Adobe Photoshop® techniques 1
The Light's Right Digital Darkroom tips
low key lighting effect - if you have lots of time to play!
TLR sharpening toolkit - free PS actions to download
improve your photos by using the color palette of classical painters
retouching AE bracketed seascapes:
RAW conversion in PS CS2 by default has an auto mode that stuffs up your creative images - turn it off
http://mikedubu.smugmug.com/Photoshop-Actions/ - nice range of mattes, artistic effects
acceptable use of PS for publishing:
for digital IR post-processing see infra-red photography
http://www.lucisart.com/ - 8 bit only
Optikverve - 8 bit only
Converting a color image to B&W options:
simplest is to use Image:Adjustments:Desaturate but this does not allow you to optimise your image from the color data such as creating effects that one would get by using a color filter on a camera lens when using B&W film.
next easiest option that allows experimenting with color channels is Image:Adjustments:Channel Mixer and tick the monochrome checkbox and then play with the channel sliders for desired effect, but remember, boosting a channel, especially the blue channel will increase noise in the shadow regions.
using a plugin such Optikverve's - but only works in 8 bit mode.
using layers to fine tune such as via Russell Brown's technique which essentially involves:
create a Hue/Saturation layer via Layer:New Adjustment Layer:Hue/Saturation name this Filter
create a second Hue/Saturation layer via Layer:New Adjustment Layer:Hue/Saturation name this Film and set Saturation to -100%
set the blending mode of the "filter" layer to "Color"
open the Hue/Saturation dialog of the "Filter" layer and adjust via Layer:Change layer Content:Hue/Saturation and play with hue - try also selecting just one channel to adjust
finally flatten image to one layer via Layer:Flatten Image
Adding realistic film grain:
also PS actions for replicating film here
Simulating a polariser filter on the sky:
open the photograph you want to fix.
create a layer (Layer 1) with a linear gradient from black to transparent starting from the top and finishing to the horizon
set it to Soft Light mode.
create an adjustment layer - in "selective colour options" setting blue and cyan at these settings:
on the Cyans setting set: Cyan +54%, Magenta +61%, Yellow 0%, Black 0%
on the Blues setting set: Cyan +63%, Magenta +63%, Yellow 26%, Black 100%
finally you create a mask so that this layer acts only above the horizon. This does not help intensify the reflections of the sky in water though.
Image:Adjustments:Selective color and add +20% black to each of cyan and white colors
Adding catchlights to eyes:
Catchlights in either the 1 o'clock or 11 o'clock position in the eyes of your subject are desirable.
Start with a separate layer over the main image layer, zoom in the get a real good closeup view of one eye, use the lasso tool (with NO feathering) to draw a catchlight shape, which is usually a slightly distorted rectangle or umbrella shape, use EDIT>FILL (make sure white is your foreground color).
Now duplicate this layer, select the move tool, and position the dupe layer over the other eye (exact same orientation as the first one). Link the two together.
Now this is the key:
lower the opacity of both layers until it looks natural. Having everything on separate layers apart from the main image means you can use trial and error to change or redo things until they are the way you like.
From the bottom to the top layer:
2. Impressionistic Detailed Pencil Sketch Monochrome (Multiply 71% Opacity)
3. Impressionistic Charcoal on Yellow (Overlay 80% Opacity)
4. Impressionistic Watercolor Damp Translucent (Normal 49% Opacity)
From bottom to top (all layers are copies of the background)
2. Impressionistic Pencil Sketch Detailed Monochrome (overlay 81% Opacity)
3. Impressionistic Paint Fine Hair Brush (Overlay 88%)
4. Impressionistic Paint Fine Hair Brush (Multiply 75%)
5. Eyecandy Swirl (Multiply 58%)
6. Impressionistic Paint Eggshell Cracquelique (Overlay 60%)
7. Impressionistic Paint Eggshell Cracquelique - 25% brush size (Multiply 35%)
8. Lucis Klimpt 51% slide (Normal 55% Opacity, 33% fill)
see http://www.pbase.com/image/44068873 and other pics
layers, bottom to top (all layers copies of the background
1. Background (IsoX, IntellisharpenII, Nik Soft Gold reflector)
2. Impressionistic Detailed Pencil Sketch Monochrome (Overlay 48% Opacity)
3. Impressionistic Paint Fine Brush Hair (Normal 39%)
4. Impressionistic Paint Eggshell Cracquelique (Overlay 42%)
Creating an out of bounds framed 3D effect:
Replacing the sky in a landscape photo:
select a sky image
Adjust the size to match that of your original landscape picture.
"Select all" with your sky image, then "edit-copy." Paste it onto your original image. It will now be in the top layer, whereas we want it in the bottom one. Double click on the background layer, and it will be renamed "layer 0" and can now be dragged to the top.
We want now to select the original sky area. Normally the Magic Wand tool can do this quite well - try using a tolerance of 16 and keep shift clicking on the sky till it is all selected.
go to Select-Modify -Expand-2 pixels. This ensures that none of the original sky is left. To make the join less obvious, feather by 2 pixels. Next press the "Delete" key. The old sky is now deleted, leaving a very unconvincing new one. The tops of buildings on distance hills look unnaturally bright, as they have been lit by the old white sky. The next step cures this.
With the sky area still selected, and the top layer active, go to select-feather and set a radius of 100. Then go to Image-Adjust-Levels. Move the bottom slider to the left. You will see the horizon darkening as you do this. Keep going till you achieve a natural looking balance between the sky and the foreground.
Sometimes the lighting is uneven, so the horizon is brighter on one side of the picture than the other. This is easily fixed. Follow the instructions above up to but not including the levels adjustment. Immediately after feathering, press the keyboard letter "q" to bring up the "Quick Mask" mode. Press "d" to set the default colours of black and white, then do a gradient fill in the selected area starting where you want least darkening and ending where you want most. Press "q" again to exit the quick mask mode and apply the levels adjustment as before. This time the adjustment will be more effective at one side than the other, correcting any uneven lighting.
As a final touch, remember that skies are always less saturated near the horizon, so check to see if your new sky looks like this. If not, go to your sky layer and do a gradient fill, with the gradient mode set to "Saturation." The foreground can be any fully saturated colour, and the background black or white. If the effect is excessive, just go to "Edit-Fade Gradient" and adjust to suit."
Click on the foreground color and choose a light grey
Menu Line => Layer =>New Fill Layer => Gradient
In the dialogbox, enter the angle for the preferred degrees - eg. 90, 100%, Linear and Align with layer . Click OK.
go to Layers palette, change Blending Mode to Screen
to remove parts of the fog, go to Tools menu => Eraser Tool and erase areas of fog you don't want
consider making blue sky a more neutral grey, Menu line => Image => Adjustment =>Replace Color then click on sky and adjust fuzziness until all sky is bright and subject is black. Set saturation to -100.
consider adding sunlight rays, Menu Line => Filter => Render => Lighting Effects
finally, flatten, adjust levels and apply unsharp mask as necessary.
Removing purple fringing:
purple fringing on digital photos is caused by a combination of effects of the lens/sensor system including:
blooming - when a photocell becomes over-saturated by light (including IR which mainly effects red and blue sites), the resulting electrical charge overflows into adjacent photodiodes, which lose their ability to record a signal that is proportional to the incoming light they receive. Most modern sensors have anti-blooming gates so this should not be the main cause.
chromatic aberration of sensor microlenses - high intensity light hitting the photocell's microlens may divert some light to adjacent microlenses.
chromatic aberration of lenses may occur in images taken with under-corrected telephoto zoom lenses in particular, and these will show on film or digital with these lenses. Usually there will also be borders between light and dark which show green fringes. You may need to check a slide or negative with a microscope to see these fringes.
purple fringing can be minimised by:
using lenses designed for digital
using a smaller aperture
avoiding backlit situations (eg. cloudy days with leaves against sky) or highly specular reflections
removing purple fringing in PS:
fortunately, the color range within the fringe is fairly narrow so we can select that colour range and desaturate it without affecting other image elements too much, mind you, you will still have the "bleeding" into shadow areas but at least it will be neutral.
use the Image:Adjustments:HSL tool
select Blue or Magenta in dropdown box at the top
use the left eye dropper and click on the purple fringing
decrease saturation to -60 to -80
you may need to repeat this again on another area of fringing if some remains
this usually is all you need but some may prefer to select the area concerned first to avoid modifying areas not affected by it.
Removing chromatic aberration:
this is usually easiest done in PS RAW conversion where there is a tool designed to do this.
obviously, you could just use Image:Adjustments:HSL tool and increase saturation, but perhaps try this method:
Make a duplicate layer.
To the duplicate layer:
Hue/Saturation/Lightness: saturation up 70
Gaussian Blur: 6 pixels
Set Layer Blend Mode: Saturation
Change Opacity to suit (try 20-40%)
Creating a cross-processing look:
The basic rule of thumb is to raise the red and green in the highlights, and to drop the red and green in the shadows. The reverse is true in the blue channel.
then consider adding even more contrast.
Creating a page curl:
Creating a grunge look:
Dave Hill effect: