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Library: Inside Photoshop

Browse through Inside Photoshop library to enhance your creativity

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Inside Photoshop, December 2014
 Inside Photoshop, December 2014 Issue


Create easy selections with Photoshop CC 2014's Focus Area command

Added on Tuesday 2nd of December 2014 03:50 am EST

by Amy Palermo

When you need to isolate an image from its background, the first step is to evaluate the image to consider the best tool for the job. New to Photoshop CC 2014 is a fantastic image selecting method-the Focus Area command. Using this command you can easily isolate the portion of an image that is in-focus from the rest of the image that is slightly blurred so you can use the image in your designs, as shown in Figure A.

Article figure image

Pick an image

The Focus Area command works best with an image in which there is an object that is more in-focus than the rest of the image. (If the entire image is in focus, you would be better off using a different selection method.) For example, in Figure A, the fact that the detailed flamingo is surrounded by a softer blue background makes the image a good candidate for this command.

Article figure image

If you have an image that meets these criteria you can use that to follow along as we explore the Focus Area command. To follow along with our example, download the file from the URL given at the beginning of this article, extract the file flamingo.jpg, launch Photoshop, and open the file shown as the Original image in Figure A.

Explore the Focus Area command

Choose Select > Focus Area to open the Focus Area dialog box shown in Figure B. When you first access this command, you will see a circle of rotating balls in the bottom left of the dialog box. This is due to Photoshop processing the selection based on the default settings. You can click OK and a



Create a strong focal point with selective color (CS4/CS5/CS6/CC/CC 2014)

Added on Tuesday 2nd of December 2014 03:59 am EST

by Renee Dustman

Oftentimes you'll want to draw viewers' attention to just a portion of your image. One way to enhance your image's focal point is to isolate that portion of your image's color. We've got a quick-and-easy technique you can use so that just the important elements of your photo really stand out, such as the barn shown inFigure A.

Figure A:


Create amazing light effects with your digital camera

Added on Tuesday 2nd of December 2014 04:05 am EST

by Amy Palermo

Tis' the season for having fun with your holiday lights! We've got a simple and fun way for you to create awesome light effects, as shown in Figure A. Sure, you can make bright trailing lights from scratch in Photoshop, but this method is quick and easy.

Figure A:

Improve layer selection with a simple adjustment

Added on Tuesday 2nd of December 2014 04:08 am EST

by Renee Dustman

That's the tricky thing about Photoshop-you can't just select a tool and go to work. You have to set up the tool the way you want it to work. The same goes for layers.

In your case, it sounds like the Auto Select Layer command is active in your document. You may


Lighten overly dark images with ease

Added on Tuesday 2nd of December 2014 04:11 am EST

by Amy Gebhardt

When faced with the challenge of lightening an overly dark image in Photoshop, there are numerous techniques you can use. However, for those instances when you have no time, we have the perfect tec


Avoid registration problems by obtaining overprint control

Added on Tuesday 2nd of December 2014 04:14 am EST

by Michelle Dick

Overprinting is the process of printing transparent inks on top of each other-as opposed to knocking out one color for another. For example, when you print cyan ink over yellow ink, the resulting overprint color is green. The order that the inks are printed and variations in the inks and paper can significantly affect the final print results.

For the most part, overprinting is primarily used for black,


Stand out from the pack with custom photo greeting cards

Added on Tuesday 2nd of December 2014 04:26 am EST

by Renee Dustman

The holiday season is a perfect time to extend best wishes to your family, clients, and colleagues with custom photo cards, like the one shown in Figure A. Just choose or design a background, add a favorite photo and a personalized greeting and you have a truly unique greeting card filled with heartfelt sentiment only you can express.

Figure A:
Article figure image

Easy as 1-2-3

Creating photo cards really is as easy as 1-2-3. To demonstrate, we'll create the card shown in Figure A using stock photos—feel free to draw from your own stockpile of images, though. Let's begin by creating a new document.

To create a new document:

  1. Launch Photoshop and press [command]N ([Ctrl]N in Windows) to display the New dialog box.
  2. Name your file Greeting_Card and set the document size to 4 inches wide by 6 inches high, with a resolution of 100 ppi, in RGB color mode.
  3. Click OK.

To design the background:

  1. Download our working files from the URL listed at the beginning of this article. (Images provided by PhotoSpin. Some images modified for educational purposes.)
  2. Choose File > Open in

Out of time? Use Match Color for a quick day to night conversion

Added on Tuesday 2nd of December 2014 04:42 am EST

by Amy Palermo

One way to quickly change the time of day in your image is with a quick color shift with the Match Color command. The Match Color command changes the colors in your source image to match the colors of another open image or a selection of the image. To start off, you’ll need two images: the target image you want to transform and the source image you want to pull colors from. To follow along with our example,


Achieve color consistency with the Match Color command

Added on Tuesday 2nd of December 2014 04:51 am EST

by Michelle Dick

There are three reasons why you might use the Match Color command. One is to remove a color cast from an image; the other is to make the colors in a series of images look consistent; the last is to match the color of a specific area to a selected area of another image.

  • To remove a color cast from a single image you can adjust tonal values within an image by adjusting its luminance and color intensity.
  • To adjust a series of photos for a consistent look requires using source and target images, which can be single images on separate layers or separate images.
  • To adjust the color of a specific area in an image, select the area in the source and apply the color values in that area to a selected area in the target.

Let's explore all of these options. We'll begin by explaining how to use the Match Color command to remove colorcasts from an image. To follow along with us, download the file from the URL given at the beginning of this article and extract the files golfer.jpg, pale.jpg, and tan.jpg. (Images provided by PhotoSpin. Some images modified for educational purposes.) To begin, we'll color correct the image golfer.jpg shown in Figure A. As you can see, the image has a green-yellow color cast to it that needs to be eliminated.

To correct the color of a single image using Color Match:

  1. Open the RGB image in Photoshop that is in need of color correcting (this feature is not available when working in CMYK mode).
  2. Choose Image > Adjustments > Match Color to disp

Juggle paths, filter effects, and color to create artistic masterpieces

Added on Tuesday 2nd of December 2014 05:00 am EST

by Jim Whitcomb

When creating a digital drawing, your first instinct might be to turn to Adobe Illustrator. But don't ignore Photoshop's drawing capabilities. Although the paths you use in Photoshop work somewhat differently than in Illustrator, they can be just as effective. Couple Photoshop paths with filter effects, and you can create exciting works of art, as shown in Figure A.

Figure A
Article figure image

Conceptualize your art

The process of creating a drawing begins with the end-that is, with the finished vision or concept. The concept is the idea or mood you want your drawing to convey. By identifying the concept first and working back to the beginning, you can plan which actions and effects in Photoshop you'll use to accomplish what look you're after.

Let's now outline a concept and then create a drawing. To follow along using our example, download the file from the URL given at the beginning of this article. Then extract the file juggler.jpg, launch Photoshop, and open the file. (Images provided by PhotoSpin. Some images modified for educational purposes.)

Plan your vision

Our concept is centered around a drawing of a circus juggler. We want the juggler to be under a bright spotlight so he appears almost monochromatic. To help achieve this effect, we'll fade the background to black. We want the drawing to have a loose, wet impasto look. To do this, we'll select, copy, and paste each major section of the image into a new layer using paths. We'll then apply a filter effect and paint each section. Finally, we'll use several paths to create a number of panel-knife-like strokes at the edges of several sections.

To prep the file:

  1. Open the downloaded file, shown in Figure B, and rename the Background layer Photo (thus unlocking the layer). Although we could use the existing colors in the photo as the basis for our drawing, the colors are so far from our concept that it will be easier to work with a monochromatic image. So, let's now discard the color information.
  2. Select Image > Adjustments > Channel Mixer.
  3. Select the Monochrome check box to convert the image to grayscale values, as shown in Figure C, and click OK. Now we're ready to outline each section of our drawing using paths.

Figure B
Article figure image

Figure C