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on Sep 30, 2009 in Digital Darkroom

It's Photoshop World Time!

We’ve only been to one meeting and already we’re learning new Photoshop stuff….cool! There are two challenges inĀ  Photoshop, learning how something functions and more important to me, how to use that knowledge to finish an image to bring more visual impact.

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curveThis is the final walk to our room, down a spooky hall from the Shinning. Finishing this image so you feel that spookiness the way I do required using Silver Efex Pro like I describe in the video and then adding a simple Curve. The Curve is a powerful tool I use ALL the time! What makes the tool so powerful? First, it’s gentle on pixels and as long as you don’t flat line, it isn’t breaking pixels. You’ll see here that I use the 10% grid. You get that by clicking within the grid while holding down the Alt/Opt key. I use that because moving the curve dead center to the corner of one grid is equal to about 1 stop of camera exp compensation.

What you see here is what a Curve would look like if you were lightening an image by 1/2 stop. This is the typical way folks work an image. I would like to suggest you do the opposite, darken an area around the area you want to look brighter. By doing this, you’re tricking the eye to see something brighter by association rather than by actually making it brighter. This protects highlight detail while making shadows darker. It’s a win-win finishing tool that I use all the time.

Well, it’s time to comb the hair and brush the teeth and headout for our famous Photo Safari. I know I’ll have more to blog from Photoshop World real soon. This is still one of our favorite events!

Photo captured by D3, 28f1.4 on Lexar UDMA digital film