Susan Varnum discusses several ways to create a focus of attention in an image by using various techniques in Adobe Photoshop CC.
- [Instructor] So I'm going to start editing this image in Photoshop. And I'm in full screen mode to maximize the amount of screen real estate that I have. If your view looks a little bit different and you want to be in full screen mode just hit Shift + F to go in there. So Photoshop has been around for quite awhile and there are lots of different ways to approach editing images. I'm going to share with you my work flow, but keep in mind that there are lots of different ways to go about achieving similar results. I'm going to drag the background layer onto the new layer icon to make a copy. And then I'll just turn off the background layer.
It's just there for safekeeping. I also have the option of making this layer a smart object and then all these edits will be nondestructive. And of course if I want to reset my image, I can access the history panel where I can double-click on the top image icon and that's going to undo any edits that I've made. So case in point, there are lots of different ways to go about this. I'm going to go into the camera raw filter. And initially what I want to do is just increase the clarity and decrease the saturation and maybe pull down the exposure too.
So this is starting to have a nice effect just right in that area with the yellows going into the magentas. I'll pull down the shadows. See what happens when I pull down the whites if I like the way that looks. Not so much. I'm going to increase the clarity. And in addition to the clarity I'm actually going to go into effects and de-haze a little bit, but I'm going to be careful about this 'cause you don't want to overdo it. Your image will get crunchy. While I'm here I'm going to do a little bit of vignetting.
All right. I may take a look what happens if I pull down some of this vibrance. Pull down the saturation just a touch more. Maybe even make the exposure a little darker. All right I'm going to go ahead and say OK. I like some of those edits already. Take a look at where it was. Where it is now. It's already a little bit more dramatic. The next thing I want to do is accentuate the shape here on top of the pistol. I believe it's called the stigma. If you want to get technical.
So I'm going to duplicate this layer again, 'cause I want to make an edit that will only impact that one area and I'm going to click on the quick mask. I'm going to zoom in a bit, by hitting Command + and then I'm going to hit the space bar to get the pan tool and get this image where I want it. I'm going to hit the right bracket to make this brush a tiny bit bigger. Try painting. I don't see anything. So I'm going to go ahead and hit the X to swap my foreground and background colors. Now I see color. My brush is probably a little big. And I could also probably stand to zoom in just a bit.
So because I'm doing sharpening it doesn't have to go all the way specifically to the edges so I can be kind of loose with this mask. I do want to get the center area thoroughly. I'm going to make my brush a little smaller. Left bracket. All right so I went a little too far, so I'm going to hit the X key so I switch my colors. Now I'm painting with white. All right that's pretty good I think. Since I'm in the mask mode I'm just going to go ahead and filter, blur, Gaussian blur.
I could also do this by feathering the mask, but I just want to soften the edges a little bit so I don't have any hard edges. I'll say OK. Get out of the mask mode. I'm going to zoom out. Command -. Oh and it was a good thing I did because I actually have everything selected but the thing I want to edit, so I'm going to go select inverse, or Command + Shift + I. All right so now I have this, just that guy's selected. I'm going to hit unmask. And now I can do a correction on this layer. So I'm going to make sure that I'm selected on the image.
I'm going to go back to filter and camera raw filter, my favorite filter. I'm going to zoom in. I can see what I'm doin' here. I'm going to pull down the exposure a little bit more. Make it a little darker. I want to sharpen it. So I'll go into clarity. Pull down the shadows just a bit and the highlights. So I think that will emphasize it nicely. I'll say OK. And that is quite a change. Maybe it's a little too much change. I'll pull that back by adjusting the opacity of the layer.
You could also try blend modes, messing around to see how it will look blended, but I think it looks fine with the opacity just around 50%. So I'm doing these edits just so that I can share this on Instagram. So I'm going to go ahead and just save it as a JPEG, and I'm going to hop over onto an iPad and actually do my first edits in the Snapseed because that's such a powerful and easy way to edit it. Some of the same things are here in Photoshop, they're definitely there in Lightroom, but this is just a quick and easy workflow. So I'm going to go ahead and save file. Save as.
And make it a JPEG, call it purple flower. And then I'll just say save. I want it on the desktop. All right. And if I hop over to my desktop, I'm just going to share it with my iPad by control clicking on it, saying share. And using AirDrop. Make sure my iPad's on so it appears. And there's my iPad. I'm going to go ahead and send it there. And then I'll hop over onto the iPad to continue my edits.
On the iPad I'll accept the AirDrop so it'll go straight into my photos. And then we'll hop over into Snapseed to import the image.
First, brush up your botanical vocabulary. Then learn how to take your raw photos and start editing them into something more. Find out how to build texture, enhance color and tone, and direct focus to draw viewers into the areas you want to highlight. Susan switches between different apps on desktop and mobile, to show the strengths of each tool. Follow along to find the workflow that works best for you and your photographic style.
- Why we photograph flowers
- Editing to draw focus
- Enhancing texture and color
- Refining your story
- App hopping: Using the best tool
- Assessing your progress