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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.
In this exercise we're going to paint in some colorful shading and colorful highlights as well using the Mixer Brush, which is quite the flexible tool inside Photoshop CS5. I've saved my progress as Shaded metallic head.psd. Now the head layer should be active and it should be locked as well, that is the transparency should be locked. What I would like to do now is lift a bright yellow from the image. However, I need to make sure that I'm lifting just a single color; I'm not the least bit interested in lifting some kind of color pattern from the image.
I just want one color at a time. So I'm going to go up here to the Options Bar, my Mixer Brush is still selected, so I'll click on this down pointing arrowhead and I'll choose Load Solid Colors Only. And now I'll press the Alt key or the Option key on a Mac and I'll click in this hot yellow, right next to the robot's hand, in order to make that the active foreground color. And now using my pressure sensitive stylus once again, I just want to you to know what I'm painting with, but you should be able to have a fair amount of firm with this even if you're using a mouse. Go ahead and paint inside of the head like so and you're basically painting sort of a vertical area of color right there, all the way from the top of his head down to the bottom.
Next we want to lift some hot red so I am going to click and hold with the Eyedropper. That is Alt+Click and hold so I have got the Alt key down here on the PC, the Option key on a Mac, until I come up with a fiery red right there, so I want to something nice and bright. And then I'll paint next door against that yellow, so closer to the outside of his head, and up here as well. Now you may end up overriding any white that you painted. That's okay, because then you can follow that up by pressing the D key and then X key to make the foreground color white, and I'll reduce the size of my cursor a little bit here, and I'll paint along this edge.
And actually, you know what, if you need a hotter effect, if you want more of the foreground color at any point in time then you can switch this setting here from Very Wet to Very Wet Light Mix. So Light Mixes are going to favor the foreground color whereas Heavy Mixes are going to favor the existing colors inside the image. All right so I'll go with Light Mix and let's try that very bright yellow once again. I'll Alt+Click or Option+Click right there, and let's go with the small brush this time around and just paint our way up to the central area of the face, like so.
I think that's ending up looking pretty darn good. You can even add some yellow highlights here and there against the edges of his head, just to communicate the amazing amount of fire that's all over this guy. Let's add some more red, as well just around this area. I am painting lightly this time around because I just want to add a little bit of red here and there. All right, that looks pretty good to me. Now, let's add some redness to the eyeballs. That's got to be done; I mean with all these veins in here, he needs some redness. So I'll click on the white stuff layer.
Again, make sure given the nature of this piece, you don't want to just start painting into a layer like that, because you're going to paint outside of it. You are not going to respect its transparency by default. So what you need to do is undo that brushstroke and go and lock the transparency of that layer either by clicking on that little checkerboard icon or pressing the Slash key on your keyboard. And now I'm going to increase the size of my cursor and paint inside of the eyeballs, like so. Now I've accidentally painted some red into the white of the neighboring eye. That's okay, we'll take care of that in the second.
So I'll go ahead and paint some red down at the base of that eye, and with a smaller brush, so I'll go ahead and reduce the size of the brush by pressing the Left Bracket key a couple of times. Let's paint in some white. So I'll press D, X, once again default color, and then switch them and let's paint some white back into that area, like so. And then finally what you can do if you want to is you can smear these color around a little bit if you wanted to sort of change the positioning of the colors. And you can do that by sticking with Very Wet, but let's go with a Very Wet Heavy Mix so that we're working with the existing colors inside the image and you even say that you don't want to load the brush after each stroke.
So we're just painting exclusively with colors that already exist inside this image. Now I'll increase the size of my brush quite a bit, so notice I am just painting inward right there, and for some reason I'm leaving a kind of residue at that location, it's kind of interesting. That's not really what I want, and the same thing is happening here. I think what it's doing is it's duplicating the size and shape of the brush right there. And that does appear to be exactly what it's doing in fact so that's a little bit unfortunate. What we need to do instead is paint in some white into that area.
So let's go ahead and turn that Load Brush icon back on, let's go ahead and favor the foreground color this time, like so, and now I'll paint along this area in order to make those ridges go away. Unless you find the ridges attractive, there is a certain humorous quality I guess in having weird red ridges around the guy's eyes, especially if he's a robot. Anyway, let's go and switch now to the mouth layer, I want to make that guy active, and I want to paint in some shading inside of the tongue. So I am going to start off by Alt+ Clicking or Option+Clicking in this dark region of red up here in order to load a dark red, and I'll now increase the size of my cursor and I'll paint into the tongue area, having of course forgotten that I need to lock down the transparency so I'll press Ctrl+Z Cmd+Z on a Mac to undo that.
Press the Slash key in order to lock the transparency and you can see this little checkerboard icon right there is now active. Now I am going to go back into the tongue region and paint away like so, and if I need something darker then I'll press the D key in order to paint with black here, increase the size of my brush and paint just in the lower region like that. And that's looking pretty darn nice. Now you could certainly shade a bunch more of this image if you want to but the only additional change I am going to make is to paint a little bit inside the irises.
So I'm going to click on the eyes layer to make it active, press the Slash key this time to go and lock it down, you'll also see a little lock icon over here on the right hand side of the layer's name. All right, so this time I am going to, once again, lift a bright yellow. So I'll Alt+Click or Option+Click in that yellow region next to the hand and then I am going to reduce the size of my brush quite a bit and paint in some yellow. That's really not the effect I am looking for, I want to a bright searing bit of yellow. So I am going to have to switch to the Standard Brush tool by pressing the B key and I'll increase the size of my brush a little bit and I am going to switch my Blend mode from Normal to Screen.
So this time the Blend mode is not affecting the layer, it's just affecting the brush as I paint with it and what that's going to allow me to do is paint in a very bright area of yellow inside of this guy's eye, and if I want to make it brighter still I could paint over it a second time, like that. Now we are not getting much of a mix between the green of the iris and the yellow that I've just painted in so let's switch back to the Mixer Brush by pressing the B key once again, and this time I'm going to go ahead and favor the existing colors inside the image so I'll set this to Very Wet Heavy Mix, like so.
And now I'll just paint back and forth a little bit, just round these edges, as I am doing here with a small brush, notice that. Then I'll press the X Key in order to paint with white and let's see if I can paint in a little brightness inside of that eye to lift things up. I am not painting in any brightness because I've got this set to a Heavy Mix, which favors the existing colors. I've got to switch this to a Light Mix, like so, in order to favor the active color, the foreground color. All right and then finally I am going to press the D key in order to bring up black as my foreground color, and I'm going to paint the bottom of the irises like so and maybe the tops a little bit too in order to darken those guys up and give them more of a sculptural appearance.
All right, so that does it for me. You, of course are welcome to continue shading the collar and the hands and whatever else you want to using the new Mixer Brush here inside Photoshop CS5.
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