Join Chris Orwig for an in-depth discussion in this video Removing a garment strap, part of Photoshop CS3 Portrait Retouching Techniques.
In this movie we are going to be doing some cloning and some patching and healing in order to remove some of the larger blemishes that we are noticing. Let's create a new layer Shift Command N on a Mac, Shift Ctrl N on a PC and we call this layer Retouch. And next, we will select the Clone Stamp Tool, let's zoom in the top of the image here and we are going to go ahead and sample an area and just paint over that little gap up there that looks fine. Next, we are going to navigate down here to the strap yet notice the little problem with the nose here.
I am going to select the Healing Brush and that looks a little strange right there, I need to diminish that a tidbit as well as the shadow something I missed on my Retouching, let's look at it before and after, okay that looks nice. Alright we are now ready to work on the strap, how the heck are we going to do that? That looks complicated, doesn't it. Well it actually won't be too bad, believe it or not. Let's try and give this one a shot. Let's merge everything to a new layer, Shift Option Command E now that we have this new layer we will call this layer Merged.
Next we are going to select the Quick Select Tool, press W on the keyboard, it's a great tool. What you can do is paint along an object and create a selection, in this case we have a pretty nice selection of the strap and I am going to go out to the shadow a little bit here as well so I am painting just outside of the strap. If I have a problem area as I do in a couple of places, I will fix that. Then I will hold down the Option key on the Mac, Alt key on a PC and paint away the problem area so bring that back in.
This isn't going to be a perfect way to remove this but nothing is in Photoshop right, take some detail work, all we want is a good start, that's all we want. Okay. That's a pretty good start, decent selection of that. Couple of other things I would like to do to add to this selection would be up top so I am going to grab the Lasso Tool, hold down the Shift key and add to the selection up here. Remember Shift with one of the selection tools is add, Option key on the Mac, Alt key on a PC is minus, add a little bit more over here, alright.
Couple of rough spots but I think those will blend in okay because we are going to use the Patch Tool. Alright now that we have a decent selection of that we could have done that another way but hey that was pretty good way to do it. We are going to go ahead and select the Patch Tool. We are going to make sure we are on source and make sure we have a nice source to sample from and we are going to drag it over here to this nice patch of skin and let go. And then let's press Command H on a Mac, Control H on a PC for a starting point, that's pretty decent. So let's go to select Deselect.
Next we are going to make a couple more selections here to clean up the rest of this. So we are going to press Command D to deselect, Ctrl D on a PC, Command D on Mac. We are just going to go ahead and apply this patch technique to a number of different areas here, I want to disguise if anything was ever there. Alright so far so good and I think we are going a good direction before and after. Let me just take a look at that, evaluate that for myself, hey I think we are doing well.
And I am making selections and then pressing Command D to deselect, zoom out make sure I am not tricking myself into thinking that looks good. Couple of problem areas, I see some brightness values that are little bit problematic, nothing too big, nothing we can't handle right, alright before and after. Now we are in good shape. The next thing we need to do is to clean up the neck area so let's zoom in on that and deconstruct what's happening here.
We will turn off this layer for a second, we have this nice line, it's actually soft here, it becomes hard on this side, a little bit harder there, nice soft line up there with the shadow so we are going to need to pay attention to our shadows and whatnot and then as we did this it just became pretty messy, doesn't look too good. So here is what we are going to do, we are going to turn off our merge layer, click in the retouch layer and merge everything to the top Shift Option Command E. That will merge everything to the topmost layer. Next thing we are going to do is make a selection with our Lasso Tool, press L for the Lasso Tool and make a selection and this portion of the image here and then press Command J on a Mac, Ctrl J on a PC.
That will copy that selection to a new layer and let's bring that down, use the arrow keys to nudge it around a little bit, make sure this is on top of our merge layer so we can see how we are doing, here is our before and after. Hey that could work couldn't it, getting the right spot there, Command T to free transform and right at that point there and then we just want to straighten that line a little bit so it connects.
Hey that was too far Command T, just a little tiny bit there and one more try. Press Enter to return there and I think that's looking good. We want to click the Add Layer Mask icon. And we are going to paint with black, our brush nice and soft just going to mask this in here, smooth things out a little bit, okay a little bit of a transition on this side, little bit of the shadow transition over there, let's see how we are doing before and after so far so good.
Let's lower the opacity. So this blends in really nicely and softens off over here on this edge before and after and then mask it away over here and before and after. Let's zoom out a little bit, see if this is looking right, looking as it should, here is hour before and here is hour after. Yeah I would say hey that's looking pretty good, maybe a little bit more we need to clean up right, more problems with the neck so let's create a new layer, click on the new layer icon, select the Clone Stamp tool.
What I am going to do with the Clone Stamp tool is take my opacity down to about 40% here and then I am going to Option click right on this line and I am going to bring up some of the softness of this line. So I want to bring up some of the tone that we have here, take away some of the problems that happened as result of the Patch Tool, go from both sides top and bottom so bring down a little bit of the shadow as well. Let's see our before and after, before and after, very nice, need to lower the opacity on that to get the blend in really nice before and after just subtly bringing in those two areas.
Now we need to work on this part of the neck up here as well. You have a good portion of the neck there so minus while I use it, let's use the same layer too, little bit smaller brush here, hold down the Option key and then go up here and let's begin to paint this in, take up the opacity. Let's go all the way up, alright so we are just extending the shadow to try to create that edge definition on the neck there and then we will reduce it just a little bit as well.
Alright create one more layer and we are going to go Clone Stamp 100% now, 100 percentile. We are going to paint in this line on the neck, believe it or not see if we can get away with it, see if we can do what has never been done before. To bring it a little bit of texture underneath there, that is too much. I can always press Command Z right, Command Z on a Mac, I should say Ctrl Z on a PC, okay.
Let's see how our neckline is doing. I like it. I like it. Of course the opacity is a little bit too high so we are going to lower that so it blends in and zoom out a little bit. There is a couple little problem areas but we are going in a good direction before and after, before and after. One of the problem areas that I notice on this is the shape right there. So I am going to select my layer with the cloning on it, press Command T on a Mac, Ctrl T on a PC and then I am going to Ctrl Click inside the free transform area and choose warp and I am going to bend this so that it fits that line a little bit better, press Return to apply before and after, hey that worked well, let's zoom out before and after, there is that line we have brought in.
Couple other areas we need to work on right there, that line isn't quite consistent so I am going to create one more layer and with the Clone Stamp Tool, nice and small, nice low opacity, just going to bring some brightness in on top of that line like a little more straight here right. Taper it off a little bit throughout the whole line and then lower the opacity.
Let's zoom out and see how we are doing. It looks like it needs to come back up, doesn't it. Alright the line though needs to come down, that's just too strong, too strong, too much for me. And the top one now can't come down, now that I lowered the opacity there I can lower the opacity here and we are going in a great direction. Now you may be wandering why isn't Chris naming his layers here. Well I am not naming my layers there because one of the things I like to do when I am doing something like this is to select all of these layers and group them.
So I am going to press the Shift key and click on all of those layers and then press Command G on a Mac, Ctrl G on a PC, look at my before and after and as I do that, I say hey I am going in a pretty good direction, it's a really nice way to be able to see those before and afters. Last thing that I want to do on this is the shadow I think is a little bit too intense up top. So I am going to create one more layer in this group and I am going to select my Clone Stamp Tool, blend mode to lighten, nice low opacity. You know I am just going to lighten this up, up top here, lighten it up all the way for that matter.
I am going to try to do this pretty subtly so I am going to work it from each side, going to work on the structure the face side because I don't want it to have that little divot and slowly remove this little by little, lower the opacity to bring that back. So we can dial in exact amount that we want there. I think it should be right about there. We don't want that rankle to be too strong, do we. Okay overall before and after, we have now successfully removed that strap from the image and we are good to go to the next movie.
- Removing distracting background elements
- Cleaning up small skin blemishes
- Reducing and removing wrinkles
- Softening and smoothing skin
- Adding and enhancing makeup
- Enhancing and enlivening eyes
- Brightening and whitening teeth
- Improving contrast and contour
- Adding body shape and dimension
- Cropping and composing a wedding portrait
- Improving portrait lighting