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Photoshop is the tool of choice for most creative professionals and has quickly become household name synonymous with computer art and image manipulation. In Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: Beyond the Basics, internationally renowned Photoshop guru Deke McClelland teaches such digital-age wonders as masking, filters, layers, blend modes, Liquify, Vanishing Point, and vector-based type. Along the way, Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details, smoothing over wrinkles and imperfections, trimming away jowls and fat, and wrapping one image around the surface of another. Plus, the training teaches how to construct and organize the elements in a composition so you can edit them easily in the future. Exercise files accompany the tutorial.
Ready for more Photoshop CS3 training with Deke? Check out Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: Advanced Techniques.
Note: Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: The Essentials is a recommended prerequisite to Photoshop CS3 One-on-One: Beyond the Basics.
Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts for Photoshop from the Exercise Files tab.
Alright now purely for the sake of variety here I have modified a few of the elements inside of this tondo themed image. I have used the hue/saturation command to give the frame something of a gilded appearance. I have colorized the Michael Angelo fresco in the background, I have rotated the hands a little bit, I have modified the face ever so slightly and perhaps most obviously I have switched out the Raphael Cardinal with another Raphael image one of the famous cherubs from the Sistine Chapel and this time around we are going to try out a few of the distortion functions that are available to you when you are working with a Free Transform command.
Now turn your attention for a moment to the Layers palette. You will notice that I have kind of tidied things up a bit. I have put all of the clock face elements inside of the face group and that includes the clock face from Nicolas Belton as well as the Raphael cherub and a little bit of a relief overlay there. And then comes the frame layer which is sitting loose inside of the stack and then finally we have a group for the hands for each of the clock hands, the minute hand, the hour hand and the second hand. Alright so I am going to go and twirl that close.
What I would like you to do is go ahead and select all of the elements that make up the clock. So, click on the face group and then Shift Click on the hands group. That will select that entire range of layers including the layers that are inside the group. And if you Ctrl drag the clock around inside the image Window you notice that the entire clock moves independent of the Michael Angelo fresco in the background which should be deselected inside of the Layers palette. Alright I am going to undo that movement. Now one of the wonderful things about the Free Transform command is that it is applicable to multiple selected layers at a time.
So I would like you to go up to the Edit menu and choose a Free Transform command or of course you can press Ctrl T or Command T on the Mac. Now I mentioned how you can scale the image by dragging any of these handles either a corner handle like so or, I will undo that movement, you can also drag one of the side handles which includes the top and bottom handles by the way in which case you will squish the image like I have here. Alright I will undo that modification as well by pressing Ctrl Z, Command Z on the Mac. If you want to slant or distort the image all you have to do is press and hold the Ctrl key on the PC or the Command key on the Mac while dragging one of these handles.
For example I am going to Ctrl drag the side handle right here and notice that I skew the image or if you prefer slant the image on screen and I will go ahead and Ctrl drag or Command drag this top handle as well. So that gives you a sense of the kind of skews that you can perform and your slants will be recorded up here inside of the Options bar to the best of Photoshop's ability, it doesn't always do such a great job of recording the slant information as it turns out but that's what these H and V values are all about.
This is telling us that we have 4.6 degrees of horizontal skew and for some reason it's telling us that we have 0 degrees of vertical skew because it's gone ahead and rendered out the skew as a straight rotation which maybe accurate as it turns out, not sure, I will leave it to Photoshop to figure that one. Anyway you can also Ctrl or Command drag a corner handle and if you do, you will move that corner handle independently of the other corner handles around the transformation boundary and that's called a four-point distortion because you can move each one of these four corner points independently of each other once again by Ctrl dragging or Command dragging that point around.
A few other tricks that you should keep in mind if you Ctrl Shift drag one of the points, notice that you will constrain it along the existing axis. So you will either constrain along this sort of horizontal axis that you have setup or along the vertical axis that you have setup and that's once again a function of pressing the Shift key along with Ctrl or Command as you drag one of the those corner handles. Of course the same thing applies when skewing, you can Ctrl Shift drag or Command Shift drag in order to skew along the existing skew line that you have set up, along the existing axis as Photoshop sees it.
Check this one out, this one is really weird as it turns out that if you press Ctrl Alt or Command Option on the Mac and drag one of the handles you will move the opposite handle symmetrically around the transformation origin and that goes for not only Ctrl Alt or Command Option dragging a corner handle but also Ctrl Alt or Command Option dragging a side handle. Alright this isn't really the effect I want. So I am going to go ahead and press the Escape key in order to exit the Free Transform mode and restore the original unmodified version of the selected layers and I am going to press Ctrl T or Command T again to once again reenter the Free Transform mode.
So what I have done is I have just cleared out all the old garbage I have applied and reentered the free transform mode so I can start things over again because what I really want to do is I want to apply a perspective distortion. That means pressing a whole lot of keys. You press Ctrl Shift and Alt at the same time or Command Shift and Option on the Macintosh side and then drag one of the corner handles and notice what you get, you get a pure perspective style distortion and I have still got Ctrl Shift and Alt down as I am making these modifications.
Now I am going to release the keys and drag up on this top handle in order to stretch the image upward a little bit and I might go ahead and increase the impact of the effect by Ctrl Shift Alt dragging one of these lower handles a little bit more one of these lower control handles and then I will Ctrl Shift Alt drag on one of the top handles on one of the top corner handles and then I will drag up a little bit, I don't have the keys down any longer because I am performing a scale. I will drag up a little bit on the top handle in order to stretch the image upward and finally I will Alt drag not Ctrl, I am just Alt dragging the side handle outward in order to move both of the side handles symmetrically outward with respect to that transformation origin in the center there.
And once I get the effect that I am looking for, I will press the Enter key on the PC or the Return key on a Mac in order to accept my perspective style distortion. So there it is. This is the original version of the clock layer and this is the modified version of the clock layer thanks to the distortion functions that are available to you when you Ctrl drag or Command drag one of the handles inside of the Free Transform mode.
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