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Photoshop CS5 for Photographers provides comprehensive Photoshop training targeting the needs of photographers. In this course, author Chris Orwig demonstrates the fundamental skills used to enhance digital photos, including managing and correcting color, sharpening, making selections and adjustments, retouching, and printing from Photoshop. In addition to teaching the techniques that enable photographers to refine and publish their photos, the course includes live-action segments that encourage thinking photographically and shooting with Photoshop’s capabilities in mind. Exercise files are included with the course.
One of the things that's really helpful to learn how to do is how to clean up your photographs. Like in this particular image of the sunrise by the Bay Bridge in San Francisco, California, I had a lot of dust on my lens. If we zoom in on the image, we can really see that even on this lo-res file. So, what would be nice would be that if there'd be a way that we could start to remove this dust. Well, one of the things that you can do is you can copy your Background layer. Let's click and drag that to the New layer icon and go ahead and name this layer clean up.
Next, we can make a selection with our Lasso tool. We want to make a selection of perhaps one of these larger pieces of dust here. So, I'll go ahead and click and drag around that. Next step, right-click or Ctrl+ Click and add some feather in here. I'm just going to add a feather of 2 pixels so that I have a nice soft edge. From here, I'm going to navigate to my Filter pulldown menu. Choose Noise and then Dust & Scratches. In this dialog, what I can do, if we zoom way in on this little selection here, I can then decrease my Radius and Threshold all the way and then bring up my Radius until that piece of dust is gone.
If I bring it up too high, it's just going to smudge this area out. So, I want it to be just where the dust is gone. Then I bring up my Threshold to bring back some of the texture. Here's our before and then after, successfully removing that strong piece of dust. We can go ahead and click OK to apply that. Well, the next step would be to hover over the selection, move it over another piece of dust, and then press a shortcut to reapply the filter. This is a really handy and quick way to remove dust that's pretty similar in different situations.
The shortcut on a Mac is Command+F. On a PC, that's Ctrl+F. We can move this around and remove these different pieces of dust here, as you can see I'm doing now. Well, of course this can be a really good strategy, yet sometimes you may run into a piece of dust perhaps it doesn't remove all the way. Well, if that's the case, you can always go back to the Filter > Noise > Dust & Scratches, and you can increase the settings here, perhaps a little bit higher Radius and a little bit lower Threshold in order to smooth that out even more. Click OK to apply.
Now, if this new higher setting works better, move that around and press Command+F in order to remove these small pieces of dust. Now, as you can see, it's really successfully removing this dust even when I'm zoomed in this close. I'm having an image that's much cleaner, much nicer sky. Here we can see the overall before, and then the after, removing these dark pieces of dust that were or on my lens. Let's zoom out for a bit. One of the things that happens is that you may discover that this technique works really well, but that it's going to take a long time because you have so much noise in the image, like I have here.
So in situations where you have a lot of noise, what you may want to do is apply this technique in a more global way and then paint it in to specific areas. Well, let's take a look at how we can do that in the next movie with this same image. So, go ahead and leave this image open, and we'll work on it in the next movie.
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