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Real focus happens inside the camera's lens element. The sharpening features in Photoshop CS3 exaggerate the contrast along edges in a photograph to transform a well-focused image into an outstanding image. In Photoshop CS3 Sharpening Images, Deke McClelland teaches a host of sharpening and noise reduction techniques, including using filters such as Unsharp Mask, Smart Sharpen, High Pass, and Reduce Noise. The training teaches the essentials of sharpening, including what it does, why it's important, and how the filters function. Plus, the training covers Deke's recommended best practices, including the four distinct varieties of sharpening, which can be used independently or in combination with each other. Photoshop CS3 Sharpening Images is about how to transform images from looking good to looking their absolute best. Exercise files accompany the course.
In this exercise, we are going to take a look at alternative sharpening workflow number one right here, sharpening for film. And I'm taking up where I left off in the last exercise that is to say, I'm looking at the Alternative Sharpening Workflow.PSD document that's found inside of the 02_When_To_Sharpen folder. And if you were to bring up your Layer Comps palette you would see that I'm looking at this Layer Comp right there that's called 'and more'. We are about to move on to the next one, Workflow # 1. Let's go ahead and move on right now.
And I've set this up, by the way, I am going to go ahead and Shift-Tab away my palettes there, I set this up so I have a keyboard shortcut to advance from one Layer Comp to another. So I don't have to keep bringing up that palette. Now you can see we are looking at a slide called 'Sharpening a Scanned Film Photograph'. We'll start by opening the scanned image. All film media whether it's transparency or color negative, print even, a print positive, exhibit 'grain'. A grain is just a function of working with film and regardless of the device, whether it's a desktop scanner or a drum scanner, what have you, the scanning process introduces noise and it's often as not softness. And by that I mean that many scanners, depending on your scanner frequency or your scanner resolution, the scanner may end up introducing interpolation and anti-aliasing, all of which of course leads to a slight softening of detail.
Now your next step in that case would be the smooth and sharpening the image as much as they may seem like opposites, smoothing and sharpening are partners and enhance the appearance and quality of an image. One defeats grain. That is smoothing, of course. And the other, sharpening, compensates for the effects of interpolation, anti-aliasing and so on. Next, you would want to edit your image having established a foundation of solid detail, using the smoothing and sharpening functions, you are now ready to edit the image to suite your final needs, always taking care to make your edits non-destructive when possible.
And I'm going to be emphasizing that over and over throughout the series, how to edit an image non-destructively so that your sharpening and your color adjustments and everything else don't conspire together to just ruin your photograph. And then finally, of course, you would flatten the image, re-sample it and sharpen it, save your edits to PSD, if you intend to print flatten the layers, re-sample to the desired size. Sharpen for output, yes, sharpen again, so this would be second pass for sharpening, and save the results as LZW compressed TIFF file.
So very much the same steps we went through in the conventional sharpening workflow. Alright. So that's one alternative. That's if you are working with an image that you've scanned from film, whether transparency, negative or print. In the next exercise, we'll see how to work with a digital photograph that you've captured as a RAW image.
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