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In Photoshop CS6 Essential Training, Julieanne Kost demonstrates how to produce high-quality images in a short amount of time, using a combination of Adobe Photoshop CS6, Bridge, and Camera Raw.
The course details the Photoshop features and creative options, and shows efficient ways to perform common editing tasks, including noise reduction, shadow and highlight detail recovery, retouching, and combining multiple images. Along the way, the course explores techniques for nondestructive editing and compositing using layers, blending modes, layer masks, and much more.
As you become more and more familiar with Camera Raw, you'll probably notice that there are certain effects or looks that you like to apply to your images over and over again. So let's see how we can speed up that process. I'll select all four of the mushroom images and then open them in Camera Raw. On the first image, let's make a few simple adjustments. I'll go to the HSL/Grayscale and we'll convert this to black and white. Then I'll click on the Split Toning panel, and we can add a slight sepia tone to the image.
And finally, I'll go to my Effects panel and we'll add just kind of a mild darkening of the edges with the Post Crop Vignetting. If this is a look that I want to either achieve consistently, because it's something that I want to print for my clients, or it's just something that I really like, I'm going to save out a preset. So here in my Preset panel, I'll click the New Preset icon. But here is where you have to kind of decide how you're going to create your presets, because there is two kind of thoughts.
You can either create a preset for each individual attribute--so for example I could create a preset to make the image black and white, I could create another preset to add the vignette, and I could create another preset to add the sepia tone. What that allows me to do is kind of mix and match, so I could make a dark vignette and a light vignette, and then I could quickly swap in between those. The other school of thought is you could make your preset that contains all of those attributes so that you have a set look with just a single click.
Let's go ahead and do it both ways. The first way is I'm going to just save first the vignette. So we'll go to Post Crop Vignetting. That's the only option that's toggled on. And I will call this Vignette, and I will call it Black, and click OK, and you can see that I have my first preset. Let's create another preset. In this case, I want to create the split toning. So I'll call this ST for split tone, and then Sepia.
There's actually a reason why I'm starting it with ST, and that is I want to make sure that all of the presets that I create for toning images are alphabetically in the same area. If I just call one Sepia and then Cyanotype, I'm going to have a much more difficult time picking those presets from the panel. So I'll click OK. We have our second preset. I'll make one more. And this is simply going to keep our grayscale conversion, so this one I'll just call Black and White.
Now, let's move to another image and apply some different settings. In this case, I will use the preset as a starting point to convert the image to black and white, but then I'll click on the Split Toning and instead of making a sepia-tone image, I'm going to actually make it more of a cyanotype. I think that's a little bit strong, so let's back off on the Saturation, then move over to the Presets, and create a new preset. This time it would be ST for Split Tone.
But then I'll call it Cyan. I want to make sure that it's only keeping track of the split toning, and click OK. And we'll create one more by going over to our effects. And this time, I'm going to add a lighter vignette, just so that we can see the difference between them. In fact, let's go ahead and eliminate the feather. We'll make it rectangular and just bring in that midpoint. So that's obviously very different from the black vignette that we applied. You can see a little bit of sepia tone in that edge.
If I don't want that, I should just simply push the Amount to +100 to make sure that I have a crisp white edge. We go to the Presets again. This time I'll click New. Again, I'm going to start this with Vignette. That way, it will appear near the Black Vignette, but I'll call this White, and then how about HE for hard-edge vignette? And I only want to keep track of the Post Crop Vignetting. Now, what this enables us to do is move to another image and then mix and match.
I can see, for example, what this would look like if I added that cyan split tone on top of it. Now, that's kind of an interesting effect because I didn't actually take the image to grayscale. What about if I add sepia? See how that's a very different effect than if I combined the black and white and the sepia together? And now I can choose whether I want the black vignette or the white vignette and I can always change my mind and go back to maybe the cyan split tone. So you can see how flexible these presets are when you save them this way.
But again, if you know that you want a specific look, and you want that look consistently, for example, you know you want to take your image to black and white, you know you want your image to have a sepia tone, and you know you want it to have the darker vignette, then go ahead and apply all of those changes to your image, click the New Preset icon and in this case, let's start with the grayscale conversion, but let's also include the Split Toning as well as the Post Crop Vignette. Then we could call this something different, like B/W + Sepia + dark edge.
Then I'll click OK. If we move to our last and final image, and I want to just apply all of those changes with a single click, all I need to do is click on the Black and White, Sepia, and Dark Edge preset. So you can see how easy it is to automate Camera Raw with presets in order to get those special effects or those looks that you really like applied to your images. In fact, there's one more super shortcut that I just want to show you. Let's go ahead and click Done, and then I'm just going to select one of the images-- in fact, let's do one that we haven't converted to sepia--and I'll choose the Edit menu again.
And this time, when we go to Develop Settings, you'll notice that you can see all of those presets that you've created. So in the future, you wouldn't even need to open your file into Camera Raw if you have a preset that you want to apply; you would simply add it from this list. So I can add the B/W + Sepia + dark edge, and my image is instantly updated. So, there you have it! Obviously, we just selected one image to apply that preset, but you could select 10 images or 100 images and select the preset and apply it to all of those images at once.
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