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Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Advanced, the second part of the popular and comprehensive series, updated for CS5, follows internationally renowned Photoshop guru Deke McClelland as he dives into the workings of Photoshop. He explores such digital-age wonders as the Levels and Curves commands, edge-detection filters, advanced compositing techniques, vector-based text, the Liquify filter, and Camera Raw. Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details, smoothing over wrinkles and imperfections, and enhancing colors without harming the original image. Exercise files accompany the course.
Recommended prerequisite: Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Fundamentals.
I have saved my progress as Stretch Armswrong.psd, found inside the 23_distort folder. So you can load up this image. I don't know why in the world you would want to. But it does represent where I am at so far, and I want to show you a couple of more things that you can do here. If you have a single point selected, not a bunch of them like this, so I am just going to click on one of the points to select it, so that the other points become deselected immediately there. Then notice that I can press and hold the Alt key or the Option key on the Mac, and instead of hovering my cursor directly over the pin, I can move my cursor slightly outside the pin, like so, and then I have the option of rotating the pin.
And notice, as I rotate the pin, I am changing the angle of the distortion is what's really happening here. So I'm saying, now that I want the distortion to angle, like so, up into the left in this case, and as a result, because we don't have any other pin going on in his hand, we also move the hand upward in kind. Now, let's say I were to press Ctrl+Z or Cmd+Z on the Mac to undo that rotation, and I set a pin down inside of the hand, well, now were I to drag this pin back and forth, you can see that the hand is now remaining fixed, and I'm stretching the areas between both of the deselected neighbors here.
Also, if I press and hold the Alt key or the Option key on the Mac, and I decide to drag, like so, I'll also bend with respect to that pin. So in other words, again, I am changing the angle of the distortion here as opposed to the angle of the various elements. Another thing to note is this Rotate value up here in the Options bar; currently it says Fixed, and it's telling me that I have assigned an Angle value, by virtue of the fact that I Alt+ dragged or Option+dragged there in the Image window, of 58 degrees.
So I can modify that value if I want to by, for example, pressing Shift+Up Arrow in order to increase the angle of the rotation, and notice that's applying a clockwise rotation to my distortion. Or I can back off of the rotation by pressing Shift+Down Arrow. And the reason I'm using Shift+Up Arrow and Shift+Down Arrow is they change the value in 10 degrees increments. You can also just press Up and Down Arrow to change the value in 1 degrees increments. Let's say you don't like what you've done.
This is a terrible angle that we've applied so far. You can reset the value to 0 if you want to, but that's not necessarily the same thing as restoring a halfway decent result, because if I went and dragged, like so, so I am really dragging the heck out of this pin and distorting this elbow more than I normally would, but just for the sake of demonstration, and I have a Fixed Rotation of 0 degrees. That's not necessarily going to produce the best look. If I want Photoshop to take over and decide what the angle of rotation ought to be, then I can change the Rotate value from Fixed to Auto, and then I can let Photoshop decide, you know what? It ought to be 11 degrees, given this ridiculous bend that you've applied here, 11 degrees is going to work for you.
Anyway, by default, I should mention, the Rotate option is set to Auto, and you can watch the value update on-the- fly as you drag that pin around. So that's what's going on with Rotation as you're applying Puppet Warp. What about this mode option over here? By default, it's set to Normal. You also have Rigid, and you have Distort, and let me show you what's going on with those two guys. I am going to back off from my image a little bit here by Zooming out, and I'm going to add a couple of points right there at the tummy on either side, maybe a couple of points at the pelvis there, one at the knee, and one at the other knee, like so.
And let's get dragging here. Let's make some pretty stern modifications. And notice, because the foot doesn't have its own pin, I'm moving the foot along with the knee, so that entire calf region is moving along with my point. And I could go ahead and stretch out this region as well, and I could stretch out this knee a little bit, and that would be a lot bit of course; these are some pretty radical modifications. And I could squeeze in on the tummy, so that he looks like he hasn't eaten in a long time. And take in his shoulders, just so that he looks absolutely as weird as possible.
And let's go ahead and stretch his hand too and stretch his elbow down. Now, that's a normal distortion, and it's abnormal in that I wouldn't necessarily recommend it, but it's normal in terms of the mode behavior. Watch what happens if I switch to Rigid. Rigid is going to give you basically harsher corners out of your distortions. So notice that it's a pretty subtle modification, I should say that upfront. But what it does is it sort of rearranges the skeletal structure of what we've applied so far, and then any Bends are also going to become more rigid as well.
So this is good if you are basically taking sort of a wooden doll or an actual puppet or something along those lines, and you're trying to manipulate the appendages without having any distortion at the pin points. For the kind of work that we're doing right here, Normal is probably the best bet, but I also want to show you Distortion. Distortion is going to apply basically proportional enlargements and reductions inside of the areas of Distortion that you're applying using Puppet Warp.
So you can think of it as scaling, and notice in my case is increasing the size of all kinds of different areas. So by virtue of the fact that I've made the stomach so very thin, and I've drawn out the hips here, we're getting some very inflated pants going on. So he has got Hammer pants. And we can also do something similar here with his shoulders, so we could make him look all bulked out if we want to. In this kind of image, it does tend to give us sort of these bits of musculature here and there.
So we could see a moment ago he had these gigantic Popeye arms, and if we'd rather his forearms were smaller and his upper arms were nice and big, then we could tug those out instead. So those are your mode options. Basically play around with them and see which ones are working best. Note though that they are not applied on a pin by pin basis. They are applied over the entire course of the Puppet Warp. So every pin is affected by the mode setting. More often than not, you're going to be working with Normal, but you want to try the others out if you're not getting the desired results.
And that's how you rotate points and apply different distortion modes here inside Photoshop.
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