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Real focus happens inside the camera's lens element. The sharpening features in Photoshop CS3 exaggerate the contrast along edges in a photograph to transform a well-focused image into an outstanding image. In Photoshop CS3 Sharpening Images, Deke McClelland teaches a host of sharpening and noise reduction techniques, including using filters such as Unsharp Mask, Smart Sharpen, High Pass, and Reduce Noise. The training teaches the essentials of sharpening, including what it does, why it's important, and how the filters function. Plus, the training covers Deke's recommended best practices, including the four distinct varieties of sharpening, which can be used independently or in combination with each other. Photoshop CS3 Sharpening Images is about how to transform images from looking good to looking their absolute best. Exercise files accompany the course.
Alright gang, by now we have gone ahead and blurred the area outside of this womans eyes using the Gaussian Blur filter. Then we went ahead and created another Smart Object, so that we that we had a Smart Object inside of a Smart Object, and we focused in on her eyes. We went ahead sharpened her eyes and her eyebrows and her lips using the high pass filter, but that's not quite enough. I want to really sell this effect by punching up the contrast that is associated with the eyelashes and the pupils and the eyebrows, so that they become the darkest portion of the image.
Here's what I am talking about. This is the final effect that I am going for. See how the eye how the eyelashes and the eyebrows and the pupils have gotten even darker. Go and zoom in, so we can see that even better here. So this is what we have got right Now this is what we are going for, and it lends the image a hypnotic quality I think, that really helps to finish off the effect. Alright, and we are going to achieve this effect incidentally using an empty adjustment layer set to the Multiply blend mode and of course a few other blending options in the layer mask as well.
Alright, so anyway, lets go back to the images that that exist so far. And if you are working along with me, just keep on working. If you are just joining me, I have got an image called nested objects.PSD that you can open. It found inside the 07_for_effect folder. I am going to ahead and bring back my Layers palette here, and I am going to zoom out actually just a little bit to the 50% zoom ratio. Now we are going to darken these details using an adjustment layer. We are not going to work with a Smart Filter this time, and by virtue of the fact that we can apply an adjustment to a Smart Object, it gives us the flexibility to apply a different layer mask without having to create yet another different nested object.
Alright here's what I want you to do. Step number one is to go over to the Layers palette, click on that Palette menu icon, and then choose Palette Options, and then I want to turn off the Use Default Masks on Adjustments checkbox. Make sure its turned off, and then click OK. Its turned on by default, and I did rather it be turned off because it just keeps you a higher degree of flexibility as you will see here. Next, I want to press and hold the Alt or Option key, the Alt key on the PC, Option Key in on the Mac, click on that black-white icon down here at the bottom of the palette, and I want you choose Brightness/Contrast.
Brightness/Contrast basically provides the least overhead wherein an empty adjustment is concerned. AlSo I use Brightness/Contrast very seldomly as an adjustment layer, so when I see it inside of a layered composition, I know it is probably empty. Alright, I am going to go ahead and choose that command. While I have the Alt key down or Option Key on the Mac, that's is going to force to display a New Layer dialog, and I am going to call this layer Darken then I am going the change the mode from Normal to Multiply, so that we are darkening the details inside the image. Then, I will go ahead and click OK, that brings up the Brightness/Contrast dialog box.
I don't want you do anything inside of this dialog box, make no modifications; that's what I mean by an empty adjustment layer. Nothing is happening inside the adjustment layer itself. It just serving as a prop really, then I will click OK, but notice what it does by virtue of the fact that I have the blend mode set to Multiply, it acts as if I am multiplying the image by itself. So it is doing this wonderful double duty here, it taking the entire image, multiplying by itself without any additional overhead to the size of the image. Notice that the flattened document size is 15.6 MB, so layered version of the image is 16.9 MB, so not much bigger.
Alright, so we have now got this overly dark version of the image that actually isnt very good at this point, I dare to say. I want to affect only the darkest color inside of the image. I don't want effect skin tones. Right now we are darkening the heck out of the skin tones. This is the original version of the image much, much lighter by comparison and this is overly dark version. I want to bring back those light skin tones and light eyes and the light lips and so on. So I am going to go over to this Darken layer right here, and I am going to double click in an empty layer over here to the right layer name to bring up the Layer Styles dialog box, and then I am going force through the lightest colors by dragging this white triangle that is associated with the Underlying Layer slider-bar.
I am going drag the white triangle all the way over to 20, so that I am any place where we have a luminance of level 20 or brighter, which is just about all of the luminance level inside of the image, they are going to show through from the underlying layer and they are going pierce their way through the weird effect I have applied so far, this darkening effect. Now that doesn't leave enough of the eyebrows and eyelashes and dark details in general behind, so I am going to press the Alt key or the Option key in the Mac and drag the right half of this white triangle away from the left half until I get a value of 140 right there.
So you should see these values, 0 for the black value, 20 for the left half of the white triangle, and 140 for the right half of the white triangle, then go ahead and click OK and notice that that create something of a smooth transition between the darkest color that where ultra darkening and the lightest colors that were leaving alone. Now the problem at this is point is, we are darkening not only the eyebrows and the eyelashes and the pupils, but we are also darkening her hair and that not good actually. I am going go ahead and zoom out so you can see just how not good that is.
We don't have any highlights that work inside of the anymore, we are also ultra darkening these beads and the folds in her fabric here, and so this is what the underlying image looks like. With all this rich details inside of the hair and notice we are just ruining it at this point, that why we need a layer mask. Alright, so I am going to go ahead and zoom in here. We need a layer mask just around the eyes and the eyebrows, and we are going to create that layer mask by adding a new one. Now I want a layer mask to start off as back so then I can paint in just those elements that I want to keep. So I am going to go down here to the mask icon and Alt-click on it or Option-click on it once again in order to add a black mask to this adjustment layer, then I am going to grab my Brush tool, and I might increase the size of the brush a little bit by pressing the right bracket key a few times, make sure that your foreground color set to white, if its not press the X key in order to make it So and then go ahead and brush over the details that you want to make dark, like the eyebrow in the case of this woman I think it works best, and I will go ahead brush in her eye as well.
So I brushed in the eyebrows and the eyes. You might not want to brush in the eyebrows. It is totally up to you, but I actually - I think this looks just totally striking at this point. I think looks awesome, and just to give you a sense of what kind of modification we are able to make here over the course of these last three exercise, this is the original, the very original version of the image from photographer Tom Young that we have first opened a few exercises back and this is the modified version in which we ware emphasizing the eyes over all of the other details inside of the image.
I think this final version of the image is much more striking and it is fairly straightforward to pull off. You can involve things in all few nested, Smart Objects, and then adjustment layer and so on, but we have made this effect entirely nondestructively. So we havent inched a single pixel on the image, which means you can go back and modify it your heats content.
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