Click It Gals...UNITE! :)

Okay...so that's a corny title, but it's wayyyy late at night and I am munching on gumballs, so what can I say?

First off..hi there Click It Gals...

I handed out a TON of information last weekend about Photoshop Elements at our Click It workshop. Many of you were thrilled with what the program can do and others of you didn't quite know where to start...I understand the feeling:) Hang in there though...you'll start to get a flow here pretty soon...

I thought it might help some of you to kinda get an idea of where I start when it comes to post-processing...You have the Workflow guide in your handout, so you can sorta follow along once again...but I'll try to walk you through a picture that I just recently took...

Here's straight out of the camera or SOOC:

It was bright sun...can anyone guess where my ISO was set?  I had to run for my camera and I knew I wanted to freeze action.  Here's another question for you...so which did I care more about at this point: shutterspeed or aperture?  In the end, I bumped both up really high because I needed the picture fast...it was hot and water was splashing everywhere...so I just kept moving my settings until I metered out!

I like the picture...it's funny and captures a personality, but I didn't quite frame it up when I took the picture...dont' worry...this happens and that's what makes photoshop so much fun! 

The first thing I did was to crop the picture...using that crop tool (see your handout guide) I drew my crop and then tilted it a little bit more...cuz you KNOW I like the tilt!

I then just looked at the picture...what did I want to convey? What is most important?  For me, I wanted just the girls to POP...so that meant that I needed to look at color and contrast first.  It looked a little drab to me...so that's where I went first...

I made a Levels Adjustment layer in my Layers pallette.  I moved my sliders accordingly as I met them up with my histogram (again, check your handout).  Then I went and grabbed my Smart Brush for Blue skies and I painted THE POOL!  Yep...totally left out the sky here, but I figured, "hey, it's only a computer, it won't know the difference between water and sky"...I was right!  Wa-La:  BLUEST blue water!

Finally, I did a little Blur the Background (see page 7 of your handout)  Remember to duplicate your layer and either make a layer mask or just blur it and use the eraser tool....I zoomed in close to get them in sharp focus, but left the background more blurred.  Let's say it together: "black conceals, white reveals"

Here's the end result:


Now, I'm a bit addicted to actions and I know that they can give an image an even greater KICK if you use them just right...I gave you some links to learn more about them in your handout...I just recently purchased some Pure Photoshop Actions and so I ran them...and this is the Final FINAL result!  It's subtle, but I think it makes things all the more colorful and draws your eye even more to the girls jumping!  I know that they'll love it!



You can see the progression here:

I hope that helps to give you a little bit of an insight into how I approach a picture SOOC and how I know where to take it from there...

Remember girls...just focus on one thing at a time...as you go along you'll start to notice different things and learn new tricks and shortcuts...I'd love to see your pics soon...please be sure to upload a few to the facebook page so we can all share and learn!

Sara  – (13.7.11)  

Thanks for this. Looks like something I can do. :)

Ang  – (13.7.11)  

Thanks for all the tips, Col! I just want to add that I can't say enough for online tutorials. All the Abode products have nice tutorials that will walk you through all sorts of things. The link might already be in our packet but here it is: http://www.adobe.com/support/photoshopelements/

I've found that I learn best with trial and error. I just give it a try and see what happens! No harm in trying since I always save a copy of my original on my hard drive. :)

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