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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.
As you're starting to discover, you can use and apply Filters in order to come up with some really creative effects. You know this point I should also point out that there are filters which help you make corrections, whether that's to reduce noise or to sharpen your image, or to correct distortion. Well we'd be covering those other filters in different chapters. Yet here, we're going to focus in on how we can get creative with these different filters. And in this movie, rather than using Smart Filters, what I want to do is simply duplicate my Background layer a few times.
To do that, press Command+J twice on the Mac or Ctrl+J a few times on Windows. I'll go ahead and rename these layers. I'll name this top one, b1 and then the underlying one b2, for blur1 or blur2. I just want to start to showcase some of the different blur effects which we can apply. To do that, click on one of those layers and then go to your Filter pulldown menu, and then select Blur. As we've seen, there's blur which allows us to kind of soften everything in the image. There also are different types of blur as well.
One that I want to highlight is this one here which is called Radial. Radial allows us to create a blur which is either a spin effect, as you can see here, or a zoom effect. By doing this, we can then re-center where this area or where this blur is going to focus in on. You can also control the overall amount of the blur. In order to make it less subtle, we can decrease the amount. Well here what I wanted to do is, to kind of zoom in on the picture. To apply this, just click OK. Now when you're working with the layer, especially with the blur like this, sometimes you won't nail it.
Notice that it's zooming into the sail. I want it to zoom in on the subject. Well how can we then undo that and reapply the filter when we're going for this a layered approach. Well if you're doing that, you can undo by pressing Command+Z on a Mac, or Ctrl+Z on Windows. Then if you go to your Filter pulldown menu, it will show you the last filter which you applied, it was Radial Blur. You could reopen that filter by pressing a shortcut. The shortcut is Command+Option+F on a Mac or Ctrl+Alt+F on Windows, and by pressing the shortcut, it will reopen that dialog of the last filter that you used.
In this case, I can then reposition this down here and then go ahead and click OK in order to apply that. So it's now zooming in on the subject. Let me show you or tell you, I should say, those shortcuts again. You press Command or Ctrl+Z, then you press Command+Option+F on a Mac or Ctrl+Alt+F on Windows. That reopens the last blur which you've applied. Again, giving you a lot of flexibility, when you're working with this a layered approach, so that you can dial in just the right amount of blur. Well here with a picture like this, which is kind of dream like, this blur is kind of interesting.
It adds something to the photograph and it changes the overall mood and really what we're communicating with this image. Well let's look at yet another type of blur. To do that, we'll just turn off the visibility of this layer, and then target the other layer, b2, blur2. For this one, we're going to go to Filter and then Blur and this time I want to navigate to Field Blur. These three blurs Field, Iris, and Tilt, they're fascinating. Let's start off with Field. What you'll find here is that now you have even more precise control, and you'll be able to see a big preview of your image, rather than that small little dialog that I was trying to use to figure out the zoom.
Well here I can see the whole image, and there is this heads-up display icon here, which I can then move around. If I click-and-drag this, say to the front of the image, I can then control the overall blur that we're seeing in the entire picture. Yet, I can also add another point, say for the subject. And on this other point you can either click-and- 1drag on this icon or on the slider, and you can see that I can remove the blur from this particular person here, so that it's blurry in the front of the picture, but it's not blurry in the back of the picture.
We can set multiple points by simply clicking. You can see that as I'm doing that, I'm really kind of creating this circular blur effect, so that all around the subject, everything is blurred except for this particular part of the picture. Now what's interesting about this is that this allows us to create a blur effect, which we couldn't really have created on camera, or we couldn't have created any other way without a lot of steps. If we zoom in on it, you can see how the blur is right here. To reactivate one of these areas, we'll just click on it and you can move that.
You can see how it's kind of pushing off these other blur effects and creating that different shape. You can also have multiple subjects that are in focus. Here I can go up to the top of the sail, say and click to add a point and then bring in some focus to this area, so that now I have the sail and also the subject in focus. In a sense, it's almost like you're able to bend focus a little bit. You can come up with, as I mentioned before, these just really imaginative or creative results.
Well what I find is in this dialog while it allows me all of this flexibility, the one thing I find distracting are all of these little icons. To hide those, press the H key. That allows you to view your image without any of those controls on it, in order to evaluate if you've made some changes which are good. Another great way to evaluate your file is to click on the Preview button. By doing so, you can see that overall before and then now after. Well after you've dialed in, what type of blur or focus you want, in order to apply this just click OK and it will then apply or render that effect on this other layer, so that we can see that effect here.
Here it is, we can click this on or off. Here's our before and after. There's one blur option or here is another blur option, and by using multiple layers like this, well in a sense we still have flexibility. If ever we want to apply a Blending mode to one of these layers, like we did with Smart Filters in the previous movie, we'll just go down and choose that blending mode. If you want to change the opacity or create a mask again you can do that. So you can do the same things that you do with Smart Filters on layers.
Again, really it's just a preference in regards to your overall workflow. All right! Well now that I've showcased these two different types of blurs, I want to dig deeper into a couple other filters, and so let's continue to talk about how we can work with filters, and let's go ahead and do that in the next few movies.
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