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In Photoshop CS5 for Photographers: Camera Raw 6, Chris Orwig provides in-depth training on Camera Raw 6, the CS5 component that enables photographers to open and manipulate images in non-destructive and now even more efficient ways. This course covers the benefits of the raw processing, which makes it possible to more precisely control an image's appearance—exposure, shadow and highlight detail, color balance, sharpness, and more—including new workflow procedures and technical concepts and issues. Learn the entire Camera Raw workflow, from opening and resizing, toning and cropping, to sharpening and saving. Exercise files are included with the course.
Let's take a look at how we can enhance and improve this beautiful portrait. I love the perspective, the leaves and whatnot. But the image just feels a little bit muddy, a little bit lacking. I want to make this image really come to life, and I want to do that with the Adjustment Brush. So let's press the K key to select the Adjustment Brush, and what I want to do first is share with you a nice tip which can be helpful for dialing in the effect that you're interested in creating. Well, one of the things that we want to do first is control our Brush Size, so here you can see my Brush Size.
I'm going to paint on the face. My Feather amount is too high, so I'll hover over the image and press Shift+Left bracket in order to decrease that Feather size. Then I'm going to press the Left bracket by itself, just to decrease my brush. I don't want this to be too big. That looks pretty good there. All right. Well, what about Flow? Well, typically we want to have a really nice and low Flow amount so we can build up our effect, and then I'm going to simply just paint across the face. Now nothing is going to happen at this point. Here's why. We haven't dialed in the effect, but because I painted on this area, I can then go ahead and increase my Exposure, add a little bit of Contrast, also add a little bit of Color Saturation, and I can start to Preview how this effect will work, because I've painted in that area, and then now I'm going back and customizing or fine-tuning the effect.
Okay, well, now that I can see that, I can go ahead and begin to paint around the rest of the image, because I've dialed this in as I want, and I'm just going to hit some of these brighter leaves. I kind of want to just bring those to life and add a little bit more of a dynamic nature to this photograph, work on the hair a little bit as well. Make my brush smaller, Left Bracket key, and I'll just go ahead and flow along the hair there, just kind of following the direction of the hair. Also, get some light into the neck area over here, and just make my way through these. And the nice thing about this is we can kind of bring light into different areas of the image as we see fit.
We're also bringing in a little bit of Color Saturation, and we could bring in anything else for that matter. And as I make my way through this, you're noticing that I'm kind of making my way around the image and going back and forth to areas that I've already worked on, and I'm doing that to slowly build up this effect. I don't want it to be over-the-top or exaggerated; rather, I want to go back with this low Flow amount. Really build this up, so that it can turn into something quite interesting. All right. Well, I think that's looking a little bit better. Let's take a look at our before and after.
Of course, we have to hide this pin, so I'll press the V key to hide that. Next, I'll press the P key. When I press the P key, here we can see my before. Press it again, and there we have that after. Already it's looking much better. I'll go ahead and increase the Color Sturation just a bit more, add some Vibrance there, press the N key to create a new adjustment here, a little bit more Exposure, little bit more Color Saturation, little bit higher Flow, and also a higher Brush Size. I'm going to go ahead and paint across some of these leaves in the background here, just making my way through this document.
Feel like those leaves need a little bit of Brightness, and I make my way over here at this part of the image. It's a little bit too dark for my liking. Working on the corners up top, and all these different areas here, just bringing in some nice tones into this photograph, and we're getting close here. If ever we make a mistake, hold down the Option key or the Alt key. You can erase what you've painted. Now let's take a look at our overall before and after to see how we've done. You can do that by pressing the P key. Here we have it before and then after.
All right, only one more thing that I want to do here. I want to go ahead and zoom in on the image. I want to zoom in on those eyes, press the N key in order to create a new adjustment. This time I'm going to double-click my Saturation slider, and my Contrast slider, and just leave Exposure on. Now I'm going to zoom in perhaps even further, nice small Brush Size here. I'm going to go ahead and just paint on these eyes just a touch. I'm interested in adding a little bit of Brightness here to this portion of the photograph. As always, if ever we go too far with this, we can always hold down the Option key on a Mac, Alt key on a PC.
Paint away the adjustment, especially on the eyelids, just on the eyes there, and then zoom back out. Let's look at our eyes and look at the Preview, here we have before and then after. The eyes look good, but they're a little bit overdone. So I'll press the V key, and that will bring back that pin. Make sure I'm targeting the eyes, make sure my Mask looks good. It does. Then what I'm going to do, press the V key again, just lower this Exposure a little bit. I don't want to over brighten the eyes. That will make this image look a little bit inauthentic. All right.
Well, I think that's looking pretty nice. Let's go to a zoom right where we can see all of our work. Press the P key one more time. Here we have it, before and after, how we can use the Adjustment Brush in order to make improvements on our photographs.
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