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Channel-by-channel edits

Channel-by-channel edits provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Deke McClelland as… Show More

Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Advanced

with Deke McClelland

Video: Channel-by-channel edits

Channel-by-channel edits provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Deke McClelland as part of the Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Advanced
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  1. 22m 25s
    1. Welcome to Photoshop CS4 One-on-One Advanced
      1m 43s
    2. Installing the DekeKeys keyboard shortcuts
      6m 9s
    3. Resetting the function keys on a Mac
      3m 51s
    4. Installing the CS4 color settings
      4m 37s
    5. Setting up the CS4 color settings
      6m 5s
  2. 2h 44m
    1. Highlights, shadows, and midtones
    2. Low contrast, bad meter
      5m 57s
    3. Auto tone, contrast, and color
      8m 1s
    4. Cache levels and the Histogram palette
      7m 16s
    5. How the auto commands work
      10m 15s
    6. A first look at Levels
      6m 11s
    7. Target colors and clipping
      9m 6s
    8. Modifying input levels
      9m 44s
    9. Adjusting the gamma value
      7m 35s
    10. Previewing clipping
      7m 18s
    11. The futility of output levels
      4m 56s
    12. Channel-by-channel edits
      11m 54s
    13. When levels fail
      4m 35s
    14. A first look at Curves
      8m 46s
    15. Static Curves layer tricks
      7m 45s
    16. Dynamic Curves layer tricks
      7m 25s
    17. Correcting the composite image
      8m 30s
    18. Neutralizing a color cast
      6m 52s
    19. The Target Adjustment tool in Curves
      8m 29s
    20. Correcting an image in Lab
      10m 7s
    21. The Shadows/Highlights filter
      4m 19s
    22. Radius and tonal width
      8m 11s
  3. 1h 48m
    1. Edge-enhancement tricks
      1m 13s
    2. How sharpening works
      3m 48s
    3. The single-shot sharpeners
      4m 29s
    4. The Unsharp Mask filter
      7m 57s
    5. Understanding the Radius value
      6m 25s
    6. Gauging the best settings
      7m 47s
    7. Previewing how sharpening will print
      3m 37s
    8. Measuring and setting screen resolution
      6m 57s
    9. Tweaking the screen resolution
      4m 28s
    10. Sharpening the luminance data
      8m 23s
    11. USM vs. Smart Sharpen
      4m 23s
    12. Smart Sharpen's Remove settings
      5m 50s
    13. High-resolution sharpening
      6m 16s
    14. When to leave More Accurate off
      3m 48s
    15. When to turn More Accurate on
      4m 24s
    16. The advanced options
      7m 57s
    17. Saving Smart Sharpen settings
      4m 23s
    18. Accounting for camera shake
      7m 7s
    19. Sharpening with the High Pass filter
      9m 8s
  4. 2h 16m
    1. Why would you blur?
      1m 8s
    2. Fading after an undo
      3m 27s
    3. The "bell-shaped" Gaussian Blur
      5m 43s
    4. The linear Box Blur
      3m 6s
    5. Add Noise vs. Median
      4m 50s
    6. Despeckle vs. Dust & Scratches
      6m 31s
    7. Smart Blur vs. Surface Blur
      8m 13s
    8. The Motion Blur filter
      4m 33s
    9. Radial Blur's Spin and Zoom variations
      5m 48s
    10. Mixing filtered effects
      3m 56s
    11. The "Captain Kirk in Love" effect
      5m 4s
    12. Diffusing focus with Blur and Overlay
      8m 50s
    13. Simulating Vaseline and film grain
      8m 2s
    14. Filling a layer with a neutral color
      2m 55s
    15. Old-school contrast reduction
      3m 39s
    16. Three steps to diffused focus
      7m 36s
    17. Averaging skin tones
      9m 45s
    18. Addressing the stubborn patches
      5m 26s
    19. Combining Gaussian Blur and Average
      6m 1s
    20. Blurring surface details
      3m 3s
    21. Smoothing blemishes while matching noise
      8m 6s
    22. Reducing digital noise
      8m 47s
    23. Striking a smooth/sharpen compromise
      4m 36s
    24. Smoothing over JPEG artifacts
      7m 38s
  5. 2h 31m
    1. Independent layers of color adjustment
      1m 7s
    2. Undersea color channels
      4m 2s
    3. Inventing a Red channel with Lab
      8m 20s
    4. Mixing color channels
      6m 55s
    5. Making shadows with Levels
      7m 5s
    6. Applying small color adjustments
      6m 0s
    7. Further modifying Levels in Lab
      8m 50s
    8. Creating a dynamic fill layer
      4m 38s
    9. Brushing and blending color
      4m 42s
    10. Working with "found masks"
      7m 31s
    11. Saturation, sharpen, and crop
      8m 9s
    12. Mixing a monochromatic image
      7m 2s
    13. Masking an adjustment layer
      4m 45s
    14. Working with Opacity and blend modes
      3m 39s
    15. Adding a black-and-white adjustment
      5m 53s
    16. The Target Adjustment tool in black and white
      6m 12s
    17. Tinting a monochrome photo
      3m 20s
    18. Introducing Gradient Map
      4m 17s
    19. Adjusting both color and luminance
      5m 44s
    20. Infusing elements with different colors
      6m 22s
    21. Adjustment layers as creative tools
      4m 34s
    22. Inverting and brightening the background
      5m 14s
    23. Blurring live, editable type
      5m 44s
    24. Hue, saturation, and darkness
      6m 51s
    25. Filling type with a color adjustment
      3m 24s
    26. Using one adjustment to modify another
      3m 21s
    27. Breathing color into the title
      3m 38s
    28. The Hue/Saturation humanoid
      3m 44s
  6. 1h 48m
    1. Parametric operations
      1m 23s
    2. The power of blend modes
      6m 16s
    3. Changing the Opacity value
      5m 46s
    4. Opacity vs. Fill Opacity
      4m 37s
    5. Meet the blend modes
      6m 4s
    6. Blend mode shortcuts
      7m 8s
    7. Darken, Multiply, and the Burn modes
      6m 33s
    8. Tempering a Burn effect with Fill
      4m 43s
    9. Saving a blended state
      4m 18s
    10. Lighten, Screen, and the Dodge modes
      8m 22s
    11. Linear Burn = Add minus white
      5m 31s
    12. Overlay and the contrast modes
      6m 52s
    13. Fill Opacity takes priority
      6m 19s
    14. Difference and exclusion
      5m 21s
    15. Using difference for golden highlights
      4m 2s
    16. The composite (HSL) modes
      6m 8s
    17. The brush-only modes: Behind and Clear
      10m 31s
    18. Layer groups and the Pass Through mode
      8m 54s
  7. 1h 53m
    1. It's all about the presentation
    2. Moving a layer a specific number of pixels
      6m 59s
    3. Adding a pixel mask to a layer
      5m 48s
    4. Editing a layer mask
      7m 19s
    5. Combining layers into a clipping mask
      6m 19s
    6. Introducing the Advanced Blending options
      4m 45s
    7. Using the luminance blending sliders
      7m 26s
    8. Forcing through underlying luminance
      4m 32s
    9. Masking with a path outline
      5m 45s
    10. Refining a mask from the Masks palette
      7m 18s
    11. Creating and modifying a layer group
      3m 29s
    12. Establishing a knockout group
      5m 29s
    13. Fixing last-minute problems
      6m 23s
    14. Introducing layer comps
      6m 40s
    15. Exploring layered states
      6m 43s
    16. Deleting layers and updating comps
      6m 18s
    17. Saving a basic composition
      6m 21s
    18. Assigning and saving appearance attributes
      7m 15s
    19. Layer comps dos and don'ts
      7m 27s
  8. 1h 56m
    1. Type: The great imaging exception
    2. Establishing default formatting attributes
      4m 6s
    3. Saving formatting attributes as a preset
      8m 5s
    4. Making a point text layer
      6m 18s
    5. Editing size and leading
      6m 44s
    6. Working with vector-based text
      6m 12s
    7. Formatting area text
      4m 16s
    8. Creating a layer of area text
      3m 20s
    9. Resizing the text frame
      4m 34s
    10. Changing the anti-aliasing setting
      3m 58s
    11. Obscure but important formatting options
      6m 31s
    12. Text editing tricks and shortcuts
      8m 44s
    13. Creating a cast shadow
      6m 1s
    14. Blurred shadows and beveled text
      7m 16s
    15. Drawing a path outline
      4m 51s
    16. Creating type on a path
      6m 39s
    17. Flipping text across a circle
      3m 18s
    18. Vertical alignment with baseline shift
      4m 16s
    19. Warping text
      4m 57s
    20. Scaling your text to taste
      3m 33s
    21. Applying a custom warp
      6m 24s
    22. Creating an engraved text effect
      5m 11s
  9. 2h 17m
    1. Bending an image to fit your needs
    2. Creating a canvas texture
      6m 48s
    3. Masking objects against a white background
      5m 42s
    4. Scaling an image to fit a composition
      8m 9s
    5. Aligning one layer to fit another
      3m 52s
    6. Changing the Image Interpolation
      8m 10s
    7. Merging faces
      5m 32s
    8. Rotating the first clock hand
      7m 17s
    9. Adding hands and pasting styles
      6m 40s
    10. Series duplication in Photoshop
      4m 35s
    11. Masking objects against a black background
      6m 34s
    12. Skews and perspective distortions
      7m 57s
    13. Envelope-style warps
      9m 2s
    14. Old-school distortion filters
      8m 50s
    15. Introducing the Liquify filter
      4m 9s
    16. Reconstructing an image
      6m 55s
    17. Using the Warp tool
      5m 16s
    18. The Pucker and Bloat tools
      5m 53s
    19. Push, Turbulence, and Twirl
      6m 41s
    20. The Freeze and Thaw mask tools
      5m 45s
    21. Saving and loading a mesh file
      3m 59s
    22. Creating and applying a texture layer
      8m 30s
  10. 1h 28m
    1. Effects vs. styles
      1m 11s
    2. Of layer styles and masks
      4m 37s
    3. Everything about drop shadow
      8m 2s
    4. Adding a directional glow
      4m 39s
    5. Colorizing with Color Overlay
      5m 18s
    6. Stroke and fill opacity
      5m 48s
    7. Creating a multicolor Outer Glow
      9m 22s
    8. Introducing Bevel and Emboss
      7m 48s
    9. Contour and Texture
      4m 35s
    10. Simulating liquid reflections
      6m 28s
    11. Saving layer styles
      6m 18s
    12. Applying and appending styles
      4m 36s
    13. Saving and swapping style presets
      3m 16s
    14. The five effect helpers
      3m 47s
    15. Blending the effect before the layer
      5m 1s
    16. Colorizing a signature
      3m 30s
    17. Clipping an effect with a mask
      4m 5s
  11. 1h 50m
    1. Welcome to the digital darkroom
      1m 46s
    2. Opening Camera Raw in the Bridge
      5m 44s
    3. The Camera Raw 5 interface
      4m 39s
    4. Adjusting the white balance
      5m 0s
    5. Finessing and saving changes
      7m 55s
    6. Using the White Balance tool
      2m 43s
    7. Working with the Exposure controls
      7m 34s
    8. Straightening and cropping a raw image
      5m 53s
    9. Applying automatic exposure adjustments
      6m 6s
    10. Exposure warnings
      5m 44s
    11. Clarity, Vibrance, and Saturation
      4m 47s
    12. Using the Graduated Filter tool
      3m 33s
    13. Dodging with the Adjustment brush
      9m 24s
    14. Tone Curve adjustments
      6m 54s
    15. Using the Spot Removal tool
      2m 48s
    16. Removing noise and sharpening detail
      4m 5s
    17. Adjusting HSL values
      4m 18s
    18. Adjusting luminance, color by color
      4m 14s
    19. Black and white and split toning
      5m 16s
    20. Camera Raw tips and tricks
      7m 32s
    21. Correcting JPEG and TIFF images
      4m 43s
  12. 57s
    1. Until next time

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Channel-by-channel edits
Video Duration: 11m 54s 20h 57m Intermediate


Channel-by-channel edits provides you with in-depth training on Design. Taught by Deke McClelland as part of the Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Advanced

View Course Description

Photoshop is one of the world’s most powerful image editors, and it can be daunting to try to use skillfully. Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Advanced, the second part of the popular and comprehensive series, follows internationally renowned Photoshop guru Deke McClelland as he dives into the workings of Photoshop. He explores such digital-age wonders as the Levels and Curves commands, edge-detection filters, advanced compositing techniques, vector-based text, the Liquify filter, and Camera Raw. Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details, smoothing over wrinkles and imperfections, and enhancing colors without harming the original image. Exercise files accompany the course.

Recommended prerequisite: Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals.

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

Topics include:
  • Using blend modes, adjustment layers, and layer styles
  • Organizing a layered composition so it is fluid and editable
  • Creating and editing type in Photoshop
  • Using blur effectively
  • Using adjustment layers to add color
  • Combining layers into a clipping mask
  • Working with Camera Raw
Design Photography

Channel-by-channel edits

In this exercise I'm going to show you how to correct an image from the Levels adjustment layer or the Levels dialog box, if we are applying a static color adjustment on a channel by channel basis which is the best way to go if you have some sort of color cast that work inside of you images, we do. In the case of this one which I have now gone ahead and saved as Composite levels.psd. So this is my work so far. We have got a three layer image if you include the Background layer. So we have got Background, which is the original image. We have this Auto Color layer that is currently turned off, we are going to turn it back on in a moment, and we have got this Composite Histogram. So we've made a composite modification which is affecting all of the channels in kind, but that is not going to allow us to correct for any cast.

So I'm just going to go ahead and turn off this Composite Histogram here, which is showing us the original version of the image as it was captured, and now I'm going to turn back on Auto Color, Clip 0.20% and 1.5%, because I want you to see something about this layer. I'm going to ahead and click on it, and by the way notice this art behavior. I have to show this to you, because it is really strange and it may end up causing you some degree of alarm. Notice if you have an inactive layer selected, so I have gone ahead and clicked on this adjustment layer that I turned off, and mean while the adjustment layer below which is on, which is not selected, we are going to see the histogram that belongs to the adjustment layer below, along with the settings that are associated with the active layer, which isn't going to do us any good, by the way. I just can't believe they have done that. But any way, it is something to bare in mind, you've to got to watch which adjustment layer is active when you are working here inside the Adjustment palette, because you can end up doing this thing where you are trying to change the settings, and it's like, wow, nothing is happening, amazing, what's going on here? Well, that's because you are working with a dead layer and it's very possible that- yup, look at that. It actually does change the settings. That's ridiculous. Oh my Gosh! Anyway, go and turn that off, and then click on the right adjustment layer, there we go. So it's just a precaution. I'm not knocking the software. No, no, not me. I'm just saying that that's something to watch out for when you are working inside of this marvelous program.

All right, so here -- of course I love Photoshop, I'm just marking it for a moment here. We've got this Background layer that's active. This is recovery mode people, and I have got this adjustment layer that's now active and turned on, so that's good. And this is accurate, believe it or not. Even though I've got this amazing modification that's been applied, so I'll turn it off for a moment so we can see. There is the original version of the image. There is the modified version of the image. Thanks to this Auto Color combination that I have applied here, and yet if you look at the numerical values, it's as if nothing has changed. Now look at that histogram. Something has been done to that histogram, because it's got a bunch of weird little blades cut into it.

Looks like some kind of crazy comb now, with these little gaps in it. And that's because the histogram has been spread, but it's been spread on a channel by channel basis. Nothing has been done to the composite version of the histogram, which is why all of the values are set to their defaults. However, if you were to switch to a different channel by going up here to this Channel Option and selecting something like Red, Green, or Blue inside of this particular image, because it's an RGB image. Then you would see that work has been done. So there is the unmodified Red histogram with the values assigned to it. So we are saying, anything with a luminance level of 23 or darker is becoming black inside of this one channel. Anything with the luminance level 195 or brighter is becoming white inside of this one channel, and nothing has been done to the midtones at all inside of any of these channels as you will see.

Notice the white points stays 195, where this specific modification is concerned so whatever reason, whatever was going on inside of Photoshop's brain when it applied this Auto Color modification. 195 is always the white point, again, that I want to stress inside of this specific adjustment. Gamma was left 1.0 throughout, but the Black point changes from one channel to the next. You can overwrite that of course. You can change it whatever you want. So the first thing I want you to know is that you've got keyboard shortcuts to switch between these channels, and I also want you to notice how they've changed from the old days. So it used to be to get to the RGB composite you would press Ctrl or Command+~ and now it's Alt or Option+ 2, so that couldn't be more different.

And it's because a lot of keyboard shortcuts have been shifted like Command+~ on the Mac will switch you between active windows, and Command+1 or Ctrl+1 here on the PC will take you to the 100% view. So 1 and ~ are basically taken, so now we are working with 2 through 5, and you may wonder, why don't they switch from Ctrl or Command to Alt or Option, and that's because, if we go to the Channels palette here, you'll notice that Ctrl+2 takes you to the RGB composite, and that would be Command+2 of course on the Mac. Where as Ctrl or Command+3 takes you to the Red Channel, and Ctrl or Command+4 takes you to the Green Channel, and we'll see more of this later. Ctrl or Command+5 takes you to the Blue channel. So I would press Ctrl or Command+2 to go back to the RGB view. So we can't use Ctrl or Command here inside the Adjustments palette, because it's already doing something here inside the Channels Pallet. All right, I'm going to switch back to Layers. So that's why it has gotten mapped to Alt or Option. I hate to belabor this, but I wanted you to know.

If you are working with a static modification inside the Levels dialog box, then you can press either Ctrl or Command 2, 3, 4, and 5, or you press Alt or Option 2, 3, 4, and 5. So you can work either way. Either modify your key words, that is, Ctrl or Alt on a PC or Command and Option on the Mac. So just FYI, more stuff to confuse you. All right, so I'm going to go ahead and switch to red. I sort of feel like it need to backed off in the Red Channel a little bit. In fact, here, this is what we need to do. We don't want to just start racing through the Channels. What you want to do is you want to look at the image, and you want to evaluate it.

And you want to say, okay, what's wrong with the image? What's the color cast? The color cast is yellow. So how are you going to fix yellow color cast. You could subtract yellow, which is a combination of red and green, or you could add the compliment, which is blue. So what this image really needs is brightening up in the blue channel. So let's go to the Blue Channel, either by choosing Blue or pressing Alt or Option+ 5 there, and notice, of course in these brightening, I mean, look at all these highlights that are going unused here.

So the highlights have really start till about middle gray actually inside of this histogram, and yet my white point is away over here. So if I drag my white point closer to the ends of the mountain range, right there, then I'm going to introduce Blue into my image, brightening the Blue Channel. So I'm introducing Blue to the highlights and as a result I'm defeating that yellow and making that yellow color cast go away. Now I have gone too far I think with this modification, so let's back it off a little bit, and we'll take it to like something like, I don't know 160 is looking pretty good. May be even something like -- actually I'll take this down to 145, just so that I have a fairly even value going on. Then I'm going to go over to the gamma value, and I'm going to take that gamma value down, because I feel like the midtones and the image are too bright in general. So I'm going to press Shift down arrow in order to reduce that gamma value, and I took a little blue out of the equation, and reintroduced a little bit of yellow. Did you see the difference? So this is the 1.0 gamma value right there. Look at the image, look at Max's face, how it's a little bit blue. If I take that gamma value down to 0.9 by pressing Shift down arrow, I'll reduced some of the blue, and give him a more naturalistic yellow flavor. Just a little bit of yellow in that skin tone. We don't want to make him jaundiced of course, and then you would go, fool around with the other channels.

Now that you have done that and say, well gosh, at this point I feel like, you know what, I could use a little less green too, because green is the yellow ingredient. So I press Shift down arrow, maybe once, maybe twice to take out some of the green, and in this case I have taken out a sufficient amount of green that I have made the image to red, so then I could go over to the Red Channel, and I could reduce it's Gamma value as well by taking it down to like 0.8. I imagine it will work pretty nicely, and then I'm going to back up the white point just a little bit, so that I take some of the red out of the highlights, and then actually I'll brighten this gamma back up just a little bit. So we've got 0.9 for the gamma and red, and we've got 210 for the white point here inside the Red Channel. 23, which is the way this was set by default in the first place is fine for the black point.

I am not going to adjust the shadows, because they are already in good shape, but you can if you want to. I'm just not going to. All right, and then I could either introduce a little more green like so, in order to yellow up the image a little bit. By taking this white point value down to 190, I'm just playing around here folks in order to see what I feel comfortable with, and then if I was to say gosh, I want more green, I would increase the gamma value like so, and if I wanted less green, I would decrease the gamma value, and that's going to give me more of sort of a red, blue, because the red and blue channels haven't been modified at this point, well, I'm modifying the green channel of course. So that's too far.

I would say something, around what I had is working just fine actually, and then let's go back to the blue channel. So this is the kind of thing you do. Kind of go back and forth between the channels just to get a sense of what's going to look best here. And then I'm going to take this white point value down a little bit further, down to 135 by pressing Shift down arrow there and I actually thing this is looking pretty nice. Now I might say you know what, it's still looking a little bit red in places. And I can go to the red channel and play with that, or I could just decide this is enough monkeying around. Let's see, yes, definitely ooh, actually that's pretty nice. 0.8 for the gamma value, or maybe raise it to 0.85. That's good.

All right, I'm going to go ahead and switch back to the RGB version of the image, and then, I want to stress here, this is the way I tend to work. When I know I have got a color cast associated with the image, I might start with like an Auto Color adjustment here inside of the Levels adjustment layer, the way I did a few exercises ago now, and then I would go to the various individual channels, red, green and blue, before I apply a composite modification and visit them and get the color balance right, and then if necessary back to the Composite view and make a couple of modifications there. So for example, I could say, you know what? I can still ease off of this white point. I could still make the image brighter. But I'm not going to, but I could do that if I wanted to and it could also brighten things up inside the gamma that is bringing the midtones little bit, or I could darken them. I could just take the gamma value down just ever so slightly down to 0.97 for example, in order to darken the image just a little bit.

Now to give you a sense of what we were able to accomplish, this is actually really great thing about the Adjustments palette here. We can now, because we kind of clicked off that adjustment layer and came back to it and made some modifications. I can not take advantage of this little revert option here. This Reset to previous state option, and I can click on it, and I'll see the original Auto Color adjustment right there. This is what this adjustment looked like before we embarked on this exercise, and then if I press Ctrl+Z or Command+Z on the Mac, this is what it looks like.

Now when I go ahead and reinstate my newest modification, so I think this is a heck of an improvement. So this is where we started, and this is where we are now. Very, very nice modification, and just to really give you a sense of what's going on. If I were to turn off this layer by clicking on the eyeball, this is the original version of the images we saw at so many exercises ago, when we first opened it, and this is the I think very successful modification. All right I'm going to go ahead and hide my pallets and zoom in on Max here, so that we can see my boy nice and up close, and personal, and I think very, very nicely modified. Here using channel by channel Levels adjustment in Photoshop.

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How to use exercise files.

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Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

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