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The third part of the popular and comprehensive series Photoshop CS6 One-on-One follows industry pro Deke McClelland as he plunges into the inner workings of Adobe Photoshop. He shows how to adjust your color, interface, and performance settings to get the best out of your images and the most out of Photoshop, and explores the power of Smart Objects, Shadows/Highlights, and Curves for making subtle, nondestructive adjustments. The course dives into Camera Raw to experiment with the editing toolset there, and returns to Photoshop to discuss toning, blur, and blend modes. Deke also teaches tried-and-true methods for sharpening details and reducing noise, as well as creating quick and accurate selections with Quick Mask, Color Range, and Refine Edge commands.
In this movie, I'll show you how to use the Refine Radius tool which is a tool that's available to you exclusively when you're working inside the Refine Edge or Refine Mask dialog box. So here I am looking at that same image from the previous movie. I've applied a Radius of 20 pixels, and turned on the Smart Radius checkbox. Now what we need to do is go ahead and scroll our way up to the hair; maybe zoom out a click, because that's a little too close. Now, notice that as I'm moving my cursor inside the image window it's a brush, and that brush represents this tool right there; the Refine Radius tool, which allows you to brush more radius into your image, that is, you're brushing in a larger area of edge detection.
Now, you can change the size of your brush up here in the options bar. Notice, in my case, it's set to 25, or you can press one of the square bracket keys. Now, in a Mac, you're going to have no problems. On Windows, it's a little tricky, because the values get stuck, and so Photoshop isn't paying attention to you. What you need to do if you want to take advantage of the bracket key trick, is you need to turn on the Show Original checkbox, and then turn it back off, so that the option is kind of sticky there and then you can press the right bracket key to increase the size of the brush, or the left bracket key to reduce the size of the brush.
I'm going to increase the size of my brush to, say, 100 pixels, let's say, and then I'm going to start by brushing into that background; in between the hairs, that bit of beige background, then I am going to brush back and forth. And notice what a difference it makes. It goes ahead and gets rid of that background, and replaces it with blue right away, and the reason is, I just brushed in more radius. If I turn on the Show Radius checkbox, you can see I brushed in this region. Now, formerly -- if I press Control+Z, or Command+Z on the Mac -- that formerly looked like this. All right, so I'll press Control+Z, or Command+Z on the Mac, again to redo that modification, because you have one level of undo when working inside this dialog box.
Now I will turn Show Radius back off, and I will brush along this main row of porcupine quills in order to bring the individual strands of hair into the sky. And then I'll go ahead and brush into the back of this guy's head as well in order to get rid of the background that was showing through there, and I might as well brush into this sort of cowlick or whatever it is in order to get rid of any remaining remnants of that previous beige background. All right, now I am going to zoom in on the head, and notice this area, right there; this little bit of highlight that's showing through. I don't want that.
So I'm going to reduce the size my brush by pressing the left bracket key several times. Now you can go ahead and click and hold on the Refine Radius tool, and switch to the Erase Refinements tool, but you don't really need to. You can get to it on the fly. So I am just going to leave the Refine Radius tool selected, and I will press the Alt key, or the Option key on the Mac, and notice what was formerly a plus sign inside of my cursor becomes a minus sign, showing me that I can brush away Radius. So I want to say, all right, you know what Photoshop? Your edge detection isn't working so well here. So I'll go ahead and brush away at that forehead and we get back the original masked edge, which looks a lot better.
All right, here I think we could use some more edge detection. So I will just go ahead and brush some stuff in, as opposed to Alt+Dragging or Option+Dragging, and then I might sort of zoom in at this location, reduce the size of my cursor some more, and press the Alt key, or the Option key on the Mac, to brush away some of the front of the sunglasses there. Let's see what else we've got. We might have some problems in the guy's nose. So we'll Alt+Drag or Option+Drag inside the tip of the nose there in order to restore the original appearance of that nose. We know we've got some problems in the chin, so I will Alt+Drag or Option+Drag like that, and that goes and reinstates the better version of the chin.
It might not be exactly what we are looking for, but we will have to fix that later. And then I will go ahead and brush up along the mouth, and lips as well, in order to bring back those original edges. Here is a problem. Now, I don't want to just go ahead and Alt+ Drag or Option+Drag like that, because I'll get some of the old garbage that was no good. So I'll go ahead and press Control+Z, or Command+Z on a Mac, in order to reinstate the edge detection. And by the way, what you are brushing back to is what you had before you chose the command in the first place. So if you ever want to test what's going on in a region, then you turn on Show Original, and you decide, well, is it better, or is it worse? If it's better, then I need to brush it away.
If it's worse, I need to leave it intact. In my case, it's worse right at this corner location; however, it's better along the red collar. So I'll turn Show Original back on, so I can see what I'm doing, and I'll Alt+Drag just right along here, like so, and that goes ahead and gives us back the good stuff that we had before, while keeping the new good stuff as well. I might just go ahead and reduce the size of my cursor a little bit, and click right there in order to make sure that I have that corner. I'll go ahead and brush along here too, and that helps that whisker area tremendously actually.
All right, now I want to scroll, and here on Windows,if I want to Spacebar+drag inside the image window, I have to click inside a numerical value to make it active. What a pain in the neck! Again, you lucky Macintosh people don't have to worry about it. And I'll scroll my way over to the shoulder here, and notice that it's a bit of a problem, so I will Alt+Drag or Option+Drag along the shoulder in order to reinstate it, so we are not seeing any of that bad blue. All right, let's go ahead and zoom out by pressing Control+Minus, or Command+Minus on the Mac, and see what we've got. And things are actually looking pretty darn good I think.
I might just try pressing the right bracket key a few times in order to increase the size of my brush, and painting right back there in order to see if I can get some more blue into that hair region, and I think this is it. Now, there's one last option I will show you, but I am going to tell you that I don't care for it. And it's this one down here: Decontaminate Colors. It's located in the Output options. Notice, Output To is set to Layer Mask. That means when you click OK, you're going to modify the layer mask. If you turn on Decontaminate Colors, which is going to try to modify the actual colors inside the image in order to better match the new background, then you're going to see a slight shift in the colors in the hair.
They're going to get a little more purplish, and then you can increase that Amount value to make them even still more purplish, or what have you. In my case, it looks like it's filling out the hairs, which seems like a great thing. The problem is, we are going to output this image to a new layer with a layer mask. The layer mask is going be the same layer mask, but we are going to be modifying the colors inside the layer, and we are not going to be modifying the colors uniformly. That's a problem. The color shifts only happen right around the edge of the mask, which means if you need to go back and make manual modifications to the layer mask, which we do, then the new colors won't look right at all.
So if you've been following along with me, what I am going to ask you to do is turn off Decontaminate Colors, and then switch Output To back to Layer Mask, because we want to make permanent modifications to that layer mask. All right, I am going to Alt+Drag in that little area of hair there in order to reinstate the opaque hair, and I might do the same right here and see what I come up with, because we are going a little too far with those modifications. Let's see; if I Alt+Drag or Option+Drag up there, now we've gone too far with getting rid of the edge detection, so I'll go ahead and drag, like so. This time I am dragging; not Alt+Dragging or Option+Dragging, and I end up with this result, which I think is about as good as I am going to do where this command is concerned.
So we'll go ahead and press Control+0, or Command+ 0 on the Mac, to center my zoom, and then I'll click OK in order to accept my modifications. And that's how you take advantage of the powerful world of automatic edge detection, using a combination of the Radius value, the Smart Radius checkbox, and the custom Refine Radius tool available to you only when you're working inside the Refine Edge or Refine Mask dialog box.
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