Sure, Johnny Depp is cool. Sure, Johnny Depp is versatile. But if you are a Photoshop Elements user, did you know that Graffi’s Handy Actions are even cooler than Johnny Depp? Read more →
We’ve all been that fortunate situation where almost every element of a photograph comes together; the composition, the landscape, the lighting, the subject.
But there’s just one thing holding the picture back; the sky. And unfortunately it’s completely out of your control. Or is it?
If you have a photograph that’s let down by a flat, boring or dull sky, it is within your control to replace it with skies that are more sympathetic to the rest of your image, creating a more eye-popping shot.
The below tutorials will ensure that you have the ability to make the dull skies that plague your photography a thing of the past
For those who have Photoshop CS4 or CS5, this five minute video tutorial is your step-by-step guide to replacing a burnt-out sky that lacks detail.
David Peterson is a man who understands how disheartening it can be to have an otherwise good landscape shot let down by a sky that has no punch. In this tutorial he shows you how it can be replaced with a more interesting sky in Photoshop Elements.
This official Adobe tutorial presented by Richard Harrington details how to replace blown out skies with an alternate backdrop. In order to make it look realistic, Richard also demonstrates how to apply colour spill to bring out details and ensure that the composite matches.
The post 12 photo editing tutorials for replacing dull skies appeared first on PhotoVenture.
[syndicated from PhotoVenture]
Sometimes you get that photo that is almost perfect. If all it takes to make it great is a little head swap, well, today is your lucky day! I’m going to show you two techniques, for quick and easy head swapping. I’ve even included a demo video at the end, if you want to watch the tips in action. I am using Photoshop CS6 for this demonstration. If you are using a different editing program, these methods may not work for you. If you are using an older version of Photoshop, the techniques should work the same, but your screen may look slightly different.
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Select the Clone Stamp tool from the Toolbar. You can press the S key for a shortcut to take you straight there. Go to the Options bar and click on the Brush preview thumbnail. Set the tool to a Diameter that’s just larger than the subject you want to clone. Reduce Hardness to 0% for a softer edge.
Keep Opacity set to 100% and tick Aligned. This enables you to paint the cloned subject to any area of the image. Make sure Sample is set to All Layers to account for any new layers. With this set, add a new layer above the Background.
To use the tool to create a clone of the subject, press Alt/Opt and click on the part of the subject you want to clone. Release Alt/Opt and then paint the subject back in to a different area.
Once your subject has been completely cloned to the new position, go to Edit>Transform>Flip Horizontal to mirror the subject. Rotate it slightly for variation using Edit>Free Transform and dragging the corner points around.
To smarten up the edges of the subject, add a layer mask (Layer>Layer Mask>Reveal All). Now use the Brush tool set to black to remove the rough edges and reveal the background around the subject.
[this post syndicated from Photoshop Daily]
Download ‘Creative Shadows.jpg‘. This is going to form the shadow of the effect. Notice how the bottom of the sword’s handle is missing. We can bring this back in later. Select the Quick Selection tool, or if this isn’t part of your Photoshop inventory, use the Magic Wand instead.
The Quick Selection tool works by dragging the selection over the area you want to keep or get rid of. Start with the legs of the model and drag upwards to the head in one motion. You can continue this selection over the arms as well if they weren’t picked up the first time round.
The sword will need to be included in this selection too. Change the size of the Quick Selection tool to 20px (use your square bracket keys to adjust brush size quickly). Gradually work the selection to the tip of the sword. If you go outside the area, hold down Alt/Opt and click to remove mistakes.
The selection so far would have missed the small triangle between the model’s arms. Hold Alt/Opt and drag the selection in this area. Press Q to activate the Quick Mask mode to check the accuracy. Use the Eraser and Brush tools to edit the Quick Mask mode to touch up the areas and then press Q to return to your image.
Press W to keep the selection tool active, Ctrl/right-click inside the selection you made and choose Make Work Path from the list. Hit OK in the pop-up box while keeping Tolerance set to 0.5. The marching ants are now a solid path around the model, ready to be saved as a custom shape.
Go to Edit>Define Custom Shape to set this path as a shape. In the pop-up box give this shape a name and hit OK to save it. You can check to see if this has saved it by going to the Custom Shape tool (U) and into the Options bar. Look in the bottom of the Shape thumbnails list.
Open your image of a portrait and select the Custom Shape tool. You’ll have to make sure your Foreground swatch is set to black. You can do this by either clicking on the square at the bottom of the Toolbar, or by pressing D on your keyboard.
Choose the shape we just made from the list of silhouettes in the Options bar. The martial artist should be the last one in the group. Holding Shift, click and drag the shape onto the image next to the person. The shape should roughly be the same size as your subject.
Press Ctrl/Cmd+T to activate the Free Transform boundary. Rotate the shape into position and go to Edit>Transform Path and select the Perspective option. You can drag the corners of the box to add perspective and to lay the shape on to the ground so it looks like the shadow of the person.
Go to the Filter menu and down to Blur>Gaussian Blur. Hit OK in the dialog box, which will rasterise the shape layer before the filter is opened. Adjust the Radius slider until it reads 8px. This will soften the outline of the shadow. Hit OK and then reduce the layer’s Opacity down to 50% in the Layers palette to make it more transparent.
You may have some of the shadow covering your person. Click on the Background layer and use the Quick Selection tool to select areas of your main subject with shadow on. Click back on the shadow’s layer and press Ctrl/Cmd+Shift+I to inverse the selection. Add a layer mask to hide the areas of shadow going over your person.
[this post syndicated from Photoshop Daily]
Dani Diamond of Fstoppers recently shared a pretty quick and clever way to removing those dark patches you have under the eyes of your subjects. Ignoring the commonly used patch tool, Dodge/Burn tool and Clone tool which either copy the texture as well as the color or smudging the texture altogether. Instead, Dani opts to…
[post syndicated from DIY Photography Net]
Some of the original tutorial files are from iStockphoto.com. We have provided a link to these images in the word doc below, but have also compiled a list of free images that we think would be good substitutes.
Cut and paste the head of a frog onto the body of another with the Lasso tool to create a composition you are happy with. There is no need to finely blend the sources together, as this is just a mockup of the creation and none of the initial frog will be visible upon completion.
Use the Pen tool to create shapes around all the segments of the frog’s body. Set your Foreground colour to match one of the segments, Ctrl/right-click and choose Fill Path on a new layer. Continue this for all the segments, creating a new layer for each.
Import the fabric texture onto the canvas directly on top of one of your segment layers. We started with the red section of the right eye for this example. Drop the Opacity of the layer to 50% so you can see your guide underneath, and use the Free Transform (Ctrl/Cmd+T) to set the rough angle of the fabric.
Select Edit>Transform>Warp to transform the texture to fit the contour of the shape. To create the spherical shape of the eye, drag points from the middle of the warped segment and dragged outwards. Pulling nodes from the corners inwards also help to round out the edges.
Ctrl/Cmd-click the thumbnail of the eye’s layer to create a selection of the eye. Then, with the texture layer selected, press Shift+Ctrl/Cmd+I to invert the selection and Ctrl/Cmd+X to isolate the shape on the Texture layer. Set this layer’s blend mode to Overlay and increase the Contrast (Image>Adjustments>Brightness/Contrast) to 56.
Hand paint the shadows and highlights to add depth and realism to the seams between fabric segments. Ctrl/Cmd-click the thumbnail on the shape layer and create a new one above the texture layer with the base shape as your selection. Use a soft black brush at low opacity and paint in strokes of shadows around the edges, then use a white brush to paint a highlight spot in the centre.
We wanted to add a seam across the eye, so we made the seam using the Pen tool and stroked a 3px black line across the surface. Using the Smudge tool with Strength set to 60%, soften the edge by dragging the tool across the contour and spreading it at the ends.
Instead of using stock images, we drew the stitches from scratch. To do this, draw the shapes with the Pen tool and fill it with a light colour (#c6a757). Then shade it the same way as you did for the eye. Add a darker shadow edge at the two ends of the stitch to indicate the thread being embedded into the surface at these points.
Creating the smaller stitches requires a different, albeit similar, technique. Create a selection from the segment you want to apply the stitch to, then choose Select>Modify>Contract and shrink the selection by 3px. On a new layer, apply an inside Stroke (Edit>Stroke) of a light shade at 2px.
Using a hard Eraser tool at 100% Opacity, erase spaces between the stitches to create the appearance of the edge seams. Create a selection from the thread and fill it in black on a new layer below your stitches. Deselect the layer and apply a Gaussian Blur of 2px.
We added a torn portion to the figure for an extra visual. To do so, draw and shade the stitches from Step 8. To fray the edges, select a 2px Smudge tool with a hard edge and Strength set to 80%, then pull out small individual fibres from the ends.
[this post syndicated from Photoshop Daily]