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A portrait can be a cherished possession for a lifetime, and now making perfect portraits is just one Photoshop course away. Professional photographer and instructor Chris Orwig uses his vast knowledge of Photoshop to focus on the specific tools every photographer needs to adjust images and keep them looking genuine. Photoshop CS4 Portrait Retouching Essential Training explores this program's deep resources and inspires photographers to do their creative best with everything from blemishes to backdrops. Exercise files accompany the course.
Now that we have color corrected this photograph, let's go ahead and minimize our interface a little bit. We can do that by clicking on the Essentials button here, and then selecting Essentials. That will just reset those panels so that we are not looking at the Info palette any more. Then let's also go ahead and select another tool. I'll select the Move tool. That will hide those eyedroppers. Those are a little bit distracting. Now at this juncture, what I want to do is zoom in to 100%, I want to start to evaluate the detail that I have in this photograph. I'm going to begin to retouch some small blemishes. In order to zoom into 100%, I'm going to do that by way of shortcut. It's Command+Option+0 if you're on a Mac, Ctrl+Alt+0 if you're on a PC.
Now, one of the things that happens when you zoom in to 100% is you start to see the detail that you have, and one of the things that I notice with this particular photograph is that, the eyes are not sharp, and I'll zoom out a little bit so you can actually see that. The face is sharp and those just really swallowed up the feel, the eyebrows are not in focus and this is in focus, it's just behind the eyes. So I'm going to have to keep that in mind as I retouch this photograph. Now I didn't notice that when I was zoomed out. So that 100% view is really helpful in order to begin to evaluate the image. All right, well now that we are here, and I'm not quite at 100%, so I want to zoom back just a little bit, so that we can look at our blemishes. I'm going to create a new layer. I need to first double-click the Color and Adjustments tab, so I can show you the Layers palette.
Now you don't need to do that but I just did that to open up a little more space there and let's create a new layer by pressing Shift+Command+N on a Mac, Shift+Ctrl+N on a PC. We will name this layer clean up 1. We will go ahead and click OK. Next, we will grab one of our Healing tools; the Spot Healing Brush is one of those tools I typically like to start with, and just to try to hit these small blemishes. Now, of course, make sure Sample All Layers is turned-on. I forgot to mention that, because typically when you are retouching, you have that on, you almost always have that on. It's always a good idea to be able to go down and Sample all the layers, and what that means is you can then have this retouching on its own layer.
So here what I'm going to do is just look to try to hit the little skin variations that I'm noticing, and you are noticing that initially, I'm really focusing in on these small little variations, you will also notice that I'll change my brush size based on the blemish. I will change that Brush size by pressing the Bracket key, Left-Bracket key makes it a little bit smaller, Right- Bracket key makes it a little bit bigger, and so when you are doing this little detail work, it makes sense to have your brush just a little bit bigger then the blemish or retouching, just so that you are actually getting the blemish and you are not doing anything else that you don't need to do here.
Now, although this forehead isn't sharp, it's out of focus because it has swallowed up the feel. There's still a little bit of skin variation, so I want to work on those. Next, I'm going to make my brush a little bit bigger, and just hit some of these other areas where I'm just seeing a little bit of patchiness. All right, well so far so good. Let's then go to the Healing Brush, and with the Healing Brush, I'll hold down the Option key on a Mac, Alt key on a PC, and work on these areas that are a little bit bigger here, and a little bit darker as well. So I'm just going to go ahead and smooth those out a bit. All right, great! So far so good. In this case, we are just removing little tiny blemishes, look at our before and then after, and zoom in a little bit more, here is our before and then after, great! So far so good.
Well, there is more that we need to do in regards to this particular type of retouching. In particular, what I want to start to do next is work on the overall tone. There are few areas that are a little bit too dark and eventually, we are going to need to work on the overall sharpening of the image, because now that we have noticed that those eyes aren't sharp, we are going to need to correct that. Now, we'll correct that later in our process, we first want to clean everything up, and then we are going to make our enhancements. Aright, well that wraps up this stage; I'll see you in the next movie, where we will continue to work on this photograph.
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