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Chromatic aberration

From: Photoshop Image Cleanup Workshop

Video: Chromatic aberration

The term chromatic aberation refers to color halos caused when certain wavelengths of light are focused at a different plane, then the other wavelengths. In other words, all of the light in the image is in focus, except for a small range of color values. And because those specific color values are out of focus, they appear as color fringing, especially along high contrast edges in an image. Fortunately, fixing chromatic aberration is very easy. I'll go ahead and zoom in on the top right corner of the caboose here, and you can see there's a fair amount of chromatic aberration present. Fortunately, this is very easy to fix.

Chromatic aberration

The term chromatic aberation refers to color halos caused when certain wavelengths of light are focused at a different plane, then the other wavelengths. In other words, all of the light in the image is in focus, except for a small range of color values. And because those specific color values are out of focus, they appear as color fringing, especially along high contrast edges in an image. Fortunately, fixing chromatic aberration is very easy. I'll go ahead and zoom in on the top right corner of the caboose here, and you can see there's a fair amount of chromatic aberration present. Fortunately, this is very easy to fix.

In this case, we'll use the Lens Correction filter to apply our correction. It's also possible, if you captured in raw, to apply this correction in the raw conversion process. But here, I'm working with an image that's already been converted, so I'll apply the adjustment after the fact. I'm going to create a copy of my background image layer so I can work non-destructively. So I'll drag the thumbnail for my background image layer down to the Create New Layer button at the bottom of the Layers panel. I'll then choose Filter, Lens Correction from the menu in order to bring up the Lens Corrector Filter dialog. I'll zoom in on a portion of the image, in this case the top-right corner of the caboose, where the chromatic aberration is most evident. And I'll make sure that any of my auto correction options are turned off in the Lens Correction dialog, and then I'll switch to the Custom tab. As you can see, I have three sliders available.

I can correct Red Cyan Fringe, Green Magenta Fringe, or Blue Yellow Fringe. It looks like I probably mostly need to concern myself with Green Magenta, although I think Red and Cyan might be an issue as well. And the basic approach here, is to simply adjust the sliders, and observe the effect within the image. We're trying to get those colors to shift, so that they become a complete non-issue. I actually think maybe I'll need to adjust my Blue Yellow just a little bit. That looks better. And let's take a look at the Red Cyan shift.

Sometimes it's easiest to move the slider all the way to the extreme, so that you can get a better sense of the adjustment. In this case, I'll need to move to the right with the Red Cyan adjustment. And that might be a little bit too much, so I'll bring that back. I do need to allow the preview to update, so I'll pause the mouse at any given time while I'm moving the slider left and right. And the point is that I'll continue moving those sliders, adjusting their position, until I can see that the chromatic aberration has been completely eliminated, or at least eliminated as much as possible.

Once I found the settings that seem to work well, I'll go ahead and click OK, and you can see that the chromatic aberration in this image has been significantly reduced. Actually, I'd say pretty much eliminated altogether. Chromatic aberration tends to occur most often with relatively inexpensive lenses, or lenses that are of a particularly short focal length. Fortunately, any time chromatic aberrations appear within an image, it's generally very easy to apply a correction.

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Photoshop Image Cleanup Workshop

31 video lessons · 1309 viewers

Tim Grey
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