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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 am still working inside the Stylish young couple.psd file, and I am taking in these strange modifications that I applied using the HDR Toning command. Now it's not altogether successful because we have brought out all kinds of noise inside the image, both luminance noise in the guy's hair and color noise under the woman's jaw. We also have some strange coloring around the edges; notice there's this kind of neon orange under her hair. But we do have some nice contouring. So we have managed to settle down the highlights a little bit, bring in some nuanced skin sculpturing, that kind of a thing.
What we would typically do at this point is we take the adjusted version of the image, and at the very least, somehow merge it with the underlying original, but that is not an option because HDR Toning has flattened our image. In this exercise, I am going to demonstrate to you how it is actually an option. We can take the most inflexible command in all of Photoshop that requires you to flatten off an the entire composition, and we can still turn around and apply it as a non-destructive adjustment, thanks to our ability to access previous states from the History panel.
So just to make sure that you can follow along with me each and every step of the way we are going to reapply our settings. And if you've saved the settings in a previous exercise, this will be a piece of cake. So all we need to do here is go up to the File menu and choose the Revert command, or press the F12 key in order to revert the image to its original appearance, and that also gets us back our Smart Object. Then go up to the Image menu, choose Adjustments, and choose HDR Toning. You will get an alert message. Go ahead and click on the Yes button.
Then inside the HDR Toning dialog box, I want you to go ahead and click on the Preset menu and choose moderate Contrast, once again, if you were following along with me, and you went ahead and saved off those settings, as I instructed. And then you will get these numerical values right here, a Radius of 100 pixels, a Strength of 0.5, which is equivalent to a 50% Amount value. Gamma 1.0, so no change there, and Exposure of -1, Detail of +30, Shadow -100%, Highlight -10%, and both Vibrance and Saturation set to 0%.
We haven't looked at Toning Curve and Histogram yet, but we will in an upcoming exercise. Go ahead and click OK to apply those settings. You will get the exact same effect that we saw just a moment ago. We have flattened off the image. Notice if this was a traditional flat effect, and we pulled this off many times back in the Fundamentals portion of the series, after you apply even a brush stroke inside of Photoshop, you can go up to the Edit menu and choose the Fade command, so that you fade the effect with the original version of the image.
This command is not applicable to HDR Toning. So once again, Photoshop cannot wrap its mind around that transition from 8-bit to 32-bit and back and still retain any semblance, or any memory of that original image. Save one. If you bring up the History panel, which you can get from the Window menu, so go to the Window menu and choose History, or if you loaded dekeKeys press Alt+F9, Option+F9 on the Mac, then notice inside of this panel, I am going to shorten it up just a little bit.
We have a list of everything that I have done. So there is the open state. The HDR Toning command flattened the image, but it was recorded as an independent step. Then I applied HDR Toning. Then I turned around and reverted the image at the beginning of this exercise. It got flattened again, when I applied the HDR Toning command. So here is the results of HDR Toning right there. Let's go ahead and save off those results as an independent snapshot, by pressing the Alt key or the Option key on the Mac and clicking on the little camera icon at the bottom of the History panel.
Then I am going to go ahead and name this snapshot Faux HDR, and I will click OK, and we now have that state saved off to memory. All right, now what I want you to do a couple of things, first of all go back to either the Revert state or the Open state; either one will do us fine. That's going to restore the original smart object version of the image. And then I want you to click in front of the Faux HDR snapshot. Click right there, in order to designate Faux HDR as our source state for any operations that rely on History inside of Photoshop.
All right, now that means we can take that source state, and we can place it in an independent layer. Here is how you do that. Go ahead and collapse the History panel, press Ctrl+Shift+N or Command+Shift+N in order to make a new layer, and let's call it the same thing, Faux HDR, and click OK. Now we need to fill it with the History state. There is a couple different ways to do that. One is the manual approach. You go up to the Edit menu, you choose Fill, and then inside the Fill dialog box, you will probably see Use set to Content-Aware, by the way, or something like that. You want to change it to History instead, and that will draw that Source state from the History panel.
So go ahead and choose History, make sure mode is set to Normal, Opacity 100%, and Preserve Transparency turned off, and then click OK, and now, just like that, your History state becomes an independent layer inside of this composition. Here is another way to work, those of you who like keyboard shortcuts, I am going to press Ctrl+Z or Command+Z on the Mac, to undo that modification. That's not the keyboard shortcut. The keyboard shortcut, and it's a very little known one at that, is Ctrl+Alt+Backspace. Notice, PC people, that is not Ctrl+Alt+Delete.
That is Ctrl+Alt+Backspace. On the Mac, that's Command+Option+Delete. So press either Ctrl+Alt+Backspace or Command+Option+Delete, and you fill a selection or an entire layer with the tagged source state inside the History panel, and here it is. Now the next thing I want to do is I just want to go ahead and reduce the Opacity value. You can play around with some blend mode settings and so forth, but I notice, even though we have some aberrant colors going, if I change the Blend mode to Luminosity, so we just pick up the colors from the original image, my shadows are turning very drab.
Instead, what I decided to do was leave the blend mode set to Normal, as it was in the first place, and then I will press the Escape key, so the Blend mode option is no longer stuck over here on the PC. And I will press the 4 key to reduce the Opacity value to 40%. And I end up with this effect here, which is quite reasonable indeed, frankly. So this is the original version of the image, if I turn off that layer, and this is the modified version of the image, thanks to what is ultimately a non-destructive application of the HDR Toning effect.
Now just so that we can compare it to that Exposure, Gamma version of the image that we created a couple of exercises ago, I am going to Shift+Tab away my panels, and I will go out to the Applications bar to the Arrange Documents icon, and I will switch to the 2 Up display, so that we can see both of these images side-by-side. And then I will Shift+ Spacebar+Drag the models over a little bit, so that we can see both of them. Over here on the right-hand side, we are seeing the results of the Exposure Gamma settings, which were exceedingly easy to apply from the HDR Toning dialog box.
It didn't require us to do any mixing with the original image. Whereas over here on the left-hand side, we are seeing what is undeniably a harder effect, that is a more labor-intensive effect, because we have to modify a bunch of local adaptation settings, and then we had to go through all that rigamarole, with the History panel and building our own layer, and mixing it with the underlying original, and all that jazz. However, the ultimate effect is a few degrees better. We have better sculptural contouring going on inside of the gentleman's face. We have equally better contouring going on inside of the woman's skin as well, and her dress detail. Check this out. If you want evidence, notice over here on the left-hand side, down here at the bottom of the image window, in her pink dress, there appears to be a very slight stain on her dress.
Now that's not necessarily the kind of thing that we want to bring out, but we did bring it up because we were able to bring out all these little details and differences between the luminance levels. That stain is not evident over here in the right-hand image. So it's a negative detail, but still it is the kind of thing that we are able to bring out using local adaptation, mixed along with the original image, in a non-destructive fashion, thanks to your ability to convert History states from the History panel into editable layers.
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