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Creating a custom border using masking

From: Photoshop CS5 for Photographers

Video: Creating a custom border using masking

Really since the beginning, photographers have been interested in what surrounds their images, because many photographers have discovered that the edges, or what surrounds our photographs, really affects the image. And sometimes, it's pretty fun to play in Photoshop and see what we can do in regards to creating custom edges or borders around our photos. One of the things that we can do here in order to create an edge effect is we can apply some of our masking skills in order to have quite a bit of flexibility in order to come up with some different options. All right. Well, let's take a look at what we could do.

Creating a custom border using masking

Really since the beginning, photographers have been interested in what surrounds their images, because many photographers have discovered that the edges, or what surrounds our photographs, really affects the image. And sometimes, it's pretty fun to play in Photoshop and see what we can do in regards to creating custom edges or borders around our photos. One of the things that we can do here in order to create an edge effect is we can apply some of our masking skills in order to have quite a bit of flexibility in order to come up with some different options. All right. Well, let's take a look at what we could do.

Well, the first thing that I want to do is go ahead and navigate over to my Layers panel. And here, I am going to click on the Adjustment layer icon and then choose Solid Color. In my case I want to have a black edge around my photos. So I am going to click Black and then select OK. So currently, you can see that I have the color here and then a white Mask revealing the entirety of this Black. Well, that's not exactly what I want. I want something a little bit different. So let's make our way over to the Marquee tool.

What we are going to do here is simply click and drag across the image, trying to make a pretty even selection. And then I'm going to click in the Mask. You can see that that is now targeted. There are corners around this icon. What I want to do is fill this middle area with black. In other words, I want to conceal the black here. I don't want to see it in the middle of my image. Well, in order to do that, I can use a shortcut. On a Mac, my shortcut, because Black is in my Background Color, will be Command+Delete.

On a PC, that's Ctrl+Backspace. All right. Well, once we've done that, we then need to deselect. We can do so by navigating to Select and choosing Deselect, or by pressing the shortcut which is listed here are. All right. Well, so far so good. I now have this Black edge, and that alone looks kind of interesting. But let's say that I really want a little bit more of a creative kind of vignette type of an affect. Well, no big deal. All that I need to do is to go to my Feather slider here in the Mask panel. And then I can dial this in however I see fit.

I can also continually modify this Mask. If it's too small or too big ,no big deal. Command+T on a Mac, Ctrl+T on a PC. I can then free transform this, and I can change how this appears, to either modify the composition or to modify the thickness of that edge. I'll go ahead and make it a little bit smaller this time, and then press Enter or Return. So the nice thing about using masking in order to create effects like this is we just have so much flexibility. For example, let's say we are not sure if Black is the right color. No big deal.

Double-click this icon here, choose a new color like, for example, white and then go ahead and click OK. Now, we have a completely different effect. We can continually modify this by going back to the mask, and here we can change the hardness of that edge or we can make it a little softer. So as you can see here, you have quite a bit of flexibility with how this works. And we can take this even further. Let's remove the Feather. Well, right now, I have this bright, white edge around my image. Well, how could I customize that, say if I want it to look like it's kind of brushstrokes, or a little bit more distressed, or messy? What I could do is select my Brush tool, and then when I hover over the image, I can right-click or Ctrl+click and then select a different brush.

I am going to go ahead and just choose one of these brushes here. I think that one will work fine. And then I'll click out of the image. Well what I want to is I want to paint with white along these edges because if I paint with white here, that means that it will reveal more of this white right here. So I'll go ahead and do that. Again, I am just going to kind of make some brushstrokes here. And at this point, I'm just using my mouse. It would be nice, really, to use a Stylus Pen. And I don't have one right now during this movie, so I am just going to use my mouse and see if I can come up with something that's somewhat interesting.

Not amazing, but nonetheless, you are starting to get a feel for how you could really work with this and come up with some creative ideas. Now, we can always modify this further. We can increase the Feather amount to change that. Or, for that matter, we could use different brushes. And as you can imagine, there are so many different brushes. And just to highlight one option which is completely different, but to get you thinking about some of the creative options, I am going to select this Leaf brush right here. And then I'm going to make this a little bit smaller.

And still painting with white, I am going to go ahead and click and drag along the edge of this photograph. And here, you can see I've now created this really interesting leaf-like brush. Now, if ever I have too many leaves, or if I've modified my edge in too strong of a way, no big deal. Simply choose another brush, right-click or Ctrl+click. This time, I am going to choose a more regular brush. And then, I'll paint with black, so black is now in my foreground color there. And I am just going to paint away some of these leaves that went over kind of the main subject of the photo.

Just a little bit too strong there for me. And then I can change it this way, and just continually customize this so that I can create an edge that makes sense to me. And as you can see, masking gives you an immense amount of flexibility. And what we can do, furthermore, is double-click the color picker. We can try different colors out to see how that connects with our photographs. And sometimes this is simply an interesting practice, just to start to see what happens if I surround my images with neutral colors, or dark colors, or bright colors.

Now, in this particular case, this edge isn't necessarily one that I would keep for this image. Yet nonetheless, this creative process can be really interesting. And the nice thing about going about creating borders, or edges, this way is that if we don't like the edge, like in this case, I don't really like this one, no big deal. Simply turn off the Eye icon. No harm has been done. No pixels have been lost. And we have an immense amount of flexibility, and ultimately this flexibility, hopefully, can lead to even more creative and compelling photographs.

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This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS5 for Photographers
Photoshop CS5 for Photographers

204 video lessons · 43198 viewers

Chris Orwig
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 4m 16s
    1. Welcome
      2m 14s
    2. Using the exercise files
      45s
    3. Photography and Photoshop
      1m 17s
  2. 27m 21s
    1. Becoming a successful student of Photoshop
      1m 1s
    2. Strategies for success
      2m 9s
    3. Taking visual snapshots
      3m 32s
    4. The importance of the 30-minute blink
      2m 38s
    5. Isolation
      5m 41s
    6. Creative memorization
      2m 59s
    7. Say it out loud
      4m 9s
    8. Be prepared for surprises
      1m 17s
    9. Why Photoshop CS5?
      3m 55s
  3. 20m 8s
    1. What is Adobe Bridge?
      2m 51s
    2. Introducing the Bridge workspace
      2m 57s
    3. Using Bridge to review and evaluate photographs
      4m 12s
    4. Working with Bridge and Photoshop
      1m 56s
    5. Introducing Mini Bridge
      3m 49s
    6. Working with Mini Bridge
      4m 23s
  4. 25m 52s
    1. Choosing your color settings
      2m 35s
    2. HUD color picker preferences
      2m 44s
    3. Image interpolation preferences
      3m 52s
    4. Zoom preferences
      1m 47s
    5. Interface preferences
      3m 3s
    6. File-handling preferences
      2m 59s
    7. Performance preferences
      2m 28s
    8. Cursor preferences
      2m 59s
    9. Guides and type preview preferences
      3m 25s
  5. 23m 46s
    1. Introducing color management
      2m 53s
    2. Two simple steps for more accurate color
      5m 34s
    3. Opening and saving files with embedded profiles
      4m 28s
    4. Why color settings and monitor calibration matter
      5m 18s
    5. Creative tip: Setting up your studio
      1m 59s
    6. Monitor calibration
      1m 46s
    7. Color management resources
      1m 48s
  6. 35m 9s
    1. Introducing the Tools panel
      1m 27s
    2. Working with the Tools panel
      4m 36s
    3. Viewing and arranging documents
      4m 29s
    4. Combining multiple images
      4m 15s
    5. Closing multiple images
      2m 17s
    6. Working with panels
      3m 50s
    7. Customizing your workspace
      4m 14s
    8. Creating custom keyboard shortcuts
      4m 49s
    9. Working with the Application bar and Full Screen view
      4m 3s
    10. Working with a Wacom tablet
      1m 9s
  7. 22m 54s
    1. Bit depth 101
      5m 29s
    2. Introducing image size
      3m 26s
    3. Resizing images
      6m 50s
    4. Resizing by cropping
      2m 33s
    5. Straightening an image
      2m 22s
    6. Creative tip: Sizing images correctly
      2m 14s
  8. 33m 49s
    1. Introducing the Camera Raw preferences
      3m 33s
    2. Opening images in Camera Raw
      3m 48s
    3. Using the basic Camera Raw controls
      3m 20s
    4. Color correction and white balance
      3m 7s
    5. Processing multiple images
      2m 21s
    6. Crop and compose
      4m 31s
    7. Converting to black and white
      2m 26s
    8. Camera raw workflow
      7m 36s
    9. Saving images from Adobe Camera Raw
      3m 7s
  9. 38m 9s
    1. Introducing transparency
      1m 29s
    2. Introducing layers
      2m 58s
    3. Working with layers
      3m 49s
    4. Aligning layers
      2m 8s
    5. Creating new layers
      4m 18s
    6. Organizing layers
      3m 34s
    7. Layer style effects
      6m 18s
    8. Creating a clipping mask
      3m 0s
    9. Targeting and moving layers
      4m 10s
    10. Layers shortcuts
      6m 25s
  10. 44m 59s
    1. Using the Magic Wand
      4m 43s
    2. Using the Quick Select tool to remove a background
      2m 16s
    3. Using the Quick Select tool for creative color effects
      2m 23s
    4. Using the Marquee Selection tool
      2m 55s
    5. Using the Magnetic Lasso tool
      3m 6s
    6. Using the Polygonal Lasso tool
      3m 28s
    7. Making color range selections
      3m 35s
    8. Using Refine Edge to improve selections
      3m 17s
    9. Using Refine Edge with a color range
      4m 21s
    10. Introducing paths
      3m 43s
    11. Creating a path selection
      4m 24s
    12. Using a path selection to improve color
      6m 48s
  11. 42m 31s
    1. Introducing masking
      1m 13s
    2. Deconstructing how masking works
      6m 56s
    3. Masking defined
      1m 51s
    4. Refining masked edges
      5m 58s
    5. Building a mask based on color
      6m 11s
    6. Changing a color using a mask
      3m 54s
    7. Masking and selective sharpening
      5m 53s
    8. Using the Mask panel controls
      4m 7s
    9. Quick Mask mode
      6m 28s
  12. 15m 8s
    1. Creating a custom border using masking
      6m 10s
    2. Using pre-built borders
      4m 21s
    3. Exploring sample image frames
      4m 37s
  13. 21m 40s
    1. Introducing the Adjustments panel
      4m 50s
    2. Using Hue/Saturation and the Target Adjustment tool
      4m 29s
    3. Adjusting brightness and contrast
      4m 46s
    4. Working with vibrance and saturation
      3m 31s
    5. Working with adjustment layer presets
      4m 4s
  14. 27m 10s
    1. Introducing levels
      3m 29s
    2. Enhancing color and tone with levels
      6m 32s
    3. Modifying color and contrast with levels
      6m 15s
    4. Using levels to make subjective color shifts
      5m 11s
    5. Using levels and masking
      3m 5s
    6. Creative tip: Checking in
      2m 38s
  15. 34m 14s
    1. Introducing the Curves dialog box
      2m 53s
    2. Demystifying curves
      5m 45s
    3. Using curves to modify color, contrast, and tone
      2m 58s
    4. Combining selections and masking with curves
      3m 6s
    5. Creating hand-painted masks
      4m 27s
    6. Enhancing a portrait with hand-painted masks
      6m 23s
    7. Using curves to enhance color
      4m 24s
    8. Using multiple curves adjustments
      1m 41s
    9. Using, modifying, and saving curves presets
      2m 37s
  16. 23m 5s
    1. Creative tip: Blending two elements
      58s
    2. Introducing blending modes
      2m 26s
    3. Blending modes visualized
      4m 40s
    4. Blending multiple images together
      4m 34s
    5. Using blending modes to remove white or black
      1m 53s
    6. Improving overexposure using blending
      1m 36s
    7. Improving underexposure using blending
      4m 8s
    8. Blending shortcuts
      2m 50s
  17. 16m 40s
    1. Correcting color with the eyedroppers
      4m 58s
    2. Correcting color and tone with the eyedroppers
      4m 14s
    3. Correcting color with Camera Raw
      1m 58s
    4. Camera Raw color correction with a color chart
      1m 52s
    5. Color-correcting skin by the numbers
      3m 38s
  18. 27m 27s
    1. Replacing color
      2m 9s
    2. Replacing color with Hue/Saturation
      5m 12s
    3. Modifying color with Selective Color
      3m 40s
    4. Modifying multiple colors with Selective Color
      3m 5s
    5. Creating dramatic sunset colors
      2m 59s
    6. Using Color Balance to improve sunrise colors
      1m 13s
    7. Using Color Balance, selections, and masks together
      4m 57s
    8. Improving a family portrait with Color Balance
      2m 35s
    9. Creative tip: Shoot more
      1m 37s
  19. 31m 12s
    1. Creative tip: The digital darkroom
      1m 20s
    2. Introducing the Burn and Dodge tools
      3m 22s
    3. Using the Burn and Dodge tools
      3m 31s
    4. Enhancing dimension with the Burn and Dodge tools
      3m 58s
    5. Improving tone with the Burn and Dodge tools
      3m 12s
    6. Using Soft Light for burning and dodging
      5m 58s
    7. Darkening with the Soft Light blending mode
      5m 39s
    8. Adding contrast to the highlights
      4m 12s
  20. 15m 1s
    1. Introducing black-and-white conversion
      4m 9s
    2. Converting a portrait to black-and-white
      4m 22s
    3. Converting a landscape to black-and-white
      2m 18s
    4. Adding grain and tone to a black-and-white image
      2m 39s
    5. Creative tip: Seeing beyond color
      1m 33s
  21. 11m 2s
    1. Adding lens flare
      3m 34s
    2. Adding film grain
      1m 47s
    3. Introducing Smart Filters
      1m 44s
    4. Applying Smart Filters
      3m 57s
  22. 10m 17s
    1. Reducing noise with Surface Blur
      4m 25s
    2. Using the Noise Reduction filter
      2m 56s
    3. Advanced noise reduction using channels
      2m 56s
  23. 45m 18s
    1. Using the Dust and Scratches filter
      3m 8s
    2. Removing dust and scratches with masking
      2m 44s
    3. Introducing the trio of healing tools
      5m 30s
    4. Using the Healing and Clone Stamp tools
      3m 26s
    5. Healing along edges and areas of contrast
      2m 8s
    6. Healing and patching
      5m 19s
    7. Using Content-Aware Fill
      4m 27s
    8. Using multiple content-aware tools for the best results
      4m 19s
    9. Making multiple selections with Content-Aware Fill
      2m 18s
    10. Deleting unwanted elements
      3m 59s
    11. Removing a garment strap with spot healing
      1m 46s
    12. Cleaning up an image with spot healing, cloning, and healing
      6m 14s
  24. 48m 59s
    1. Creative tip: Leaving crumbs
      1m 18s
    2. Whitening teeth
      2m 8s
    3. Improving eyes
      3m 24s
    4. Changing eye color
      2m 48s
    5. Enhancing makeup
      5m 33s
    6. Removing blemishes
      2m 20s
    7. Softening skin
      7m 0s
    8. Reducing shadows around eyes
      5m 32s
    9. Reducing and removing wrinkles around eyes
      6m 43s
    10. Improving highlights and shadows
      5m 6s
    11. Changing body size and shape with Liquify
      3m 50s
    12. Modifying the body with Puppet Warp
      3m 17s
  25. 23m 19s
    1. Using the Lens Correction filter
      5m 16s
    2. Removing distortion with Automatic Lens Correction
      2m 22s
    3. Improving a portrait with Lens Correction
      2m 16s
    4. Using Free Transform to correct perspective
      4m 47s
    5. Using Puppet Warp to correct perspective
      4m 47s
    6. Changing a portrait with Puppet Warp
      3m 51s
  26. 37m 11s
    1. Introducing Smart Sharpen
      4m 56s
    2. Smart Sharpen demystified
      5m 49s
    3. Smart Sharpen and masking
      8m 49s
    4. Using Smart Sharpen on small details
      5m 3s
    5. Using the Unsharp Mask filter
      6m 9s
    6. High Pass sharpening an image
      6m 25s
  27. 20m 5s
    1. Resizing for the web and email
      4m 23s
    2. Sharpening for the web and email
      2m 49s
    3. Correcting color for the web and email
      3m 50s
    4. Saving and exporting images for the web and email
      2m 43s
    5. Creating a web gallery
      4m 0s
    6. Sharing photos online
      2m 20s
  28. 17m 15s
    1. Desktop printing recommendations
      2m 46s
    2. Creating a PDF layout and contact sheets
      3m 5s
    3. Resizing and sharpening for a specific print size
      3m 12s
    4. Using Soft Proof to preview the print
      3m 48s
    5. Using the Print dialog box
      2m 25s
    6. Choosing printer settings
      1m 59s
  29. 56s
    1. Goodbye
      56s

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