Join Chris Orwig for an in-depth discussion in this video Enhancing the eyes, part of Retouching Bridal Portraits with Photoshop.
In this movie, we'll look at how we can improve the eyes of this portrait, and we'll explore how we can do that by creating two separate adjustment layers. We'll begin by creating a quick selection. We'll then use that quick selection to build a mask with our adjustment layers, which will allow us to brighten the eyes And also to change the color of the eyes, as well. So here lets zoom in close to the face, you can do so by pressing command plus on a Mac or control plus on Windows. Then press the space bar key and click and drag around to reposition the photograph.
One of the ways that you can quickly build a selection is by using what's called quick mask. To access quick mask, tap the q key on your keyboard. Then you need to select the brush tool and paint with black. So here we'll select our brush tool. You can select it in the tools panel or press the V key. You want to make sure to choose black as your foreground color here. You can do so by clicking on that color chip and then sampling the color black there. And then next, we need a brush size which is relatively small here.
We need a nice and small brush size without any hardness. And what we're going to do is paint over the area that eventually we're going to modify. Now, the only strange thing about quick mask is that when you begin to paint, what happens is that you're painting in What looks like a red color problem, or shift. This actually isn't a problem. While it looks really strange, what this is showing us is the area that eventually will be selected. Here, I need to paint away the pupil. To do so, we'll flip these colors, so I can then paint with white.
What that will allow me to do is to paint away that red color shift from this area of the picture. Next we can flip these back by pressing the x key that toggles, the foreground and the background colors there. And then we want to paint with black on the other eye here. And you want to make sure you're covering up, all the area where we can affect the overall color, and the brightness. Press the x key to toggle that To the white, and then paint away, this from the pupil area. You also may need to decrease your brush size if you want to get really close into the edges or, if you just want to work with this in a little bit more of a detailed way.
Well next we'll tap the Q key, that will allow us to exit Quick Masking and that, kind of horrible view. Of the eyes there, and what quick mask does actually is it selects the opposite of what we need. So, before we can use this, we need to invert our selection. To do that, navigate to the select pull-down menu, and choose Inverse. Now that we have the opposite selected, which is in this case just this area. We'll go to our adjustment layer. Before I do that though, let me reiterate the steps that we took there.
The first up was to press the Q key, the next step was to select the brush tool into paint with black over the area that we wanted to work on and the paint with white over the area which we didn't want to work on or didn't want to affect. Then we tap the q key to exit quick mask which turns that mask into a selection. And then we went to select and we chose inverse to invert our selection. Alright, well after having gone through all that, we're now ready to begin to create our first adjustment. We'll do so with color balance.
Click on the color balance adjustment layer icon. And because we had that selection active, now as we make adjustments we'll only affect those areas as you can see here. And here perhaps what we want to do is change the overall, look in thee eyes. This right now is a bit exaggerated, but we can do is we can scale this back, so that we can create different color in the eyes. In this case perhaps we want to bring out some of the blues that we have there we can mix these different values together to come up with a nice look in that area of the image.
If we want to have an even softer edge well we can increase the feather. That will then just soften the edges of those brush strokes which we've added to the area of the picture or we can also paint on the mask as well. Now right now I know that the color is over the top yet stick with me we'll scale this back in a moment. You can see the before and after so far. Because what I want to do next, is I also want to brighten the eyes. One easy way to do that is with curves. So, let's click on our curves adjustment layer icon, and then click on the curve, and drag up.
This allows us to create a brightening effect. Now currently, there isn't a mask which is concealing this From the rest of the image. It's brightening the eyes and everything else. If only we could reuse the mask which we've already built down here. Well we actually can. If we click into the mask, hold down the Option key on a Mac or Alt on Windows. And then drag the mask. You'll notice that the icon changes, so there's a little double arrow icon. This allows us to copy and paste, and replace the mask on another layer.
So if again you option click and drag that on a Mac. Or alt click and drag on Windows and then let go, it will ask you. Do you really want to replace the layer mask? Yes, exactly, that's exactly what we want to do? So we'll click Yes. And that will then allow us to just have this brightening effect modify this area of the image. Now, if we double-click the curves adjustment here, we can further modify this. We can add a little bit of brightening and just a touch of contrast there as well. As you can see that I'm doing here. If we want to dial in, or change the mask, we'll just click into it, and then here we can paint with white.
Maybe with a little bit of a bigger brush, and I'll just paint this around. Then we can paint this into the area where we want it to affect the image the most. We can also modify our color layer. Notice that this is just a little bit of a brightening effect. The color layer is way to strong for my liking. So here let's click into that layer and then decrease the opacity all the way down to zero. And then bring it up so that we have a nice, natural look for color for the eyes. we can also go into this area and paint over this.
We need to add the color into a little bit more of the edges. If we miss some of those edges or if we just want to customize the way that this color looks. We can also do that by painting it into the mask and controlling where that will effect the photograph. Now currently, I think this overall look that we have here is a bit too strong. You know really that will become more evident when we zoom out. When you zoom out you start to look at the entire image. From a little bit of a further distance, if the eyes are glowing too strong, if they're too bright or if there's too much color there, you'll want to make some changes.
Here if we click on her eye icons, you can see the before and afters with these layers. And in this case I think we have a nice improvement you know it's kind of interesting what we originally thought were blue eyes really don't look very blue at all until we add a little bit of that color back using these two layers. Of course what you'll want to do though is further just customize this until this looks good and it looks good to your taste and a lot of these type of adjustments they really are subjective. There isn't neccessarily a right or a wrong to.
Making changes like this. Yet keep in mind that you want to have a vision for the portrait. My vision is to create a really natural and authentic and beautiful picture here. So I'm going to be careful to not go too far with these amounts. That being said I still want to bring out a little bit of color. And also, a little bit of the brightness of the eyes as well, as we've done here with these two separate adjustment layers, beginning with color balance and finishing this off using curves in order to brighten and to add a little bit of contrast, to the eyes.
- Cleaning up images and removing distractions
- Softening skin and reducing freckles
- Enhancing eyes
- Adding blur to the background
- Using Liquify to change the wedding dress
- Adjusting light and color with Curves and masking
- Painting in light with the Camera Raw adjustment brush
- Whitening teeth
- Cropping to improve compositions
- Converting to black and white