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Make this picture color + better


kiwi

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Ya I know,but I am crap at tutorials and I dont find them easy to write anymore,but I will come up with something.If you are new o PS then check out Marks excellent tutes on his home page,jmo but I dont think you will find much more helpful,concise explanations anywhere :)
 

kiwi

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First thing I did was to make a selection around the lady.I use several different methods,but this time I set a layer to softlight and chose a hardish paint brush and purple I think it was,then I started painting in around the shape{after I had saved the selection as a channel}.Next I added an adjustment layer {hue and saturation} and removed the saturation completely to check all the tones.Once you find the problem areas I copy the original layer and work on the copy.So I grab the patch tool and make a small area of skin nice and clean and then use that area to patch the blemishes and un wanted tones.Sometimes the patch tool will right royally screwup the tone youre trying to patch,so when this happens I undo then grab the paint brush and sample the grey tone I do want,then brush over the problem area lightly and then patch it,this generally works I find.



Once you have cleaned up the blemishes and scratches etc from the lady and the background,you next need to create alpha channels for the face only and the areas you want to tweak without upsetting what you have already done.You might find that for instance as you lighten the head covering that areas dont lighten as well,so I carry on then create an adjustment layer of say brightness contrast and fill its mask with black,then take a brush with white and paint back in exactly how much I need until the areas all sync or look the same again.



The coloring can be a bit tricky and for the most part I just paint skin color on,but first using the alpha for the face I make a new layer and set it to color or overlay and mix a skin type color to act as the base for starting with.Next I reduce its opacity until I have a basic look of what I am going for,then I make a new layer and select the airbrush and around 8 - 12% opacity {if using a Wacom etc just check "other Dynamics" on} and I slowly build up the tones on different layers so I can reduce the opacity and change blend modes etc.



There are some areas which are just so badly blemished {in the skin tones} that you cant really fix them satisfactorily,so when this happens what I do is I {using the airbrush} sample the skin color from around blemish and try and blend the sharp color edges into the original color,it doesnt always work but often you will find that median and g blur will just make it worse again {as will the patch tool} ,so now I use the paint brush quite a bit in photo fixing and compositing.



The history brush is also great for re touching,you can actually use it like an adjustment layer for filters with some practice.



Adding color to a photo is always going to be problematic,because its incredibly difficult to come up with a result,where someone cant tell its been re worked,but if you really want to get the most you can out of PS or any other graphics app its a good idea to study some painting or sketching,or even more so art theory,it will make youre work look so much better then you could imagine in a short time simply by applying what you have learnt.



Stu.
 

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