Join Timothy Sexton for an in-depth discussion in this video Choosing your tools, part of Photoshop Retouching Techniques: Skin.
For skin work like this, we will be using the Patch tool, the Clone Stamp, and the Healing brush. Over use of any of these tools tends to a retouch look. Using them in conjunction lessens the effect they have on your image. Let's just zoom in and test some of these tools. So the Patch tool can be found right here where you find your Healing brush. So let's select that. And the Patch tool is really great for quickly moving through an image, getting rid of all the really obvious things. And what you do is you circle the image to create a selection, and then you drag that down to an area that you want to replace it with.
And just deselect it. And there you go, it's gone. You do have to watch out for repeats with that, so just be a little cautious with it. And you can just go through really quickly, and just get rid of all that stuff. Okay, now the Clone Stamp can be used in a couple of different ways, and with a couple of different settings. Let me just zoom out a little bit here. Now there are different focal points on the image. Some areas are a bit softer, like in here, where other images are more in focus like right here. So, removing blemishes and hairs in this area, you want your Clone Stamp to be set off transfer mode and to a higher hardness percent, just to have a sharper edge right there.
Having a sharper edge on you brush will keep these areas of the image where there's a high focus less muddy. Using a soft brush will just sort of push the pixels around and create too much of a blend and make the areas appear muddy. So just, you could see how that works. Just clipping away. You can get rid of those spots without it looking to mushy. And then when you move over to these areas, where it's a little bit softer. Let's go back to the brushes and let's bring the hardness down and go on to Transfer mode. Transfer mode allows us to put the Pen onto Pen Pressure.
Let me just turn it off so you can see what happens to your brush down here. And let me just crank up this hardness so you can see it a little bit more clearly. Okay. Let's go back into Transfer. Now, going to Transfer mode right here, setting the Opacity Jitter to Pen Pressure and the Flow Jitter to Pen Pressure, you can see that it softens the edges and fades it out on the end. And that allows us to blend in areas. I do, probably 90% of my retouching on this mode. But you do have to change back to a harder brush and off Transfer mode when you are working in areas where there's a higher focus.
So, let's go back to Tip Shape and let's crank that hardness down to a nice, soft brush. And let's just go in and take away these areas. Now, these areas, you don't have to worry about mudding the image up too much and making it too soft, because it's already soft. So, by setting your brush to Transfer mode right here, you can quickly move through and smooth out those softer areas. The Clone Stamp we're also going to be using on different color modes. So if we go right up here and we put it onto Darken mode, and we select, and we select right below it, we'll just be affecting just the dark pixels.
And that's a great way to cover large areas, especially large soft areas, like right here on the neck where you can get away with. Getting rid of all of that in big moves. So let me actually switch to lighten mode right here. And we'll just sample it and just gently paint down. And you can clean up blotchiness and little spots like this on a neck in no time, by going back and forth between lighten and darken mode. You just want to be aware of the shapes. So you are just constantly sampling and applying the And we'll also be using the Dodge and Burn tool.
And I like to use the Dodge and Burn tool in conjunction with the soft light layer. So Shift+Cmd+N brings up a new layer, and we're going to clip it to the layer below. And we're going to put it onto Softlight and fill it with a softlight neutral, 50% gray. And hit OK. And working on this layer gives us a bit of a buffer zone. So we can always scale back the opacity on it, on this layer if we felt we went too far. Or we can put it into a Quick Mask mode and just paint out what we don't want.
And then just get the Dodge. I use the Dodge and Burn in conjunction with each other. If you look over here in the toolbar, let me just put this out, you have the Dodge and you have the burn. To go back and forth between the two of them, you can hold down Option. So let me give you an example. I'm going to crank this exposure all the way up. Now I'm on the Dodge, and if we just push that around, you can see how it lightens up. And now holding down Option, we can burn. And it's a great way to toggle back and forth between the two functions because you use them in conjunction with each other.
And let's bring that exposure back down to 5% by hitting zero five on your keyboard, and let's just take a look at how this works a bit. So just in these areas right here, you can lighten out blotchy areas. Right down in these areas here, you can smooth out blotchy areas using that Dodge and Burn tool, and keeping the texture intact. Going back and forth between all of these functions will result in more believable skin work.
- Choosing your tools
- Eliminating facial hair
- Reducing blemishes
- Working with beauty skin
- Identifying what to remove
- Enhancing facial structure with Liquefy
- Correcting "dirty" areas, aka gray spots
- Restoring lost or missing texture