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Photoshop CS4 for Photographers is an essential course for any digital photographer who wants to master the software's vast array of image enhancement techniques. Professional photographer and instructor Chris Orwig uses his own compelling images to demonstrate how the power of Photoshop can make photographers more passionate about their work. He covers many aspects of the application, such as working with RAW images, using curves and levels, making images snap, and enhancing bland photographs by converting them to black and white. Exercise files accompany this course.
In this movie, we are going to continue to talk about how we can use the Photo Filter Adjustment Layer. This time, we are going to apply this to a color image. Let's go ahead and double-click this file corwig_boat.psd, you can find it in the Chapter 21 folder. Next, press F to get a full-screen view mode and then Spacebar to reposition the image. All right, what I want to do here is click on the Photo Filter icon and I'll go ahead and use the default Warming Filter, yet I want to increase the density. Now, I like the tone except one of the things I'm noticing is that the image looks a little mushy. It kind of mushed out the overall color variety and I don't really like that. So, I'm going to go ahead and warm it up some more.
And what I'm going to do here is apply a blend mode in order to make this image really snap. Now, that being said, keep in mind that you don't always need to use blending modes when you are using Photo Filters, yet with this image that will work really well. So, go down to our Layer here and then we will choose from our pulldown menu, our blend mode pulldown menu, Soft Light. All right, now that's the color that I'm interested in. Here is our before and after. It's adding this really interesting warmth, that's making those colors snap. I really like it. Yet one of the things I'm noticing is I have a little bit of a problem around the edges of my image. It's a little bit too dark for me, that won't print so well. So, I'll press the B key to select the Brush tool. Now, I'm going to paint with a 100% Opacity, click in the Mask, target the mask there, paint with black. I'm going to go ahead and just try to brighten up these edges just a little bit, so that this image will print a little bit better.
Now, as I do that, I realize you know what, I really wish I hadn't paint it with black there; I wish I hadn't paint at a 100% Opacity. I want to darken those corners a little bit; they are now too bright. Well, here is what I can do; I can navigate back to the Mask panel and then lower the density of the mask. Watch this, as I do this one, I'm slowly brining back the darkness there. The mask you can see, if you Option- click on the Mac/Alt-click on the PC, has now become gray, when I crank this up it's black. So, I can go ahead and reduce the intensity of the mask, meaning it's masking less out. I love that. Now, this mask is still a little bit rough. I'll smooth it out; Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur. Again, just to create a little bit more of a transition, I'll go ahead and zoom out here so we can see how this is working.
That looks nice. Click OK. Didn't quite mush it out enough. So, Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur, go ahead and add a little bit more there, zoom out so I can see it. Again, I'm just looking to try to create a little bit more of a transition around my edges. Okay great. Next, I'll go back to the mask itself by holding the Option key on the Mac, Alt key on the PC that will then hide the mask. Here is my before and after. All right and just for the fun of it, I want to include an extra little tip here that you can use when you are working with Reflections; grab your Quick Select tool, click on the boat, zoom in a little bit and what we are going to do is just paint across the boat pretty quickly. Now, if I have any problems areas in my selection as I do, no big deal, I'll go ahead and paint across the boat a little bit extra, hold down the Option key on the Mac/Alt key on the PC. I'm going to go ahead and reduce my selection here. Again, on the Mac, hold down the Option key; on the PC, hold down the Alt key, I'm just looking to clean this up a little bit, so we have a rough selection of the boat.
Now that's not a perfect selection here but it's decent. Go ahead and bring in this portion of the boat. Okay, I like that, zoom out. Let's copy this to a new layer. Command+J on the Mac/Ctrl+J on the PC. Next, we need to free transform this. So, select the Move tool. Press Command+T on the Mac/Ctrl+T on the PC and then right-click or Ctrl-click and choose Flip Vertical. That boat is now upside down. We will reposition that. I'm also going to drag it out just a little bit here, extend it just a little bit.
Now, if you want to change the shape of this particular reflection that we are going to create, you can hold down the Command key on the Mac/Ctrl key on the PC, and I can go ahead and change the overall shape of this and I'm going to go ahead and bring in those points there. Now, I'm doing that just so I have a little bit of variety, making this just a little bit more flat, you can see how it's flattening it out, so it's going to fall across the water just a little bit more. I like that, double-click to apply that. Now, that reflection doesn't look good because it's too harsh. So, we need to apply a blend mode. You know the blend mode. It's Soft Light. All right, great.
So, now we have brought in those really interesting colors into that reflection. We can reposition that just to touch here, just trying to bring out some of the colors, some above. Next, click on the Add Layer Mask icon. Select the Brush tool. Let's paint with about 70% or so here black and I'm just going to go ahead and reduce this, just a touch here, just looking to soften the edges. Because of my selection of that, that was pretty rough and then I'll lower the opacity. And again, just looking to bring a little bit of reflection into the water before and after. I just thought I would throw that one in there just for the fun of it because it is really fun to work with Reflections, especially when you are looking to enhance the color and tone of your photographs. Our overall before and after. All right, that wraps up this movie.
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