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>> Male Speaker: In the sharpening folder, I've created a link to Nik Multimedia. And Nik Multimedia created a handful of really cool plug-ins. And one of them is Nik Sharpener Pro 20. 20 has some great upgrades to it. Let's take a look at how it works. You won't be able to do this in Photoshop unless you have this plug-in. I want to showcase it in case you feel it might be a good resource for you, because I imagine it will be for some folks out there. I'll go to File > Automate.
And when you install it, it's automatically included in this list, and I'll choose Nik Sharpener Pro. There are a number of different ways to choose the type of sharpening that you would like to use. If you are going to go to ink jet, some kind of output device, it's a good idea to select the brand if your brand is in there. And basically how this works is the sharpening is optimized for the resolution that these printers print at by default. So we'll go ahead and click Epson because that's the printer that I tend to use.
And from the top down we have Basic, Image Width, in this case it's telling me the dimensions. It's a small image. It's been sized down. Viewing Distance, Auto, it's configured based on twice the width of the image. The type of paper that I'll be using and I'm going to be using matte paper. I really love matte paper. And Printer Resolution is going to be that 1440. Actually though, sometimes on the matte paper I actually take it down a little bit less than that. So I'll lower it. Once I've done that, I'm going to click on the Advanced tab.
And here are some unique things that I can do. I can sample colors. In this case I'm going to sample the skin and say I don't want any sharpening in tones that are similar to that tone. I will then sample the eye color and I do want sharpening there. 100 percent is going to be pretty intense for an image this small. For a high-resolution file, you would be able to get away with 100 percent. I don't know if you remember the previous version of Nik, but there were three settings. And those setting are equivalent to 60, 100, and 125 in the new version.
And they were named after people; it was Anna, John, and Zap. So now it's just percentages. If you do want to kind of go back to that old-school way of thinking, you can Option+click or Alt+click and drag these sliders and then go to one of those settings for everything. I don't want to do that so I want to go ahead and say I want it at 60 percent there. On the blue hood, take about 50, 60 percent of sharpening. The background colors, the green, no sharpening on that. And you know this cheek has a little bit more red in it so I'll sample that, no sharpening there as well.
Let's click OK. Once we've done that we have the ability to modify this mask which I'm not going to do because I know about how masking works. So I'll just go ahead and click Apply. Once it applies the sharpening, I'll minimize this temporarily. I then can invert my mask, Command+I, and it's now at white, and it's revealing the sharpening. And if you take a close look, what you'll notice is that it sharpened the eyes, it sharpened the hood, it hasn't sharpened the background, and it hasn't sharpened the skin.
Now it takes a little bit of work to get these settings actually dialed in, but it is a really unique way to approach sharpening and to mask out specific colors. Let's take a closer look at how this works before we wrap this up. Go back to Epson, open up the dialog window Advanced. I want to select the skin, pull it out. A couple different areas of the skin because there are different tones there. I want the hood to be at 60, nothing on the background, nothing on that color either.
And it's not just that color, it's colors that are similar to that in that color range. If you go up to the Eye icon, there are a couple of different view modes. The most effective view mode is this one down here. What that does is it gives you this red rubylith overlay and shows you what part of the image will actually be sharpened. And you can dynamically change that. Notice that that looks a little, whoa, that looks a little scary actually. That is the skin tone, and I am saying don't sharpen those areas.
I can also bring in more sharpening-specific areas and get live previews with clicks. So now I am able to say, yeah, sharpen those eyes and the blue part of the hood. You know what? Make sure my background is gone, click OK. And Apply, invert the mask, and we'll click before and after. And what was sharpened was only what was created in that mask, a dynamic preview of what is actually being sharpened, which I can come into Photoshop and then modify even further, lowering Opacity or masking off specific areas.
Now if that isn't cool, I don't know what is. So, pretty neat and effective plug-in. and the guys at Nik, one of their core statements is "make it easy." And they do help make sharpening easy. I've had wonderful results with this plug-in. I've also had phenomenal results with Smart Sharpen. So you don't have to have this, although I wanted to point it out so you know that it's out there. This now officially closes our chapter on sharpening. I hope that it's been helpful, and I hope that it makes your images incredibly sharp, and I want to close our conversation about sharpening how Ansel used to talk about sharpened images.
And when some one would say Ansel your image is so sharp, he would be disappointed because it would be as if they missed the whole point. It's as if they said the image was sharp. Where I want people to say Chris, your image is haunting me; it's impacted me in a way. I just can't get rid of it. I can't shake it out of my mind, my heart, my soul. So as we sharpen, keep in mind that we want to have that technical aspect of our images there. We need images that are tack sharp.
But more important than that, we want to have an image that goes beyond sharpness to an image of impact.
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