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Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Advanced, the second part of the popular and comprehensive series, updated for CS5, 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 CS5 One-on-One: Fundamentals.
All right gang, in this final exercise of the chapter I'm going to show you yet another way to modify your Gradient Map. This time not by meticulously editing color stops but rather by taking something that's more or less in keeping with what you want. And then blending it in with that black-and-white composite using a combination of Blend mode and Opacity. The process goes more quickly but you have to wrap your mind around it a little bit as well. So I've saved my changes as Subtle ski resort.psd because after all we've applied a more subtle colorization effect.
I am going to go and switch, inside the Adjustments panel, I am going to switch back from this subtle 15th gradient that we've created Low sat complement back to Complementary VY in order to reapply that garish effect that we had before. Let's try to make it work as opposed to editing every single color stop let's just work here inside the Layers panel. I'll go ahead and collapse the Adjustments panel for a moment by double-clicking to the right of the Mask tab, and then I am going to change that Blend mode and one way to change the Blend mode is to choose Color.
So if you're having problems getting the Luminance levels right and you're either darkening the image or you are brightening the image and you are getting frustrated by the whole thing then just go ahead and choose Color, and you'll accept the original Luminance levels inside the underlying image and you'll apply the color from the Gradient Map effect. So you won't have to worry about all that luminance adjustment anymore. So, I'll turn that colorize layer Off, we have this grayscale effect right there. I turn it On and we have this colorized effect. You do have to note that you are adding saturation to the mix so you may see a little bit of darkening despite the fact that you're choosing Color and you're accepting the original luminance levels, but the darkening effect shouldn't be too onerous.
Anyway, that's one way to work. Another way to work is to take advantage of one of these Contrast modes here, Overlay through Linear Light. Although, my guess is that either Overlay or Soft Light is going to best suit your purposes. So, I'll go ahead and choose Overlay and we get this effect here which is pretty cool. Now, we just lost a ton of color there but we have such rich luminance action going on now inside of this image, compare that to the flat black-and-white photograph that is the no color black-and-white photograph.
Just imagine adding this color to the mix and outputting that to your inkjet printer how many rich luminance levels you are going to have available to you? Same thing if you're reproducing the image commercially using all four process colors, Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black, you are going to get a rich array of luminance levels. Now, we are over darkening the effect at this point so we could back it off if we wanted to. I could reduce the Opacity, say to 60 %, and decide whether I like that effect better, or I could go ahead and even switch down to the Soft Light mode.
Now, I am going to lose more color when I do that, however, once again we still have a lot of color going on inside of this image. It's just basically under the radar at this point. We are not screaming, hey! I've got a colorized image, look at it, it's a big sepia tone, instead we are craving a super high quality duotone image. That's going to print super successfully, and again it's going to look like a wonderfully rich black-and-white image. Again, this combination here of Soft Light and 60% works really well where this particular image is concerned.
So, this is the standard black-and-white, plain black-and-white version of the image, and this is the subtly colorized version of the image filled in with Soft Light and an Opacity level of 60%. Now, I know some of you are just begging, hey! So we've seen what you can do here using Gradient Map along with the Big Sky panorama, what about those Goth women, that we've lost track of for like two or three full exercises now? Well, let's go ahead and switch back to them, and I've saved the most recent version of this image as Sepia tint red frock.psd because we applied that really frankly lame sepia effect using black-and-white.
That tint check box I just don't really approve of it all. Again, easy to apply, but, what is easy? Now, I mean you've seen what we can do. So let's go ahead and switch things out. Now, what's interesting about this is I don't even have to turn Off that sepia check box, that's associated with black-and-white there. So if I double-click on the thumbnail for the black-and-white adjustment layer, Tint is turned On. Who cares? I could turn it Off if I want to but I don't need to because Gradient Map is going to overwrite it.
So, instead what I am going to do is click this left-pointing arrowhead in the bottom left corner of the Adjustments panel to return to my list I'll click the fourth icon in the third row which is Gradient Map or at least I'll Alt+Click on it so that I can name that layer and I'll call it colorize. And then I'll go ahead and click OK, and let's switch to this guy right there. He actually works out beautifully for this image, Earthtone reflect. When I first select it, it gives you these weird little sort of green shadow details inside the image which you might have fun with.
Actually, you could go ahead and pull those out if we you wanted to. In another words, I could click on this Gradient bar and then I could go ahead and lengthen the zone that's covered by those green shadows essentially. So I end up getting this effect here, which has a certain sort of function where these particular people are concerned. But anyway, I'm going to go and escape out because I think actually the best effect for this image is to change the Blend mode here from Normal to something like once again Soft Light in order to achieve this effect here.
And then, I'm going to press the Escape key so that the Soft Light option is no longer active and I'll press the 5 key to reduce the Opacity value to 50%, and actually that might be a little low. So I'll type-in 66 for 66% Opacity to raise that up a little bit. Not only does that give us a better effect overall but it also helps to blend the frock into the image that much better. So let's go ahead and fill the screen with these images, I am going to go ahead and press Shift+F to go directly to the Fill Screen mode and zoom in on this image a little bit here so that we can take it in.
So this is the Big Sky panorama incidentally subject to that Complementary VY gradient set to the Soft Light blend mode, 60% Opacity. This is our just gorgeous women that have been with us throughout this entire lesson now set to the Earthtone reflect. I think it's called that gradient, Soft Light Opacity 66%. All right, so there you have it. We've learned how to mix our own custom black-and-white images using either the Channel Mixer adjustment or the black-and-white adjustment.
I've also shown you the best way to infuse colors into your black-and-white photographs and that is using Gradient Map.
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