Monday, August 9, 2010
The far background was nicely out of focus, but fairly bright. Just the opposite of what’s needed to make the rose pop. The branch holding the rose was well exposed, but too sharp. Channel Masks to the rescue. Like the cavalry charging to the fight, using Channel Masks make quick work of isolating the elements into individual, addressable components. Very simply defined, making a Channel Mask can be as easy as making a selection, right clicking on the selection and selecting the Save Selection option. You now have a Channel Mask. You’ll find it in the Channels Panel listed as (unless you gave it a name) Alpha One. Make another selection, do the same thing and you wind up with Alpha Two. Then Alpha Channel three, four, five, etc. It’s a great habit to get into to save Selections as Channel Masks. If you make a Selection, do whatever you want to do to that Selection and move on, you’ve lost that Selection. If you need the same item selected again somewhere down you work flow and you haven’t saved the Selection as a Channel Mask, you have to make the same Selection again. With a Channel Mask, all that’s need is to CRTL Click on the Channel Mask Icon to reselect the Selection. All the Refine Mask adjustments you’ve made will be there.
So, the Leaf Channel Mask was picked and a Gaussian Blur applied to reduce their importance and make then recede into the back. The entire image was given a Brightness/Contrast Adjustment Layer and toned down to darken the overall image. Before making that Adjustment Layer the Flower Channel Mask was selected. Therefore, the Mask that came with the Adjustment Layer already had the flower masked. Using CTRL I (eye) allows you to flip the Mask black and white to white and black as needed.
The second “trick” was using a double vignette Mask. The first was shifted to be positioned over the rose, creating a halo effect. The second was a general vignette Mask equally spaced around the entire image. This image involved more “finishing” than a typically image.