Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Month 1 .. The Storm tutorial

"In this PS tutorial Bunty Pundir creates a dark and dramatic piece. Learn how to manipulate images of water and sky to transform them into an amazing ocean scene."

Month 1 .. Time tutorial

time - my result - a bit rough around the edges, but .....

Today I completed rather a long tutorial as per link underneath, but I will just jot down new things I have learned from this so I have notes to refer to.  The author concentrated mostly on lighting effects, some of which I found very interesting and a lot that I did not know.

"In this tutorial Bunty Pundir will show you how to create a surreal photo manipulation featuring a girl reading a book and a giant clock. This tutorial showcases some classic photo manipulation techniques such as painting shadows, adding lighting effects and unifying elements into a final image."

  • So the first layer was the road photo, added to this was the photo warming filter.
  • A light source was added to the middle using curves, increasing lightness on the highlights.
  • Using opacity, colour balance to accentuate the light source.
  • The clock was added, duplicated. To keep the original reflection and shadows a mask was painted over the duplicated clock layer.
  • Clone stamp was used to remove the name from the clock face.
  • Lots of masking and adjustment layers were used for highlights and colourings.
  • Use a brush on a mask to delete any colours on the clock face etc.
  • Add a layer and brush for extra shadows.
  • Use a layer mask on adjustment layers to accentuate as needed.
  • There were a few steps I decided not to use,
  • Curves adjustment using the bluc channel accentuates yellow on any layer.
  • For another light source, he set the foreground color to #61390e and used a soft round brush to make a big stamp right in the middle of the background, blend mode to linear dodge then a brightness adjustment with minor brightness and minus contrast
  • Various colour balance, masking, brightness, warming layers for final effects.

Friday, 5 January 2018

Select and Mask

Creating accurate selections and masks in Photoshop is now quicker and easier than ever before. A dedicated new workspace helps you make precise selections and masks. Use tools like Refine Edge Brush to cleanly separate foreground and background elements and do much more.
The Select and Mask workspace replaces the Refine Edge dialog in earlier versions of Photoshop, offering the same functionality in a streamlined way.

Launch the Select And Mask workspace

Open an image in Photoshop and do one of the following:
  • Choose Select > Select And Mask.
  • Enable a selection tool, such as Quick SelectionMagic Wand, or Lasso. Now, click Select And Mask in the Options bar.
  • In the Properties panel for a Layer Mask, click Select And Mask.
  • Press Ctrl+Alt+R (Windows) or Cmd+Option+R (Mac).
You can set the default tool behavior, such that double-clicking a layer mask opens the Select And Mask workspace. Simply double-click a layer mask for the first time and set the behavior. Alternatively, select Preferences > Tools > Double Click Layer Mask Launches Select And Mask Workspace.

User interface

User interface: Select And Mask workspace

A. Tool options B. Tools C. Adjustable properties 

Tools at a glance

The Select And Mask workspace features a combination of familiar and new tools:
Quick Selection Tool
Make quick selections based on color and texture similarity when you click or click-drag the area you want to select. The mark you make doesn’t need to be precise, because the Quick Selection tool automatically and intuitively creates a border.
The Quick Selection tool works just like the corresponding tool in classic Photoshop. See Make quick selections.
Refine Edge Brush Tool
Precisely adjust the border area in which edge refinement occurs. For example, brush over soft areas such as hair or fur to add fine details to the selection. To change the brush size, press the bracket keys.
Brush Tool
Begin with making a rough selection using the Quick Selection tool (or another selection tool) and then refine it using the Refine Edge Brush tool. Now, use the Brush tool to finalize or clean up details.
Use the Brush tool to fine-tune selections in two simple ways: paint over the area you want to select in the Add mode, or paint over areas you don’t want to select in the Subtract mode.
The Brush tool in the Select And Mask workspace works much like the corresponding tool in classic Photoshop.
Lasso Tool
Draw freehand selection borders. Using this tool, you can make precise selections.
The Lasso tool in the Select And Mask workspace works just like the corresponding tool in classic Photoshop. See Select with the Lasso tool.
Polygonal Lasso Tool
Draw straight-edged segments of a selection border. Using this tool, you can make straight or freehand selections. The Lasso tool in the Select and Mask workspace works just like the corresponding tool in classic Photoshop. See Select with the Polygonal Lasso tool.
You can select this tool from the options when you right-click Lasso Tool.
Hand Tool
Navigate around the photo. This photo works just like the Hand tool in classic Photoshop
Zoom Tool
Magnify and navigate around the photo; works just like the Zoom tool in classic Photoshop

Options bar

Add or Subtract: Add or subtract from the refinement area. Adjust the brush size if necessary.
Options bar

Sample All Layers: Creates a selection based on all layers instead of just the currently selected layer

Refine the selection

You can refine your selection in the Properties panel of the Select And Mask workspace. Adjust the following settings:

View Mode settings

View Mode. From the View pop-up menu, choose one of the following view modes for your selection:
  • Onion Skin (O): Visualizes the selection as an animation-style onion skin scheme
  • Marching Ants (M): Visualizes the selection borders as marching ants
  • Overlay (V): Visualizes the selection as a transparent color overlay. Unselected areas are displayed in that color. The default color is red. 
  • On Black (A): Places the selection over a black background
  • On White (T): Places the selection over a white background
  • Black & White (K): Visualizes the selection as a black and white mask
  • On Layers (Y): Surrounds the selection with areas of transparency
Press F to cycle through the modes and X to temporarily disable all modes.
Show Edge: Shows the area of refinement.
Show Original: Shows the original selection.
Low Res Preview: Shows lower resolution preview on Mouse Down.
Transparency/Opacity: Sets transparency/opacity for the View Mode. This setting applies beyond the Select And Mask workspace to the Overlay view mode in classic Photoshop.

Edge Detection settings

Radius. Determines the size of the selection border in which edge refinement occurs. Use a small radius for sharp edges, and a large one for softer edges.
Smart Radius. Allows for a variable width refinement area around the edge of your selection. Among other use cases, this option is helpful if your selection is a portrait that includes both hair and shoulders. In such portraits, the hair might require a larger refinement area than the shoulders, where the edge is more consistent.

Global Refinement settings

Smooth. Reduces irregular areas (“hills and valleys”) in the selection border to create a smoother outline
Feather. Blurs the transition between the selection and the surrounding pixels
Contrast. When increased, soft-edged transitions along the selection border become more abrupt. Typically, the Smart Radius option and refinement tools are more effective.
Shift Edge. Moves soft-edged borders inward with negative values or outward with positive ones. Shifting these borders inward can help remove unwanted background colors from selection edges.

Output Settings

Decontaminate Colors. Replaces color fringes with the color of fully selected pixels nearby. The strength of color replacement is proportionate to the softness of selection edges.
Important: Because this option changes pixel color, it requires output to a new layer or document. Retain the original layer so you can revert to it if needed.
Output To. Determines whether the refined selection becomes a selection or mask on the current layer, or produces a new layer or document.
  • Click  (Reset The Workspace) to revert the settings to the original state in which you entered the Select And Mask workspace. This option also reverts to the original selections/masks applied to the image when you entered the Select And Mask workspace.
  • Select Remember Settings to save the settings for use with future images. The settings are applied afresh to all future images, including the current image if it is reopened in the Select And Mask workspace.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License  Twitter™ and Facebook posts are not covered under the terms of Creative Commons.

Monday, 1 January 2018

52/2018 #1 - Outdoors

I am going to try my best at following an already suggested photo a week for 2018, this means I don't have to come up with a theme myself, which does make it more difficult. I've tried a photo a day but my longest stint at that was four months, although interesting to follow my progress.

This first theme is Outdoors.
In the wee hours of New Years Day we had fireworks down at the showgrounds, my very first attempt at photographing fireworks and it was quite a learning curve, they burst right overhead and we were occasionally hit with debris but oh so wonderfully close.  Lots of shapes and colours, beautifully executed by the technicians and it was great to be with all the family.

Next theme is "small"
My images are going to be freshly thought out and photographed, no rummaging through my old files.

New Year Fireworks

The flowers

The excitement

The sparklers

The dandelion

Friday, 15 December 2017

Shift Art ten day challenge #3

The object of the challenge was to read the tutorial and be inspired by, or emulate the steps.  Assets were provided however I decided to do a Poser model and work from that.

I really enjoyed this tutorial, I don't feel as bad as a week or so ago now because I have learned (and remembered) so much.  I was really struggling then because it has been so long since I played with my software, feeling so much more confident now.

Today I learned properly how to use layer masks and merge layers (the background was two individual images), did some more selective colouring so I can match different hues to each other, using the quick selection tool to more advantage, how to add properties for fine tuning and add a gradient to make subtle changes.  I also added a vignette, which I don't usually, which added another dimension altogether.

Happy day today.

My final image.

Day 3

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Shift Art ten day challenge #2

The object of the challenge was to read the tutorial and be inspired by, or emulate the steps.  Assets were provided however I decided to do a Poser model and work from that.

I was worn out doing this one, my computer wasn't at all happy with all the layers in Photoshop and it took me six or seven hours to do this tutorial.  I was disappointed with the final outcome of the glass cracks on her skin, although her leg was starting to come up really well.

I learned a lot and will definitely do something similar in the future but without the pressure and more time to do it carefully, but I started to get the hang of it all.  A lot of time was taken up extracting the rocks from their jpg background but I saved them now as png's for future use.

I learned how to group layers into tidy and easy to access areas, use layer masks because I had forgotten so much, how to do layer selective colour and use masks to lighten/darken areas, how to brighten up a background in select areas, ie behind the head, how to colour between the glass pieces to resemble deep cracks in her skin, I don't know why the colour of the glass didn't match her skin as that was what I originally had, and the resulting whole image is too dark and she was pink, but yes given more time would fix these little problems.  I was worn out as I said earlier and it was tea time lol. 

Here is my final image.

day 2

Shift Art ten day challenge #1

The object of the challenge was to read the tutorial and be inspired by, or emulate the steps.  Assets were provided however I decided to do a Poser model and work from that.

I learned how to select hair in channels, how to place lens flares on separate layers. I didn't follow the hair selections as I wanted the red hair, not the mono image of the tutorial.
I found the tutorial a challenge in itself, I have forgotten so much and there has been so many advanced changes in Photoshop.

Here is my final image.

Finding my way

Sunday, 10 December 2017

How to use a clipping Mask

How to use a clipping mask

Put your image above and clip it to the mask (hover between the layers and press Alt to get the clipping icon).  Because the masks are PNG, the white bits are invisible and when you clip your image, only the black parts will show the image.

Friday, 17 November 2017

Shift Art Challenge - November

Another group I belong to holds a monthly artistic challenge, providing a selection of images to choose from so we can mix, match and design to our hearts content to create a piece of art.  We also use our own resources.

Generally there are restrictions, for example using at least three images and using a combination of the images provided, and there must be a major theme using a particular image.

"In Flight"
was my image for November challenge.
Because of internet problems I was unable to submit it into the challenge but I really did enjoy the working out of my compilation.

In Flight

As I chose my images to include, the first one to catch my eye was the wooden carving of the adult and young child.  My thoughts were to create a scene reminiscent of the snippets I have heard and pictures I have seen of townspeople fleeing their bombed cities

Starting at the beginning ... again

After a start - and a stop - and a few half hearted attempts to start again, the coast is clear and I can now restart my ambition to become a serious digital artist, using the tools of a course I joined 18 months ago.

Today I've been able to go back to the very beginning, take notes and I will be practicing and practicing and by this time next year I will be very proficient and proud to call myself a digital artist.

so...... stay tuned for my latest bits and pieces of art, be they samples, writings, pure play, whatever delights I create.

My journey.