A FEW FUN PHOTOSHOP TIPS!
This week I am just adding a few little topics for a change and I hope you will find something useful in them. Enjoy!
The Trapeze Artist! Creating a Simple Painterly Border
I just had to post this little Cloudless Sulphur Butterfly hanging almost upside down in a breeze on one of my pink pentas – it was amazing to watch! This image was really cropped down tight in Lightroom to focus in on the butterfly. Her body, legs and antennae were sharpened using the Adjustment Brush. Besides the basic tone adjustments, a Lightroom preset I created from David duChemin’s older Refining Your Vision in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom book (still a great read) that I call “duChemin Classic India” preset was applied. It contains just the Split Toning Panel using these slider settings: Highlights Hue 50 and Saturation 60, and Shadows Hue 266 and Saturation 35. It creates a really nice soft feel and I have used it many times. I love the simple things! In Photoshop I added Isabella Lafrance’s Facebook overlay called Bedrock set to Hard Light blend mode at 100% layer opacity that can be downloaded under her Freebies tab. I think her overlays are some of the best around! In a Layer Mask, the butterfly was painted back to make it sharper.
Okay – I cheated when making the light pink painterly border (not the sharp edge border on the outside) and took the next few steps directly from Creative Live’s 30 Days with Dave Cross – Day 7 on Layer Masks that had been running around the clock. Love this website and love Dave Cross! This process is a very “simple to do” look. A composite layer was placed on top (CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+E). Next a New Layer was created and placed underneath the composite layer, then filled with white (Edit -> Fill -> White). A layer mask was added to the composite layer and inverted to black (CTRL+I inside mask). Now to create the border, I used a Stipple Brush set to 30% opacity at 100 pixels to create a first pass at the border – painted in white on the layer mask. Dave used a Chalk brush in his tutorial. Then a Mixer Brush was used to make interesting edges around the image. (I used Dave’s Mixer Brush setting of a Round Fan set to Load and Clean, and load was set to Wet 100%, Load 90%, Mix 60% and Flow 100%, and do not check Sample All Layers.) You could stop here, but I decided to add a Color Fill Layer in pink to create a pink effect in the border just made – the Layer Mask was copied from the composite layer by clicking on the mask, holding ALT, and dragging to the Color Fill layer mask. Next the Properties Panel was opened and the mask was inverted, and the Density set to 48%. A Levels Adjustment Layer was added on top to put a little contrast back into the image. The last step was another composite layer where I added my SJ Thin Double Edge Frame layer style for a second finishing frame – sampled from the image to get the pink and green colors. Dave’s border can get a really nice painterly feel This can be a very creative border process – it was easy and a lot of fun!
Creating a Vintage Image
While listening to a Creative Live rebroadcast (this is a great site to have running in the background when playing around in Photoshop – just click on their Watch tab and select a show), I created this image. This is not really a tip, but is an example of how to combine old images, clip art, text, and textures to get a unique, and rather in-vogue look. I am a big fan of The Old Design Shop and am constantly downloading so many of Julie’s vintage images – this is a real treasure site if you love vintage items which I do! For this image I actually started with a New Document set to 10 inch X 10 inch at 240 resolution and then added in the American Agriculturist magazine cover from November 1879. It was too nice an image not to do something with. (On her website just click on her image to make it bigger on your computer and then right click and select Save Image As to download.) I took this image into my new document. First selected the beige using Select -> Color Range (see my How to use the Color Range Command with CS4 Through CC 14.1 blog) and exited to show a selection. Changed the swatch to black as foreground color and added a new layer; then CTRL+Backspace to delete the beige in the clip art and set the layer to Color Burn blend mode. A brownish Color Fill Layer was clipped (ALT+click between the layers) to the turkey art. Erased some of the edges out. Next I brought in Clip Art flowers from Dover Floral Bouquets CD Rom clip art 029 as a jpg – went to the Color Range Command and Sampled the white setting the sliders to Fuzziness 200 and Range 4 and Localized Clusters checked. Back in Photoshop a Layer Mask was created and it looked kind of nice, so I left the dark square around the flower and left the lines white. A darker color was added using a darkish brown Color Fill Layer clipped to the flower layer. 2 Lil Owls Workbook Bonus Texture Set 17 (see my Tidbits Blog sidebar for website link) was added as a background texture underneath the above layers. A New Layer was added directly above the texture and Brush Lovers 1st 2000 brush was used in upper left corner (not available anymore but any nice flower petal would work). Shadowhouse Creations Text Brush 9, which is a nice script, was used and set to 39% opacity. A Layer Mask was added and the text was removed from the cover magazine and clip art flower areas. A greenish Color Fill Layer was clipped to the text to make it green. A New Layer on top and Kim Klassen’s squiggle 2 brush was painted on top of magazine cover. Kim Klassen’s Cloth & Paper touch1 was used as an overlay on top and changed to a light peach color. The last step was a Levels Adjustment Layer. This was a lot of fun to create – almost like doodling in Photoshop! I am not sure you can go wrong with any creative approach to this.
Lightroom/ACR Hand Tinted Portrait
This is a very simple technique I first saw from a video called Adobe MAX: Expressive Painting in Photoshop that Jack Davis (Photoshop Hall of Famer and very creative artist besides being the Wow Book guy!) did for the Adobe Max 2013. He does a beautiful vintage image of his mother using this technique. It involves first taking a color image in Lightroom or ACR and turning it into a black and white, digitally or actually scanning an old image that is already in black and white. The trick is to select the Adjustment Brush and set the color swatch to a color, then paint in different areas of the image with new brushes using different color swatches. You do not have to be real exact with your colors – that creates some of the charm of the image. Jack basically does this hand-tinting in just a few minutes. Needless to say it took me a little longer – maybe 20 minutes. For Aliona’s picture, 8 different pins were created each with different colors and slider characteristics. Remember when using the Adjustment Brush sliders that the Exposure and Contrast sliders are equivalent to Luminance in the HSL tab, and the Color Swatch is your Hue and Saturation. By combining these settings, you should be able to get the exact colors you want. For Aliona’s eyes and lips, the Clarity and Highlights sliders were adjusted to get the look I needed. A light pink tone was used on her cheeks. The lips used a darker tone of pink. Also a Radial Filter was used to emphasize her face. That was basically it – turned out very beautiful and unique. Take a look at the video for some other great tips from Jack too!.
I hope you enjoyed my short little blogs post this week. It is fun to try some little techniques and see what you get! Now go have some fun!…..Digital Lady Syd