Creating a perfect selection of clouds in Photoshop can be a real challenge. They're fuzzy and have no well defined edge in most cases. How do you create a good selection (or layer mask) in this case, for example, in order to process the blue sky and the white clouds differently? In this video tutorial, I'll show you a technique for achieving this. We will use Photoshop's Channels panel to create a base mask. Then I will use the Brush tool in overlay mode to work on the mask and make the blue sky parts darker and the clouds brighter. Bit by bit, we will get a perfect mask that allows us to apply selective editing to the sky.
Being able to create precise selections of objects, even if they have fuzzy edges is of major importance in Photoshop. You're not only going to need this ability if you want to create a composite image (two or more images blended together). It's also super helpful for selective editing where you apply different adjustments to the different objects in your images. No matter which method you're using to make your selections, the Refine Edge tool is your universal weapon for cleaning the edges of complex selections. However, when you open the tool for the first time, it may not be intuitive to use. In this article, I will show you how three Photoshop masters use Refine Edge in their Photoshop workflow.
Digital blending is a set of techniques that allow you to combine different versions of the same image (or different images) into one. The final image is created by revealing and hiding different parts of each layer. These techniques typically involve using layer masks and varying techniques for manipulating them. However, there are also techniques that do not rely on masks at all. In this article, you will learn a set of basic digital blending techniques that allow you to deal with most situations in which you need to blend layers.
Blending your photos with a texture can breathe a whole new kind of life into your images. Textures add interesting structure to an image and they turn them into pieces of art that are somewhere between a painting and a photograph. In fact, texturing, when done right, can turn photos into beautiful art that would otherwise have ended up in your trash bin. But as Nicole S. Young explains at the beginning of her book, not all photos lend themselves for being combined with a texture, and not all textures work with a given photo. Moreover, texturing a photo requires more work than just adding two images on top of each other and setting the blending mode in Photoshop. This is a fascinating area of photographic post-processing, and with this book Nicole provides a great guide to anybody who would like to try their hand at these techniques.
In landscape photography, you often need to process the sky separately from the rest of your image, for example to give it more color and definition. But selecting the sky in a complex scene can be really difficult. You have to deal with all kinds of objects that you need to exclude, like trees that create extremely complex shapes. In this video tutorial, I'll show you how to create a perfect selection of the sky in these situations using Photoshop's Channels palette.
Layers and the blending of layers is the defining characteristics of Photoshop. Stacking different layers on top of each other and blending them together gives you all the power to create whichever look you want. But if you are only relying on layer masks to blend your layers, you are missing a very important aspect of Photoshop: Blending modes. Blending modes allow you to combine layers in much more complex and powerful ways than just changing their opacity. This opens the door to many very advanced techniques. In the featured videos in this article, you will learn how to unlock those techniques.
Over the years, different software solutions for creating an HDR image from a set of source exposures have emerged. First, it was Photomatix and other dedicated software tools that where mainly used. In parallel, people always used to do manual blending for more subtle results. Then HDR was added to Photoshop and with Lightroom CC/6, it was finally possible to merge your source exposures directly in Lightroom. In this article, you will get an overview of the most commonly used methods and techniques. They are quite diverse and can be used to achieve different types of results, ranging from a classical colorful, detail-rich HDR look to very subtle and natural looking images.
In a perfect world, there would be nothing disturbing the flawless look of your subject and its beautiful surroundings. Nothing would distract the viewers from enjoying the things you actually want to show them. But if you've taken a photo or two yourself, you know that the world if often pretty far away from perfect. Usually, when the composition is just right, there is something distracting in the photo. Sometimes you realize it but accept it since everything else looks great. On other occasions, you only notice it when you're back on your computer and inspect the images. In order to save images in these cases, you need some solid cloning skills to be able to remove those distracting elements from your photos. And you also need to have good knowledge about which type of distractions you are able to remove and which ones are problematic because removing them will leave telltale signs. In this featured video, Aaron Nace shows you a bunch of techniques for removing (almost) anything from your images.
Digital blending is the essence of working with Photoshop, and learning how to blend different layers into one coherent image may seem like a chore to you. But it really is the essential skill you need to acquire if you want to be good at editing your images. Luminosity masks are a very quick and elegant way of creating perfect masks based on the tonality in your images. They let you work on highlights, midtones and shadows separately and can help you achieve a well-balanced exposure throughout the entire image. In this video course, Jimmy McIntyre shows you everything you need to know about creating and using luminosity masks for blending different types of images.
When you photograph into the sun, you often have areas in your image that lack color and look washed out due to the sun overpowering those regions. Getting the color and saturation back in those areas can be quite hard. If you simply increase the saturation, you'll get a wash of colors that do not resemble those that you saw at the actual scene. In this video tutorial, I'll show you how to use a Photo Filter layer in Photoshop to bring back color into theses regions. This technique also works in other situations where color is lacking in some areas of your image.
Have you ever dreamed of shooting with a megapixel monster camera and get images upwards of 50 Megapixel? Of course, these cameras are really expensive which means that they're out of reach for most of us, right? While that's true, there is a technique that allows you to create ultra-high resolution images even with an ordinary, entry-level camera. It's called Superresolution, and it's mostly done in post-production. In this featured video tutorial, Ian Normal shows you how to do this. With his 24 Mpx camera, he creates a series of 20 photos of the same scene and merges them together in Photoshop such that the combined image actually has 94 Mpx of resolution.
Enhancing the details in your images is one aspect of your editing work that Photoshop traditionally does not excel in. That's why numerous plugins have been created that you can use from within Photoshop to increase mid-tone contrast and enhance the edges in your image. In the video below, I'll be showing you a simple technique for doing this right from within Photoshop without requiring any plugin. This technique gives you lots of control over the details in your images without having to buy, install and fire up a plugin each time. You also get to change the strength of the effect in isolation, independently from the rest of the pixels which is a big bonus over the use of plugins that typically create an entire new image layer with the effects backed in.
You may have heard of this technique called frequency separation where you magically separate the details in your image from the colors and tones to be able to manipulate both independently, right? It's used a lot in skin retouching, and it really gives you incredible flexibility. Variants of this technique are also used in landscape and architecture photography to really accentuate the details of an image without introducing artifacts like halos. In this featured video, David Biedny explains the technique and really shows you what it all means. This is the best tutorial on frequency separation I've seen to date. It really empowers you to make this powerful technique your own and use it to fit your photography.
I know this is crazy and I shouldn't really do it, but I'm going to do it anyway. As a personal bonus for those of you who purchase the upcoming Complete Photography Bundle through the link http://frb.li/5dd, I have something very special. I will give away my yet to be released Personal Workflow Video Courses for Lightroom and Photoshop to you... for free!
I bet you love long exposure photos. Who doesn't? But sometimes you discover just after you're back at your computer that a particular scene would have made for a great long exposure. Maybe you just did not realize it while you were at the location, maybe you had no ND filter with you to get those nice long shutter speeds and create a long exposure. Bummer! But maybe not all is lost here... In this featured video tutorial, Blake Rudis shows you how you can still create a long exposure effect in Photoshop from a regular (short exposure) photograph.
Digital blending is a technique by which you blend selected regions of one photo with regions from another photo to combine the best aspects of both images. Of course, this is also possible for set of more than two images. One typical use case is manual HDR where you blend the well-exposed areas of each photo in a bracketed series of shots. But digital blending techniques are not only applicable to multiple exposures. While that's usually how these techniques are used, you can actually use the same technique to blend a single photo with itself, or rather, with a different version of itself. In the video below, Jimmy McIntyre shows you the basics of this technique.
In Photoshop, there are many different techniques to dodge and burn an image. You may know the Dodge and the Burn tools that let you work directly on an image layer to darken or light areas selectively. The problem with the direct application of these tools is that they are destructive. This means, they directly change the image pixels and you cannot really undo or change them once they are applied. In this article, you will learn 4 different techniques by Photoshop masters for actually applying dodging and burning non-destructively. These are very important skills that will make your workflow faster, more flexible, and more robust, no matter which type of photography you are into.
You may have stumbled across the Blend-If controls in the Layer Style dialog box in Photoshop. But chances are that you did not even notice them, let alone recognized that they are actually a very powerful tool. Blend-If is one of those tools that is not self-explanatory and that does not make you want to use it straight away. The reason is that, by itself, it does not do a lot other than letting you select a range of tones where the layer and the layer below are going to be blended together. Sounds cryptic? Watch the two videos in this post to gain some insights into this tool.
The Orton effect is visual effect that you can apply to your images to give them a nice glowing appearance. When Michael Orton invented this look, he would take two film slides - one in focus, the other one out of focus - and blend them. Today, applying this effect in Photoshop is quick and easy. In the video below, Jimmy McIntyre demonstrates how to do it by creating a duplicate of your images layer, setting the right blend mode and applying some Gaussian blur.
Creating an interior panorama does not only require great precision when you shoot the source images - it also requires some advanced techniques for stitching and post-processing the final panorama image. The close proximity of the different elements in the interior to your lens and the geometry of most interiors reveal even small mistakes in this process. In this video tutorial, I will show you how to correct these mistakes by using powerful techniques for transforming and cropping your final image. You will learn how to create perfect interior panoramas - images that you can be proud of. The techniques will even work for single images.