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In Photoshop CS6 for Photographers, author, photographer, and teacher Chris Orwig explores Photoshop from the perspective of the photographer.
The course details the features and techniques behind enhancing and retouching photos, preparing them for print and online publishing, and much more. Chris demonstrates how to make basic edits in Camera Raw, develop and save color profiles, work with layers and selections, tone and sharpen, and retouch images while retaining their natural character.
Chris also shares some creative tips and project ideas, such as converting a photo to black-and-white and enhancing a portrait with hand-painted masks. The course also covers workflow details, such as organizing images in Bridge and Mini Bridge, optimizing Photoshop preferences, and calibrating your monitor.
Now that we know a little bit about the Clone and Healing tools, let's take a look at how we can use these tools in order to clean up the background in this portrait. Also, along the way, I want to share with you a few shortcuts, and tips that you can use in order to more effectively work with these tools. Well typically when it comes to cleaning up the small details, you'll want to do this on a new layer. So let's create a new layer and you can do so by pressing Shift+Command+N if you're on a Mac or Shift+Ctrl+N if you're on Windows. Let's name this new layer Clean Up.
Next, let's select the Spot Healing Brush. You can do so by pressing the J key. Then if you press Shift+J, you notice that it will toggle through the different Brush tools, you can see that. Go ahead and press Shift+J until you have the tool with the icon of the Band-Aid and then the small selection next to it. Next, you want to make sure to turn on Content Aware. This will help blend what we are retouching or cleaning up here. Then also turn on Sample all layers, so that we can do all of our retouching on this new layer.
Next, hover over what you want to clean up and then change your brush size. Here we can do so by pressing left-bracket key to make it smaller, right-bracket key will make it bigger. Next, we're either going to click or click-and-drag in order to start removing some of these small little blemishes. A lot of times what you'll want to do is have a brush which is just a little bit bigger than the blemish you are working on. This will prevent you from bringing in strange artifacts, or different things that might happen when you replicate or clean up these little areas with this tool.
Here, I will make the brush bigger by pressing the right-bracket key. I'm also pressing the Spacebar key in order to move around the image. Now, as we move around the image, we are just going to go ahead and do a lot of little clicking, and you know, these first steps of all of the spot healing, they are really important. Sometimes, it's the small stuff that helps our images to be set apart. The more that we invest here in the small stuff, well the better off we'll do with the bigger adjustments later. Okay. So again just here making some really small adjustments.
You are noticing that I'm moving around quite a bit, and I'm doing that so that I'm not cleaning up one area too much. You want to make sure you are kind of being consistent across the board and so I can just go ahead and navigate around and clicking on different areas; lots of little clicks, not very exciting to watch. But it actually is pretty exciting to see once you start to look at your before and after. Well so far, here we have it. There is our before, here is our after. On this layer essentially, we just have all these little spots; these spots that we've corrected.
Well next, let's take a look at a few areas which are a little bit bigger. For example, one of the things that I want to do is I want to clean up these blemishes here, remove this tile, and deal with this side of the picture as well. Well, if I go ahead and start to remove these blemishes with this tool, I can do so. And for the most part, I may get lucky, and be able to remove them, but sometimes what will happen is this. Here, if we zoom in, you can see there is this gap right here. Well, I want to re-create this line, and one of the best ways to do that is with the Clone Stamp tool.
So in order to have extra flexibility, I am going to clone stamp to a new layer. Press Shift+Command+N and here I will go ahead and name this layer Clone. I should say Shift+Command+N on a Mac or Shift+Ctrl+N on Windows. Let's name this new layer Clone. Next, we will click OK. Then press the S key to select the Clone Stamp tool. Here, we want to turn on Aligned and also Sample All layers. Next, hold down the Option key on a Mac, Alt key on Windows and then click to sample an area.
Now, here we can go ahead and move this line over, and then just start to paint it in. Now why did I do this on a separate layer? Well, it's nice to do this on a separate layer in case that line wasn't in the perfect spot. So here, we could move it to get it in that exact spot or if you press Command or Ctrl+T sometimes it's helpful to free transform that a little bit just to get it to fit exactly where you need it. So again, by having that extra flexibility of having this on its own layer, it just gives us more control when it comes to that clone work that we did. All right! Well so far so good.
What about say this big tile? Let's go back to our cleanup layer and what I want to do is I want to think about how I can remove this. I could use the Clone Stamp tool, but the problem with that is it's going to duplicate the texture in the background it won't work. I could try using the Spot Healing Brush, but again, that tool typically works well with smaller areas. And really, it's the Patch tool that I need to use, and previously, we talked about how when we work with the Patch tool, we need to duplicate the background layer. Well, that's it for working with the Normal mode.
If we take this to a more advanced mode which is Content Aware, you notice that there's an option for Sample all layers. Now we can go ahead and click-and-drag around this area, and after having done that, we can then go ahead, and work on our clean up layer, and just click-and-drag this to a new area of the image. Now, you notice that I'm bringing in these different lines based on the area that I'm selecting. You want to choose an area where you can bring in lines which are connected or cohesive. In this case, that works well. I can also do this with other parts of my image; again just selecting something, and then bringing this to a nice area of texture or tone.
We can do this in order to clean up little problems, or in order to deal with textures or blending that didn't quite cut it when it came to working with our other tools. So as we make these little selections, really what we are thinking about is how we can deal with larger areas and how we can do that by simply circling them and then sampling another area. As we make these changes, really what we're trying to do is to reduce and simplify in a way that brings more focus to the subject. Well, after having done this, I think we are going in a good direction; we've cleaned this photo up really nicely.
Again, we can click on that before and after, and here you can see our before and now our after. So now, after having seen the before and after, you can see how we can use these tools to clean up our photographs in some phenomenal ways; yet here, we've been focusing in on working on the background. Yet, what about those situations where you want to clean up or improve the subject, say like with a close-up portrait? Well, let's take a look at how we can do that in the next movie.
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