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This chapter is from the book

Creating a Single Image

  • Disregard for details is the first sign of doom.
  • —Kai Krause

Step 1: Many Parts to Assemble the Whole

As in the previous chapters, you will approach the creation of this image going from global to granular. The following steps will show you how I removed everything that was not my vision from the Seattle Sequence 2.0 flower images and how I practiced preemptive Photoshop at the point of capture. I chose the lens I used for its bokeh, because, in my vision of this image, it is the quality of the blur in relationship to the area(s) of focus that I find aesthetically appealing.

  1. Open these three files:
    • _VAV0719BASE_DRK.tif
    • _VAV0722BASE_LITE.tif
    • _VAV072122_SHRP.tif
  2. Starting with the file _VAV0722BASE_LITE.tif, double-click on the icon of the image in the Layers panel. (It should say "background" when the Layer dialog box comes up.) Name this layer BASE_LITE which unlocks it—something that needs to be done before you align all of the layers.
  3. When you select Save As, create a new folder (located in the lower, left corner of the Save As dialog box) and name the folder SEATTLE_LILY. Now, rename the _VAV0722BASE_LITE.tif file SEATTLE_LILY_16bit, and save it as a Large File Format (.psb). (This is located in the Format pull-down menu in the Save As dialog box and is the second option just below Photoshop Document.)
  4. Duplicate this file, and rename it SEATTLE_LILY_ALIGN_16bit.
  5. Once you have saved the file, create a layer group, and name it ALIGNED_PARTS.
  6. Click on the _VAV0719BASE_DRK.tif, making it the active file. Click on the BACKGROUND layer of this file and, holding down the Shift key, drag the background layer to the destination file, SEATTLE_LILY_16bit.psb. Name the newly created layer BASE_DRK. Do the same with _VAV072122_SHRP.tif and rename this new layer SHRP_DRK. Once you have placed all of the files into the SEATTLE_LILY_ALIGN_16bit file, close them. You should have two files open, SEATTLE_LILY_ALIGN_16bit.psb and SEATTLE_LILY_16bit.psb. The layer order in the ALIGN_PARTS layer group in the SEATTLE_LILY_ALIGN_16bit file should be BASE_LITE, BASE_DRK, and SHRP_DRK.
  7. Save the file.

Step 2: Creating a Lighter Version of a Darker Flower

In this step, you will use Match Color to make a lighter version of a layer. It would have been lighter had I done this in the camera, but while I was shooting this part of the harvest, the clouds moved, changing the lighting. Normally, when I am working this way, once I have established focus, I do things in manual mode, which affords me greater control over exposure and DOF. The trade off is that the camera cannot automatically readjust exposure for changes in light. So even though I wanted a brighter image, I did not get it. Using Match Color is one way to match both the color and the brightness of one file to another. There is a caveat—when the Match Color adjustment works, it works really well, and when it does not, it is useless. Match Color works best when you harvest images of the same thing at the same location. It might not work if you try matching color from two different locations and/or of two different objects.

  1. Duplicate the SHRP_DRK layer (Command + J / Control + J).
  2. Rename this newly duplicated layer (which Photoshop will have automatically named SHRP_DRK copy) to SHRP_LITE.
  3. Make SHRP_LITE the active layer, and go to Image > Adjustments > Match Color (Figure 4.2.1).
  4. In the Source pull-down menu, select SEATTLE_LILY_ALIGN_16bit and, in the Layer pull–down menu, select BASE_LITE (Figures 4.2.2 and 4.2.3).
    Figure 4.2.2

    Figure 4.2.2 Selecting SEATTLE_LILLY_ALIGN_16bit. in the Source pull-down

    Figure 4.2.3

    Figure 4.2.3 Selecting BASE_LITE in the Layer pull-down

  5. The image is brighter, but not quite enough. In the Options part of the Match Color dialog box, move the Luminance slider to the right to 133, and move the Color Intensity slider to the right to 115.
  6. Click OK.

    Compare the image before the Color Match adjustment (Figure 4.2.4), after the Color Match adjustment (Figure 4.2.5), and after the Luminace and Color Intensity increases (Figure 4.2.6).

    Figure 4.2.4

    Figure 4.2.4 Before the Color Match adjustment

    Figure 4.2.5

    Figure 4.2.5 After the Color Match Adjustment

    Figure 4.2.6

    Figure 4.2.6 After the Luminance and Color Intensity increases

  7. Save the file.

Step 3: Aligning the Almost Aligned

No matter how good your tripod, tripod head, and camera fastening system, whenever you touch the camera during the capture process, even to refocus, you introduce some form of camera movement. This next step addresses this first part of the alignment problem.

I have observed that when using the Auto Align Layers feature in Photoshop CS5, the order of the layers in the layer stack and which layer you click on first (top or bottom) has an effect on how the layers will be aligned. Therefore, you must decide which is the primary layer (the BASE_LITE layer is the primary layer in this image) and make sure it is at the top of the layer stack.

  1. Click on the BASE_LITE layer and make it active. Holding down the Shift key, click on the SHRP_LITE layer. This will make all of the layers between the two active.
  2. Go to Edit > Auto Align Layers. For the Projection, select Auto. Generally, this one works best. Click OK.

    You will notice that the alignment process has resulted in an image that is no longer full frame (Figure 4.3.1). You could crop the open areas, but that would change the image, and perhaps risk losing parts of it. This next step addresses this second part of the alignment problem.

    Figure 4.3.1

    Figure 4.3.1 After the alignment, the image is not full frame

  3. Holding down the Shift key, click on the ALIGNED_PARTS layer group and drag it to the SEATTLE_LILY_16bit file.
  4. Save the SEATTLE_LILY_16bit.psb file.
  5. Close and do not save the SEATTLE_LILY_ALIGN_16bit.psb file.

Step 4: The Sum is Greater Than the Parts: Creating One Image from Four Layers

In this step, you will not only extend the range of exposure, you will also extend the range of the sharpness and blur. I have found that real pixels are always better to use than attenuated ones. By using pixels unmodified in Photoshop, you reduce the amount of overall artifacting. You can also control the amount of detail in any specific area. Essentially, you can have your blur and see the image, too. In the first part of this next step, you will add dark, and in the second part, you will add light and sharpness.

All the decisions that you make from this point forward are about how the viewer's eye will move through the image, how to reinforce the gesture of the image, and how to cause shape to become the unwitting ally of color.

You will begin by making sure that the viewer sees the yellows before the greens, so that their unconscious eye moves from the lower left of the image to the center, then to the upper part of the flower where the top of the lily intertwines with the stem, and then to the top of the lily that goes out of the frame.

Adding Dark

  1. You have two layers named BASE_LITE: one inside the ALIGNED_PARTS layer group, and one outside it. Rename the BASE_LITE layer in the ALIGNED_PARTS layer group BASE_LITE_M (for Base Lite Modified). This is the image map for the BASE_DRK layer (Figure 4.4.1).
    Figure 4.4.1

    Figure 4.4.1 The image map

  2. In the ALIGNED_PARTS layer group, turn off all the layers except BASE_DRK and make it the active one. You should now have the BASE_LITE layer turned on (the one outside the layer group) and the BASE_DRK layer (the one inside the layer group) turned on.
  3. Add a layer mask to the BASE_DRK layer and leave it white.
  4. Select the Brush tool (B), make the foreground color black and the background white, set the brush opacity to 100% and the width to 400 pixels, and brush in the entire flower and the area inside the stem. View the layer mask (Figure 4.4.2), and compare the images before (Figure 4.4.3) and after the brushwork (Figure 4.4.4).
    Figure 4.4.2

    Figure 4.4.2 The layer mask

    Figure 4.4.3

    Figure 4.4.3 Before brushwork

    Figure 4.4.4

    Figure 4.4.4 After brushwork

  5. With the foreground color black and the background white, and a brush opacity of 50% and a width of 250 pixels, brush in the entire stem next to the flower. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and move the slider right to 74%. Brush in the back part of the flower at 50%. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and move the slider left to 44%. View the layer mask (Figure 4.4.5) and the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.4.6).
    Figure 4.4.5

    Figure 4.4.5 The layer mask

    Figure 4.4.6

    Figure 4.4.6 After more brushwork

  6. With the foreground color black and the background white, and a brush opacity of 50% and a width of 600 pixels, brush in the entire area to the lower right of the flower. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and move the slider left to 34%. View the layer mask (Figure 4.4.7) and the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.4.8).
    Figure 4.4.7

    Figure 4.4.7 The layer mask

    Figure 4.4.8

    Figure 4.4.8 After more brushwork

  7. With the foreground color black and the background white, and a brush opacity of 50% and a width of 600 pixels, brush in the two stalk areas above the leaf on the right side of the image. Do one first, then bring up the Fade effect dialog box and move the slider left until the adjustment is most visually appealing, which for this image is at 47%. Then do the second and move the slider left to 47% as well. (They both require the same setting because you want both stalks to match. The Fade effect tool allows you to address only the last thing that you did, so you can do only one thing at a time; it's the same type of adjustment that you made in Chapter 1 when brushing in Challen's eyes.) In the lower left corner of the image, brush in the lower corner to the left of the stem, bring up the Fade effect dialog box and lower that opacity to 47%. View the layer mask (Figure 4.4.9) and the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.4.10).
    Figure 4.4.9

    Figure 4.4.9 The layer mask

    Figure 4.4.10

    Figure 4.4.10 After more brushwork

  8. Save the file.

Adding Light and Sharpness and More Dark

What you have done thus far is to manually extend the dynamic range of the dark aspect of this image without using tone mapping software. Also, you used real pixels created at the point of capture to darken the image. This approach leads to more realistic looking colors and shadows, and you did not introduce the potential artifacts and color shifts that can result from using Curves and Levels adjustment layers.

In the first part of this step, you created an image that is all about the bokeh or the quality of the blur of the lens that created it. In the next steps, you will selectively add lightness to extend the dynamic range of the exposure even further. You will accomplish this using the layer on which you did the Match Color adjustment. Specifically, you are going to add sharpness from an image that was shot at a greater DOF. (In Step 2 of this lesson, Creating a Lighter Version of a Darker Flower, you matched the color and brightness of that image to the present one.) You will also add sharpness from the original image (before you applied the Match Color adjustment) that was captured at about the same exposure level as the BASE_DRK layer that you have just brushed in.

Here are the image maps for the three things that you will be doing to this image: The Sharpen Lite image map (Figure 4.4.11), the Sharpen Dark image map (Figure 4.4.12), and the Lily Tip Sharp image map (Figure 4.4.13).

Figure 4.4.11

Figure 4.4.11 The Sharpen Lite image map

Figure 4.4.12

Figure 4.4.12 The Sharpen Dark image map

Figure 4.4.13

Figure 4.4.13 The Lily Tip Sharp image map

  1. Make the SHRP_LITE layer active.
  2. Select the Marquee tool, make a selection of the lily leaf tip (Figure 4.4.14), copy it to its own layer (Command + J / Control + J) and name that layer TIP_SHRP_LITE. Create a layer mask and fill it with black.
    Figure 4.4.14

    Figure 4.4.14 The selected area

  3. Make the SHRP_LITE layer active, create a layer mask, and fill it with black. With the foreground color white and the background black, brush in the area of the front part of the lily with a brush opacity of 100% and a width of 600 pixels.
  4. Set the opacity to 50% and brush in the lily's stem. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and lower the effect to 22% by moving the slider to the left. View the layer mask (Figure 4.4.15) and the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.4.16).
    Figure 4.4.15

    Figure 4.4.15 The layer mask on SHRP_LITE

    Figure 4.4.16

    Figure 4.4.16 After brushwork on SHRP_LITE

  5. Make the SHRP_DRK layer active, create a layer mask, and fill it with black. With the opacity still set to 50%, and the foreground color white and the background black, brush in the back part of the lily. View the layer mask (Figure 4.4.17) and the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.4.18).
    Figure 4.4.17

    Figure 4.4.17 The layer mask on SHRP_DRK

    Figure 4.4.18

    Figure 4.4.18 After the brushwork on SHRP_DRK

  6. Make the TIP_SHRP_LITE layer active. Making sure that the layer mask is also active, zoom in to the tip area. Make the brush opacity 100% and the brush size 40 pixels. Brush in just the tip. View the layer mask (Figure 4.4.19) and the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.4.20).
    Figure 4.4.19

    Figure 4.4.19 The layer mask on TIP_SHRP_LITE

    Figure 4.4.20

    Figure 4.4.20 After the brushwork on TIP_SHRP_LITE

Breaking the 11th Commandment... Yet Again

In the lower left corner of the image, there is an area of light that pulls the eye's focus away from the flower. To address this issue, you will first use a clipped curve that you will also darken. Here is the image map for the Darken and Lowered Contrast adjustment layer (Figure 4.4.21).

Figure 4.4.21

Figure 4.4.21 Image map for the Darken and Lowered Contrast Curves adjustment layer

  1. Create a Curves adjustment layer, and if it is not already, put it in the Fine Grid mode (Option- / Alt- click on the grid in the Curves dialog box). Lower the top handle of the curve six grid points. Click on the center handle and move it so that it is on the first and second grid line from the bottom. The output should read about 107 (Figure 4.4.22).
  2. Fill the layer mask with black, and with the foreground white, select the Brush tool. Set the opacity to 50% and the brush width to 400 pixels. Brush in the area from below the bottom of the upper part of the left side of the lily (between the two stems) up to the stem that crosses the bottom of the lower left corner. Then re-brush over the brightest part of the area on which you just did brush work. (Remember that since 50% of 50% is 25%, you have just re-brushed this area at 75%.) Now, brush the stem in the lower left corner, bring up the Fade effect dialog box, and reduce the amount by moving the slider to 25%. View the layer mask (Figure 4.4.23) and the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.4.24).
    Figure 4.4.23

    Figure 4.4.23 The layer mask

    Figure 4.4.24

    Figure 4.4.24 After the brushwork

  3. Click on the ALIGNED_PARTS layer group, create a master layer, and name it MASTER_1.
  4. Save the file.

Step 5: The Registration Problem

You will notice that there is a light band that runs across the bottom of the image. This occurred during the alignment process. Also, there may be some parts of the aligned image that may fall outside the canvas of the original BASE_LITE image (the image onto which you dragged the ALIGNED_PARTS layer group). In this step, you will address both issues.

  1. Select the Crop tool (C) and drag it from the top left corner to the lower right one so that the entire image is within the Crop box (Figure 4.5.1).
  2. Press the Return or Enter key to accept the crop.
  3. When the Crop processing has finished, make the MASTER_1 layer active, and zoom in to the lower left corner of the image.
  4. Select the Marquee tool (M), then click and drag the marquee selection so that it is slightly bigger than the light area at the bottom of the image. Drag it from the right to the left edge of the image.
  5. Go to Edit > Fill and, in the Contents part of the Fill dialog box, from the Use pull-down menu, select Content Aware. Click OK.
  6. Save the file.

Step 6: Harvesting from Within

As I discussed earlier, a pattern is interesting, but a pattern interrupted is more interesting. Currently, the image on which you are working has a pattern of greens and yellows in the background with one area of pinkish red. You want to interrupt that pattern while reinforcing the yellows over the greens. And there are still light areas that need to be toned down so that they do not pull the unconscious eye away from the main focus of the image, the lily. For that, you need some darker shapes to conceal the lighter ones and then some red/pink shapes to interrupt the pattern of greens and yellows. Simply darkening the image by using Curves would not accomplish this. Whatever you do, when you are finished with this next step, the image must look as if it was originally captured that way. To accomplish this, you will harvest image structures from within the image. Here are the image maps for the two things you are about to do. View the Stem Parts image map (Figure 4.6.1) and the Reds image map (Figure 4.6.2).

Figure 4.6.1

Figure 4.6.1 Stem Parts image map

Figure 4.6.2

Figure 4.6.2 Reds image map

  1. Create a layer set and name it INNER_HARVEST.
  2. Make the MASTER_1 layer active. With the Marquee tool (M), make a selection at the edge of the lower right corner that contains the reddish/pink area, and copy it to its own layer. Name this layer REDS. Drag REDS into the INNER_HARVEST layer set (Figure 4.6.3).
    Figure 4.6.3

    Figure 4.6.3 Copying the lower right corner to its own layer

  3. Again, make the MASTER_1 layer active. With the Marquee tool (M), make a selection of the stem area below the front part of the lily and copy it to its own layer. Name this layer STEM_PART. Add a layer mask. Drag the STEM_PART into the INNER_HARVEST layer set. Duplicate the STEM_PART layer (Figure 4.6.4).
    Figure 4.6.4

    Figure 4.6.4 Duplicating the stem area

  4. Turn off the STEM_PART copy layer (the one that you just created) and make the STEM_PART layer active.
  5. Select the Move tool (V) and move the STEM_PART layer to the lower right corner (Figure 4.6.5).
    Figure 4.6.5

    Figure 4.6.5 Moving the new STEM_PART layer to the lower right

  6. Select Free Transform (Command + T / Control + T), click on the top, center control handle, and stretch the selection upward to just above the front part of the lily. Click Return / Enter (Figure 4.6.6).
    Figure 4.6.6

    Figure 4.6.6 Stretching the selection upwards

  7. Select the Brush tool. Fill the layer mask with black. With the foreground color set to white, set the brush opacity to 50%, and brush in the right side of the image (as shown in the STEM_PART image map). Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and increase the amount by moving the slider to 71%. Compare the image before the brushwork (Figure 4.6.7), and after the brushwork (Figure 4.6.8), and look at the resulting layer mask (Figure 4.6.9).
    Figure 4.6.7

    Figure 4.6.7 Before brushwork

    Figure 4.6.8

    Figure 4.6.8 After brushwork

    Figure 4.6.9

    Figure 4.6.9 The layer mask

  8. Copy the STEM_PART copy layer so that you have a new layer, STEM_PART copy 2. Turn on the STEM_PART copy 2 layer. Select the Move tool (V) and move the STEM_PART copy 2 layer to the upper right corner, above the lily and over the light area between the two stems (Figure 4.6.10).
    Figure 4.6.10

    Figure 4.6.10 Adding STEM_PART copy 2 above the lily

  9. Select Free Transform (Command + T / Control + T). Holding down the Option / Alt key, click on the left, center control handle and expand the selection to the left. Click Return / Enter (Figure 4.6.11).
    Figure 4.6.11

    Figure 4.6.11 Expanding the selection left

  10. Select the Brush tool and fill the layer mask with black. With the foreground color set to white, set the brush opacity to 50% and the brush width to 400 pixels. Brush in the upper right side of the image (as shown in the STEM_PART image map) leaving the slider set to 50%. View the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.6.12) and the resulting layer mask (Figure 4.6.13).
    Figure 4.6.12

    Figure 4.6.12 After the brushwork

    Figure 4.6.13

    Figure 4.6.13 The layer mask

  11. Turn on and make the STEM_PART copy layer active, and move it so that it is over the bright area in the left corner of the image (Figure 4.6.14).
    Figure 4.6.14

    Figure 4.6.14 Adding the STEM_PART to the bright area on the left

  12. Select Free Transform (Command + T / Control + T) and move the curser to the lower handle. When the rotation arrows appear, click and drag it to the right, and holding down the Option / Alt key, click on the left, center control handle. Expand the selection as you move it to the left. Click Return / Enter (Figure 4.6.15).
    Figure 4.6.15

    Figure 4.6.15 Transforming the selection

  13. Select the Brush tool. Fill the layer mask with black. With the foreground color set to white, set the brush opacity to 50% and its width to 250 pixels. Brush in the light area in the lower left corner (as shown in the STEM_PART image map). Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and move the slider to 86%. View the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.6.16) and the resulting layer mask (Figure 4.6.17).
    Figure 4.6.16

    Figure 4.6.16 The image after the brushwork

    Figure 4.6.17

    Figure 4.6.17 The resulting layer mask

  14. Save the file.

Getting the Red In

You should now have an image in which the central focus is the lily. There should be no light areas to pull the eye away from that. You have used both image structures and colors that were inherent in the image. In this next step, you will add reds into the image to interrupt the pattern of the greens and yellows in the background, and to introduce visual depth. By introducing red elements, I think that all the aspects of the image become more appealing, which means that the viewer will look at it longer. Look again at the Reds image map (Figure 4.6.2).

Figure 4.6.2

Figure 4.6.2 The Reds image map

  1. Turn on, and make the REDS layer active. Select the Move tool (V) and move it to the center of the image.
  2. Duplicate the REDS layer twice.
  3. Flip the REDS layer copy 2, horizontally (Edit > Transform > Flip Horizontal). Move the layer that you just flipped to the right (Figure 4.6.18).
    Figure 4.6.18

    Figure 4.6.18 Duplicating the REDS layer twice and flipping the REDS layer copy 2

  4. With the Move tool selected (V), click the left arrow key until the two layers overlap (Figure 4.6.19).
    Figure 4.6.19

    Figure 4.6.19 Aligning the two new layers with the Move tool

  5. Merge this layer to the layer below it (Command + E / Control + E).
  6. Select the Spot Healing tool from the Tool options bar and select Content Aware. Make sure the Sample All Layers checkbox is turned off (Figure 4.6.20).
    Figure 4.6.20

    Figure 4.6.20 Selecting Content-Aware and turning off Sample All Layers

  7. With a brush width of 70 pixels, and holding down the Shift key (this locks the brush so that it will move in a straight line), start at the top of the pink area and drag the brush down to bottom of the pink area. Then release it (Figures 4.6.21 and 4.6.22).
    Figure 4.6.21

    Figures 4.6.21 AND 4.6.22 Brushing in the gap to correct it and the result

  8. Name this layer REDS_DUO and add a layer mask to it.
  9. Duplicate the layer (the new layer will be named REDS_DUO copy), and move it to the upper right corner above the lily between the two stems. Turn off the REDS_DUO and REDS layers (Figure 4.6.23).
    Figure 4.6.23

    Figure 4.6.23 Moving the REDS_DUO above the lily

  10. Select Free Transform (Command + T / Control + T) and, holding down the Option / Alt key, click on the left control handle and expand the size. Click near the lower, left handle, which will bring up the Rotate arrows, and rotate the image slightly clockwise to match the angle of the two stems that border this selection. Press Return / Enter (Figures 4.6.24, 4.6.25, 4.6.26, and 4.6.27).
    Figure 4.6.24

    Figure 4.6.24 Activating the Free Transform tool

    Figure 4.6.25

    Figure 4.6.25 Expanding the width

    Figure 4.6.26

    Figure 4.6.26 Rotating the selection

  11. Make the layer mask active and fill it with black. Select the Brush tool, set its opacity to 50% and its width to 300 pixels, and brush in the area between the two stems. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and reduce the opacity to 38%. View the image after brushwork (Figure 4.6.28) and the resulting layer mask (Figure 4.6.29).
    Figure 4.6.28

    Figure 4.6.28 The image after brushwork

    Figure 4.6.29

    Figure 4.6.29 The layer mask

  12. Duplicate the REDS_DUO layer (the new layer will be named REDS_DUO copy2), and move it to the lower right corner to the right of the lily stem (Figure 4.6.30).
    Figure 4.6.30

    Figure 4.6.30 Adding red below the lily

  13. Select Free Transform (Command + T / Control + T), and holding the Option / Alt key, click on the left control handle and expand the size. Click near the lower, left handle which will bring up the Rotate arrows and rotate the image slightly clockwise to match the angle of the two stems that border this selection. Press Return / Enter (Figures 4.6.31, 4.6.32, and 4.6.33).
    Figure 4.6.31

    Figure 4.6.31 Free Transform tool

    Figure 4.6.32

    Figure 4.6.32 Expanding the width

    Figure 4.6.33

    Figure 4.6.33 Rotating the selection

  14. Make the layer mask active and fill it with black. Select the Brush tool, set its opacity to 50% and its width to 500 pixels, and brush in the area between the two stems. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and reduce the opacity to 38%. View the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.6.34) and the resulting layer mask (Figure 4.6.35).
    Figure 4.6.34

    Figure 4.6.34 After the brushwork

    Figure 4.6.35

    Figure 4.6.35 The layer mask

  15. Turn on and make the RED_DUO layer active. Move it to the lower left corner between the two stems (Figure 4.6.36).
    Figure 4.6.36

    Figure 4.6.36 Adding red to the left side

  16. Select Free Transform (Command + T / Control + T), and holding down the Option / Alt key, click on the top, center control handle and expand the height. Click near the lower, left handle to bring up the Rotate arrows and rotate the image slightly counterclockwise to match the angle of the two stems that border this selection. Holding down the Option / Alt key, click on the left, center control handle and expand the selection slightly. Press Return / Enter (Figures 4.6.37, 4.6.38, and 4.6.39).
    Figure 4.6.37

    Figure 4.6.37 Selecting the Free Transform tool

    Figure 4.6.38

    Figure 4.6.38 Expanding the selection

    Figure 4.6.39

    Figure 4.6.39 Rotating the selection

  17. Make the layer mask active and fill it with black. Select the Brush tool, set its opacity to 50% and its width to 500 pixels, and brush in the area between the two stems. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and reduce the opacity to 31%. View the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.6.40) and the resulting layer mask (Figure 4.6.41).
    Figure 4.6.40

    Figure 4.6.40 The image after the brushwork

    Figure 4.6.41

    Figure 4.6.41 The layer mask

The Emery Board Step

In this last part of the "inner harvesting" step, you will smooth out any places where the transition from sharpness to blur occurs more abruptly than you would like. Also, this is a good time to increase the colors' intensities and the lightness of the background to further fine tune the image. You will use the Base Layer to accomplish all these tasks. Look at the Base Lite Brush Back image map (Figure 4.7.1).

Figure 4.7.1

Figure 4.7.1 Base Lite Brush Back image map

  1. Duplicate the BASE_LITE layer and move it so that it is the topmost layer in the INNER_HARVEST layer group. Rename this layer BASE_LIGHT_BB (BB = Brush Back).
  2. Create a layer mask and fill it with black.
  3. Make the layer mask active. Select the Brush tool. With the foreground color set to white, set the brush opacity to 50% and its width to 400 pixels. Using the image map diagram as your guide, brush in the lower part of the lily. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and reduce the opacity to 41%. Brush in the left stem. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and reduce the opacity to 36%. Brush in the right stem. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and reduce the opacity to 31%. In the upper right corner, brush the right-most yellow base of the background lily. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and reduce the opacity to 28%. Finally, brush in the lily's base next to where you just brushed. Bring up the Fade effect dialog box and reduce the opacity to 31%. Look at the image after the brushwork (Figure 4.7.2) and the layer mask (Figure 4.7.3).
    Figure 4.7.2

    Figure 4.7.2 The image after the brushwork

    Figure 4.7.3

    Figure 4.7.3 The layer mask

  4. Make the INNER_HARVEST layer group active.
  5. Create a Master layer and name that layer MASTER_2.
  6. Save the file.
  7. Select Save As (Command + Shift + S / Control + Shift + S), and when the Save As dialog box comes up, rename the file SEATTLE_LILY_MASTER_CNTRST_SHRP_16bit. Click off the layers radial button and save it in the Large Document file format (.psb).
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