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The third part of the popular and comprehensive series Photoshop CS6 One-on-One follows industry pro Deke McClelland as he plunges into the inner workings of Adobe Photoshop. He shows how to adjust your color, interface, and performance settings to get the best out of your images and the most out of Photoshop, and explores the power of Smart Objects, Shadows/Highlights, and Curves for making subtle, nondestructive adjustments. The course dives into Camera Raw to experiment with the editing toolset there, and returns to Photoshop to discuss toning, blur, and blend modes. Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details and reducing noise, as well as creating quick and accurate selections with Quick Mask, Color Range, and Refine Edge commands.
In this movie, I'll show you how to blur the tiger tattoo with the application of a Smart Filter, and I'll show you how to blend that filter into place as well and then I'll show you a special approach that will allow us to see the effects of the Smart Filter even if we apply further transformations. So I'm going to start things off here by going up to the Filter menu and choosing Blur and then I'll choose Gaussian Blur and if you loaded dekeKeys you've got a keyboard shortcut, this is a very common useful filter, of Shift+F6. And I ultimately elected to set the Radius value to 4 pixels where this image is concerned, higher resolution images incidentally would require a higher radius values in order to achieve the same effect, and then I'll go ahead and click OK in order to apply that filter.
Because I'm working with a Smart Object, Photoshop applies Gaussian Blur automatically as a Smart Filter, which means that I can edit it anytime I like. Now all I have to do to edit the settings is double-click on the words Gaussian Blur and then I have access to that radius value once again. Anyway, for now I'm just going to cancel out. Now let's say at this point, this isn't really the effect I want, it's way to blurry, but we'll address that in a moment, but for now let's imagine that I want to apply further transformations to this image and I want to be able to see the filtered version of the image as well.
Well, if you go up to the Edit menu, and choose Free Transform or any of the other transformation options, then Photoshop is going to warn you that the Smart Filters that are applied to this layer will be turned off temporarily, so as long as you're applying the transformation, you can't see the filter and sure enough when I click OK, the Gaussian Blur effect disappears. What if that's not what you want? Well, I'm going to go ahead and press the Escape key in order to leave the Free Transform mode and then I'll right-click on the words Smart Filters and choose Clear Smart Filters in order to get rid of that effect.
The great thing here is we've got a Smart Object inside of a Smart Object, so we can nest the filtering effect like so, just go ahead and double-click on the thumbnail for the tiger tattoo layer. If you get this alert message that's telling you how Smart Filters work just go ahead and click OK and then inside the Smart Object, we're still in Photoshop by the way, you want to go up to the Filter menu and just choose that first command or you can press Ctrl+F or Cmd+F on the Mac and because we're working with the Smart Object, as you can see here, Photoshop goes ahead and forces the display of the Gaussian Blur dialog box.
I still want to apply a radius values 4 pixels then I'll click OK and I also want to go ahead and blend this filtering effect into the original image and I'm going to do that by double-clicking on this little slider icon there and that'll bring up the Blending Options dialog box and I'm going to change the mode from Normal, once again, to Multiply in order to sync that affect. So what I am doing is I am telling Photoshop to use the Gaussian Blur exclusively to darken the image, which means that the blur is going outward and not inward and that will create the appearance of the any kind of leaching into the skin and then I'll select the Opacity value and change it to 75% and I'll click OK.
Now because the Gaussian Blur effect is extending outside the outlines of this tiger art, it's extending outside of the canvas as well, so we're going to get some very sharp edges if we just go and save our changes at this point. What we need to do is extend the canvas a little bit. By going up to the Image menu, and choosing the Canvas Size command or you can press Ctrl+Alt+C or Cmd+Opt+C on the Mac, and I'm going to turn on the relative checkbox, so that we're just adding pixels to the image and I'm going to enter a width value of 20 pixels and a height value of 20 pixels as well and I'm just trying to give it way more pixels than we need.
Theoretically, because of the Gaussian distribution of the Gaussian Blur filter we need about 6 or 7 pixels in order to account for 4 pixels of radius but 20 pixels will for sure be enough. Now I'll go ahead and click OK in order to extend that canvas outward. Now that I'm done working on the Smart Object I'll go ahead and close it and then here on a PC I'll click the Yes button on the Mac you'll click the Save button in order to update that Smart Object inside of the larger composition. Now that we've applied the filter inside of the Smart Object, instead of outside of it we can transform this layer and still see the effect of the filter and so just by way of demonstration, I'll go up to the Edit menu and choose as opposed to Free Transform this time, I'll go to the Transform submenu and choose the Warp Command, so we can go directly to the Warp mode and note we don't get an alert message this time and we continue to see the effects of the Gaussian Blur filter.
And then, I'm just going to drag upward on the flames at the top of the tiger's head in order to add a little bit of extra distortion there, and when I'm done I'll press the Enter key or the Return key on the Mac, in order to accept my changes and that's how you blur an image with the help of a Smart Filter nested inside of a Smart Object, so that you can continue to see the results of the filter even when you apply further transformations.
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