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This chapter is from the book

A Quick Pencil Sketch

This lesson is just for fun—like many of the others in the book. I like to have fun in Photoshop, as well as use its powerful imaging capabilities to enhance my professional photographs. I'll show you how I created an image that looks like I sketched it with a pencil on white paper.

I'll use a picture I took of a seagull in St. Augustine, Florida (Figure 3.114). Note that this effect, like many others you can create in Photoshop, works on some images better than others.

Figure 3.114

Figure 3.114

Tech info: Canon EOS 1D Mark II, Canon 100-400mm IS lens @ 4200mm. Exposure: 1/250 sec. @ f/8. ISO 200.

With the Layers dialog box open (Window > Layers), I created a duplicate layer Figure 3.115). You can create a new layer using either of the following techniques: go to Layer > New Layer > Layer via Copy (press Command-J: Mac or Ctrl-J: Win), or drag the background layer down to the "Create a new layer" icon, which is what I did here.

With the new (top) layer active (shaded in blue) (Figure 3.116), I went to Image > Adjustments > Desaturate. The image now appeared in black and white (Figure 3.117).

Next, I duplicated the top layer (you can use any of the aforementioned techniques). I now had a three-layer document (Figure 3.118).

Working on the top layer, I chose Image > Adjustments > Invert (press Command-I: Mac or Ctrl-I: Win). The file now looked like a negative (Figure 3.119).

While still working on the top layer, I selected Color Dodge mode from the pop-up menu at top left (Figure 3.120). The image almost totally disappeared, which is the normal result (Figure 3.121).

Still on the top layer, I went to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and adjusted the Radius slider until I was pleased with how the pencil sketch image looked (Figures 3.122 and 3.123).

Just in case you thought this effect was only for the birds, here's how the same technique transformed another picture I took in St. Augustine into a pencil sketch (Figures 3.124 and 3.125).

Figure 3.124

Figure 3.124

Tech info: Canon EOS 1Ds Mark II, Canon 17-40mm lens @ 17mm. Exposure: 1/125 sec. @ f/8. ISO 100.

Figure 3.125

Figure 3.125

Tech info: Canon EOS 1Ds Mark II, Canon 17-40mm lens @ 17mm. Exposure: 1/125 sec. @ f/8. ISO 100.

Have fun, as always!

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