Easy-to-follow video tutorials help you learn software, creative, and business skills.Become a member

Nesting a Smart Sharpen effect

From: Photoshop CS3 Sharpening Images

Video: Nesting a Smart Sharpen effect

In this exercise, I am going to show you how to apply Density Mask Sharpening inside of Photoshop. Now I was telling you at the outset of this project, that this technique is specifically applicable to dark haired people. I should specify what I mean by that. It is any one from medium brunette and darker, which is most of us, incidentally. Most of us have dark hair, but you may wonder well what about the blonde minority out there. We don't want to forget about them. How do we go about sharpening those folks? If Density Masks don't work for them, what do we do? Well actually, and this is going sound like a cultural commentary, it's not.

Nesting a Smart Sharpen effect

In this exercise, I am going to show you how to apply Density Mask Sharpening inside of Photoshop. Now I was telling you at the outset of this project, that this technique is specifically applicable to dark haired people. I should specify what I mean by that. It is any one from medium brunette and darker, which is most of us, incidentally. Most of us have dark hair, but you may wonder well what about the blonde minority out there. We don't want to forget about them. How do we go about sharpening those folks? If Density Masks don't work for them, what do we do? Well actually, and this is going sound like a cultural commentary, it's not.

This is a point of image editing fact. Most blondes are not real blondes. Most blonde people get blondeness whether a man or a woman. They get their blondeness from a bottle, which is a good thing from our perspective because it means their eyebrows are still dark and their eyelashes are very dark as well. So we will still be able sharpen their eye details using a Density Mask. Also we will be able to sharpen the shadow details, such as the pupil, everybody has got black pupils and the corona around the irises, even if you are detailing with a light eyed person, which is fairly rare once again, they are still going to have dark corona around their eye, that is dark sort of halo around the eye and of course all the shadow details, like the inside of the mouth and the bottom of the lip and underneath the nose, and around these fingers and underneath the chin and so on. Those are all going to dark as well.

So a Density Mask is going to work for those folks. The only place it is not going work with blonde people is inside the head hair and we are not that terribly concerned about the contrast between the highlights in the blonde hair inside blonde people because there isn't there much contrast in the first place and the techniques that I have already shown you such as High Pass sharpening will work just fine. Alright having said that, I am working on a catch-up image if you have just joined me, I am working on a an image called Jet black hair.PSD, It's found inside the 07_For_Effect folder and I have gone ahead and converted background layer to a Smart Object and I applied the High Pass filter, subject to an Edge Mask.

Now what we are going do is create a second pass of sharpening using the Smart Sharpen Filter as it turns out, that will be modified by a Density Mask. So because we need a different mask this time around, I need to go ahead and enter my Smart Object and create a Nested Smart Object. I am going to do that by double clicking on the yowo thumbnail right there, in order to open the image inside of a separate image window as we are seeing right here and this is original unsharpened version of the image, as we can see by the fact that she hasn't been sharpened of course that we are looking at the Background layer.

Let's go ahead convert that Background layer to another Smart Object by choosing Convert to Smart Object, here from the Palette menu and I am going to call this one density. Not destiny, but Density because we are going to be applying a Density Mask. Now we are going to approach this sharpening effect, much as we would a High Pass sharpening effect that is to say, we are going to go ahead and load a channel as the selection outline, so that we have a Base Mask to work with before we apply the filter. So I am going to go to the Channels palette. Now when we are working with an Edge Mask, we want a high degree of variety, between highlights and shadows and mid-tones inside of the image, which is why we go with green channel.

When we are working with a Density Mask we want a high degree of contrast and you are going to get most contrast inside any portrait shot, whether we are talking about black skin tones or white skin tones or something in between, you are going to find the most contrast inside of the red channel. So go ahead and Ctrl-click or Command-click on the red channel thumbnail in order to load it as a selection outline. Now go back to the Layers palette and as I said this time we are going to be applying the Smart Sharpen Filters. So go to the Filter menu, choose Sharpen and choose Smart Sharpen and we are going to go over the top with the effect as you are seeing right here.

I want you to really hit this image hard. I want you to apply an Amount value of 500%. That sounds ridiculous and it looks horrible in the background. Don't worry about it, it will look great in just a moment. I want you to assign a Radius of 3 pixels for this image. You might go higher for a higher resolution image and then set Remove to Lens Blur. Now we are sticking with one of our rules of portrait shots, don't turn on the More Accurate check box. Leave that off. Because if we were to turn it on, notice what happens. We get this microscopic level of sharpening going on inside the image and that doesn't benefit anybody.

Alright, so I am going to turn off More Accurate, 500 for an amount, 3.0 for radius and Lens Blur for Remove, click Ok in order to accept your modification. Now we have exactly the opposite of the effect we were looking for, we are sharpening the heck out of the highlight and we are ignoring the shadows and that's because we were working with a Luminance Mask. What we need to do is convert this Luminance Mask into a Density Mask and we will be doing that in the next exercise.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS3 Sharpening Images
Photoshop CS3 Sharpening Images

115 video lessons · 17017 viewers

Deke McClelland
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 50m 30s
    1. Why every image needs sharpening
      2m 38s
    2. Understanding the effects of sharpening
      5m 26s
    3. Understanding the mechanics of sharpening
      4m 19s
    4. Understanding sharpening and gradual transitions
      3m 21s
    5. Understanding sharpening and noise reduction
      4m 0s
    6. Understanding amount and radius
      7m 50s
    7. Measuring your screen resolution
      6m 19s
    8. Using reliable zoom ratios
      5m 30s
    9. Calculating the actual print size
      4m 54s
    10. Gauging the ideal sharpening settings
      6m 13s
  2. 59m 31s
    1. Everyone knows you sharpen last (and everyone is wrong)
      1m 8s
    2. Understanding the conventional sharpening workflow
      5m 4s
    3. Flattening and saving to TIFF
      6m 39s
    4. Downsampling (and why you shouldn't upsample)
      6m 8s
    5. Understanding last-step sharpening
      6m 44s
    6. Recognizing problems with the conventional workflow
      9m 38s
    7. Erasing sharpening with the history brush
      4m 30s
    8. Using alternative sharpening workflows
      2m 37s
    9. Sharpening a scanned photograph shot on film
      2m 45s
    10. Sharpening a digital photograph
      3m 6s
    11. Sharpening specific details
      3m 43s
    12. Finding broad workflow conclusions
      2m 49s
    13. Learning that technique trumps timing
      4m 40s
  3. 1h 27m
    1. Comparing and contrasting neighboring pixels
      1m 6s
    2. Using the Gaussian Blur filter
      4m 25s
    3. Using Gaussian luminance distribution
      4m 47s
    4. Using the Unsharp Mask filter
      4m 54s
    5. Understanding the history of Unsharp Mask
      3m 51s
    6. Building your own USM with Gaussian Blur
      7m 35s
    7. Using the Smart Sharpen filter
      7m 35s
    8. Compensating for camera shake
      8m 50s
    9. Building your own Smart Sharpen with Lens Blur
      6m 59s
    10. Using directional sharpening with Emboss
      9m 13s
    11. Using Smart Sharpen extras
      8m 56s
    12. Using Convolution Kernels for more accuracy
      7m 8s
    13. Using the High Pass filter
      7m 32s
    14. Using Luminance Sharpening
      5m 5s
  4. 2h 14m
    1. Smoothing filters, smart objects, and masks
      1m 25s
    2. Using the Median filter and Dust and Scratches
      7m 7s
    3. Using Smart Blur and Surface Blur
      6m 12s
    4. Using the Despeckle filter
      8m 17s
    5. Softening flesh tones selectively
      10m 15s
    6. Using the Reduce Noise filter
      7m 27s
    7. Combining smoothing and sharpening
      8m 24s
    8. Making an image into a smart object
      9m 24s
    9. Applying editable smart filters
      6m 8s
    10. Combining two smart filters
      8m 5s
    11. Assigning a filter mask
      5m 59s
    12. Nesting one smart object inside another
      10m 32s
    13. Employing a static High Pass layer
      8m 59s
    14. Matching static pixel-level edits
      4m 37s
    15. Avoiding clipping with luminance blending
      9m 7s
    16. Sharpening and smoothing
      6m 36s
    17. Making an edge mask
      8m 14s
    18. Making a non-edge mask
      7m 17s
  5. 1h 33m
    1. Sharpening with Adobe Camera Raw
      1m 29s
    2. Introducing Camera Raw (4.1 or later)
      8m 13s
    3. Understanding why to sharpen for source
      5m 14s
    4. Using Camera Raw’s sharpening control
      5m 52s
    5. Previewing limitations and tricks
      6m 45s
    6. Why downsampling doesn’t work
      3m 12s
    7. Reducing chromatic aberration
      7m 30s
    8. Using the Defringe option
      3m 32s
    9. Understanding high frequency, low radius
      5m 21s
    10. Raising the Detail value
      3m 6s
    11. Using on-the-fly edge masking
      5m 41s
    12. Sharpening a low-frequency portrait
      6m 36s
    13. Eliminating color noise
      4m 47s
    14. Reducing luminance noise
      4m 42s
    15. Correcting “false sharpening”
      7m 15s
    16. Reducing shadow noise
      5m 22s
    17. Approximating ACR sharpening in Photoshop
      8m 35s
  6. 59m 8s
    1. Gauging and exploiting luminance frequency
      1m 27s
    2. Using low-frequency source sharpening
      5m 53s
    3. Using High Pass for portraits
      4m 19s
    4. Actioning a low-frequency edge mask
      7m 42s
    5. Modifying the source sharpening
      5m 21s
    6. Using high-frequency source sharpening
      5m 26s
    7. Using Smart Sharpen for cityscapes
      3m 2s
    8. Actioning a high-frequency edge mask
      5m 4s
    9. Downplaying color artifacts and clipping
      4m 4s
    10. Sharpening a medium-frequency image
      5m 24s
    11. Sharpening a layered composition
      7m 16s
    12. Sharpening for multiple frequencies
      4m 10s
  7. 1h 8m
    1. Who needs dull when you have sharp?
      56s
    2. Focusing in on a person’s eyes
      4m 22s
    3. Blurring the area outside the eyes
      4m 22s
    4. Sharpening eyes and other details
      5m 38s
    5. Darkening the lashes and eyebrows
      7m 13s
    6. Sharpening dark-haired people
      5m 2s
    7. Edge mask and emphasize
      3m 39s
    8. Nesting a Smart Sharpen effect
      4m 48s
    9. Density mask sharpening
      5m 35s
    10. Adding depth of field
      4m 39s
    11. Sharpening a background
      4m 23s
    12. Masking background from foreground
      8m 51s
    13. Eliminating halos around a person
      5m 38s
    14. Deepening and warming a background
      3m 28s
  8. 1h 18m
    1. Reverting back to convention
      1m 37s
    2. Understanding the use-neutral composition
      4m 15s
    3. Restoring much-needed antialiasing
      4m 2s
    4. Reducing noise in a high-frequency image
      7m 24s
    5. Making a third-level smart object
      3m 55s
    6. Preparing an image for print
      5m 18s
    7. Using ideal settings for commercial reproduction
      5m 37s
    8. Calculating very large-format settings
      5m 11s
    9. Using ideal settings for inkjet output
      4m 26s
    10. Sharpening for commercial reproduction
      5m 45s
    11. Sharpening for inkjet output
      4m 58s
    12. Revealing high-frequency multipass sharpening
      5m 21s
    13. Using Gaussian Blur to sharpen hair
      5m 41s
    14. Flatten, Save As, Resample, and Sharpen
      5m 9s
    15. Revealing low-frequency multipass sharpening
      3m 30s
    16. Sharpening an image for web or screen
      6m 22s
  9. 1m 50s
    1. Goodbye
      1m 50s

Start learning today

Get unlimited access to all courses for just $25/month.

Become a member
Sometimes @lynda teaches me how to use a program and sometimes Lynda.com changes my life forever. @JosefShutter
@lynda lynda.com is an absolute life saver when it comes to learning todays software. Definitely recommend it! #higherlearning @Michael_Caraway
@lynda The best thing online! Your database of courses is great! To the mark and very helpful. Thanks! @ru22more
Got to create something yesterday I never thought I could do. #thanks @lynda @Ngventurella
I really do love @lynda as a learning platform. Never stop learning and developing, it’s probably our greatest gift as a species! @soundslikedavid
@lynda just subscribed to lynda.com all I can say its brilliant join now trust me @ButchSamurai
@lynda is an awesome resource. The membership is priceless if you take advantage of it. @diabetic_techie
One of the best decision I made this year. Buy a 1yr subscription to @lynda @cybercaptive
guys lynda.com (@lynda) is the best. So far I’ve learned Java, principles of OO programming, and now learning about MS project @lucasmitchell
Signed back up to @lynda dot com. I’ve missed it!! Proper geeking out right now! #timetolearn #geek @JayGodbold
Share a link to this course

What are exercise files?

Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course. Save time by downloading the author's files instead of setting up your own files, and learn by following along with the instructor.

Can I take this course without the exercise files?

Yes! If you decide you would like the exercise files later, you can upgrade to a premium account any time.

Become a member Download sample files See plans and pricing

Please wait... please wait ...
Upgrade to get access to exercise files.

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Learn by watching, listening, and doing, Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along Premium memberships include access to all exercise files in the library.


Exercise files

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

For additional information on downloading and using exercise files, watch our instructional video or read the instructions in the FAQ.

This course includes free exercise files, so you can practice while you watch the course. To access all the exercise files in our library, become a Premium Member.

Join now "Already a member? Log in

Are you sure you want to mark all the videos in this course as unwatched?

This will not affect your course history, your reports, or your certificates of completion for this course.


Mark all as unwatched Cancel

Congratulations

You have completed Photoshop CS3 Sharpening Images.

Return to your organization's learning portal to continue training, or close this page.


OK
Become a member to add this course to a playlist

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses—and create as many playlists as you like.

Get started

Already a member?

Become a member to like this course.

Join today and get unlimited access to the entire library of video courses.

Get started

Already a member?

Exercise files

Learn by watching, listening, and doing! Exercise files are the same files the author uses in the course, so you can download them and follow along. Exercise files are available with all Premium memberships. Learn more

Get started

Already a Premium member?

Exercise files video

How to use exercise files.

Ask a question

Thanks for contacting us.
You’ll hear from our Customer Service team within 24 hours.

Please enter the text shown below:

The classic layout automatically defaults to the latest Flash Player.

To choose a different player, hold the cursor over your name at the top right of any lynda.com page and choose Site preferencesfrom the dropdown menu.

Continue to classic layout Stay on new layout
Exercise files

Access exercise files from a button right under the course name.

Mark videos as unwatched

Remove icons showing you already watched videos if you want to start over.

Control your viewing experience

Make the video wide, narrow, full-screen, or pop the player out of the page into its own window.

Interactive transcripts

Click on text in the transcript to jump to that spot in the video. As the video plays, the relevant spot in the transcript will be highlighted.

Are you sure you want to delete this note?

No

Your file was successfully uploaded.

Thanks for signing up.

We’ll send you a confirmation email shortly.


Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

Keep up with news, tips, and latest courses with emails from lynda.com.

Sign up and receive emails about lynda.com and our online training library:

Here’s our privacy policy with more details about how we handle your information.

   
submit Lightbox submit clicked
Terms and conditions of use

We've updated our terms and conditions (now called terms of service).Go
Review and accept our updated terms of service.