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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 take a look at how we can really exaggerate color. How we can bring colors out in a real unique way. Now we all know a little bit about Vibrance and Saturation. Yet there is another technique that we can use, in order to create more color variety and also more color saturation. And this technique involves going to the Lab color space. So here is what we are going to do. We are going to go ahead and navigate to the Image pulldown menu, choose Mode and then Lab Color. Now when you do that it won't look as if anything has really changed, but we are now in a new color space. So if we go to our Adjustment Layer panel and click on the Curves, one of things we'll notice here is we have Lightness, A and a B channel.
Now, in order to create this real intense color saturation, here is what we are going to do. We are going to navigate to the A channel. We are going to bring in this top point. We just need to make sure that we bring in the top point and then the bottom point the same amount. So that the midpoint is still right there in the middle. Now, however far you bring this in, it will then saturate those colors more. So we will go ahead and navigate to the b channel. We are going to do something very similar and again however far you bring these in, it will create more saturation. So if I go in even further on the top and the bottom. We have even more color saturation. I'm not going to go quite that far with this one.
Now we can, of course, create color shifts as well, if we want to. We could go one way or the other. So in this case, I'm going to brig this down just a touch to remove a little bit of the yellow there. All right, well let's take a look of what we have so far. Here is our before and then now our after. We have these just amazing vibrant colors. Now we could, of course, mask this color into specific areas. So we will zoom in a little bit on this image. Now this is a low-res file. So we could include it with the training, but you get the gist. We have these really nice and vibrant colors and let's say that we want to get those vibrant colors into the makeup.
So we will go ahead and click in the mask, press Command+I on a Mac, Ctrl+I on a Property Changer. Then grab your Brush tool. We are going to go ahead and paint with 100% white there and I'm just going to mask these colors in and in this case to the lips here and I'm also going to mask them into the eye makeup here. And the nice thing about this Lab technique is it's actually adding more colors because the gamut of the lab color space is so big, we are getting a little bit more color here. I'm going to do a little bit on the cheek as well. Now this is going to be pretty subtle. Here is my before and after, but these type of almost neon colors, the only way you can get those is from going to those color space. Now with this particular image, I probably would want to go beyond the makeup.
So in this case, I'm going to go ahead and hold down the Shift key and click on the Mask to disable that, because I think this image can really benefit from this overall color saturation that's really fun. Well, either way if you want to limit it to the makeup. So you just have those colors inside of that makeup there or if you want to saturate the rest of your image, you could create a mask or not even have a mask for that matter. In this case because we are talking about make up though I'll just leave it on these makeup areas. Now the next step is going to be to navigate back to the RGB color space by navigating to Image > Mode and then RGB Color. We are going to go ahead and flatten this because that will happen anyway. And now we have these new colors.
That Lab Color space gave us color saturation and color variety and you would be really surprised that what this can do in regards to increasing the makeup colors in your own photographs. So in closing, if you haven't experimented with this Lab Color technique. I definitely recommend that you do so because I think you will soon find, as I have found myself that it adds incredible amount of color variety and saturation and it will help create color in your images in a real unique and distinct way.
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