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It's quite common for photographers to be admonished not to oversharpen an image. But in some cases, oversharpening an image can actually provide a nice creative effect. In this case, I might like to exaggerate some of the texture, for example. I'm going to start off by creating a background copy. I'll drag the thumbnail from the background image layer down to the Create New Layer button, the blank sheet of paper icon at the bottom of the layers panel. And then, I'm going to apply an exaggerated sharpening effect to this layer. I'll choose Filter, and then Sharpen, followed by Smart Sharpen from the menu.
And then I'll increase the radius significantly and also increase the amount rather significantly. And I'm looking for, not exactly an artificial effects, but an exaggerated effect. A strong creative effect in the image. I'll go ahead and fine tune my settings here. That looks to be pretty good. I'll go ahead then and click OK to accept the change. Now, this obviously creates a bit of an artificial appearance in the image. Perhaps a little bit too strong but I do like the contrast effect that it's created for me. And so to tone things down, I'll simply reduce the Opacity slider for my back ground copy layer up at the top right of the Layers panel.
And something right about there produces what I think is a rather interesting effect. We have this almost hyper realistic water, the back ground looks relatively normal, all things considered. But the texture in the water is really looking rather interesting. So sometimes applying more sharpening than you think you really need can create a very nice effect. I do recommend working on a copy of your background image layer so that you can always mitigate the effect by fine tuning your Opacity setting for that background copy.
But as you can see, what otherwise would be considered over-sharpening, can really produce an interesting effect in a photo.
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