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In the all-new Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Mastery, the third and final installment of the popular series, join industry expert and award-winning author Deke McClelland for an in-depth tour of the most powerful and empowering features of Photoshop CS5. Discover the vast possibilities of traditional tools, such as masking and blend modes, and then delve into Smart Objects, Photomerge, as well as the new Puppet Warp, Mixer Brush, and HDR features. Exercise files accompany the course.
Recommended prerequisites: Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Fundamentals and Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Advanced.
I have saved my progress as Complete bulb outline.psd found inside the 27_pen_tool folder, and we have indeed completed the path outline around the light bulb. Now in this exercise, we are going to take this masked object, we are going to assign a layer effect, specifically an outer glow, so a very simple effect, and then we are going to mask the effect so it better matches the scene. Now the way you mask a layer effect is you separate it from its layer and then you apply a manual adjustment. All right so you may recall that we had reduced the density of this mask so we could see through the mask to the other pixels inside the layer.
We now need to reset that density value so I am going to go back to my Masks panel with the bulb layer selected and I am going to change the Density value but it's dimmed. In fact, the Mask panel is telling me No mask selected. Well sure enough the vector mask is not selected, so I don't have it active and the Mask panel when the vector mask is not active doesn't know what to do. Well you can either click on it, click on the thumbnail to make it active or you can click on this little icon that looks like it's not even available.
But if you click on it, it selects the vector mask. It goes ahead and gives the thumbnail a double outline for example and then we have access to that Density value so that I can raise it back up to a 100% so we are cutting all the way down now. All right let's go ahead and hide the Mask panel, turn off that layer of white. That's just there so we can distinguish the masked bulb from it's environment. And you might want to at this point actually, since we raised the Density value again, you could turn the white layer back on and click on the vector mask to turn it off, that is, so that we are not seeing the vector-based path outline here inside the image window, just to get a sense of whether this light bulb looks any good or not.
So I will go and zoom out sufficiently far to center the light bulb and that actually looks pretty darn good to me. So now what I am going to do is turn white back off, and let's add that outer glow effect, after all that's the whole reason we went to the trouble of creating this vector mask in the first place. So I will go down to the fx icon, click on it and then I will choose Outer Glow and immediately we get this white glow effect, in my case anyway, because I had set that to my default, and it's got an Opacity value of 100% so that's just fine. I am going to raise the Size value to a 100 pixels like so and that gives us an even white glow.
Now if you are not so keen on the white glow, you want it to match the color of the sparks inside of the light bulb, then you can click on this Color Swatch right there in order to bring up the Color Picker dialog box and then eye drop one of these hot seeming yellows actually but it gave me a kind of crimson hue with just the tiny as bit of saturation. Let's try a different color right there, that's absolutely white. So some of these colors are just plain old white. Let's try this, this looks like a slightly better match, but you know what, I am just going to dial in a color here that looks right to me.
I would say it's about a Hue of 45 degrees, looking at it, and a Saturation value of 5% is probably just fine. Then I will take the Brightness value upto a 100%. So those are my values 45, 5, 100 let's see how they work out. I will click OK and it doesn't seem to have changed the glow all that much. I can switch from Screen to a more intense Lightning Effect which would be Linear Dodge and we can see if we end up getting a kind of better effect out of it. It's not any yellower than it was before so let's go ahead and tweak that color once again.
If I increase the Saturation value I should arrive at more of a yellowish glow but then because of Linear Dodge we are ending up kind of mixing it along with the blue so we are getting a little bit of a green effect in the background. Let's try to take that Hue value down a little bit like so. Actually that's starting to look a lot better like we have a better match here. So let's go ahead and take the Saturation value back down now and I am just sort of feeling this odd as I go along here. This looks pretty good to me 25 degrees for the Hue value, 40% for the Saturation value, Brightness a 100%, can't go any higher than that.
Click OK and you could increase the Spread a little bit, let's see what happens when we do that. If I increase the Spread value to 10% then I would want to back off the Size value to something like, let's say 75 pixels. All right that looks pretty good to me. That is a different effect than I had originally created when I showed you this project in the first place. But, you know no difference is spice of life, so I will go ahead and click on OK in order to accept that modification. Now the one thing we can't do, it makes a certain amount of sense to have this glow like out of nowhere, around the glass. It would actually leak into the glass a little bit as well.
But, because we want a nice precise effect this is going to be fine. However, it doesn't make any sense whatsoever for the glow to descend down into the metallic base. So we need to go ahead and mask away that portion of the glow and there is a couple of different ways that I could pull that off. I can either apply a mask, a layer mask, that is a pixel based layer mask directly to the light bulb and have that effect the outer glow as well or I could separate the glow from the layer and mask it independently. So why we get a sense of how successful both approaches might be, I will start things out by adding yet another mask to this bulb layer.
So every layer can have both a pixel-based layer mask and a vector mask associated with it, so as many as one of each. So I will go ahead and click on Add Layer Mask and that will add a pixel-based mask and the pixel-based mask comes first. So reading from left to right you will always see the contents of the layer first, then the pixel-based layer mask is one exists and then the vector mask if one of it exists. Now I will go to the Gradient tool, select it and you can also select that tool by pressing the G key. Notice that my default setting is active the very first one which is Foreground to Background and my colors are set to their defaults as well black for Foreground, white for Background.
I have also got the other default settings going on so I will be creating a Linear Gradient and that's exactly what I want. Now I will drag upward like so, right about there and here is the problem. I end up tracing the glow into and around my layer mask as you can see right here. So it not only traces around the bulb but then once we get it to layer mask it traces down at the bottom of the glass and you might like that effect, you might not like the effect. The thing to bear in mind is the glow is going to expand in that region.
It's going to get bigger because it's trying to trace around a big blurry area. So the blur of the gradient is actually displacing the size of the glow. So if you don't want that here is what you do to. You try to find some little smidgen of the layer that's black over here and right-click on it and choose Blending Options or if you loaded dekeKeys you can just press Ctrl+Shift+O or Cmd+ Shift+O on a Mac to bring up the Blending Options dialog box and then I want you to turn on this check box and let's see how this fares here.
Turn on Layer Mask Hides Effects and that actually proves to workout brilliantly actually that goes ahead and uses the mask not to displace the outer glow but rather to go ahead and hide it. So the layer mask is masking the effect just as it's masking the layer and then you click OK. Now you don't want to turn on that option for the vector mask because then we'd be left with no glow whatsoever, so just the Layer mask check box should be on. Then click OK in order to accept that modification. Okay, the other way to work just FYI in case you want to try a different approach, I will Shift+Click on that layer mask to turn it off so that we can see the glow surrounding the entire light bulb again. And then I am going to right-click on that Outer Glow Effect there and I am going to choose this command way at the bottom Create Layer and that will go ahead and bust that layer effect off as it's own independent layer.
Now if you get a warning that says, that not all layer effects can be rendered as layers, just go ahead and click OK because you still need to try it out and see if it's going to work. Now we have got this independent layer of outer glow. It's no longer a parametric effect, that is, we can't edit it numerically but we can edit it as a pixel layer and I have already got that Gradient mask ready to go because I created it for the bulb layer. So I am just going to duplicate it down here by Alt+Dragging or Option+Dragging it onto the Outer Glow and it will apply automatically.
It turns right back on there as you can see and then I will click on that layer so we are not seeing the vector outline here inside the image window and we get an equivalent effect, actually, once everything is said and done. So either approach is going to work for this specific effect, I just want you to have a sense of what options are available to you as you work inside Photoshop.
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