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Cleaning up the small details

From: Photoshop CS5: Athletic Retouching Projects

Video: Cleaning up the small details

At this stage, what I want to do is simply clean up some of the small details. So, to do that, let's zoom in. Press Command+Plus on a Mac, Ctrl+Plus on Windows. Next, let's create a new layer, and let's name that new layer. We can do so by pressing Shift+Command +N on a Mac, Shift+Ctrl+N on Windows. We'll go ahead and name this details. Press Enter or Return to create that layer. Next, let's use one of our retouching tools. For example, we could go ahead and simply use our Healing Brush. I want to make sure we're sampling to all layers, and we also want to have a nice small brush.

Cleaning up the small details

At this stage, what I want to do is simply clean up some of the small details. So, to do that, let's zoom in. Press Command+Plus on a Mac, Ctrl+Plus on Windows. Next, let's create a new layer, and let's name that new layer. We can do so by pressing Shift+Command +N on a Mac, Shift+Ctrl+N on Windows. We'll go ahead and name this details. Press Enter or Return to create that layer. Next, let's use one of our retouching tools. For example, we could go ahead and simply use our Healing Brush. I want to make sure we're sampling to all layers, and we also want to have a nice small brush.

Next, we Option+Click or Alt+Click on an area that has good skin there, nice detail, and then we just look to try to reduce and simplify. We want to reduce all the little skin variations and blemishes that we're seeing. Whenever you do this, you always want to sample from different areas. We've talked about this before, but it's just worth noting that, again, what you'll do is you'll click, and you'll retouch an area from one angle or one perspective, and then you'll go edit from another. You'll constantly move around the frame, and it's almost like the more that you can move around, the better off you'll be, so that you can revisit little areas that you've retouched again and again to really get the edges looking good, the shadows looking great, and just to reduce and simplify, so we're removing all of these little variations.

A lot of times this kind of work is essential in portrait photography, because we notice things, when we have a still frame, that we don't really see in real life. So, we're just looking to try to bring that back to little bit more of a realistic view even though what we're doing is we're doing is we're reducing blemishes. The fact of the matter is you don't really see those blemishes. It's almost like the camera brought out the blemishes by pausing the frame and by stopping the motion. Well, in either case, what I want to do though with this image is I want to create even a little bit more of an idealized image too, so I'm going to go ahead and reduce these little blemishes here.

I'm thinking about blemishes in regards to tonality, also in regards to just any kind of a change in the skin that I'm seeing that I want to get rid of. Change my brush size and work on the little red area in the eyes there just to try to clean that up a bit, and also over here as well, get rid of some of those veins. Let's zoom in closer. Now, when you have veins like this that you can retouch one at a time, it's great, because you can just get in there and retouch one little vein. Yet whenever you get near an area of contrast, just make sure your brush follows that line of contrast.

So, position the brush so that it's along that same edge, so that you can remove that particular problem. Otherwise, you may get it so that it's bringing in a little bit more of a problem than was actually there. So, here you can see I'm just following that edge, and then I'm following that line and then retouching it out that way, so we can start to remove those little areas of the image, which are distracting. We'll go ahead and just work on a couple other areas of the eye as long as we've zoomed in here. Be really careful with this. We want to be really close as we're doing all this detail work, and we want to make sure to go back and forth across the different areas we've retouched.

Press the Spacebar key and you can click and drag around, and it's nice to use a small brush just a little bit bigger than your blemishes, because that helps you have that precise control over how something will be cleaned up. All right, let's just keep doing this, a few more little blemishes here to remove and to get this looking as good as possible, and just a couple more little things here. All right, well, so far so good! I think we're doing a nice job on reducing and simplifying. There's always more that you could do with this, but again, for image like this, I think we're at a pretty good stopping point.

Let me zoom out just to make sure we're going in a good direction. Here it is, our overall before and then after. I think that looks nice. The last thing I want to do before I leave my detail work is I want to work on the shadows here underneath the eyes. So, in order to do that, I'm going to go ahead and merge to top, press Shift+Option+Command+E on a Mac, Shift+Alt+Ctrl+E on Windows. Let's name this eye shadows. Next, press the S key to grab your Clone Stamp tool. We're going to go to blending mode of Lighten.

Because we have the image on this layer, we can use this blending mode which in turn will sample an area of skin, Option+Click or Alt+Click, and then it will say if there is an area that's darker underneath where I'm painting, go ahead and brighten that up a little bit. That brings a nice texture here as we do that as well. So, it's going to help us really just brighten up this little shadow area that was brought in from that other frame so that we can have just a touch brighter view there. Make the brush a touch smaller to get into the little detail area, and try to have a real nice consistent and cohesive line there.

We don't want it to be standing out in any way, shape, or form. Then we'll just make our way down as we go across this area of the image, kind of back and forth, a little bit bigger brush now, just helping me to really brighten up those shadows underneath the eyes, and just a little bit more there. Here is that before and after. Another nice thing about this is if you feel like you've gone too far, you can always lower the Opacity. Let's zoom out. Here, what I'm going to do is simply lower the Opacity just a bit there. Bringing that little bit of that shadow is fine. All right, so far so good! I'm zooming back in so we can evaluate our progress.

Here it is, our overall before, and then after. So far so good!

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS5: Athletic Retouching Projects
Photoshop CS5: Athletic Retouching Projects

82 video lessons · 11974 viewers

Chris Orwig
Author

 
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  1. 1m 55s
    1. Welcome
      53s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 2s
  2. 58m 44s
    1. Creating two exposures with Adobe Camera Raw
      7m 20s
    2. Cleaning up the small details
      4m 22s
    3. Reducing brightness on the skin
      6m 7s
    4. Enhancing color and tone
      5m 17s
    5. Using curves and blending modes for tone
      4m 12s
    6. Improving the eyes
      5m 38s
    7. Modifying the jacket
      6m 38s
    8. Changing the background color
      3m 11s
    9. Final adjustments
      3m 58s
    10. Sharpening the image
      7m 52s
    11. Black-and-white creativity
      4m 9s
  3. 13m 19s
    1. Simplifying with selections
      6m 4s
    2. Cleaning up the details
      4m 1s
    3. Filling in the windows
      3m 14s
  4. 18m 1s
    1. Enhancing muscles
      4m 16s
    2. Adding zoom and modifying color
      5m 14s
    3. Working with contrast
      3m 32s
    4. Blending with a displacement map
      4m 59s
  5. 34m 54s
    1. Cleaning up the original image
      2m 43s
    2. Removing small details
      6m 13s
    3. Removing blemishes and distractions from the background
      8m 6s
    4. Lightening certain colors
      5m 2s
    5. Enhancing the color and tone
      4m 34s
    6. Adding motion blur to the cyclist
      3m 51s
    7. Sharpening and creating layer comps
      4m 25s
  6. 27m 27s
    1. Improving the composition by cropping
      1m 38s
    2. Toning the image with HDR toning
      3m 48s
    3. Adding multiple blending modes to one adjustment
      3m 15s
    4. Creative color reduction
      5m 32s
    5. Sharpening the image
      6m 51s
    6. Enhancing the color and tone
      6m 23s
  7. 16m 13s
    1. Applying a freeform crop
      1m 56s
    2. Modifying the shadows and highlights
      1m 59s
    3. Working with Smart Sharpen
      2m 43s
    4. Changing the color and tone
      3m 44s
    5. Enhancing the color and sharpness
      3m 43s
    6. Final project review
      2m 8s
  8. 34m 6s
    1. Combining multiple exposures
      2m 7s
    2. Masking in the eyes
      5m 54s
    3. Cleaning up the small details
      5m 17s
    4. Enhancing the eyes
      6m 10s
    5. Sharpening the eyes
      2m 31s
    6. Enhancing the skin
      4m 28s
    7. Modifying the overall color and tone
      5m 15s
    8. Final project review
      2m 24s
  9. 22m 32s
    1. Removing unwanted background elements
      3m 45s
    2. Correcting the wall color
      4m 33s
    3. Improving the color of the track
      6m 59s
    4. Adding motion blur
      4m 10s
    5. Improving composition by cropping
      3m 5s
  10. 33m 58s
    1. Using Liquify to change the shape
      4m 56s
    2. Improving the shadows
      3m 4s
    3. Cleaning up the details
      4m 25s
    4. Removing unwanted highlights on the skin
      5m 2s
    5. Sculpting dimension in the muscles
      6m 52s
    6. Increasing height
      4m 49s
    7. Applying midtone contrast and sharpening
      4m 50s
  11. 36m 10s
    1. Making basic adjustments with Adobe Camera Raw (project 1)
      4m 27s
    2. Enhancing the color and tone
      4m 35s
    3. Final project review
      7m 14s
    4. Making basic adjustments with Adobe Camera Raw (project 2)
      3m 44s
    5. Working with shadows, highlights, and curves
      5m 32s
    6. Making creative color adjustments
      5m 20s
    7. Modifying the tone and sharpening
      5m 18s
  12. 16m 27s
    1. Converting the image to black and white
      3m 29s
    2. Improving the eyes
      2m 31s
    3. Sharpening the details
      6m 19s
    4. Enhancing the color and tone
      4m 8s
  13. 9m 42s
    1. Cleaning up the image with Content-Aware Fill
      2m 47s
    2. Removing and repositioning the subjects
      6m 55s
  14. 45m 42s
    1. Making basic adjustments with Adobe Camera Raw (project 1)
      4m 21s
    2. Cleaning up the small details
      3m 22s
    3. Modifying the tone
      4m 5s
    4. Adding grain
      7m 36s
    5. Making basic adjustments with Adobe Camera Raw (project 2)
      8m 39s
    6. Working with curves
      2m 33s
    7. Sharpening the details
      4m 54s
    8. Enhancing the color and tone
      6m 15s
    9. Final project review
      3m 57s
  15. 24s
    1. Goodbye
      24s

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