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Library: Inside Photoshop

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Inside Photoshop, February 2015
 Inside Photoshop, February 2015 Issue


Give your digital photos classic appeal

Added on Monday 9th of February 2015 04:01 am EST

Not everything you do in Photoshop has to be glitter and glam. Sepia tints, vignettes, and simple edge effects are a few ways you can enhance your photos with a classic look. Follow along and we’ll show you another great way to give your images a boost. And, as shown in Figure A, you won’t take anything away from your photo’s intrinsic charm.

Figure A: BEFORE
Article figure image

Article figure image

Grab a photo

You can use any photo for this technique but we chose to focus on photographs of people. So many artistic techniques modify the character in portraits. This one, on the other hand, lends itself to retaining that character. To follow along with our example, download the file from the URL given at the beginning of this article, extract the file baseball.jpg, launch Photoshop, and open the file shown in Figure B. (Images provided by PhotoSpin. Some images modified for educational purposes.)

Figure B:
Article figure image

Set up the document

For this technique you’ll need to create a duplicate of the original image and modify that duplicate. So to begin we’ll set up the duplicate file and make those modifications.

Figure C:
Article figure image

To create a duplicate file:<



3 easy shadow techniques to enhance your images

Added on Monday 9th of February 2015 04:08 am EST

Legend has it that every February 2nd the groundhog comes out of his burrow, and if he sees his shadow he fearfully retreats back in—giving us six more weeks of winter. Thankfully, you don’t have to fear shadows in Photoshop—or the groundhog’s lousy prognostications. Instead, embrace these three amazingly easy techniques when working with shadows, and you’ll both give your images a dramatic boost and gain greater flexibility when editing your images.

#1: Inner Shadow Vignette

The Inner Shadow layer style is popular for text effects, but it has some other hidden talents as well. Specifically, you can create an amazingly quick and easy vignette with this handy layer style. A vignette is a photographic technique where the image fades into the background. With the Inner Shadow layer style you can create an easy vignette with a fade to black, giving your image a dramatic border and drawing your eye to the primary focal point, in this case, an image of a bird.

To create a vignette with an Inner Shadow:

  1. Open the file bird.psd, as shown in Figure A, or open another image with which to work.
  2. Double-click on the layer and click OK in the resulting dialog bo


Easily create a magnifying glass effect using the Liquify command

Added on Monday 9th of February 2015 04:10 am EST

There you are with your favorite newspaper or magazine in hand, casually browsing down the page and you come across a map. Adjacent to the map is a magnifying glass graphic showing an enlargement of a map detail, as shown in Figure A. Did you ever wonder how the newspaper created the magnifying glass effect? Did a photographer actually take a photo of a magnifying glass positioned over the map? Maybe at one time the newspaper did it that way. But nowadays, there’s no need to drag out the studio camera and lights. You can easily create the very same magnifying glass effect with Photoshop using the Liquify command and the Bloat tool.

Figure A:
Article figure image

Open the map image and select an area to enlarge

To follow along using our examples, download the file from the URL given at the beginning of this article and extract the files map.jpg and Magnifying_glass.jpg. (Images provided by PhotoSpin. Some images modified for educational purposes.) Then, launch Photoshop, choose File > Open, and when the Open dialog box opens, navigate to the folder in which you’ve stored the map.jpg file, and click Open.

Select a map section

The map is of the New England area of the United States, as shown in Figure B1, and we want to enlarge the Boston area, which we’ll do with the Rectangular Marquee tool and the Transform command. Choose the Rectangular Marquee tool from the Tools panel, and select a section of the map that centers on the Boston area, as shown in Figure B2. Select a section that is larger than you need, so it more than fits inside the magnifying glass lens. Now, press [command]C ([Ctrl]C in Windows) to copy your selection, and then press [command]V ([Ctrl]V in Windows) to paste it into a new layer. Double-click on Layer 1’s name in the Layers panel, and enter Boston Cape Cod in the Layer Name text box, and click OK.

Figure B:
Article figure image

Article figure image

Article figure image

Enlarge the map section

Next, we want to enlarge the map section about 200%. Choose Edit > Transform > Scale. On the tool options bar, enter 200% in the W text box and 200% in the H text box, for results shown Figure B3, and then press [enter]. The enlarged selection appears off of your canvas, but we’ll adjust that a little later.

Open, select, copy, and paste the magnifying glass image

Now we want to open the magnifying glass image and then copy and paste it into our map image. Choose File > Open, and when the Open dialog box opens, navigate to the folder where you’ve stored the Magnifying_glass.jpg, and click Open.

Select the magnifying glass area

Although we could select and then copy and paste the entire rectangular imag



Fix high contrast photos while maintaining the lighting ratio

Added on Monday 9th of February 2015 04:11 am EST

Have you ever taken a picture directly in front of a window? If so, and you didn’t use a flash or fill-flash to reduce the lighting ratios, then your final print was probably less than desirable. Because of b lighting and very dark shadows anything located in front of the window will be silhouetted. However, with a little help from Photoshop you can fix the tonal values of your image bringing a dark foreground into the light, as shown in Figure A.

Figure A: BEFORE
Article figure image

Article figure image

Making a negative

To begin, open an image that you want to retouch in Photoshop. Then, make a separate copy of the image by choosing Image > Duplicate. In the resulting Duplicate Image dialog box name your new document Negative and click OK.

With your new document open, change its mode to Grayscale. To do so, choose Image Mode > Grayscale. If, at this point, an Adobe Photoshop dialog box displays asking to Discard Color Information click OK. Now, choose Image > Adjustments > Invert to create a negative image, as sho



Trace the line contour in an image to enhance detail

Added on Monday 9th of February 2015 04:12 am EST

You’re not alone; many folks don’t understand image sharpening. Sharpening an image properly requires skill and careful observation. Even when done well, there can be drawbacks to the standard sharpening techniques. By the same token, you may not need to sharpen an entire image. Sometimes only certain details need enhancement.

When the average viewer looks at an image, he unconsciously notices its sharpness (or lack thereof) by viewing a few key areas in the image, such as a person’s eyes or the edges of an object. If the eyes appear to be in focus, then the rest of the face becomes acceptably sharp. There are other ways to enhance details in an image without using sharpening. One simple drawing technique is to add fine lines to enhance edge contrast. For example, compare the images shown in Figure A. You can see that the After image has more detail and the colors seem slightly enhanced. Now here’s our confession: we applied neither sharpening nor color adjustment to the image.

Figure A:
Article figure image

Article figure image

Stay in line



Here's a quick way to age a photo

Added on Monday 9th of February 2015 04:13 am EST

There are times when adding years of wear and tear to a photo brings a special visual interest to your project. And, although it may seem a simple process of desaturating a color image and adding a yellowish cast, that approach doesn’t always produce the most convincing results.

Use these tips the next time you need a retro look. For the purposes of this example, we’ll go back to the early days of full-color photography in popular consumer magazines.



    Make an incredible collage in minutes

    Added on Monday 9th of February 2015 04:14 am EST

    Don’t worry if you don’t have much time because we have the perfect technique for you. (Just don’t tell your boss about this one!)

    For quick collages, such as the one shown in Figure A, just open two images in Photoshop that you wa



    Here's the fastest way to duplicate a layer (Photoshop CS4/CS5/CS6/CC/CC 2014)

    Added on Monday 9th of February 2015 04:15 am EST

    You can click and drag a layer to the Create A New Layer button at the base of the Layers panel to create a duplicate of



    Darken your overexposed photos with this quick fix (CS4/CS5/CS6/CC/CC 2014)

    Added on Monday 9th of February 2015 04:15 am EST

    A common problem of shots taken with a digital camera is overexposure – when the shot looks too light and colors are washed out. You could try to adjust Photoshop&rsquo



    Scaling a rectangular marquee selection (CS4/CS5/CS6/CC/CC 2014)

    Added on Monday 9th of February 2015 04:16 am EST

    There’s more to the Rectangular Marquee tool than meets the eye. Select it from the Tools panel, and then just click the appropriate button on the tool options bar to create a new selection, add to a selection, delete a selection, or intersect with another selection, as shown in Figure A. To smooth the edges of a selection, enter a pixel value in the Feather text box. Your only other option is to choose