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Photoshop CS4's adjustment features offer unparalleled opportunities to correct and manipulate images. In Photoshop CS4: Image Adjustments in Depth, Jan Kabili explains how to use all the major Photoshop adjustment features. She shares the best techniques for adjusting image quality, and shows how to use the new Adjustments panel to streamline a photo correction workflow. Jan also demonstrates multiple ways to eliminate color casts, and explains how to use the new On-Image Curves control to adjust brightness and color. This course offers a detailed look at the techniques photographers and designers use to master image adjustments in Photoshop. Exercise files accompany the course.
The Replace Color adjustment can be used to substitute colors for those already in an image. It's one of the few adjustments that we'll be looking at that's not available as an adjustment layer. So before I apply the Replace Color adjustment, I'm going to duplicate the background layer that contains this photograph by going to the Layers panel and on a PC I'll Right-click, on a Mac I'll hold the Ctrl key and click on this background layer and choose Duplicate Layer and then I'll click OK. So I'll be working on the background copy, preserving my background layer.
To apply this adjustment, I have to go up to the Image menu and down to Adjustments. At the very bottom of this menu, you can see there is few adjustments that are available only as direct adjustments. I'm going to choose Replace Color. That opens the Replace Color dialog box. There are two things to do in this dialog box. One is to select the areas where I want to change the color and the other is to go ahead and change the color. When I do change the color, I'll be able to change the hue, the saturation or intensity of the color as well as the brightness or lightness of the color.
But first to select the areas that I want to change, I'm actually going to move the Replace Color box over a bit just for now, so you can see whether I have all the flowers selected or not. I'm going to start by selecting this eyedropper right here. I'd like to start with the Fuzziness slider pulled over somewhat to the left because the Fuzziness slider is really like a Tolerance slider. When I click on a particular color, it determines the range of colors that will be selected around the one on which I've clicked. I'm going to try to select the pink flowers. So I'm going to click on part of this pink flower and I can see over here in this diagram, in white the areas that are currently selected, the black parts are not selected and wherever there is a gray in this diagram, there is a partial selection.
Now I'm going to add some colors to that selection. So I'm going to click on the Plus Eyedropper and with that, I'm going to come into the flower and I'll click on a lighter pink. You can see in the diagram that I've succeeded in selecting a little bit more. I think this diagram is really hard to see. So what I'm going to do is just choose some really bright color that's going to allow me to see in the image what I've selected so far. First I'll go to the Saturation slider and I'm going to drag that over to the right and then I'm going to drag the Hue slider as well. So now I've got this bright saturated green as my replacement color for the time being to help me see what's selected.
I can see that I need to add the deep pink parts of the flower. So with my Plus Eyedropper still selected, I'll click on some of the deeper parts of the flowers. Now I'm going to try moving the Fuzziness slider over to the right to see if I can just include those last bits of the flowers. I think I've almost got them. If you're going through the same process and you find that you're selecting items that you don't want, that are at a different place in the image, you can try clicking Localized Color Clusters and that will sometimes fix the problem.
In this case it's making it worse, so I'm going to uncheck that. So now I've got a pretty good selection of the flowers and I'm going to move my Replace Color dialog box over again, so that I can go on to the next step which is to replace these colors. I'll go to the Hue slider and I'll pick a color that I like, maybe orange. I'll go to the Saturation slider and I'm going to reduce the saturation of that orange so it's more subtle and I also can vary the lightness. I'll see how it looks a little darker. I think I like it just about in the middle. If there are still some areas that I want to add to the selection, I can do that even after I've adjusted the Hue/ Saturation and the lightness.
So with my Plus Eyedropper, I'll click on these little bits that I didn't get yet and that last click went too far. It partially included the sky in the selection. I could get the Minus Eyedropper and click in the sky to try to eliminate it from the selection. But I have to be careful not to go too far and eliminate some colors that I want down here. So I'm back to the Plus Eyedropper and I'll click in the flowers. So you can see that there is a little bit of back and forth involved, but eventually I've got it the way I wanted. If I wanted to save these settings to apply to another image, I could do that by clicking the Save button.
I'll preview the change that I've made by unchecking the Preview box. So that's where I started and that's where I ended up. Then I'll click OK. I've made that adjustment on the Background Copy Layer preserving my original photograph on the background layer below.
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