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Photoshop CS4 for Photographers is an essential course for any digital photographer who wants to master the software's vast array of image enhancement techniques. Professional photographer and instructor Chris Orwig uses his own compelling images to demonstrate how the power of Photoshop can make photographers more passionate about their work. He covers many aspects of the application, such as working with RAW images, using curves and levels, making images snap, and enhancing bland photographs by converting them to black and white. Exercise files accompany this course.
In this movie, we are going to broaden and deepen our understanding of blending modes. We are working on this file blending_modes.pds. You can find it in the chapter 19 folder. Go and crack this one open by double-clicking on it in the Bridge and then press F to go to Full Screen View mode and then press Spacebar to reposition the image. Now I'm going to go ahead and show you something that I'm going to be doing. If you go to Window pulldown menu and choose a Layer Comps, I'm going to be going through these different Layer Comps here, so just so you know what I'm doing and just in case you want to work through this side, you can go ahead and click on those arrow keys.
Now I have a shortcut set up, so I'm going to close that and then press F to go Full Screen View mode so we can really focus in on blending modes. Now in the previous movie we started to talk about blending modes and how they are grouped. We consider they are grouped or divided by these little light gray lines, okay well great. Well today we will go a little bit deeper, what's actually happening here? Well for the Normal blending mode, they are basically leaves the color unchanged. There isn't really any interaction with the layers below. Dissolve is one of those blending modes, you are going to use merely rarely, so I'm not going to even talk about it here just yet. Now the Darken blending modes, we talked about that right, Darkens the underlying layer. These all work with Lightening. This adds contrast by making some areas lighter or darker.
The Difference and Exclusion modes they are all about comparison then finally Hue, Saturation, Color, Luminosity change different aspects of the color. Now they all work just a little bit differently. So again a lot of times when we start to talk about blending modes, all these different ideas get a little bit muddle together, let's make this really simple. Again we can think of the top group is darkening, the next group is lightening, and then the following group as simply adding contrast. This one we can use for comparison into our effect and then finally dealing with color. All right well how then this exactly break down. I'll go ahead and press the F7 key to open up my Layers panel and I'm going to open up these examples folder and here I have a number of different examples and I just want to continue to deepen or understanding of these blending modes.
So I'm going to click in the Grayscale Layer and when I do that, I'll go ahead and choose some different blending modes. Again here we have Darken, we can see it's darkening those pixels, let's also get Multiply. Well interesting, Darken and Multiply have a relationship that's similar yet they affect color and the overall intensity that affected in some pretty interesting ways. Let's compare those two to Lighten. Okay interesting, we see a little bit of a color shift here to Screen, okay very fascinate. So we are seeing that the top two Darken and Multiply are very similar to the Lighten and Screen blend modes except that they are exact opposite. Okay well let's go ahead and turn this layer off and turn of this layer, where you can actually see, what have this different percentage amounts from dark to light.
Now click in that layer, I'm going to go ahead and navigate down to my Darken and again we can see what's happening there across the board and then Multiply as well. A little bit of further reach and compare that to Lighten and then also to your Screen. Well pretty interesting isn't it. Well let's then go down to another important blend mode which is Soft Light. Now when we get to Soft Light, we notice that not much is happening right here, 50% gray, yet to making my whites to a lot whiter and my blacks a lot blacker but 50% gray is in really touch. What about that layer just above it, Overlay? Oh! Gosh, it's the same thing but more intense. So one of the things that we just learned is that the top two blending modes work very similar all the way down the line here for these first three groups.
Yet the intensity of the affects are little bit different and with Overlay and Soft Light which are the two blending modes you will be using quite often just keep that in mind. When you are using Soft Light to add contrast, we can always intensify that effect by going to this Overlay blend mode. All right well so far so good let's turn these layers off and let's go even further. On this next layer you can see that I have these different pieces of color and I have these little small pieces of color as well. Now I want to include those in order to begin to talk about our different Color blend modes. In particular I want to talk about Color and Luminosity. Now when I take this to the Color blend mode, what it allows me to do is to see through the color and to see some of the texture or the detail of the image behind it. So rather than looking like I'm just adding color on top of the image, the color is now blending into the image, interesting. Again we can see that texture here on the roof.
The next blending mode that I want to point out here is Luminosity. Now this one is going to be really important when we sharpening our images or when we work on curves adjustments or we don't want to affect color and here's why. When we take a Layer blend mode to Luminosity all of the sudden we're not seeing the color values that were there rather we're seeing the luminance values and those luminance values are then affecting the underlying image. So that's pretty interesting. Well let's go ahead and take a look at that with curves. So here I have a curves adjustments, I'll double-click that to open up the Curves panel and I'm going to take this to the Red channel and I'll go ahead and increase the red quite a bit, you can see I have a ton of red that I'm not seeing a red hue here. I'm not seeing a red shift on the image. Well why is that? Oh! you guess it right? The blend mode for that layer is Luminosity.
Now if I take this to the blend mode of Normal. Wow! All of a sudden I'm seeing that huge color shift. So if you are making adjustments even in the RGB channel, let's go ahead and make adjustments here and then let's go down to this Red channel and reset that and we see that just by making this adjustment in the RGB channel, I'm really affecting the overall colors. Well if I then take that blend mode to a blend mode of Luminosity, all of a sudden it's just affecting the tones, of course, it will affect the color a little bit but it's not as strong as a color shift. So again keep in mind that this works when you are working in the RGB mode or any of the different channels.
So one of the reasons why we may want to do that is let's say, we have crack color and again this adjustment isn't very good, I'm exaggerating here but let's say we have correct color. We need to modify the brightness of something and we are worried that if we make a curves adjustment, we are going to ruin the cool correct color. Well all we need to do is make that adjustment then take that blend mode to Luminosity. Okay well let's go ahead and close that panel for a moment and jump back to our blend modes here and take a look at these guys. Well so far what we have begun to do is first of all understand these in different groups: darkening, lightening, contrast, comparison, and then color and then we dug a little deeper and begin to see how some of the different blend modes work.
Now I haven't dug into all the blending modes, just the essential ones. And what I wanted to point out was that there is a l little bit of a pattern in regards to how these are organized and in regards to how these work. And then finally we wrapped up our conversation about blending modes with a couple of practical examples of how we can use either the Color or the Luminosity blending mode in order to create a particular effect. All right, well now that we know quite a bit about blending modes so let's go ahead and apply what we've learned and we will do that in the next few movies. See you then. 19_02_deepen
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