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Tonal correction with Screen and Multiply

From: Photoshop Blend Mode Magic

Video: Tonal correction with Screen and Multiply

When you are going to work on an image that needs some correction, either tonal adjustments, color corrections or whatever it is that you need to do to the image, it's a good idea just to take a second and kind of evaluate the image and figure out what you might do to fix it. So in the example here, I've got an image that's got two distinct problems. The foreground is very dark and the background is very light. So that kind of tells me that I'm going to have to two different adjustments, right. If I make an adjustment to try to make that background darker, that's going to make the foreground dark too. So I'll have to mask that off or somehow protect that from happening.

Tonal correction with Screen and Multiply

When you are going to work on an image that needs some correction, either tonal adjustments, color corrections or whatever it is that you need to do to the image, it's a good idea just to take a second and kind of evaluate the image and figure out what you might do to fix it. So in the example here, I've got an image that's got two distinct problems. The foreground is very dark and the background is very light. So that kind of tells me that I'm going to have to two different adjustments, right. If I make an adjustment to try to make that background darker, that's going to make the foreground dark too. So I'll have to mask that off or somehow protect that from happening.

To this image here, I'm going to use blend modes to correct the problem. So let's do a little bit of review when I want to make something darker. What blend mode makes things darker? Well, let's begin by doing a self-blend, by doing a duplicate. I'll duplicate this layer, Command+J, Ctrl+J. And if we take a look at the Blend Mode list in the Layers panel, remember which group darkens things? Well, the group that begins with Darken, and I'm going to use my old standby the Multiply blend mode. Let's choose that and you'll see, great, the background looks a lot better but of course, the foreground looks a lot worse.

So what do we do here? We need to mask that off. We'll go to the bottom of the Layers panel, we'll add a layer mask by clicking the Add Layer Mask button and I'm going to get my Gradient tool, which acts as a very big paintbrush here, and we are going to drag a gradient between the foreground and background areas. Remember in masking terminology, black protects, white selects, or black hides and white reveals. So I want to hide the foreground area. So I'm going to click right above this last rock here and drag up and then when I let go, I have created a mask that protects the foreground from this Multiply blend mode on this particular layer. So you can see wherever there is black, don't show the Multiply. If I Shift- click, there is the mask turned-off.

If I Shift-click, again there is the mask turned-on. So now we are going to duplicate this layer that we have set to Multiply, Command+J, Ctrl+J. Now that doubled up the background, right, we didn't want that to get dark again. So what I'm going to do is change the blend mode to Screen, which is the opposite of Multiply. Now we've actually made the background worse, so what I need to do to this layer mask here is invert it, so I get the opposite of it. Right now, the top is white, the bottom is black. If I do Command+I or Ctrl+I on Windows, the background is now protected from the screening of the foreground. So I'll turn that layer on and off and you can see the foreground is now looking much better.

Now if the effect is too strong for both the foreground and the background, you can of course play with the layer Opacity and fine-tune this and adjust this down. If I get my Move tool, press V for the Move tool. I now have a hundred levels of screening or a hundred levels of multiplying because I have a hundred levels of opacity per layer. So if I go to the Screen layer and I think it's making the foreground too bright, I'm just going to press say the 7 key on my keyboard and that changes the opacity of that layer to 70%. Maybe I'll make it 50%. Here is before and there is after, and I'm pretty happy with that.

For the background, I'm going to click on the middle layer here that's been set to Multiply and maybe that sky has been turned too dark. So again I can play with my layer Opacity. Maybe we'll type 6 for 60% and then I can see before and after by turning the eye of that layer on and off. So you can see it's very quick to just duplicate a layer and change its blend mode to start correcting images, and me personally being a visual person, I find it a little bit easier than dealing with the charts and graphs interface of something like the Curves command or the Levels command.

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This video is part of

Image for Photoshop Blend Mode Magic
Photoshop Blend Mode Magic

46 video lessons · 25569 viewers

Michael Ninness
Author

 
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  1. 2m 25s
    1. Welcome
      1m 33s
    2. Using the exercise files
      52s
  2. 13m 9s
    1. The three kinds of blending in Photoshop
      1m 49s
    2. Blend modes, blend modes, everywhere!
      1m 38s
    3. Cycling through the blending modes
      2m 1s
    4. Three blending modes you must know
      5m 8s
    5. Blending mode keyboard shortcuts
      2m 33s
  3. 3m 13s
    1. Roughening or pointilizing edges with Dissolve
      3m 13s
  4. 34m 40s
    1. Removing halos with Darken
      2m 26s
    2. Bringing down hot highlights with Multiply
      3m 50s
    3. Tonal correction with Screen and Multiply
      3m 35s
    4. Combining adjustment layers with blending modes
      3m 58s
    5. Creating a composite from a single Camera Raw file
      5m 56s
    6. Creating a cast shadow with Multiply
      4m 50s
    7. Creating artistic edges with Multiply and Screen
      3m 39s
    8. From iPhone to Photoshop: Colorizing line art with Multiply
      6m 26s
  5. 14m 47s
    1. Removing dust spots with Lighten
      1m 36s
    2. Adding lightning to a sky with Screen
      3m 20s
    3. Adding a lens flare effect with Screen
      2m 27s
    4. Reducing halos when sharpening with Lighten
      3m 55s
    5. Creating a faint soft-edged line drawing with Linear Dodge
      3m 29s
  6. 1h 5m
    1. Using Dodge and Burn with Overlay
      4m 34s
    2. Reducing wrinkles with Overlay
      6m 37s
    3. Using graduated neutral density filters with Overlay
      5m 32s
    4. Custom vignettes with Overlay
      3m 30s
    5. High-Pass sharpening with Overlay
      4m 16s
    6. Smoothing skin with High-Pass sharpening and Overlay
      5m 29s
    7. Textured patterns with Overlay
      6m 21s
    8. Textured type with Overlay
      2m 55s
    9. Creating a dramatic diffused glow with Overlay
      2m 49s
    10. Creating a subtle glow with Soft Light
      2m 57s
    11. Creating a medium glow with Soft Light
      4m 25s
    12. Simulating film grain with Add Noise and Soft Light
      3m 54s
    13. Recovering detail in over-saturated areas with Pin Light
      8m 30s
    14. Creating 80's pop art with Hard Mix and Multiply
      3m 15s
  7. 5m 7s
    1. Aligning layers with Difference
      5m 7s
  8. 12m 51s
    1. Reducing color noise with Color
      2m 13s
    2. Avoiding false saturation with Luminosity
      5m 33s
    3. Recovering detail in blown-out highlights with Luminosity
      5m 5s
  9. 26m 27s
    1. Getting better sepia tones
      5m 15s
    2. Using antique color effects
      5m 5s
    3. Combining multiple exposures
      4m 34s
    4. Replacing the sky in an image
      3m 44s
    5. Splitting edges when sharpening
      3m 15s
    6. Displacing type around contours
      4m 34s
  10. 22s
    1. Goodbye
      22s

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