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Using Adobe Photoshop To Create Special Effects
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Using Adobe Photoshop To Create Special Effects
Copyright © 2007 Zion
Adobe Photoshop is a great graphics editing tool, which can be
used to produce striking, eye catching photos and images with
just a few clicks of a button. With Photoshop, we have the ability
to instantly create an aged effect, add motion lines, glows, or
color effects, or make a photograph look like a drawing. Photoshop
can also help us add fancy text effects to a photo and remove
unwanted objects and figures from a scene. The following include
some excellent ways to improve a dull photograph or create
special, poster-type effects.
One of the simplest effects you can use to alter a photo in
Adobe Photoshop is colorization. This effect can be found under
the Image tab, in the Adjustments menu, with the Hue and
Saturation sliders. By clicking the small box at the bottom of the
dialog, you can use to Hue slider to create a unified color over
the whole image. This can be great for creating monotone
backgrounds behind a central figure.
To select an image from a white background and save the
shadows underneath it (important for figures in motion, especially
those who are jumping), we can use the luminosity of the image.
In order to do this, use the magic lasso and QuickMask tools to
roughly select the desired areas.
Next, you should use the Float command to create a new layer
of your selection, leaving the old copy in place below it. You can
then save this selection to the Channels palette. Then, turn off
the floated copy and create a new layer. By pressing
Ctrl+Alt+tilde (~), we can select the luminosity of the image
– essentially its brightness. However, we wanted to select the
shadows – the opposite of brightness.
To do this, simply use the Invert command under the Selection
menu. Make the new layer the target of this by clicking it. Fill the
blank layer with black, with the reverse luminosity selected. This
will look ghostly, and the base layer will suddenly go very dark,
but don't be confused by this. You can now turn your floated copy
back on, and put whatever background you choose behind your
figure on a lower layer. The figure and its shadows will appear
above the new background.
To add a shadow to a picture which does not already have one,
simply apply a Layer Style to the desired layer of the image.
This effect can be found under the Photoshop Layers menu in all
recent versions of the program. Simply apply the drop shadow
Layer Style to the image, and a small shadow in the chosen color
will appear beneath your selection. You can change the size and
transparency of the drop shadow in the Layer Style tab.
To create a motion blur effect, select your figure and copy it
onto a new layer. Now, on a layer below it, with the selection
still in effect, fill your selection with black, or any other color.
You can apply the Motion Blur filter from the Filters menu to this
selection and create lines of movement without disturbing the
figure on the layer above. Play with the distance and angle of the
motion blur to see what kind of look you can create in your image.
You can combine this filter with other effects for different kinds
of motion lines.
Two photos can be easily merged in Photoshop. Drag the smaller
image into the larger by clicking and holding it. You can create
space in one image using the Resize Canvas function under the
Image menu if there is not enough room. The dragged image
should appear as its own layer on top of the original image.
Next, turn on the Layer Mask function and make sure that the
double lines appear around the icon for the mask to show that it
is selected. Then, create a radial gradient (with your colors set
to a white foreground and black background) to mask part of
the new image, revealing the portions you wish to show. With the
lasso tool and brush, you can adjust your mask to reveal and
conceal the desired portions of the image. This effect is great
for integrating images with two people, making them appear to
Another good effect for creating a dramatic image is turning the
image into text. To do this, move your selected image to a new
layer. Then, create the text that you would like to mask into the
image on a text layer. Heavy and bold type styles are best for this,
as they provide the greatest amount of image area. This increases
recognizability. Ctrl-click the type layer to select the area of the
type, and then change to the original image layer.
It is then easy to Float or copy and paste the area covered by
the type onto a new layer. Once the original photo layer is
turned off, the picture-type can be easily seen. This effect is
great when combined with drop shadows or other layer effects.
Lighting effects are in great demand for Photoshop images. These
can be accessed through the Filters menu. One very popular
lighting effect is the Lens Flare, which allows the user to create the
look of a ball of light on their image. This effect, and the Spotlight
effects can be used to add magical effects, new light sources,
or other lighting changes to an image.
Layer transparency can be used to drop ghost images in behind a
figure. To do this, simply paste the desired image into a layer
below the main layer and set the transparency slider to whatever
opacity you choose. This effect can be very useful when combined
with the colorization effect listed above. Multiple transparent
layers can be used with different images to create the impression
of motion leading up to the main figure.
An old photo look can be created by colorizing a photo to a sepia
color, then adding effects to imply damage. Careful application
of the airbrush Eraser tool can create fading. The Noise filter,
applied with monochrome turned on, causes the photo to look
grainy and old. Using low opacity transparent layers above the
image, with the layer set to Multiply, will darken the darkest
areas of the image, creating a murky effect.
These and many other tips and tricks allow the Photoshop user to
make exciting changes to their photos and create new and
different images. A great way to learn new techniques is to play
with the software. Spend a few minutes every day trying different
things and in different orders, you'll be surprised just how much
you'll improve. And finally, if you want to achieve a specific effect
but you have no idea how, do a search in Google or Yahoo,
you're bound to find what you need that way.
About the Author:
Zion Owns and Operates BBallCentral - Basketball Graphics -
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