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A portrait can be a cherished possession for a lifetime, and now making perfect portraits is just one Photoshop course away. Professional photographer and instructor Chris Orwig uses his vast knowledge of Photoshop to focus on the specific tools every photographer needs to adjust images and keep them looking genuine. Photoshop CS4 Portrait Retouching Essential Training explores this program's deep resources and inspires photographers to do their creative best with everything from blemishes to backdrops. Exercise files accompany the course.
In this movie, we are going to discuss how we can add a little bit of height to our photographs. Now you can see my topmost layer is my merge layer and this really is the one where we started to thin the legs. So I'll name this layer legs. Next let's merge the underlying layers to a new layer above. We are going to do this pressing a shortcut. On a Mac that's Shift+Option+Command+E; on a PC that's Shift+Alt+Ctrl+E. We are going to name this new layer, height. All right, great! Well there are a couple of different things that we can do here. One thing that we can do is actually make a selection. So I'm going to go ahead and make a selection of the legs. So let's say that we just want to lengthen the legs a little bit. We can then click on the Add Layer Mask icon and so on this layer just to illustrate all that we have, if we turn off the visibility of the other layers there for a moment. Let me open a little more space here, so we can see that. All that we have are the legs down below.
Okay, great! Well, now that we have that, we will go ahead and click into the Image layer. Press Command+T on a Mac, Ctrl+T on a PC. We are just going to look to add a little bit of height here, so I'll go ahead and add that height. Press Enter or Return, then I'll select the Move tool by pressing the V key and I want to go ahead and nudge this up. So I'm going to go ahead and nudge this up right to where those wrinkles align perfectly. Okay that looks good. Now lets look at our before and after. Here we have our before and then after. Zooming out a little bit. Just a simple, subtle way to add a little bit of height or create a little bit of an illusion of height. Now if we want to go further than this, one of the things we can do is merge again to the top, Shift+Option+Command+E, and we'll call this layer height2. And that's Shift+Option+Command+E on a Mac, on a PC, Shift+Alt+Ctrl+E. And on this layer, we will press Command+T on a Mac, Ctrl+T on a PC.
We are going to change our height to about 102% and then press Enter or Return. So I'll go ahead and apply that. And so again here we can see our overall before and then after with the height. It's kind of tricky to see this, so I'm going to go to Full Screen View mode by pressing the F key, then pressing F7 key to bring up my Layers palette. Here is our overall before and then after. Subtle your significant way to give a little bit more of a perspective of height. This particular technique can help in a number of different situations. One of the things that you really want to be careful of when you are doing this though is not to overdo it. Sometimes what happens is it makes images feel just a little bit more cinematic and I've seen this technique used with rock bands, with movie stars, all different types of techniques. But again, you want to experiment a little bit with that.
All right, well so far, so good. Let's take a look at our overall retouching here as before and then after. We have more ground to cover and we will do that in the next movie.
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