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Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Advanced, the second part of the popular and comprehensive series, updated for CS5, follows internationally renowned Photoshop guru Deke McClelland as he dives into the workings of Photoshop. He explores such digital-age wonders as the Levels and Curves commands, edge-detection filters, advanced compositing techniques, vector-based text, the Liquify filter, and Camera Raw. Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details, smoothing over wrinkles and imperfections, and enhancing colors without harming the original image. Exercise files accompany the course.
Recommended prerequisite: Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Fundamentals.
I've gone ahead and saved out my progress thus far as Phase2.msh. So if you want to load it up here inside the Liquify window, you can click on Load Mesh, and then inside the 23_distort folder you'll find a file called Phase2.msh. Go ahead and open it on up. In this exercise, I'm going to show you how to tilt the head in a fairly quick and dirty way, and then we're going to have to finesse it using the Warp tool. So, there's no such thing as a quick trick that's going to resolve an image entirely, but this will get us something like 30% of the way there.
But it requires that we use a mask, because what we're going to do is we're going to take this Twirl Clockwise tool, and we're going to apply a really big heaping helping of twirling, and we do want to twirl her head clockwise. So the default behavior of the tool is fine. I'm going to increase the Brush Size, however, all the way to the maximum, which is 1500, and then I'd want to click basically at a fulcrum inside the image. So, for example, her head needs to spin upright, centered on her neck.
We don't want to spin her face like this, for example, because even though that ends up actually looking pretty good where her face is concerned-- That looks awesome where her face is concerned! I haven't tried this before. This is why I'm so psyched about this. I'm going to now grab my Forward Warp tool and I'm going to scoot her over and see what happens there. That's not bad actually. That is pretty interesting. Another way to work, however, for the sake of demonstration here, I'm going to press Ctrl+Z, Ctrl+Alt+Z, Command+Z, Command+Option+Z a couple times on the Mac.
If I want to right her head with respect to the center of her neck, I do this number here. I'd go ahead and click, and Mike, I don't have the right tool selected. That's my problem. I have the Warp tool. Let me switch back to the Twirl Clockwise tool right there, and I click at the base of her neck, and we do this number, and that does twirl her head upright. However, the problem is that it twirls her body the opposite direction and we don't want that. So we need to protect her body, and we're going to apply some protection using a mask. So I'm going to press Ctrl+Z, Command+ Z on the Mac to undo that modification.
I'm going to switch over to my Freeze Mask tool, which makes the mask, whereas your Thaw Mask tool paints the mask away. Anyway, I'm going to switch to Freeze Mask. I've got way too big of a cursor. So I'll just reduce the heck out of the brush, and then I'll paint inside the image. Well, the thing is I need to paint a huge region of the image. I need to basically protect everything but her head and her neck. So that means that it's going be easier for me to go ahead and mask the entire image and then paint a hole in the area that I want to twirl.
So I'll click on the Mask All button over here on the right side of the dialog box in order to mask everything like so, and then I'll switch over to my Thaw Mask tool, and I'll increase the size of my cursor a fair amount by pressing Shift+Right-bracket, and I'm going to click right there at the center of where I want her head to be. Now, that gives me a real soft mask as you can see, and that's a function of that Brush Density option incidentally. If I were to increase it to 100 and click, you'd see that I'll get a much firmer brush out of the deal.
But an even better way to work, I'll go ahead and restore that Brush Density value to 50 because 100 doesn't work with any of the other tools very well. I'll click and hold, and notice that if I just brush back and forth just ever so slightly, then I'll firm up that mask quite a bit. So that looks pretty good. I might want to thaw this area a little bit as well and thaw this region like so until I get kind of a V or a cone coming off of her head here. Then once I get a mask that I'm confident about, I'll switch back to the Twirl tool.
I'll increase the size of that brush once again to 1500, and then I'll click on her neck, and notice that goes ahead and twirls her while at the same time protecting the other details inside the image. Now that's not maybe enough protection because I just stretched her shoulder like crazy. If you want to reconstruct that shoulder, you could grab the Reconstruct tool, but bear in mind that the Reconstruct tool is always going back to the very original version of the image. So it's not going back to the edit that I made right before twirling this area.
It's going all the way back. Which can turn out to be useful sometimes, other times not. Anyway I'll choose Reconstruct, reduce the size of my cursor quite a bit like so, and then I'll go ahead and drag in this area, and that's not really what I'm looking for because her shoulder drops too far down. So, I'll undo that modification and instead I'll just get my Warp tool, and I'll drag this area down, like so. We're getting a very bad edge around that mask, so I need to get rid of the mask, and I'll do that by clicking on the None button over here on the right-hand side of the dialog box, and that unmasks everything.
Now, I can go ahead and warp up the top of the image here because I need to restore the white area so that we don't have that transparency showing through, and then I'll drag some of these details like so in order to restore the less stretched version of the blouse, and this may take quite a few little brushstrokes here, and I'll go ahead and drag this over as well, and drag her shoulder up. Now, if you're having problems getting decent results, you may decide in the end that it's easier just to reconstruct that area.
So I'll go ahead and select the Reconstruct tool just to show you how that might work. I'll increase the size of my brush as you can see, and then I would paint down here around the shoulder details, like so. I have to be a little more careful than that actually. I'm going to undo that modification. I'll reduce the size of my brush quite a bit and then paint right there. See the thing that's bothering me is I've really kind of done a number on this V-neck of her blouse, and it's not looking right anymore. It's looking all weird and stretched. So I need to go ahead and restore some of these details here, and then I would come back with the Warp tool.
Maybe increase the size of my brush just a little bit and go ahead and lift up these details once again to where I had them just a moment ago. So anyway, you know, a fair amount of back and forth thing is required especially for an image that's as challenging as this one. Now then, we come to the element of really righting her head and obviously this is better I would argue, because it's taking us in right direction, but it's not best. Her head still doesn't look natural, and in fact now it has this kind of strange curvature to it that insinuates that her skull somehow is bending.
We don't want that. So what I would suggest we do is take things over with the Warp tool. Now this is not fast work. Once you start getting into this sort of detail, we're not going to be able to twirl anymore. We already did what we could with the Twirl tool. We're not going to be able to take advantage of the automation provided to us by things like Pucker and Bloat. We could use the Bloat tool eventually to increase the size of the eyes if we need to, if we need to match their size because somehow one eye gets squished. However, we're not to that point right now. Where we're at now is the Warp tool manipulation.
So it is going to take a fair amount of work here. You are going to have to apply tiny modifications in certain areas. So you may need to reduce the size of your brush and then turn around and increase the size of your brush, and it really is just a matter of grabbing these details, and moving them around. So tell you what. What I'm going to do, just because watching me perform this entire modification could be a little bit dull after a certain point, but it's basically what you're seeing me do now, just tiny little brushstrokes, and just moving things into better locations over time, I'm going to go ahead and save my mesh so far by clicking on the Save Mesh button, and I'm going to go ahead and call this guy Phase3, because that's where I'm at.
I'm in the third phase of my modification. Click the Save button just in case you want to load that guy up, but here's the one that you're really going to want to work with. Click on the Load Mesh button, and then click on this guy, Head upright.msh. That is the most successful application of Liquify that I came up with. If you hunt around inside the image, I'm sure you'll find a few things that aren't exactly right, and you can tweak those if you so desire. But anyway, click on Head upright, click on Open in order to open that guy up, and this is the final version of the modification. And you can see that I have increased the size of the eyes just a little bit.
I've righted the hair. Her bangs are still a little bit uneven. We've got some tight hair over on her right-hand side, and then we've got some loose hair over on her left-hand side. That's a function of the fact that her head used to be sloping over to left. So gravity was favoring the left side of the hair because that's where it was drifting down. You can work on that a little bit more if you want to. Notice me. I am playing with her shoulders. You can do that as well. And the lines inside of her pants need a little bit of work actually, now that I take a look at them, because we do have a little bit of unnatural bending going on.
This wrist over here on the left-hand side is too narrow. So I went too far with this modification, and it might not be narrow enough to match over here on the right-hand side. So there are some tweaks that you might want to apply. That's the benefit of going ahead and saving your changes because eventually you'll notice some problems with them. In fact, you know what I'm going to do is I'm going to go ahead and save this version of the mesh as Slightly tweaked let's say, and you may think that I'm being totally ridiculously fastidious at this point to save a total of seven meshes associated with this file, but you're never going to regret it, believe me.
All right! I'll go ahead and click the Save button. I'll click OK in order to apply my changes, and just so we can get a sense of what's happened here, this is the before version of the image. Quite frumpy, especially in terms of her posture, and this is the after version. Thanks to the amazing nipping and tucking power of Liquify here inside Photoshop.
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