Join Chris Orwig for an in-depth discussion in this video High-impact color with Camera Raw and Photoshop, part of Photo Tools Weekly.
- Hello, and welcome to another episode of Photo Tools Weekly, thanks so much for joining me. The topic for this week's episode comes to us by way of a suggestion from Kelly all the way from Australia, and she wrote that she wanted to learn how to create more high-impact and vivid color. So we'll take a look at how we can do that first by using Camera Raw in Photoshop, and then second we'll talk about you can do this with Lightroom in Photoshop as well. All right, let's begin.
For this project we'll start off in Adobe Bridge, and here we're going to work with a high resolution raw file. In Bridge, we're going to begin by duplicating this file and to do that, simply right click or control click on an image, then choose from the menu, duplicate. The reason why we want to do this is because we're going to combine two different images together in Photoshop. So once you've created the two files, let's go ahead and select them, click on one, hold down the shift key, click on the other, then we'll open them up inside of Camera Raw.
To do that, press command + R on Mac, or control + R on Windows. Now here we're going to select both files for starters, so click on one, again hold down the shift key, and click on the other in the film strip over here. Next we're just going to do some basic adjustments, maybe brighten up the exposure, drop those highlights down, add a little contrast. For the shadows, we can decide how much of a silhouette we want to have there. This is a photograph I captured just a couple days ago of a friend who is a yoga instructor. What I want to do with these images is just kind of help them come to life just a little bit, do some of the basic workflow.
And then next, we're just going to click into one file and fine tune the color. Here I want this to go much more warm, so I'm going to take my temperature over to the right and bring a little bit of the tint in as well. Now the magic for the color will really happen when we get over to split toning. Clicking on that tab and going here in my highlights I'm going to bring in some nice bright yellows for the shadows, we're going to leave those nice and deep and red and bring that up, and that's where the image really just kind of lights up, and looks quite interesting.
Next I'll go back and maybe drop the shadows down a little bit there, I want a little more of a silhouette. Now go to the next photograph, this one. This one, we're going cool on this one. So I'm gonna add some cool tones there and as well we'll go over to our split toning controls. We're going to bring in some blues into those highlights and bring those values up, and sometimes you just need to click around or drag around a little bit until you find the right color. Some blues in the shadows there, we just want a lot of that warm and blue combo, right because eventually we're going to bring these two files together.
So we're creating this really vivid color palette. Alright, once we've done that which basically was work in the basic, do some normal adjustments, and then modify temperature and then highlights, we did that for both images just in different ways. Next step is to click done, this brings us back to Bridge where we can see both of the files. Now from Bridge the way that we can combine these two together is to go to the tools pull down menu, then choose Photoshop and select load files into Photoshop layers.
When I click on this, what it will do is it will send both the files over to Photoshop, and combine them into a single document. Alright, so as you can see what it's done for us is it's combined these two images into this single layer document. And now here in Photoshop we're going to have some fun combining these two together. We'll do one technique which will be a bit more graphic and then another one which is a bit more subtle and has some color adjustments as well. Alright, well let's start off with our graphic concept. Here, we're going to work with out elliptical marquee tool without any feather, and I'll go ahead and just click and drag it over an area of the image.
And then next, I'll click on the add layer mask icon, which will create a mask based on that shape. And this just creates kind of this fun combination of these two things. Here I'll grab the type tool by pressing the T key, and I'm going to go ahead and just type out the word yoga and press command + T on Mac or control + T on Windows in order to free transform that. This could perhaps be an ad for a yoga studio, or maybe for a particular class, or an editorial piece on yoga. And it just has that really interesting look because of these color combinations.
So this is perhaps one option, or option number one. Let me show you another. This one will be a bit more subtle, so here I'll go ahead and get rid of my type for a moment, and drag that mask to the trash can and delete that, so we just start back to having these two images. For this one I'll put the blue file on top of, or the cool file on top of the warm file here. And next what I'm going to do is add a layer mask, so click on the add layer mask icon, and I'm going to grab my brush and with the brush what I want to do is I want to create an effect where we have perhaps all these nice warm colors up here in the sky, and then cooler tones down below.
So I'll paint with black. I want to have a really big brush, so I'm going to make this a little bit bigger here. And painting it 100%, I'm just going to start to paint over this area, and what I can do is bring in or allow it to see through I should say to the underlying layer which is bringing in all of these warm colors into that part of the image. Just going back and forth making sure I'm getting all of that. And so now if we look at our before and after, we can kind of see that different ways and how we're getting to combine these two together.
Now, the next and really final step is to add a few specific color adjustments. The first one's for the blue, the blue now to me looks a little bit faint, I want some more blue there so let's use color balance, it's a great tool, it's really intuitive, click on the icon and I'm just going to swing my blues over here, and I want them to have a little bit brighter look. Now this is ruining the sky, right, no big deal just click on the icon to create what's called a layer clipping mask so that this adjustment is only affecting the lower part of the image.
So that is color adjustment number one, now what about the sky? Well let's go down to that layer, click on color balance, that will create it right above that one, and here of course I want to go warm, right, I want to have these really rich and deep and saturated colors. And because this one is right above that, it's only going to affect that right, because this one is on top of that. And by having these two colors together just creates this fun and fantastic type of look.
Alright well now that we've seen how we can do this here with Adobe Bridge, next let's take a look at how we can step it up a little bit with our brush work, and also talk about how we can do this when working with Lightroom in Photoshop, and we'll do that in the next movie.