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Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Advanced, the second part of the popular and comprehensive series, updated for CS5, follows internationally renowned Photoshop guru Deke McClelland as he dives into the workings of Photoshop. He explores such digital-age wonders as the Levels and Curves commands, edge-detection filters, advanced compositing techniques, vector-based text, the Liquify filter, and Camera Raw. Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details, smoothing over wrinkles and imperfections, and enhancing colors without harming the original image. Exercise files accompany the course.
Recommended prerequisite: Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Fundamentals.
I've saved my progress as Fire-engine red.psd. Now in the next exercise we are going to modify the contents of this layer mask to avoid applying the results of the Hue/Saturation layer inside the teeth, because we want those teeth to be nice and neutral. However, before we do that, I want you to be entirely comfortable with switching between the layer mask and the full-color image. So in this exercise we are going to explore the various ways to do that. Now notice that the layer mask is currently active because it has a heavy outline around it.
I also want you to notice that the name of this layer is cherry red all lower case. That is going to become important in just a moment. Now, you can click on the Background layer in order to make it active, so you can paint inside that background layer, and the layer mask is no longer active as you can see. You can also click on the Adjustment layer to make it active again. Because you can't paint inside an Adjustment layer, the layer mask becomes active immediately, and gains that heavy outline right there. What if you want to view the layer mask independently of the rest of the image? We have seen this before, but I am going to show it again because this leads into a bunch of new stuff.
If you Alt+Click or Option+Click on the Mac inside of that layer mask thumbnail, then you view just the layer mask here inside the image window independently of the rest of the image. If you want to see the image again, you either click on some other layer, some full color composite layer, or you Alt+Click or Option+Click on that layer mask thumbnail once again. All right! So there's a bunch of other ways to work now that involve keyboard shortcuts, and the Channels panel. So I am going to switch over to the Channels panel. If you are not crazy for keyboard shortcuts, if they bug you, then you absolutely have my permission to abandon the rest of this exercise, and check out the next one.
However, if you are crazy for keyboard shortcuts, or you just want to know everything you can about Photoshop, well, stick with me. Notice here inside the Channels panel we have got the RGB composite image along with its incumbent red, green, and blue channels. We also have that general lips Alpha channel that I added to the image previously. But in addition of those we have this Italic channel right here that is called cherry red Mask. Notice that it's called cherry red in lower case. That's named after the name that I assigned to this layer. Then Mask is Photoshop's name with an initial cap there to indicate the layer mask.
The fact that it's Italic shows us that this is a temporary occupant of the Channels panel. It will go away as soon as we switch to a different layer. Now we won't lose the layer mask. We will just lose the channel item here inside the Channels panel. Notice also that we have keyboard shortcuts. So we've got Ctrl+2 or Command+2 on the Mac for the composite image. If I were to press Ctrl+2 or Command+2, I will switch focus to the RGB image like so which means here inside the Layers panel that the layer mask is no longer active.
If I were to now press the B key in order to switch to the Brush tool right there, why then I am going to see a Ghostbusters icon out here inside the image window because I can't paint, because the layer mask is not active. In order to switch back to the layer mask, I could either click on it obviously here inside the Layers panel or if we are looking for a keyboard shortcut it's Ctrl+Backslash or Command+Backslash on the Mac. Notice sure enough that makes that item active. What is interesting about this is that the layer mask is active, but we can not see it.
Meanwhile, the RGB image is visible as are the red, green, and blue channels, but we cannot edit them. So we are editing something that we are not seeing or just seeing the results of our modifications as represented by any changes that are going to happen to the contents of that Hue/Saturation layer. That is kind of a curious proposition, but it actually works out pretty nicely, but you might want to be able to switch visibility back and forth as you work. So typically what you do to switch visibility of one of the channels inside the Channel panel is you press its keyboard shortcut without the modifier key.
In other words, you just press the Slash key in order to control the visibility of that layer mask. That doesn't work with 2 because 2 would change the opacity of that layer to 20%, for example; depending on the selected tool if I had the Brush tool selected as I do right now, then I would change the opacity of the brush to 20%. But it's not going to take me back to the RGB image. Well, it's difficult to defend why Adobe has decided to do this, but here is the rationale. The keyboard shortcut for the full- color composite image used to be Ctrl+Tilde or Command+Tilde on the Mac.
So Tilde still controls visibility. To switch visibility back and forth between the layer mask and the full-color composite image, you have to press the combination of the Backslash, and Tilde keys. So I will show you how that works inside the Channels panel first, and then I will show you how it looks inside Layers panel. So here we are looking at the RGB image; even though the layer mask is active we are looking at the RGB image. So we don't have to press the Tilde key because it's already visible. If we want to add the layer mask to the visibility, so we turn on the eyeball for the layer mask here, then you press the Backslash key, and of course you could just click in the eyeball I realize that.
I am just trying to show you everything that's available to you. So you can press the Backslash key, and you are basically in a kind of layer mask Quick Mask mode. So you are seeing the ruby-lith overlay. If you don't like the ruby color, but for some reason you want to see the mask, and the image at the same time, notice the mask is still active. So any painting we do affects the mask, not the image. But if you do want to be able to see the two at the same time, then double-click on this cherry red mask thumbnail right there here inside the Channels panel, then click in the Color swatch, and then let's change it to 210, for example, for the Hue value; click OK, click OK again, and we have a better overlay color.
Let's say you just want to see the Mask by itself. You don't want to see the RGB image, why you could click on its eyeball to turn it off or if you are looking for a keyboard shortcut, you press the Tilde key. Then to get back to viewing the RGB image again, you press Tilde and then Backslash. So Tilde to turn on the color composite image, Tilde to turn off the layer mask where visibility is concerned Let's see that happen inside the Layers panel now. First of all, you can do something that's not very easy to do here inside of the Layers panel.
You can switch focus away from the layer mask by pressing Ctrl+2 or Command+2 on the Mac, and then you can switch focus back to the layer mask, not by clicking on it. That's one option, of course, but by pressing Ctrl+Backslash or Command+Backslash on the Mac. Now then, to control visibility, if we are looking at the RGB image, and we'd rather be seeing the layer mask, press in this order Backslash, then Tilde. If we are looking at the layer mask, and you now like to look at the RGB image, press these keys in this order, Tilde, and then Backslash. All right! So now you know everything there is to know about switching focus and visibility between the full-color image and the layer mask.
In the next exercise, we are going to brush away those teeth.
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