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This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

Four Other Retouches We Use Liquify For

Liquify is an absolutely amazingly powerful tool unto itself, and here are four more instances where it literally comes to the rescue (while you’ll find more reasons and ways to use it on your own, these are four situations you’ll come across fairly often where it’s the perfect tool for the job). Also, one thing you’ll learn about retouching is that once you start to correct a certain problem, like ripples or folds in clothes, those problems start to stick out to you almost like they jump off the image, so you’ll get really quick at identifying them and fixing them fast using Liquify.


If you see a fold, or a ripple, or anything that needs a bit of tucking in, just tuck it in. You’ll use the same Liquify tool we used for nudging teeth around—the Forward Warp tool (it’s the first tool at the top of the Toolbox on the left). The same rules apply: make the brush slightly larger than the fold or material you want to move, then just gently nudge it over and it moves like you’re moving a thick liquid (like molasses).e


Liquify has a special tool just for making things smaller. It’s called the Pucker tool (it’s the fifth tool down from the top in the Toolbox on the left) and to use it, just make the brush size a little larger than the area you want to make smaller (in this case, we’re going to make our bride’s nose smaller, even though it really doesn’t need it), and then don’t paint with it—just click. Each time you click, it shrinks the area inside your brush a bit more. If you go too far, just press Command-Z (PC: Ctrl-Z) and it undoes your last step. You can use this for reducing “bug eyes,” as well.


A very popular retouch is to make your subject’s eyes larger (ever-popular on magazine covers) and it’s easy to do. You’re going to use the cousin of the Pucker tool (which makes things smaller, right?). It’s the Bloat tool, and it makes things bigger. It works the same way the Pucker tool does: you just move it over your subject’s eye (just do one at a time), make it a little larger than the eye and eyelids, and then just click. Each time you click, the eye gets a little bigger. Remember, if you go too far, or it doesn’t look right, use that keyboard shortcut I just mentioned to undo it.


This is another one I wind up doing quite a bit, especially when your subject has bare shoulders (and today’s brides all seem to want strapless bridal gowns, so this is a good one to know). You’re going to use the Forward Warp tool (like we do for fixing bumps or folds in clothes) and just gently nudge any bones sticking out along the shoulders (seen here) right back in.

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