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Photoshop is one of the world’s most powerful image editors, and it can be daunting to try to use skillfully. Photoshop CS4 One-on-One: Advanced, the second part of the popular and comprehensive series, 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 CS4 One-on-One: Fundamentals.
Download Deke's customized keyboard layouts and color settings for Photoshop from the Exercise Files tab.
I have gone ahead and dutifully saved my changes so far in an image called Black and white comp.psd, and in this exercise I'm going to show you how to tint a black and white image. The idea being that right now it's fairly flat, it has a lot of volumetric detail, so we have a richness of Luminance levels associated with a single channel. The problem with that is if we then turn around and send it to a commercial printer, they might render it just in black ink, which means we would not have very good shadows, we wouldn't have all the contours that we'd want, we wouldn't have the richness of detail that requires Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black, all working together. There is a better approach that involves a Gradient Map adjustment layer, which I'll show you in the next exercise. But I'm going to show you this option just so you know about it. All right, so turn on the Tint checkbox, and notice immediately you tint the image, with the color that's specified by the swatch, now this is different than it used to be.
In Photoshop CS3 you had a Hue slider, and you had a Saturation slider, that's it. Now you've got Hue, Saturation and Brightness working together, and Brightness turns out to duplicate much of the functionality of Saturation, but I'll show you how it works. Click on swatch and you bring up the Color Picker dialog box that's called Select Target Color in this case but it's the old Color Picker. It goes by many names inside Photoshop, it changes its name all the time. So anyway, I want to show what happens if you go really bright with a color, like I'll select a really vivid shade of green, just to give you a sense of what it's doing. It's kind of doing a color overlay, so it's not a straight colorization effect, it's not just applying the Color blend mode for example, in order to infuse the image with color. It's more of a multiply effect, it's more of a coding of color that's being applied that respects the highlight, this is something new also to CS4, they provide this function.
It now respects the highlight, much better than you did before. In the old days it would just have covered them with green. So it is a fairly sophisticated function. The problem is, what I don't like about it is, you can only infuse the image with one color and nothing more. And so the highlights remain neutral white, the shadows remain neutral black, and the midtones are effectively infused with some color, and that's it. So we can do better than that with Gradient Map. But this isn't bad, the changes that they have made are good. I'm going to switch back to the color that we had in the first place, the orangish color right there, and then I'm just going to edit it slightly. I'm going to take the Hue value up to 45. I'm going to take the Saturation down to 15. It's going to work pretty nicely.
Now notice if I take Brightness down to 0. what do I do? I kill the Saturation. It's really effectively another saturation control. If you don't want it doing anything, if you want to take it out of the mix, which is a good idea, then increase Brightness to 100%, just leave it there. 45, 50 an 100% will deliver this effect, the effect you see before you right now, click OK in order to apply it. And then what I suggest you do is turn off the Tint checkbox, because there is a better way to work as I say that I'm going to show you in next exercise. But the brilliant thing is by performing that modification, and then turning off the checkbox it does remember, if I turn the checkbox back on, it does remember that swatch value that I just applied. So that's pretty cool.
Anyway, let me turn it off, leave it nice and black and white like so. As I say in the next exercise I'm going to show you the best way to do it. This is a killer function that most people never take the time to learn, you are going to of course, and it goes by the name Gradient Map. Join me please!
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