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TIPS and TRICKs
Guardian of the Great White North (Webmaster)
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Hey every one. instead of putting tips and hints on the pictures comments I thought we could put them here. that way it should be easier to find them here later when you need them rather then searching the gallery for the picture that had the trick you wanted posted on it. if you can remember what picture had it in the first place.
It also may cut down on the gallery surfing keeping the bandwidth down.
If you have a tip or trick, please add to this thread.
Also if you have any questions or would like help with anything, ask away.

Posted on: 12 11 03 03:09 pm
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image cleaning
Guardian of the Great White North (Webmaster)
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Here is a trick i just learned to remove pixellation (aka blochyness) from a picture. I got this off of Dperceful of c2f Fame.
TRICK # 1
step 1: open picture with photoshop
2: make a duplicate layer of the original image
3: now go to filters>other>maximum and put a setting between 2 and 6
4: then go to filters>blur>glausen blur with a setting between 2 and 6
5: set the opacity of this layer between 50 - 65
6: change the layer mode to overlay
7: then merge the visible layers
now this will remove alot of pixellation from the image. a generally clean it up.hope it helps. please note this is done to the image before you manip it. you may have to adjust the brightness and contrast as this tends to brighten the image up.
break time have a drink. now back to work

now if you are scratching you head saying "what the f**k" try the next trick

TRICK #2
you can just take the smudge tool and set it to between 10%-30% and wiggle it slowly around the picture avoiding the detail areas like eyes, nose, edges, etc.. it takes longer then the above trick but it is not complicated even a little. and if you do it right the image will look very nice.

You can use either trick or both on a image to clean it up. Trick #1 works best before you start to manip. Trick #2 works before and after.

Winterhawk

Posted on: 12 11 03 03:13 pm
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Getting that Latex look
Guardian of the Great White North (Webmaster)
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One of the biggest hints, that has help my stuff look better and better, that I have received since I started Photomanipulation came from Dark Knight in a couple of comments on some pictures that i posted in the gallery.This trick helps give the costumes that latex look. I have modified his hints slightly for my own stuff. Below is my modified version of the Trick.
Trick #1
Step 1: After you have finished everything for your costume and you have removed the pixellation (if any). Make a new layer and put the new layer in front of everything.
Step 2: Select the new layer and the airbrush tool with opacity at around 1%-4% with the color white.
Step 3: now on the new layer with the white airbrush start painting over the highlights that have already been created on the costume with the natural shading of the model. When doing this remember where the light source is suppose to be coming from and the natural curves of your models body. (also see Black Alchemy's light and shadow tutorial in the downloads section). You will have to go over the same area multiple times building up the middle section of the new white hightlight and having it fade at the edges.
Step 4: Select the blur tool at about 50% pressure and completely go over the new layer to blend the highlights in a natural way, keep going until it looks right.
Have fun, I hope it helps.

Posted on: 16 11 03 04:11 pm
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How to make a star field.
Guardian of the Great White North (Webmaster)
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How to make a star field.

1.Start with a completely black background layer.
2.Create a new layer (layer>new>layer) Layer 1
3.Then choose red as you foreground color and black as your background color.
4. Then use the cloud filter (filter>render>clouds)
5. then use the difference clouds filter(filter>render>difference clouds) use this repeatedly until you get a formation that you like.
6.Create a new layer (layer>new>layer) layer 2
7. change you foreground color to blue
8. Then use the cloud filter (filter>render>clouds)
9. then use the difference clouds filter(filter>render>difference clouds) use this repeatedly until you get a formation that you like.
10. Change the opacity of layer 1 & 2 to around 30 or so. the more opacity you have the more it looks like a nebula rather then a star field.
11. create a new layer (layer>new>layer) layer 3 and fill it with black.
12. use the noise filter (filter>noise>add noise) set the amount at 18%, distribution glausian, with monocromatic checked.
13. make a duplicate layer of layer 3 call it layer 4
14. use the glausian blur filter (filter>blur>glausian blur) with a setting of about 7 on layer 4
15. set the opacity of layer 4 to 50% at set the layer to overlay.
16. merge layers 3 and 4 creating and new layer 3
17.change the layer settings for layer 3 setting to screen.
18. enhance the brightness/contrast of layer 3 so the white speckles look like stars. (image>adjustments>brightness/contrast)
19 then use the lens flair filter repeatedly to make big stars. (filter>render>lens flair) and place then randomly and of different sizes all over the picture.

Posted on: 27 01 04 05:32 pm
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Chain Mail Made Easy.
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This is the basic way i make chain mail. I have also used this method for other textures.

Step 1: enter quick mask mode and mask out what you want to be chain mail and create a new layer call it layer 1.
Step 2: Lock transparences on layer 1
Step 3: Use the blur tool to make it nice and smooth but still retain the lights and shadows.
Step 4: Duplicate layer 1 and call it layer 2 and lock transparences
Step 5: Find a large and detailed picture of chain mail and open it.
Step 6: Use the clone tool and completely fill layer 2 with the chain mail from the chain mail picture.
Step 7: Desaturate layer 1 and layer 2
Step 8: Set the layer properties of layer 2 to Multiply
Step 9: Color layer 1 & 2 using the B.A. Method of coloring (see B.A. Start to Finish tutorial)
Step 10: touch up-use dodge, burn etc to get some additional highlight and shadows on layer 1

I have used this method for alot of different textures. This is how i made the chain mail in both my Captian America & Magnus Pictures As well as the Scales on the purple half of my Metamorpho. Experiment with it. See what you can do. I have also used it for leather texture on a picture i never finished.

Posted on: 17 03 04 12:15 am
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Reductions and Selections in Photoshop
Mr. The Mighty Lord *Krackaboom!*
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The Lords and Ladies of Heromorph have requested that I post some of my tips for proper Selection and Reduction in Photoshop. Enjoy:

Clean up selections using the Smooth command in Photoshop

If you use the Magic Wand tool for making selections or have to
expand or contract a selection, you'll find that the selection
is a bit messy. To clean it up choose Select > Modify > Smooth
and enter a radius value equal to the amount that that you expanded
or contracted your selection by or try a radius between 2 and 6.

Avoid jagged lines when making selections in Photoshop

Many times when making quick selections using the Magic Wand tool or
the Lasso tool the final outcome isn't as crisp as we'd like it to be.
To fix this, after making a selection enter into Quick Mask Mode by
pressing Q on the keyboard. Then, choose Filter > Noise > Median.
In the resulting dialog box, increase the Radius until your selection
is smooth. Then click OK. After smoothing out your selection, return
to Standard Mode by pressing Q again. That's all there is to it!

A quick fix for jagged line art in Photoshop

Cleaning up messy line art can be a breeze. More than likely, if
it's line art, then the image was saved as a bitmap. Open the image
in Photoshop and convert it to Grayscale by selecting Image > Mode >
Grayscale. Keep the Size Ratio as 1 and click OK. Then choose
Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and apply a slight blur that removes
all the uneven edges. Usually this is a Radius between 1 and 5
pixels. Then click OK. Next, choose Image > Adjust > Threshold
and adjust the slider so your image is only black and white. Finally,
convert your image back into a bitmap, by selecting Image > Mode >
Bitmap. In the Bitmap dialog box, set the Resolution Output to
600 ppi and choose 50% Threshold as the Method.

Erasing the background of an image in Photoshop

Photoshop's Background Eraser tool is the perfect tool to use to
eliminate any unnecessary background scenery, while preserving
the foreground information. To test it out, open an image in Photoshop
and select the Background Eraser tool. Then click on an area that
you want to erase within your image. The trick when using this
tool is to make sure that the cross in the center of your brush
is only touching the pixels that make up the background of your
image. If you accidentally touch part of the foreground with this
cross, the Background Eraser tool then erases the foreground as
well.

Keeping reductions sharp in Photoshop

Have you've discovered images from your digital camera look muddy
after resizing them to make their size more manageable for the
Web. The most probable reason for the image's appearance is the
manner in which you're reducing the images. Most of the time, when
you resize an image in Photoshop, you're using the bicubic algorithm,
and therein lies the problem. As it resizes the image, it averages
the color areas of the corresponding areas to determine the color
value for each pixel in the new image. While minimal reductions
don't do much, big changes in the size of an image can make the
resulting image appear a bit soft (or muddy, if you must). So much
so that the Unsharp Mask trick doesn't work. The solution isn't
to throw out the bicubic reduction, but rather to go about things
a little more slowly.

For example, if you're reducing a large digital image of 1536 by
2048 pixels to something like 154 by 205 pixels (a reduction to
10 percent), you should go about it in steps. First, reduce it
by 50 percent and then use the Unsharp Mask filter (with a 50-percent
Amount, a 1-pixel Radius and a 0 Threshold).

Now, reduce the image again by 50 percent and then reapply the
Unsharp Mask filter. Finally, reduce the image to the final size
and reapply the filter. By doing the reduction in steps, and by
correcting the image as you go along, the resulting images will
be much cleaner.

After reviewing how well this technique works, you might even consider
creating an action in Photoshop to do the reduction and correction
automatically. That way, you not only save time but get better
results as well.

Safe settings for Photoshop's Unsharp Mask filter

The Unsharp Mask filter, contrary to its name, sharpens and
adds contrast to images. Knowing what settings to plug in for
this filter can be a bit perplexing. So, rather than just
arbitrarily guessing what numbers to put in for the Amount,
Radius and Threshold try the following settings. For images
that are already sharp and hold a lot of detail, set the Amount
to 70%, the Radius to 4 pixels and Threshold to 3 pixels. For soft
or slightly blurred images set the Amount to 180%, the Radius to
2 pixels and the Threshold to 6 pixels. From there you can make
slight adjustments for maximum quality. And remember that it's good
practice to over sharpen the image a bit (just a bit) because it
will be softened when it's printed.

Avoid unwanted halos when sharpening images in Photoshop

When you apply the Unsharp Mask filter to a color image, the filter
automatically adjusts each color channel causing unwanted halos
around the edges of your image. To keep this from happening, convert
your image to Lab mode by choosing Image > Mode > Lab Color. Then
apply the Unsharp Mask to the Lightness layer only in the Channels
palette. This will bring out the detail without affecting the colors
of your image.


BikerBot

Posted on: 24 07 04 12:50 pm
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Extracting objects from their background in Photoshop
Mr. The Mighty Lord *Krackaboom!*
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And one more:

Extracting objects from their background (Photoshop)

The Extract command provides a sophisticated way to isolate a foreground object and erase its background on a layer. Even objects with wispy, intricate, or undefinable edges may be clipped from their backgrounds with a minimum of manual work.

Note: For simpler cases, you can instead use the background eraser tool.

To extract an object, you use tools in the Extract dialog box. First you draw a highlight that marks the edges of the object, and define the object's interior. Then you can preview the extraction and redo it or touch up the result as needed. When you extract the object, Photoshop erases its background to transparency. Pixels on the edge of the object lose their color components derived from the background, so they can blend with a new background without producing a color halo.

You can add back opacity to the background and create other effects by using the Edit > Fade command after an extraction. (See Blending filter effects (Photoshop).)

To extract an object from its background:

1 In the Layers palette, select the layer containing the object you want to extract. If you select abackground layer, it becomes a normal layer after the extraction. To avoid losing the original image information, duplicate the layer or make a snapshot of the original image state.

Note: If the layer contains a selection, the extraction erases the background only in the selected area.

2 Choose Image > Extract.

You use tools in the Extract dialog box to specify which part of the image to extract. You can resize the dialog box by dragging its lower right corner.

3 Specify options for tools in the dialog box (you can change these settings at any time):

For Brush Size, enter a value, or drag the slider to specify the width of the edge highlighter, eraser, cleanup, and edge touchup tools.
For Highlight, choose a preset color option, or choose Other to specify a custom color for the highlight.
For Fill, choose a preset color option, or choose Other to specify a custom color for the area covered by the fill tool.
If you are highlighting a well-defined edge, select Smart Highlighting. This option helps you keep the highlight on the edge, and applies a highlight that is just wide enough to cover the edge, regardless of the current brush size. Smart Highlighting can greatly improve the extraction when the object and background have similar colors or have textures.

4 Adjust the view as needed:

To magnify an area, select the zoom tool () in the dialog box, and click in the preview image. To zoom out, hold down Alt (Windows) or Option (Mac OS) as you click.
To view a different area, select the hand tool in the dialog box, and drag in the preview image.

5 Define the edge of the object you want to extract:

To draw a highlight that marks the edge, select the edge highlighter tool () in the dialog box, and drag so that the highlight slightly overlaps both the foreground object and its background. Use Smart Highlighting to trace sharper edges. Use a large brush to cover wispy, intricate edges where the foreground blends into the background, such as hair or trees.

If you use Smart Highlighting to mark an object edge that is near another edge, decrease the brush size if conflicting edges pull the highlight off the object edge. If the object edge has a uniform color on one side and high-contrast edges on the other side, keep the object edge within the brush area but center the brush on the uniform color.

If the object has a well-defined interior, make sure that the highlight forms a complete enclosure. You do not need to highlight areas where the object touches the image boundaries. If the object lacks a clear interior, highlight the entire object.
To base the highlight on a selection saved in an alpha channel, choose the alpha channel from the Channel menu. The alpha channel should be based on a selection of the edge boundary. If you modify a highlight based on a channel, the channel name in the menu changes to Custom.
To erase the highlight, select the eraser tool () in the dialog box, and drag over the highlight. To erase the entire highlight, press Alt+Backspace (Windows) or Option+Delete (Mac OS).

6 Define the foreground area:

If the object has a well-defined interior, select the fill tool () in the dialog box. Click inside the object to fill its interior. (Clicking a filled area with the fill tool removes the fill.)
If the object is especially intricate or lacks a clear interior, make sure that the highlight covers the entire object, and then select Force Foreground. Select the eyedropper tool () in the dialog box, and click inside the object to sample the foreground color, or click in the Color text box and use a color picker to select the foreground color. This technique works best with objects that contain tones of a single color.

7 Click Preview to preview the extracted object, or skip to step 10 to extract the object without a preview

Selected area highlighted and filled, and extracted object

Zoom in as needed, and set any preview options:

Use Show menu options to switch between previews of the original and extracted images.
Use Display menu options to preview the extracted object against a colored matte background or as a grayscale mask. To display a transparent background, choose None.
Select Show Highlight or Show Fill to display the object's highlight or fill.

8 If necessary, repeat the extraction to improve the results (when you are finished, you can perform final
touch-ups as described in step 9):

To perform another extraction after adjusting the highlight and fill, repeat steps 5, 6, and 7.
To perform another extraction with new extraction settings, change the Smooth, Force Foreground, or Color settings, and repeat step 7.

Note: To specify the amount of smoothing of the extracted object, drag the Smooth slider or enter a value.
It is usually best to begin with a zero or small value to avoid unwanted blurring of details. If there are sharp artifacts in the extraction result, you can increase the Smooth value to help remove them in the next extraction.

9 Touch up the extraction results as needed:

To erase background traces in the extracted area, use the cleanup tool (). The tool subtracts opacity and has a cumulative effect. You can also use the cleanup tool to fill gaps in the extracted object. Hold down Alt (Windows) or Option (Mac OS) while dragging to add back opacity.
To edit the edge of the extracted object, use the edge touchup tool (). The tool sharpens edges and has a cumulative effect. If there is no clear edge, the edge touchup tool adds opacity to the object or subtracts opacity from the background.

10 Click OK to apply the final extraction. On the layer, all pixels outside the extracted object are erased to transparency.

Note: For best results in cleaning up stray edges, use the cleanup and edge touchup tools in the Extract dialog box. You can also clean up after an extraction by using the background eraser and history brush tools in the toolbox.

BikerBot

Posted on: 24 07 04 12:51 pm
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Re: Extracting objects from their background in Photoshop
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one of the true masters of photoshop, Bert Monroy, if you have a chance to catch this guy's seminars...i highly recommend it. check out his tutorials.

PixelPerfect at Revision3

Bert Monroy's site...and yes...that train station is all digital folks.

for those who watched the old tech tv, you will recognize many people at revision 3...and bert monroy was on the old screensavers show all the time. enjoy.

dan

Posted on: 6 08 07 07:50 pm
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Re: Extracting objects from their background in Photoshop
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Quote:

DPerceful wrote:
one of the true masters of photoshop, Bert Monroy, if you have a chance to catch this guy's seminars...i highly recommend it. check out his tutorials.

PixelPerfect at Revision3

Bert Monroy's site...and yes...that train station is all digital folks.

for those who watched the old tech tv, you will recognize many people at revision 3...and bert monroy was on the old screensavers show all the time. enjoy.

dan


Oh how he irritates me in a good way. He claimes that if you spend more than 2 minutes on a certain area in your image that you are working on, then you are taking to long. I snickered and then he started.... and whollllyyyyy shnict! He has created a photo-realistic brick wall with graffiti on it in about5 minutes. He is a god among Photoshop. So, yes... Catch a seminar... just to watch him work is worth the money... what you learn is a bonus.

Basically... Yeah, what Dan said.

Posted on: 8 08 07 02:32 pm
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Re: Extracting objects from their background in Photoshop
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Here's a quick pimer in flash photography
http://www.jibjab.com/view/179855

Posted on: 25 08 07 02:45 am
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Re: Extracting objects from their background in Photoshop
Kling on HM (WebMaster!)
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Quote:

jediadept wrote:
Here's a quick pimer in flash photography
http://www.jibjab.com/view/179855



Posted on: 27 08 07 07:17 am
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