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Summoning colors where none exist

From: Photoshop CS6 One-on-One: Fundamentals

Video: Summoning colors where none exist

In this movie, I will show you how you can use the Hue/Saturation command to summon colors from an image that you would swear don't exist at all. This is a low-angle photograph that I shot of this delightfully creepy tree-house that's actually near my house, and looking at the image, it appears for all the world, black and white. You can perceive a little bit of color going on in the sky, but that's about it. I'm going to switch over to the Channels panel, so I can show you how the channels compare. So there's the Red channel, and here is the Green channel, and here is the Blue channel.

Summoning colors where none exist

In this movie, I will show you how you can use the Hue/Saturation command to summon colors from an image that you would swear don't exist at all. This is a low-angle photograph that I shot of this delightfully creepy tree-house that's actually near my house, and looking at the image, it appears for all the world, black and white. You can perceive a little bit of color going on in the sky, but that's about it. I'm going to switch over to the Channels panel, so I can show you how the channels compare. So there's the Red channel, and here is the Green channel, and here is the Blue channel.

So the three channels are almost identical to each other. When the channels are absolutely identical, you have a grayscale image. It's only when you have differences between the channels that you get color. So let's go ahead and switch back to the RGB composite, and I'm going to switch over to the Layers panel as well. Now I will bring up the Adjustments panel, and click on the Hue/Saturation icon to switch over to the Properties panel and gain access to my Hue and Saturation controls. Now I'm going to start things off just by cranking the Saturation value all the way to +100, and you can see, sure enough, there are colors inside the image, and now they are absolutely electric.

The problem is I'll go in and zoom in here. You can see all this color noise, that is, random variations in color between neighboring pixels, that are non- representative of the actual scene and that invariably happens when you crank the Saturation value up to its maximum. But if I start nudging the value down, you can see that the color noise starts to disappear pretty quickly. So if I take the saturation down to +90, there's some lingering color noise to be sure that's not nearly so obvious as it was before, and once we go ahead and zoom out, it's pretty darn minimal.

Now at this point, the woods struck me as being a little too red. So I clicked in the Hue value, and I press Shift+Up arrow in order to make it a little more orange and you can tell which direction to go by taking a look at that Color slider, because if we were starting with something that was too red in the first place, and we want to scoot it over to orange, then obviously, we want to make a positive change because orange is to the right of red inside the slider. Now I figured I wanted to make some selective changes using that Target Adjustment tool.

So I'm going to start things off by reducing the color of the sky because after all, the sky was more colorful portion of the image in the first place, and now I think it's a little overwhelmingly so. So I'm going to drag to left and that's going to automatically switch me to the blues there inside the Properties panel. I will see that I've now managed to reduce the Saturation value to -40. Now the sky strikes me as a little bit too purple, well if you look at the Hue slider once again. If we want to make it more blue, then we need to reduce the Hue value, and I'm going to do that by pressing the Ctrl key or the Command key on the Mac and dragging slightly over to left until I arrive at a Hue value of -10.

I end up with a pretty decent effect here. I'm going to hide the Properties panel and zoom in just a little bit. Now let's take a look at the altogether different channels. I will switch over to the Channels panel. Here is the Red channel with this bright tree trunk in the foreground, here is the Green channel, and you can see that the sky is brightening up at this point, and then here is the Blue channel with much darker tree details. The tree house is darker as well and the sky is quite bright, and it's those differences between luminosity levels inside the three channels that are generating the actual color saturation in the full color RGB composite.

That's how you use a Hue/Saturation Adjustment layer to draw forth colors from a seemingly colorless image. So just imagine if the image appears to have a little bit of color in the first place, how much work you can get done. In the next movie, we're going to make this image that much more vivid using the Vibrance command.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS6 One-on-One: Fundamentals
Photoshop CS6 One-on-One: Fundamentals

100 video lessons · 56426 viewers

Deke McClelland
Author

 
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  1. 19m 15s
    1. Welcome to One-on-One
      2m 27s
    2. Opening from the Windows desktop
      4m 7s
    3. Opening from the Macintosh Finder
      4m 9s
    4. Opening from Photoshop or Bridge
      2m 45s
    5. Opening an image from Mini Bridge
      1m 16s
    6. Opening through Camera Raw
      2m 32s
    7. Closing one image and Closing All
      1m 59s
  2. 38m 14s
    1. Navigating your image
      40s
    2. The dark vs. the light interface
      3m 12s
    3. Navigating tabs and windows
      4m 32s
    4. Panels and workspaces
      4m 27s
    5. Zooming incrementally
      4m 29s
    6. Zooming continuously
      2m 43s
    7. Entering a custom zoom value
      2m 25s
    8. Scrolling and panning images
      2m 31s
    9. Rotating and resetting the view
      2m 11s
    10. Cycling between screen modes
      3m 10s
    11. Using the Navigator panel
      3m 38s
    12. Adjusting a few screen prefs
      4m 16s
  3. 45m 58s
    1. Digital imaging fundamentals
      1m 45s
    2. Image size and resolution
      3m 3s
    3. The Image Size command
      3m 27s
    4. Common resolution standards
      3m 20s
    5. Upsampling vs. real pixels
      4m 36s
    6. Changing the print size
      6m 16s
    7. Downsampling for print
      4m 12s
    8. Downsampling for email
      3m 11s
    9. The interpolation settings
      5m 22s
    10. Downsampling advice
      4m 36s
    11. Upsampling advice
      6m 10s
  4. 53m 17s
    1. The layered composition
      1m 40s
    2. Introducing the Layers panel
      4m 12s
    3. Adding, scaling, and aligning layers
      5m 27s
    4. Dragging and dropping layers
      4m 36s
    5. Stack, reveal, and rename
      2m 58s
    6. Opacity, history, and blend mode
      6m 5s
    7. Duplicating a selected portion of a layer
      5m 32s
    8. Applying a clipping mask
      3m 58s
    9. Blending inside a clipping mask
      4m 10s
    10. Finishing off your artwork
      3m 13s
    11. Creating a new layer and background
      4m 24s
    12. Layering tips and tricks
      7m 2s
  5. 26m 19s
    1. The art of saving
      54s
    2. Four things to know about saving
      6m 0s
    3. Saving layers to PSD
      6m 38s
    4. Saving print images to TIFF
      4m 48s
    5. Saving an interactive image to PNG
      3m 41s
    6. Saving a flat photo to JPEG
      4m 18s
  6. 19m 36s
    1. Honing in on your image
      1m 43s
    2. The new and improved Crop tool
      3m 35s
    3. Editing your last crop
      3m 1s
    4. Straightening a crooked image
      2m 29s
    5. Filling in missing details
      6m 44s
    6. Using the Perspective Crop tool
      2m 4s
  7. 42m 6s
    1. First, there is brightness
      2m 12s
    2. How luminance works
      4m 18s
    3. The three Auto commands
      3m 27s
    4. Automatic brightness and contrast
      3m 19s
    5. The Brightness/Contrast command
      2m 47s
    6. The dynamic adjustment layer
      4m 5s
    7. Editing adjustment layers
      3m 52s
    8. Isolating an adjustment with a layer mask
      3m 31s
    9. Introducing the histogram
      4m 58s
    10. Measuring an adjustment
      3m 34s
    11. Using the Shadows/Highlights command
      6m 3s
  8. 44m 33s
    1. And second, there is color
      1m 31s
    2. Identifying a color cast
      3m 34s
    3. Correcting a color cast automatically
      3m 57s
    4. Changing the color balance
      6m 10s
    5. Compensating with Photo Filter
      3m 11s
    6. Adjusting color intensity with Vibrance
      3m 29s
    7. Correcting color cast in Camera Raw
      5m 46s
    8. The Hue/Saturation command
      5m 26s
    9. Summoning colors where none exist
      4m 8s
    10. Making more color with Vibrance
      4m 27s
    11. Making a quick-and-dirty sepia tone
      2m 54s
  9. 55m 46s
    1. Making selective modifications
      1m 10s
    2. The geometric Marquee tools
      6m 1s
    3. Aligning one image element to another
      4m 59s
    4. The freeform Lasso tools
      3m 59s
    5. Polygonal Lasso tool and Quick Mask
      5m 19s
    6. Cropping one selection inside another
      6m 15s
    7. Creating rays of light
      4m 44s
    8. Quick Selection and Similar
      4m 11s
    9. Making it better with Refine Edge
      4m 56s
    10. Integrating image elements
      2m 39s
    11. Magic Wand and Grow
      5m 17s
    12. Refine, integrate, and complete
      6m 16s
  10. 53m 49s
    1. Your best face forward
      1m 0s
    2. Content-Aware Fill
      6m 11s
    3. Using the Spot Healing Brush
      5m 36s
    4. The more capable "standard" Healing Brush
      5m 55s
    5. Meet the Clone Source panel
      3m 53s
    6. Caps Lock and Fade
      4m 57s
    7. The Dodge and Burn tools
      5m 1s
    8. Adjusting color with the Brush tool
      6m 35s
    9. Smoothing skin textures
      5m 58s
    10. Brightening teeth
      4m 0s
    11. Intensifying eyes
      4m 43s
  11. 51s
    1. Goodbye
      51s

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