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Better Shadows/Highlights inside Lab


Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery

with Deke McClelland

Video: Better Shadows/Highlights inside Lab

I've saved the results of the previous project as RGB SH objects.psd, so called, by the way, because we are working in the RGB mode, SA chore shadows highlights was our primary Smart Filter, and of course we were working with Smart Objects the whole time, nested Smart Objects in fact. In the next of couple of exercises, I am going to show you how we can achieve more nuanced results using shadows highlights inside the lab mode and when I say more nuanced results, I mean way the heck better. Now Lab is an alternate color model to RGB. As you know RGB stands for Red Green Blue, it's the color model of light; it's also the color model employed by image capture devices, including scanners and digital cameras and so on.
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  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 27s
  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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Watch the Online Video Course Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery
20h 1m Advanced Sep 30, 2010

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In the all-new Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery, the third and final installment of the popular series, join industry expert and award-winning author Deke McClelland for an in-depth tour of the most powerful and empowering features of Photoshop CS5. Discover the vast possibilities of traditional tools, such as masking and blend modes, and then delve into Smart Objects, Photomerge, as well as the new Puppet Warp, Mixer Brush, and HDR features. Exercise files accompany the course.

Recommended prerequisites: Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Fundamentals and Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Advanced.

Topics include:
  • Using masks and blend modes in radically new ways
  • Mastering the Pen tool and Paths panel
  • Transforming and maximizing Smart Objects
  • Employing Smart Filters to create complex effects
  • Exploring the capabilities of Bristle brushes and the Mixer Brush
  • Merging multiple images into seamless panoramas
  • Exploring the full range of luminance with HDR Pro
  • Recording actions and batching-processing images
Design Photography
Deke McClelland

Better Shadows/Highlights inside Lab

I've saved the results of the previous project as RGB SH objects.psd, so called, by the way, because we are working in the RGB mode, SA chore shadows highlights was our primary Smart Filter, and of course we were working with Smart Objects the whole time, nested Smart Objects in fact. In the next of couple of exercises, I am going to show you how we can achieve more nuanced results using shadows highlights inside the lab mode and when I say more nuanced results, I mean way the heck better. Now Lab is an alternate color model to RGB. As you know RGB stands for Red Green Blue, it's the color model of light; it's also the color model employed by image capture devices, including scanners and digital cameras and so on.

Lab, on the other hand, is device independent, it doesn't have anything to do with any image capture device, any display, any printer or anything like that, rather it's designed to emulate the way that we see colors, the way we perceive colors in fact, and when you are working inside the Lab mode you are working with three color channels. So you have one channel called Lightness that contains all of the luminance information, then you have a and b, which are arbitrary designations for two perpendicular axes of color. And if you go back to our discussions in Camera Raw, remember how we had the Temperature axis going from blue to yellow, and then we had the Tint axis going from essentially turquoise to pink. Well a and b work the same way except the other way around.

a is Tint, so it goes from turquoise to pink, and b is Temperature, so it contains the blue and yellow information. Now that's not all that important that you wrap your brain around that, the main thing is that we are cleanly dividing the luminance information from the color information, which affords us greater control where shadows, highlights, and many of the other Smart Filters are concerned. So here is what we are going to do, we are going to switch over to Washed-out man.psd, you may recall that's this photograph expressed as a smart object, nothing more, and we are working inside the RGB mode, so let's remedy that by going up to the Image menu, choosing mode and choosing Lab color.

Anytime you switch color models when you have a smart object going, Photoshop gives you this alarming error message, very disconcerting as well because it says do you want to rasterize your objects and there is no reason to rasterize your Smart Objects 99% of the time. Even though Photoshop is gleefully suggesting you do it because Rasterize is the default button, click on Don't Rasterize and now you are working inside the Lab color mode, now you should know that your original image that's contained inside of the Smart Object is still RGB.

That doesn't really have any effect on what's going on inside the composition. So that's totally okay. Anyway so here we are inside Lab. I am going to go up to Image menu, and I am going to choose Adjustments and I will choose Shadows/Highlights. And we will start things off by applying the same color modifications that we did last time around inside the RGB mode, so I am going to change Amount to 10% and then I will tab down to Radius and take that up to a 100% because that's the value we used last time. Highlights is 50-50-50 so every single one of these items Amount, Tonal Width and Radius should be 50, and then I left Color Correction alone essentially because as you may recall we applied the luminosity blend mode, so wiped out the color correction value which we had set to a 100 but just for the sake of demonstration.

The key thing though is that I raised Midtone Contrast up to 60. We get a very different effect as you can see, it's a much flatter effect, it's still fairly washed out actually, he seems to have just this iron jaw at this point, but the interior of his face doesn't appear to contain that much volumetric detail. For example his cheeks right here are pretty flat where the shading is concerned, so I am going to adjust these values to get different results. First of all, I see no reason to breathe life into the shadows.

We didn't have dramatic shadows in the first place quite frankly. They are not all that dark, so let's leave them as dark as they were by setting the amount value down to zero, these values, Tonal Width and Radius don't matter anymore because the Amount is set to 0%. Nothing is happening here. I am going to tab my way down to Highlights and I am going to just pound at the Highlights, I am going to take that value up to 75%, so we are making the Highlights much darker than they were before and as you see, I was trying to draw some detail out in the cheeks and the forehead and so on and then, I am going to tab my way down to Midtone Contrast and I am going to take that guy down to 30 and that is going to soften the effect a little now, it looks pretty tepid, we are really taking some of the wind out of the image but actually it's going to work out beautifully for us.

Now once again what we are going to do is we are going to apply the Luminosity blend mode to the Smart Filter, so just so that you can really see the effects, I am going to take this Color Correction value back up to a 100 so you can gauge for yourself what a ridiculous horrible setting it is. I just don't like it at all. Anyway, I am going to click OK and now I will go over to Shadows/Highlights and I will double-click on that Settings icon that brings up the Blending Options dialog box and I will change the Blend mode to Luminosity which of course is going to completely undercut that awful color value and by the way it's going to get rid of any other color anomalies that we might have set up using the Shadows/Highlights Filter because you never know what kind of color modifications are going on under the hood.

Usually they are pretty subtle if you leave that Color Correction option set to zero but it's still worth getting rid of them entirely by setting the Blend mode to Luminosity and clicking OK. So, so far so good we want to get rid of that Filter mask because it's not doing anything for us, so Right Click inside the Filter Mask thumbnail and choose Delete Filter Mask. Already we have a very different result than we had last time. Now otherwise, we need to approach the image in the same way. So I am going to take this Smart Object and place it into another protective Smart Object by going up to the Layers panel flyout menu and choosing Convert to Smart Object, it should really be placed inside Smart Object. If you loaded dekeKeys it's Ctrl+Comma Cmd+Comma on the Mac. Takes a few moments to happen, and then you will see the Smart Filter disappear because now we have one Smart Object nested inside another.

Now what I suggest you do before you apply Gaussian Blur or High Pass, just go ahead and load the Luminance channel as a selection outline. So switchover to the Channels panel and Ctrl+Click or Cmd+Click on that Lightness Channel and that will load the core Luminance information as a selection outline. So this is a different approach that we took with RGB as well. I am not making you go back into the original image this time around. It's fine to work from the affected image. All right I am going to switch back to Layers panel and notice because we have a selection outline as soon as I go up to the Filter menu, choose Blur and then choose Gaussian Blur and notice many of the Filter submenus are now dimmed because all of those Filter Gallery effects do not work inside Lab, they work only inside RGB but the best of the filters, the ones that you use on a regular basis, still work inside Lab so choose Blur, choose Gaussian Blur and then I will apply a Radius of 15 pixels just as before, click OK and notice two things happen. We get a new Gaussian Blur Smart Filter and we also automatically get a Filter mask that's going to work for us.

So we are not going to have to load a Filter mask later, it's already there. Now double-click on the Settings icon in order to bring up the Blend Options dialog box, change the Blend mode to Overlay, click OK, these are the exact same steps we took last time around. Now I want you to go up to the Filter menu, choose Other and choose High Pass or if you loaded dekeKeys, you have got a keyboard shortcut of Shift+F10 and a Radius value of 5 pixels just as before is absolutely fine, click OK, go over to the Settings icon to the right of High Pass, here inside the Layers panel, double-click on it and let's go and change the Blend mode to the Big Contrast mode, Linear Light and then click OK once again in order to apply that effect there. And then finally I want you to click on the Filter mask thumbnail, go to the Mask panel icon, click on it to bring up the Masks panel and change the density to 50% and then press the Enter key or the Return key on the Mac to accept that value.

Close the Masks panel and that's your final effect. Now the one thing that I am not sure I like about this, because this is a more subtle effect, check it out, I will go ahead and compare it with the RGB version of the correction and this is the RGB SH objects.psd file that I showed you at the outset of this exercise, notice how much more sun burnt he appears and how ruddy the shadow details look and how nearly washed out the Highlights are. So it's a much higher contrast effect whereas if we switchover to the Lab version of the image, it settles down dramatically and we have a much more naturalistic effect with the exception of the Saturation values which are a little bit over the top. And I will show you how to reduce the Saturation levels in a really great way, using a levels Adjustment layer of all things, in the next exercise.

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery .

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Q: The instructions for installing the dekeKeys don't work on my computer (which is running Mac OS X Lion). Is there an update to these?
A: The dekeKeys distributed with this course will still work for Lion. You just need to add them to a slightly different folder than in previous versions of OS X.

Open a new Finder window and choose Go > Go to Folder. Type the following file path exactly as written below. Copying and pasting may result in an error.

~/Library/Application Support/Adobe/Adobe Photoshop CS5/Presets/Keyboard Shortcuts

Move and/or copy/paste the dekeKeys to this folder and follow the rest of the instructions as outlined in the video, "Installing the dekeKeys keyboard shortcuts."
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