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Working with random effects

From: Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Advanced

Video: Working with random effects

All right, time for a brief recap. Here I am inside Slippery when wet.psd. If I go over to the droplets layer, right-click on it and choose Clear layer Style, then I dump away all those layer Effects, and I'm left with this kind of black tar pattern, and that's what we're trying to achieve over these first few exercises. We want to create these random blobs that are sort of glued together, black against transparency, so that we can see through to the underlying layers. And then it's ultimately the layer Effects that convert all that blackness into liquid.

Working with random effects

All right, time for a brief recap. Here I am inside Slippery when wet.psd. If I go over to the droplets layer, right-click on it and choose Clear layer Style, then I dump away all those layer Effects, and I'm left with this kind of black tar pattern, and that's what we're trying to achieve over these first few exercises. We want to create these random blobs that are sort of glued together, black against transparency, so that we can see through to the underlying layers. And then it's ultimately the layer Effects that convert all that blackness into liquid.

And it can be a variety of different kinds of liquid, as we'll see. I am going to go ahead and switch over to my work in progress here, which I've called Noise + GBlur.psd. And although it's very difficult to see here, we have some marginally dark gray blobs against a marginally lighter gray background. What we need to do is increase the contrast between the blobs in the background using an Adjustment layer known as Threshold. The idea is Threshold draws a line in the sand and says, all you guys that are darker than this line, you become black, everybody else becomes white, and that creates the ultimate contrast, just at a single line the contrast is drawn.

All right, to see how that works, I want you to bring up the Adjustments panel, and you can get to it if you loaded dekeKeys by pressing the F10 key. And then notice this middle icon in the third row, Threshold. I want you to Alt+Click on it here on the PC or Option+Click on the Mac, and we're going to call this guy, dropmaker. And I want you to turn on Use Previous layer to Create Clipping Mask. Then click OK, and right away you should see a bunch of blobs form inside your image. Now, notice the Threshold Level by default is 128.

So it's saying everybody that's darker than 128 become black and 255 is white, so 128 is right there in the middle. You can see what a tiny histogram we have to work with here. So we don't have anything resembling Shadows or Highlights. We've just got the slimmest number of Midtones in between, and that's what we are drawing out to create what appears to be cow spots at this point. It looks like one of those old Gateway computer boxes. All right, so I'm going to go ahead and close the Adjustments panel, because 128 is what we want to use. If I were to bring it open, I could show you.

If you want more blackness, you'd increase the Threshold value. If you want more whiteness, you decrease the Threshold value, but 128 is pretty much going to be your bet there. Now, if you like what you see, then you're ready for the next step. If you don't like what you see, bear in mind that Black represents the water at this point and white represents the area behind the water. I'm pretty happy with some of the patterning I'm seeing and the distribution of some of the dots, and so on. But we've got much more water on the left- hand side of the image than we do on the right. So it would be nice to see a more even distribution.

If you want to try it again, then you've got to try those previous three steps that you saw in the last exercise. I'll go ahead and reperform it for you, because you'll see, we'll get a totally different result this time around. You click on the noise layer to select it, and then you go ahead and press Shift+Backspace or Shift+Delete on the Mac. You'll get the Fill dialog box. It's set to Use 50% Gray. You click OK. So you don't have to do anything in these dialog boxes. You just click OK when they come up. You'll see a field of white there in the background; don't worry about that. Next, go up to the Filter menu, choose Noise, and choose Add Noise.

Again, it shows you your last applied settings, so just click OK. You might say at this point, hey Deke, if we just keep doing the same darn thing every time, aren't we going to get the same results? No, because Add Noise, this one filter here, does something different automatically each and every time. It's a random noise distribution, so its contribution changes. It fluctuates from one application to the next. Click OK, and then go up to the Filter menu, choose Blur, and choose Gaussian Blur, or If you loaded dekeKeys, press Shift+F7.

Then oh my goodness, I didn't like the last droplet distribution. I really don't like this one very much, all I have is this one drop to work with right here. That's where it is, someplace in the grayness, but that's all we've got. Now, you might think, well, let's increase the Radius value. Let's take it up to 30. Well, that's not going to do anything, and let's take it down to 26, let's say. Well, we got sort of a blobbier blob going right there. But that's it. We really aren't going to get anywhere with changing the Gaussian Blur value.

What might work for us, I'll go ahead and click OK, at this point we might have some luck changing the Threshold value. So I'll double-click on this Threshold thumbnail, and let's try to increase the Threshold value. And wow, I can increase it to 131 this time, which is actually pretty darn high in order to bring in some droplets. That's interesting! All right, you know what? I'm going to Escape out of this though. I'm not going to make any modification. I'm going to leave it set to 128 right there. Even though it's still showing me the 131 preview. Let's go ahead and reduce that value and then increase it.

All right, so that's 128. Let me try another stab at the noise layer; I am going to press Shift+Backspace or Shift+Delete on the Mac in order to bring up the Fill dialog box. Hue is set to 50% Gray, click OK, and that gives me grayness. Now, I can't see it because it's being thresholded over to white. Now, let's go over to the Filter menu, choose Noise, choose Add Noise. Let these value stand, click OK. We're seeing noise, albeit, it's being transformed to exclusively black-and-white noise by the dropmaker layer. And then I'll go up to the Filter menu, and I'll choose Blur, and I'll choose Gaussian Blur.

Now I get this distribution of dots right there, and I'll click OK. So we're seeing more than we saw before. What happens if I once again double- click on this thumbnail, and I'm going to increase the Threshold value, like so, and that gives me yet another new result. So the thing is, when you're working with a random filter like Add Noise in order to achieve a random effect, then it may take a few swings at the effect in order to get it exactly right. So I just want you to know that, because your results are totally going to vary from mine.

There is no way for me to anticipate exactly what you're going to get. All right, I'm going to go ahead and close the Adjustments panel. So whatever Threshold value it takes, apparently you can raise or lower that value to get very different results, depending on how the other filters behave there. At some point you're going to get a reasonable distribution of black inside of white. The problem is, let's go ahead and Zoom in on this effect here. I'll Zoom in past 100%, so that you can see; this is the 200% Zoom Ratio by the way, so you can see that we have very harsh transitions, because of the way that Threshold works, either the pixels are being changed to black, or they're being changed to white.

There is no anti-aliasing or transitioning in between. We just have jagged edges. We need to clean up those jagged edges using a combination of another application of Gaussian Blur, plus the Levels command, and I'll show you how that works in the next exercise.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Advanced
Photoshop CS5 One-on-One: Advanced

247 video lessons · 32788 viewers

Deke McClelland
Author

 
Expand all | Collapse all
  1. 40m 2s
    1. Welcome
      2m 1s
    2. Making Photoshop your default image editor
      7m 43s
    3. Installing the dekeKeys keyboard shortcuts
      8m 10s
    4. Remapping OS shortcuts
      7m 37s
    5. Installing the Best Workflow color settings
      4m 31s
    6. The color settings explained
      6m 54s
    7. Loading the CS5 color settings in Bridge
      3m 6s
  2. 1h 5m
    1. What you can do with Photoshop
      1m 46s
    2. The mission-critical eyes
      2m 44s
    3. Copy Merged and Paste in Place
      6m 52s
    4. Sharpening details to match
      4m 34s
    5. Masking eyes
      9m 22s
    6. Working with clipping-mask layers
      9m 5s
    7. Shading with layer effects
      8m 10s
    8. Color and highlight effects
      4m 2s
    9. Refining layer masks
      5m 43s
    10. Fabricating the highlights in the pupils
      7m 33s
    11. Using a merged copy to sharpen
      5m 34s
  3. 2h 14m
    1. Highlights, shadows, and midtones
      1m 16s
    2. Introducing the Auto commands
      7m 23s
    3. Adjusting Cache Level settings
      6m 8s
    4. Reading a channel-by-channel histogram
      6m 21s
    5. How the Auto commands work
      5m 22s
    6. Auto Tone, Auto Contrast, and Auto Color
      7m 7s
    7. Blending the Auto results
      4m 4s
    8. Introducing the Levels command
      6m 15s
    9. Using Levels as an adjustment layer
      3m 12s
    10. Applying custom Levels adjustments
      6m 8s
    11. Understanding the gamma value
      7m 39s
    12. The futility of Output Levels
      2m 56s
    13. Selections and adjustment layers
      5m 48s
    14. Opening up the shadows
      3m 40s
    15. Previewing clipped pixels
      4m 51s
    16. The black, white, and gray eyedroppers
      5m 7s
    17. Gray card tips and tricks
      6m 5s
    18. Making channel-by-channel adjustments
      7m 29s
    19. Introducing the Curves command
      7m 44s
    20. Curves dialog box tricks
      7m 16s
    21. Curves adjustment layer tricks
      5m 45s
    22. Correcting an image with Curves
      5m 32s
    23. Filling in the highlights
      5m 42s
    24. Neutralizing casts and smoothing transitions
      5m 37s
  4. 1h 46m
    1. The art of enhancing edges
      1m 26s
    2. How sharpening works
      6m 2s
    3. The single-shot sharpeners
      6m 7s
    4. Introducing Unsharp Mask
      6m 19s
    5. Radius and Threshold
      6m 24s
    6. Sharpening colors vs. luminosity
      5m 56s
    7. Gauging the ideal settings
      8m 59s
    8. Unsharp Mask vs. Smart Sharpen
      7m 1s
    9. Using the Remove settings
      9m 30s
    10. The More Accurate checkbox
      6m 8s
    11. Saving your Smart Filter settings
      5m 31s
    12. The Advanced sharpening settings
      7m 52s
    13. Accounting for camera shake
      6m 18s
    14. Sharpening with the Emboss filter
      6m 43s
    15. Sharpening with High Pass
      9m 23s
    16. The new and improved Sharpen tool
      6m 22s
  5. 1h 34m
    1. Edge's evil twin: noise
      1m 12s
    2. Color vs. luminance noise
      7m 21s
    3. Reducing color noise
      7m 45s
    4. Reducing luminance noise
      4m 59s
    5. Relegating an effect to the shadows
      6m 27s
    6. Switching between layer and mask
      6m 59s
    7. The Dust & Scratches filter
      4m 56s
    8. Adjusting shadow saturation
      5m 52s
    9. Combining High Pass with Lens Blur
      6m 57s
    10. Masking a layer of Lens Blur
      7m 34s
    11. Painting away High Pass sharpening
      8m 22s
    12. Building up a noise pattern
      6m 40s
    13. Converting noise to texture
      4m 24s
    14. Bleeding colors into paper
      6m 16s
    15. Matching different noise levels
      8m 31s
  6. 1h 32m
    1. We are the stuff of light
      1m 24s
    2. Applying automatic lens correction
      5m 53s
    3. Introducing Shadows/Highlights
      3m 44s
    4. Shadows/Highlights in depth
      7m 59s
    5. Creating a "bounce" with Gaussian Blur
      4m 43s
    6. Sharpening on top of blur
      7m 3s
    7. Sharpening the merged composition
      6m 16s
    8. Grouping and masking layers
      5m 40s
    9. Adjusting the density of a mask
      7m 14s
    10. Creating a Shadows/Highlights shortcut
      5m 47s
    11. Restoring detail with Shadows/Highlights
      6m 23s
    12. Changing the Shadows/Highlights defaults
      6m 21s
    13. Smoothing skin details with Gaussian Blur
      3m 56s
    14. Smoothing with High Pass
      5m 44s
    15. Lowering contrast with Gaussian Blur
      7m 4s
    16. Inverting a sharpening effect
      7m 5s
  7. 2h 32m
    1. Color becomes monochrome
      1m 31s
    2. Converting an image to grayscale
      6m 49s
    3. Extracting luminance information
      7m 37s
    4. Introducing the Channel Mixer
      10m 23s
    5. Aggressive channel mixing
      9m 42s
    6. Proofing CMYK colors
      7m 49s
    7. Color settings and intent
      7m 6s
    8. Practical Channel Mixer variations
      4m 30s
    9. Saving variations as layer comps
      7m 57s
    10. The default grayscale recipe
      8m 55s
    11. Creating a custom black-and-white mix
      6m 59s
    12. Shadows/Highlights in black and white
      4m 58s
    13. Introducing the Black & White command
      5m 55s
    14. Adjusting Black & White settings
      9m 39s
    15. Mixing a Black & White portrait
      6m 32s
    16. Black & White vs. Channel Mixer
      9m 21s
    17. Adding tint and color
      8m 0s
    18. Introducing the Gradient Map
      7m 10s
    19. Loading custom gradients
      4m 32s
    20. Editing gradient color stops
      9m 58s
    21. Colorizing with blend modes and Opacity
      7m 13s
  8. 2h 10m
    1. Two great commands working great together
      1m 18s
    2. Introducing the Color Range command
      5m 13s
    3. Setting key colors and Fuzziness
      5m 38s
    4. Predefined vs. sampled colors
      3m 57s
    5. The Localized Color Clusters option
      5m 41s
    6. Defining a selection with care
      4m 44s
    7. Introducing the Quick Mask mode
      5m 20s
    8. Testing edges with the Magic Wand
      5m 14s
    9. Hand-brushing a selection
      5m 39s
    10. Saving and loading an alpha channel
      4m 35s
    11. Converting a selection to a layer mask
      2m 46s
    12. Switching between an image and a layer mask
      6m 58s
    13. Protecting elements with a layer mask
      8m 5s
    14. Duplicating and editing a layer mask
      7m 34s
    15. Introducing the Refine Edge command
      4m 46s
    16. Accessing the various Refine Edge options
      5m 35s
    17. Refine Edge's preview options
      6m 21s
    18. The Adjust Edge values
      4m 11s
    19. Edge Detection and Smart Radius
      6m 5s
    20. Using the Refine Radius tool
      8m 8s
    21. Using the Decontaminate Colors option
      7m 30s
    22. Old-school masking adjustments
      7m 7s
    23. Four micro mask adjustments
      8m 33s
  9. 3h 13m
    1. Photoshop's vector exceptions
      1m 11s
    2. Making text in Photoshop
      6m 18s
    3. Creating and editing a text layer
      6m 56s
    4. Font and type style
      7m 35s
    5. Type size and color
      7m 52s
    6. Combining layer effects and type
      10m 57s
    7. Drawing a custom shape layer
      8m 34s
    8. Side bearing, kerning, and tracking
      10m 36s
    9. Point text vs. area text
      8m 26s
    10. Selecting and formatting a paragraph
      5m 19s
    11. Copying and pasting unformatted text
      7m 45s
    12. Creating text inside a custom path
      6m 26s
    13. Creating text along a path
      8m 13s
    14. Adjusting baseline shift
      6m 16s
    15. Drawing a fading arrowhead
      7m 29s
    16. Fading a shadow with a layer
      5m 32s
    17. Logo creation and Fill Opacity
      7m 44s
    18. Stretching a background element
      6m 9s
    19. Drawing with shape outlines
      6m 18s
    20. Combining vector-based shapes
      6m 42s
    21. Masking vector-based shape layers
      6m 7s
    22. Correcting spacing problems
      7m 44s
    23. Drawing the ultimate specular sparkle
      8m 45s
    24. Preparing text for commercial output
      5m 9s
    25. Saving a high-resolution PDF file
      7m 11s
    26. Inspecting the final PDF document
      7m 8s
    27. Saving large poster art
      9m 32s
  10. 2h 36m
    1. What filters ought to be
      1m 25s
    2. Layer effects vs. filters
      6m 14s
    3. Carving with an Inner Shadow effect
      7m 45s
    4. Selling an effect with Drop Shadow
      7m 17s
    5. Creating blurry shadow type
      5m 30s
    6. Saving custom default settings
      6m 22s
    7. Creating a custom contour
      7m 3s
    8. Introducing Bevel and Emboss
      7m 35s
    9. Adjusting Angle and Altitude
      7m 8s
    10. Exploiting global light
      8m 11s
    11. Gloss and edge contour
      5m 8s
    12. Applying and creating layer styles
      6m 45s
    13. Loading, saving, and merging styles
      6m 17s
    14. Creating a textured bevel effect
      6m 56s
    15. Using shadows as highlights
      7m 39s
    16. Combining filters and effects
      6m 58s
    17. Working with random effects
      6m 55s
    18. Smoothing with Gaussian Blur and Levels
      6m 13s
    19. Masking blacks from whites
      4m 37s
    20. Applying liquid styles
      4m 36s
    21. Simulating liquid reflections
      8m 12s
    22. Finessing and cropping a liquid effect
      7m 25s
    23. Initiating a displacement map
      6m 17s
    24. Applying a displacement map
      7m 37s
  11. 1h 12m
    1. Two words: Free Transform
      34s
    2. Scale, rotate, and constrain
      6m 30s
    3. Using the transformation origin
      7m 42s
    4. Applying a slant (aka skew)
      3m 37s
    5. The four-point "perspective" distortion
      7m 51s
    6. Two ways to make gradient text
      5m 59s
    7. Building complexity from a simple shape
      4m 42s
    8. Duplicating a series of transformations
      6m 3s
    9. Rasterizing a layer with its effects
      6m 41s
    10. Applying a custom warp
      7m 24s
    11. Blending and softening a warped layer
      4m 39s
    12. Creating spherical highlights
      6m 30s
    13. Using a center-source inner glow
      3m 51s
  12. 2h 42m
    1. Distorting reality
      1m 33s
    2. Extracting a foreground element
      6m 45s
    3. Introducing the Puppet Warp command
      7m 20s
    4. Setting and manipulating pins
      7m 48s
    5. Rotating pins and switching warp modes
      6m 41s
    6. Expanding and contracting the mesh
      6m 11s
    7. Changing the Density setting
      8m 0s
    8. Adjusting the pin depth
      5m 18s
    9. Winding an image into a pretzel
      6m 2s
    10. Applying Puppet Warp to type
      6m 30s
    11. Warping single characters
      6m 25s
    12. Editing puppet-warped text
      8m 24s
    13. Extending an image with Free Transform
      8m 46s
    14. Extracting from a white background
      10m 5s
    15. Tracing a shape with Puppet Warp
      9m 1s
    16. Introducing the Liquify command
      5m 4s
    17. Warp, Twirl, Pucker, and Bloat
      8m 53s
    18. Saving and loading a mesh
      5m 59s
    19. Push, Mirror, and Turbulence
      11m 49s
    20. Lifting and slimming details
      8m 22s
    21. Warping fabric, arms, and legs
      7m 1s
    22. Masking and finessing the results
      10m 8s
  13. 3h 3m
    1. Welcome to the digital darkroom
      1m 44s
    2. Introducing Camera Raw
      7m 40s
    3. Adjusting white balance
      7m 0s
    4. Selecting and synchronizing images
      6m 9s
    5. Making automatic adjustments and saving changes
      7m 19s
    6. Creating and managing snapshots
      8m 23s
    7. Adjusting the Exposure value
      6m 24s
    8. Working with clipping warnings
      5m 5s
    9. Adjusting Brightness and Contrast
      7m 35s
    10. Vibrance, Saturation, and Clarity
      9m 25s
    11. Recovery and Fill Light
      6m 57s
    12. Using the Graduated Filter tool
      7m 2s
    13. Painting edits with the Adjustment Brush
      9m 44s
    14. Straighten, crop, and geometric distortions
      7m 49s
    15. Applying manual lens corrections
      7m 19s
    16. Vignette and chromatic aberrations
      6m 21s
    17. Introducing the Tone Curves
      6m 9s
    18. Parametric curves and targeted adjustments
      6m 26s
    19. Correcting a low-noise photograph
      7m 35s
    20. Sharpening and high-noise photos
      8m 25s
    21. Selective Hue/Saturation adjustments
      5m 34s
    22. Selective Luminance adjustments
      5m 39s
    23. Adding grain and vignetting effects
      5m 23s
    24. Mixing a subjective black-and-white image
      7m 53s
    25. Colorizing with the Split Toning options
      4m 29s
    26. Opening a raw image as a Smart Object
      5m 39s
    27. Camera Raw wrap-up
      8m 38s
  14. 55s
    1. Until next time
      55s

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