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Photoshop CS4 for Photographers is an essential course for any digital photographer who wants to master the software's vast array of image enhancement techniques. Professional photographer and instructor Chris Orwig uses his own compelling images to demonstrate how the power of Photoshop can make photographers more passionate about their work. He covers many aspects of the application, such as working with RAW images, using curves and levels, making images snap, and enhancing bland photographs by converting them to black and white. Exercise files accompany this course.
In this movie we will be working on the file corwig_boat_walk. You can find it in the chapter 21 folder. Let's double- click that one to open it in Photoshop. After that go to Full Screen View mode. Now this image is interesting to me because I was on a boat that was incredibly crowded. There were people around. There wasn't a lot to photograph but I saw this scene and thought wow, it's interesting, there aren't a lot of colors, right? There are these lines on the deck, the blue and the red in the jacket and blue sky. So that was kind of interesting to snap this photo and it's intriguing to me and I want to take what I have here to push it a little bit further. I want to work with the color in a unique way. So I'll click on the Adjustment layer icon for Hue/Saturation and next what we are going to do is, go down to all the different colors, we are going to go to our Yellows and de-saturate. We are going to go all the way through this de-saturating all the different colors that we have in this image, Blues as well and finally Magentas.
There are of course shortcuts to get there, on a Mac its Option, on a PC that's Alt, two through eight. All right well now that I have removed most of the color, I just have color left in the Reds. So let's go back to those reds for a moment and let's expand the view of this. I'll click on this icon here and navigate to the Reds. Now that I'm in the Reds we can see the range of Reds that are being affected. So I'm going to shift this color a little bit so we can see it, and then increase the color saturation. Okay I know that looks bad but stick with me. Down here this is showing me what colors have been affected by this adjustment up top. If I go ahead and drag in at this point it says well select actually less color. So I'm going to go ahead and bring these points in, I'm going to bring them in and in and in, bring this one in as well until the majority of the effect is just on the jacket. Now you never going to saturate something on 100 points or very rarely, so I'll go ahead and take that back to zero.
Now when I move this slider again for the most part it's just focusing in on the jacket. So we have learned a little bit about how we can target specific colors. Now if we don't have quite the reach, we may need to extend this out and we can go ahead and extend that out in order for to select some of the other colors. Now there are two sliders here, right. There are in middle slider in and this is the color we are targeting, we are then remapping that Red to Blue, you see the underneath, and then these outer controls here control how far out that faints into other types of color.
So you can see as I increase that or decrease that, it increases or decreases the reach of the color. All right, well, let's take the Hue back to zero, so we have just the nice red there, then let's open up our Layers palette and look our before and after, before and after. When I get to this place what I'm interested in this, except it's a little bit too obvious, remove all the color except for one it's a little bit too focused on the person. So what I'm going to do here is simply lower the Opacity of this layer, which will bring back some of the other colors. So now when I look at my before and after, it's muting everything except for the red on the jacket.
Now I want to make this even more pronounced, I want to make it even more about this person. So I'm going to go ahead and create a Curves Adjustment by clicking on the Adjustment Layer icon and choosing Curves, then I'm going to brighten this. I'm going to brighten this significantly. All right well now click on Masks and let's open up Layers, so we can see that, click on Mask and then click on Invert that will then invert or hide all of that adjustment. Select your Brush tool, paint with white to reveal I'm just going to paint a little bit around this person here, around her feet.
I'm going to lead into that up, just a touch here. I'm going to paint on some of these pieces of wood. Little bit bigger brush here to add that. Again I want light pointing towards her. It's pretty subtle but here is our before and after, that would smooth out my edges, I'll navigate to Filter > Blur, and Gaussian Blur, and I'm going to do that because I'm not using a Wacom Tablet right now. So again here is my Radius, increase that just a smooth that one. I want to little bit more of a subtle effect. Here is my before and after.
Now is that effect that significant? Well not really, but that's fine, I'm going to lower even more. I just wanted this to add a little bit more of a snap about her. Now here is our overall before and after, using color in order to drag someone's attention. Now you can of course click in this Hue/Saturation Layer and increase the intensity of this, if you want to go for a little bit more of a dramatic effect, yet if you are going to do that, what I recommend is you then create another color adjustment on top of that. We will go to our Adjustments what we are going to do, is go back to that list and in this case I'm going to choose Color Balance and all that I'm going to do here is add a little bit of warmth, a little bit of Yellow, go and add a little bit of Red as well. Go up to those highlights I want to add some Yellow into the highlights as well, a little bit of Red there too. Go to the shadows, you got it. I'm going to add a little bit of Red and Yellow.
Now close that and open up Layers and here we have this final Adjustment, I want to lower the Opacity of that adjustment, we will bring this way back, and the reason I recommend you to do that is because if you are going to push something pretty far, it may be a good idea to experiment with adding other colors rather than simply removing all color. Now in my opinion what's best, well let's go back to the original image, that's interesting. The Hue/Saturation of interesting. I like to little bit of light we brought in, and then this final color, yeah that's kind of interesting but what my favorite treatment here is just going back to Hue/Saturation decreasing that a bit. So again it just makes that red snap a little bit more. So keep in mind you can bring color out, either by adding more to it or you can bring color out by reducing the colors that surround it.
All right, well we have done quite a bit in this movie and my whole intent here is to get you to begin to see what's possible and to get you to begin to experiment with your own images and to play with these different controls and to use them in ways that they weren't in core intended to be used in order to come up with some really creative and fun color treatments of your photographs.
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