop features that are suited to the Bridge, and we've got this one right here that's called Load Files into Photoshop Layers. Now this has long been a feature of Photoshop CS3 Extended and I lobbied Adobe to get it moved into standard Photoshop, and here it is. Because it's useful to us plain old everyday artists. Load Files into Photoshop Layers. It launches Photoshop, and goes in and piles all of the images on to layers for you so that you don't have to do it manually, which is a fantastic thing. All right, now I'm going to go ahead and turn off all but the bottom layer, and I'm going to press Alt+Right bracket so that we can see the progression of these images like so.

Now I'm pressing Alt+Left bracket. You can see him jumping across and you can see how the scene moves a little bit too. So the clouds are in motion and the ground is in motion and we don't really care about those people who are relatively still in the background there. The whole world's moving, but those people are remaining still. And of course, the bicyclist is moving. We want him to be moving. Okay, but we need alignment. Do we not? So what I want you to do is go ahead and select all of these layers and you can click on one, Shift-click on another if you want to, or there is a keyboard shortcut actually. It's Ctrl+Alt+A or Command+Option+A on the Mac. Selects all layers.

Now they don't have to all be turned on. In our case just one of the layers is visible. The others are hidden, which is just fine. Now go up to the Edit menu, choose that same command, Auto -Align Layers, and I got news for you. This time we've got some lens information because there is a lot of distortion associated with this scene. And that's a function of this fisheye lens that's being used. So it detected a fisheye lens in the metadata, the Canon EOS 5D, I went ahead and saved that information along with the files. And it even saved exactly what that lens is and so Photoshop CS4, this is new, is capable of applying some fisheye compensation if you like. Now I don't want that. I totally invite you to do that on your own if you want to, but we're going to get better alignment with this option turned off, and I actually like the fisheye distortion.

I think it works well with the scene. So I'm going to turn that checkbox off. Vignette removal is not on. So leave it off and then Auto is selected, leave that selected, click OK. In the gradual passing of time you'll go ahead and align these layers to each other. Now it doesn't do quite as good a job this time around, as it did with Elizabeth and I, and the more layers you start heaping on the more that Auto-Align is inclined to get it wrong is essentially what it comes down to. Anyway, let's go ahead and try out these layers here.

I am going to click on the top one to make it active. And there is its eyeball right there. So it's the only one that we can see. I'm going to press Alt+Left bracket to move down the stack. This is Option+Left bracket on the Mac and you can see that the scenes are pretty well aligned. But there is some distortion action happening over there on the right hand side with this final layer and you may also notice that we have a little bit of color wandering going on, which is interesting, because I processed them all the same. They started off as raw files. I apply the exact same settings, the aperture was the same, the shutter speed was the same. Everything, the color metering was the same and so on. And yet we do have some wandering. Blue is going on in the sky, but that's not going to hurt us. So don't worry about that. Anyway, you might as well just go ahead and turn them all on and now if you look at the top, right there of the image, you can see what I'm talking about with the wandering blues.

They are sort of shifting back and forth. As I recall, 2 and 4 match each other, and then 1 and 3 match each other as well. Now, you can at this point if you want to, go ahead and blend all of these layers automatically, which is pretty interesting by the way. Let's go ahead and do it, just so you can see what happens. There's this command under the Edit menu right there called Auto-Blend Layers. And I can't choose it because I only have one layer selected. So let's press Ctrl+Alt+A, Command+Option+A on the Mac to select all of those layers. Go up to the Edit menu and choose Auto-Blend Layers. Now you get a new dialog box here inside Photoshop CS4 and it's asking you, are you trying to create a panorama or you're trying to stack images on top of each other and do some wacky effect? We're trying to do the wacky stack effect, and yes, we want seamless tones and colors. Right, so let's go ahead and click OK and see what it comes up with. Now this is not necessarily what Auto-Blend was intended to do. But it can create a pretty interesting mix of images and keep the background stuff and then just add in the new stuff inside the image.

So it's trying to retain each one of the independent bicyclists as you can see, and it hasn't done a half bad job. Actually that's a pretty cool composition right there. Now is it exactly what you want? I don't know. Might be, given that it takes just a minute or two of work, it might be absolutely good enough for you. Now the thing that I want you to see though here is that we have not only a bunch of images that have been modified, their colors have been modified. So the colors now match each other, which is amazing. So we don't have those wandering blues any more and we've got automatic layer masks.

Check out the complexity of those layer masks. This function is amazing, but I'm going to show you something. What if you decide, well, gosh, I kind of want to paint this guy in a little differently. And so I want to adjust the masks, and I want this guy's bottom right here to be not so feathery. Something along those lines, what do you do? Well, if you were to let's say with this top layer, which I believe is this guy that's over all the way to the right there, Stunt Cyclist 1.jpg. If you were to turn off his layer mask by Shift- clicking on it, then you would see that his colors are little choppy. Like what in the world is going on there? Let's go ahead and Shift-click on one of these other layer masks as well, and in order to see those we need to Shift-click on this layer mask again to see it.

And you know what, this is what I'm going to do. I'm just going to turn off all these top layers, because we're not getting the effect I'm looking for. And then I'm going to Shift-click on the bottom layer so that I turn off its layer mask and you can see an unfortunate consequence of this filter, and they need to fix this because Auto-Blend could be really that much awesomer if they would take care of this problem. Not only do they apply these masks, but they only correct the image inside of the masked areas. So the automatic color correction is applied inside the masked area. It is not applied outside the masked area.

That means you really do not have the option of editing the masks because you're going to reveal wrong colors and that's going to kill the effect. So you either accept the consequences of the command or you don't, or you back up and try to do it manually on your own. And we're going to do the latter. We're going to go ahead and try our own things, just so you can see a different way to mask these images into place by hand. So let's go ahead and bring up the History palette right there and I'm going to click on this historic state, Select All Layers, because it's right before Auto-Blend layers and so we'll be able to see all of the layers in our stack, great. In the next exercise I'm going to show you how we are going to go ahead and create our own manual merge of the bicyclists, which will be more accurate as you'll see.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Mastery.


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Q: My Polygon tool is locked into a very small size. I can use the Transform tool to increase it's size once drawn, but I must have something set that will not allow me to freely draw it like I can the other shapes. What could be causing this problem?
A: This could be caused by a value associated with the Radius option of the tool. Click the down-pointing arrowhead to the right (a few tool icons over) from the Polygon tool in the options bar at the top of the screen. This brings up pop-up panel. If the Radius option has a number value, select that value and press Delete or Backspace to clear it out. That should fix the problem.
 
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