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Photoshop is the world’s most powerful image editor, and it’s arguably the most complex, as well. Fortunately, nobody knows the program like award-winning book and video author Deke McClelland. Join Deke as he explores such indispensable Photoshop features as resolution, cropping, color correction, retouching, and layers. Gain expertise with real-world projects that make sense. Exercise files accompany the course.
Download Deke's free dekeKeys and color settings from the Exercise Files tab.
I've saved off a progress file called EyeBagsbegone.psd. And in this exercise, we are going to even out the skin tones in my face so that they are not quite so yellowish. And here's what I want you to do. Go ahead and get the Brush tool. And go with a massive brush. We are going to start pretty big here. So I've got a 200 pixel brush for what it's worth. And I am going click on the overlay paint layer to make it active. And then, I am going to create a new layer on top of it. I'll press Ctrl+Shift+N or Command+Shift +N on the Mac to create a new layer and I'll call this fleshtone or something along those lines. Click OK.
And this by the way is the kind of technique that's going to work on anyone. So it doesn't matter if you're dark skinned or pale skinned or what, because we are going to observe the original luminance levels, and just make this new coloring fit. All right. So first thing I have got to do though is I have got to lift that color. And all that really matters is the Hue value, and we'll just monitor that in the Color panel which is currently set to HSB, Make sure yours is as well by going to HSB Sliders. And I am going to lift a color from my face by pressing the Alt key or the Option key on the Mac which gets you the Eyedropper on-the-fly, and then lift something that you think you like.
I will Alt+Click on my cheek here, and notice that we get this new color ring that shows as the previous foreground color on bottom and the new foreground color on top. And then go ahead and release and release the Alt or Option key as well so that you are back to your brush. And it doesn't really matter what the Saturation and Brightness values are set to, as long as they're not zero. They should be something other than zero. What really counts is what the Hue value is set to. And it should be something between 0 and 40 essentially, because 0 is red and 40 starts getting into the yellowish tone.
And as long as you're near orange, you're going to be fine. And remember I was saying that we are all orange people; black, white doesn't matter, we're all actually orange. And so a value of 16 will probably fair pretty well for me. And then I am going to just paint all over the place. And don't paint on the eyes if you can avoid it. I'll reduce the size of brush here. But I am going to paint over things like the ear and the jaw and the nose, and we can always erase those eyes back in a moment. And I'll paint down here as well. And you might at this point say well Deke; this is not a good modification.
I don't think this is a credible edit at all. I think somebody might notice that you made this edit for example. Well I will look in just a moment. But let's go ahead and zoom in a little. And I am going to switch to the Eraser tool by pressing the E key, and then I'm going to erase around the jaw, because I don't want to go out into my jacket and I don't want to go out into the background either. And by the way, always remember that you can click and Shift+Click with any of these tools. So for example, with the Eraser tool, if I click and then I Shift+Click.
I connect the click and Shift+Click points with a straight line, and then Shift+Click again, and then Shift+Click again. So it's a way of constraining your modifications. And again, that works with any of the brush tools. So Dodge, Burn, Sponge all of them. I am going to click here, Shift+ Click here, Shift+Click here and so on. These are all Shift+Clicks by the way in order to advance my way up the side of the ear. And I might like kind of click and drag inside of the sideburn there, because I don't want to colorize that. Go ahead and drag up this side; reduce the size of my brush a little bit.
Paint up this side as well; paint up into the hair region what little I have. And then go ahead and paint inside of the eyes, mostly because I don't want to change my irises to this flesh color here. And that's good for now. Although you know what, I am going to switch back to the Brush tool by pressing the B key. And I am going to reduce the size my brush and zoom in. I am going to make my brush very small, because my eyelids are a little red. So I want to flesh them up as well a little bit. So I'll paint around here and then around here.
All right, so how do we make this anything resembling a realistic modification? Well, you go over here to the Layers panel and you change the blend mode. Now, notice these guys down here at the bottom. We have Hue, Saturation Color and Luminosity. Luminosity will keep the luminosity of this layer and merge it with the colors of the underlying layer. That's not what we want. That'll give us this effect there. That's not a good edit. We want exactly the opposite. We want to preserve the luminance of the underlying layers apply the color from this layer.
So go ahead and choose the Color function. Now notice that goes too far even though it reveals me again. I have this very strange red face now. And what we need to do is we need to divide color into its components, which are Hue and Saturation. Recall that Saturation is the intensity of the color and Hue is the core color itself. Well, we want to retain the original saturation levels and just bring in the Hue and that's it and we'll get this effect right there. Now that's still too far. And in fact, it's a little bit too red.
Let's go ahead and zoom out here, and check out how it compares to the hands. Now, the hands and the face are kind of similar in color. But I think this hand color looks pretty awful on my face. So let's go ahead and zoom in. And we can modify that face color and here's how. We can see that it's too red, right? I look like I've gotten, I don't know what slapped several times or something along those lines. We need to orange things up a bit. So that means raising the Hue value. And so I am going to click in that Hue value and I am going to press the Up arrow key until I raise it to 20 degrees let's say and then press the Enter key, the Return on the Mac to accept that modification.
And now let's fill what we've done so far, we're just going to replace the colors inside fleshtone with this new color. And you do that using a keyboard trick Shift+Alt+Backspace or Shift+Option+Delete on the Mac. That gives me something more in the orange range. And if I feel like I need to go a little farther then I could increase that Hue value some more, and then Shift+Alt+ Backspace or Shift+Option+Delete again. I'm pretty happy with this, not an Opacity level of 100% however. I'll take the Opacity down to something like 60% and then press the Enter key in order to accept that, and let's see what we think at this point.
I might want to erase back some of the details a little bit. So I'll go ahead and click on the Eraser tool in order to make it active. And I might want to erase the eyebrows so that I restore the original eyebrow colors like this. And there might be other details I decide to erase. If you decide you want to just back off certain regions independently of others so you are just fading the modification away in certain areas, then you would want to reduce the Opacity value. So for example I could set it to 30%. I could have done that from that keyboard as well.
Increase the size of my brush and maybe paint over this region a little in order to restore some of the original coloring. Paint over this region as well; paint here. Really up to you how you decide to handle it. I am going to paint into this hair a little as well. If you feel like you've gone too far, then you can still back this Opacity level off even more. I can take it down to like 40% for example, and then switch back to my Elliptical Marquee tool. So to give you a sense for the contribution of this layer, this is what my face looked like before. You can see all of those yellowish areas in there, and this is what it looks like now that we have some more homogeneous skin tones.
Thanks to the contribution of a layer that is set to a Hue value between 0 and 40 with saturation and brightness set to anything but 0, and then set the blend mode to Hue and reduce the Opacity value.
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