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Using Smart Blur for simplification

From: Digital Painting: Street Scene

Video: Using Smart Blur for simplification

In the previous videos, we have looked at a couple of different filters for removing noise. In this one, we are going to take a look at the Smart Blur filter. And in these chapters, I'm intentionally going up the degree of sophistication as we move forward, so now we are getting to a little bit better filter than we saw before. Each one exerts a little bit more specific control over the reduction of noise within an image while maintaining the edges of contrasted areas. So once again let's go and open up our image in chapter06, and we definitely want to move this into 100%, so we can see all the detail.

Using Smart Blur for simplification

In the previous videos, we have looked at a couple of different filters for removing noise. In this one, we are going to take a look at the Smart Blur filter. And in these chapters, I'm intentionally going up the degree of sophistication as we move forward, so now we are getting to a little bit better filter than we saw before. Each one exerts a little bit more specific control over the reduction of noise within an image while maintaining the edges of contrasted areas. So once again let's go and open up our image in chapter06, and we definitely want to move this into 100%, so we can see all the detail.

This kind of manipulation is something you would want to see at 100%. If you watch it at reduced magnification, you won't get a true sense of what's happening. So let's go up to the Filter menu and go to Blur > Smart Blur. Now the Smart Blur filter does not have a preview on the actual image. We have to see what's happening within the window of the filter itself. As I have done before, the settings that we had earlier in our filters that we've looked at work pretty well.

So I am going to go around 5 and 25 right here, and you can already see this does a really interesting job. I particularly like the way this filter maintains edges. Let's also talk a little about Quality. You have three settings. I don't see that much difference in them, but High sounds good because you want to get the highest quality, so I always set it on High. I don't know if it's always worth it, but you might as well take advantage of the fact that a little bit more heavy computation is being done on the image when you choose High over Low frequency.

The biggest difference actually is in the amount of time it takes. So here's our image, and I will just move it a little bit so we can see how it's applied this filter. It's done a very nice job of maintaining crisp edges on all of the contrasting areas, and yet it's really simplified the non-sharp areas. So it's very good at removing high-frequency detail and yet maintaining all of the edges within. I can't tell you which one of these filters is the best one, because every image has its own set of frequencies that you're going to be removing, and you just don't know which one is going to work.

So the best thing you can do is experiment with these different filters to see which one works best with a particular image that you are in the process of translating. Now, we are going to go up yet another notch in the next video and take a look at a third-party filter, which is probably the pinnacle of being able to do simplification on photographic images.

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This video is part of

Image for Digital Painting: Street Scene
Digital Painting: Street Scene

45 video lessons · 15172 viewers

John Derry
Author

 
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  1. 8m 50s
    1. Welcome
      1m 11s
    2. Using the exercise files
      39s
    3. Installing custom brushes
      7m 0s
  2. 22m 3s
    1. Understanding the visual vocabulary
      4m 46s
    2. Using the vocabulary of photography
      6m 41s
    3. Using the vocabulary of painting
      7m 1s
    4. Looking at reality through a mental painting filter
      3m 35s
  3. 10m 22s
    1. Understanding that resolution is in the brush strokes
      3m 6s
    2. Understanding the subject
      7m 16s
  4. 16m 1s
    1. Removing lens distortions
      2m 33s
    2. Using the Free Transform tool
      4m 42s
    3. Using the Lens Correction filter
      4m 36s
    4. Understanding the ACR lens correction profiles
      4m 10s
  5. 12m 23s
    1. Working with Vibrance
      3m 14s
    2. Using the Match Color command
      2m 59s
    3. Understanding the traditional paint color swatch set
      6m 10s
  6. 16m 6s
    1. The eye has a bettor sensor than a camera
      3m 16s
    2. Using the Shadow/Highlight filter
      3m 17s
    3. Using the HDR Toning filter
      5m 23s
    4. Understanding how RAW files provide malleability
      4m 10s
  7. 14m 42s
    1. Working with the Reduce Noise filter
      2m 50s
    2. Working with the Surface Blur filter
      3m 6s
    3. Using Smart Blur for simplification
      2m 51s
    4. Working with the Topaz Simplify plug-in
      5m 55s
  8. 31m 10s
    1. NDLP: A creative safety net
      5m 1s
    2. Using custom actions
      9m 41s
    3. Using the reference layer
      5m 29s
    4. Cloning layers
      6m 5s
    5. Working with the Hue/Saturation adjustment layer
      4m 54s
  9. 17m 28s
    1. Brush categorization
      10m 1s
    2. Working with canvas texture
      3m 41s
    3. Using Sample All Layers
      3m 46s
  10. 12m 48s
    1. Being willing to destroy detail
      7m 21s
    2. Establishing the painting style
      5m 27s
  11. 25m 1s
    1. Simplified indication
      9m 3s
    2. Understanding color
      4m 10s
    3. Introducing texture
      11m 48s
  12. 17m 36s
    1. Providing rest areas for the eye
      6m 55s
    2. Focusing on the subject through detail
      10m 41s
  13. 24m 20s
    1. Being willing to depart from the original
      6m 48s
    2. Creating detail to enhance the artwork
      8m 36s
    3. Creating physical surface texture effects
      8m 56s
  14. 10m 33s
    1. Waiting a day
      4m 14s
    2. Examining your importance hierarchy
      6m 19s
  15. 57s
    1. Goodbye
      57s

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