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Photoshop is the tool of choice for most creative professionals and has quickly become household name synonymous with computer art and image manipulation. In Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: Beyond the Basics, internationally renowned Photoshop guru Deke McClelland teaches such digital-age wonders as masking, filters, layers, blend modes, Liquify, Vanishing Point, and vector-based type. Along the way, Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details, smoothing over wrinkles and imperfections, trimming away jowls and fat, and wrapping one image around the surface of another. Plus, the training teaches how to construct and organize the elements in a composition so you can edit them easily in the future. Exercise files accompany the tutorial.
Ready for more Photoshop CS3 training with Deke? Check out Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: Advanced Techniques.
Note: Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: The Essentials is a recommended prerequisite to Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: Beyond the Basics.
Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts for Photoshop from the Exercise Files tab.
Let's now end our blow by blow look at the blur and averaging functions here inside Photoshop with an examination of the radial blur filter. It's actually a really great function as it turns out. It's an old one and it yearly needs to be updated. I wish it to be updated because there is so much you could do with it that would be so cool but it's still good it's still great actually I should say. They have the little bit of a pain in the neck so I will show it to you Ctrl+Alt+C, Ctrl+Alt+C or Command+Option+C, Command+Option+C a couple of times in order to undo the motion blur effect and then undo the surface blur effect.
I am going to click on the Layers palette and make sure that the 3 BL layer is active which it wasn't so that was a good thing I checked. And I am going to go ahead and apply two different variations of the radial blur filter to these two side by side rectangles here these two side by side layers. One is spin and one is zoom as it turns out. It's almost like they are two totally different filters. So go up to the Filter menu choose Blur and then I want you to choose Radial Blur right there and it brings up this dialog box so it's a little frustrating.
In that there is no preview outside the dialog box there is no preview inside the dialog box all you have is this Blur Center function. I am going to go ahead and stick with the Spin function, which spin things around the center point and I am going to take this value. Notice this I am pressing Shift up arrow and it doesn't work. You actually have to manually adjust this option here. That's how old this filter is. You could also enter a value if you want to but it really hasn't be touched since the Photoshop equivalent of the Stone Age. There are a lot of things got updated in starting about Photoshop 3 with previews and with up and down arrow control and all this other stuff.
And Radial Blur dismissed the boat there, but very powerful function as I say so blur method will leave set to spin you can see what it's going to do and quality you can set between draft which will be pretty noisy, good which has a little bit of noise and then best which has the least amount of noise associated with it. They are all a little bit noisy. Though as it turns out best is awfully slow, also so I would typically stick with good. I mean on modern machines draft isn't all that much faster than good so I might as well just stick with good and of course they are going to slow down when you are working on larger and larger images.
Alright notice that you can you can drag this blur center around if you want to. I am going to leave it set pretty much where it was because I don't want to damage the fact that it was nice and centered even though I already have. There is no way to snap it right back to the middle there. I wish it was. Anyway I am going to move that to the center and you will see that it's not working from the center of the layer it's going to be working from the center of the entire image so I will click OK and you will notice of course that it spins with respect as I said from the center of the image.
So we get this Radial Blur going around like this. That's okay I guess it's kind of interesting but it's not what I am looking for. What if you want to spin the layer around its own center point, well you could monkey around with that center control which is a real hit or miss proposition I mean you are just going to hunting and packing for a while to figure out where exactly you should put that center point because you have no context for it. You are working inside of, I will go ahead and show you again. We are working inside of a square that's kind of a problem and our image is rectangular and we have no idea where everything fits in respect to this square we don't know if it stretches out.
I don't know what's going on with this. So anyway go ahead and cancel out of that. I will show you the better way to work. I will undo the application of Radial Blur on this bottom left image. I will go over to the Layers palette. I am going to have to click on 3BL to make it active again because undoing the operation send me back to 2TR top right here and now I am going to load the selection outline that's associated with this layer by Control or Command clicking on the thumbnails, so just go ahead and Control or Command click, control click on a PC command click on a Mac on this layer thumbnail right there and now go back to the Filter menu and just choose Radial Blur you don't have to do anything else just choose the command or you can press Ctrl+F and notice that it goes ahead and blurs inside centered inside the selection outline.
Alright now it doesn't violate the edges of the selection outline which it would if we deselected the image and took the time to figure out exactly where the center point needs to be. But you can do that on your own time if you are interested in figuring that up because it's really as I said I have nothing to give you there. It's just you know it's just hunt and pack so I am going to go ahead and press Ctrl+D or Command+D in order to deselect that layer then I am going to go back to the Layers palette click on 4BR and then control click on it or command click on the 4BR thumbnail in order to load its selection outline.
Now I am going to go ahead and press F7 to hide that palette and then I am going to press Ctrl+Alt+F or Command+Option+F on the Mac in order to reload the Radial Blur dialog box. I am going to click on Zoom in order to zoom the image outward from the center point. Instead of spinning it we are going to zoom it toward the viewer. Now a value of 30 resulted in a relatively large spin blur here. But it results in a pretty small zoom blur as it turns out so let's just go ahead and maximize this value take it all the way up to a 100 and then click OK in order to zoom the image and there you have it.
Once again it went ahead and centered inside this selection outline and although there is not really any reason to do it let's just go ahead and compare this to the Gaussian Blur and Box Blur functions. Here is Gaussian Blur and Box Blur right there at the top of this image and then if I press the End key here is this Spin Radial Blur variation and here is this Zoom Radial Blur variation. Alright, enough analysis already. Let's see some creative applications starting in the next exercise which is a little thing I like to call the Captain Kirk in Love effect and it turns out to be a really practical effect.
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