January 27, 2011
Shoot and Edit: Week 3, Part 2B – Good Night….Edit (Bath Tub)
Welcome to Week 3, Part 2B of our Shoot and Edit photo challenge.

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Earlier this morning, I shared a tutorial on reducing noise. If you happened to miss that lesson, click HERE. Now, I’d like to share with you a few tips on adjusting white balance…specifically for those fun bathtub shots. Recall Jill’s SOOC shot from Monday:
Boys in the Tub SOOC rs
Again…building on what we’ve learned in the past two weeks (Week 1: Edit, Week 2: Edit), I started this edit in Adobe Camera Raw. Regardless of what editing program you’re working in, you should have some of the basic functionality that Adobe Camera Raw offers. Below, I’ve copied my SOOC data and the revisions I made in Adobe Camera Raw. Here’s what I did:
Bathtub ACR
Here is the photo after my Adobe Camera Raw Adjustments: 
Boys in the Tub ACR
After a few quick adjustments, I opened the photo in Photoshop Elements 7. PSE makes it really easy to adjust skin tones and/or remove color casts. One of those ways is to “Adjust Color for Skin Tone.” Duplicate your background (Ctrl+J or Command+J)…go to ENHANCES>ADJUST COLOR>ADJUST COLOR FOR SKIN TONE. You will get this pop up screen:
Adjust Color to Skin Tone
Just as the directions say, click on the skin and Elements will adjust the image for you. If you’re not satisfied, try again. I personally did not like the results of this approach…but I thought I’d share it anyways:
 Boys in the Tub Skin Tone
Another option for correcting white balance/skin tone/removing color casts is to use the “Remove Color Cast” feature in Photoshop Elements. Go to ENHANCE>ADJUST COLOR>REMOVE COLOR CAST. This option is a bit easier in my opinion…simply click on a part of the image that should be white, black or gray. I clicked on the white of the tub to get the following results:
Boys in the Tub Color Cast Remove
Like I said, I think this approach works much better. What do you think? From this point, I went through my typical processing steps that we discussed in previous lessons (Week 1: Edit, Week 2: Edit). I also made a very subtle adjustment to his eyes using an approach I introduced this morning: 

To enhance the eyes…there are a number of actions out there to really make this easier on you (I really like Morgan Kervin’s Eye Love Sparkle action). However, I thought it might be nice to give you some tips that did NOT include an action. After you’ve merged all your previous layers (CTRL+E or Command+E), create two duplicate layers:
  • Duplicate Layer 1: Change the Blending Mode to Screen. Add a Layer Mask – fill it BLACK. Use a soft white brush at 25% opacity and paint over the eyes to lighten the color (you could also do it with brightness/contrast). 
  • Duplicate Layer 2: Go to FILTER>OTHER>HIGH PASS FILTER….just as we’ve done in the past, use a soft light blending mode. However, add a layer mask – fill it BLACK and use a soft white brush at 25% opacity to paint over the eyes. You only want the eyes to pop. If it looks like too much, lower the opacity of that layer. If it’s too noisy, delete the layer.
To avoid “alien eyes,” it is absolutely necessary to use low opacity brushes to paint on the effect (and I believe this is the case when painting on ANY effect). I will often take it a step further and lower layer opacities once I’m done to achieve a really nice natural look. Here is the final outcome: 
Boys in the Tub Final RS
With all of that said, continue building on what we’ve learned in the past two weeks (including the noiseware functions we discussed earlier). If it is necessary, play with the white balance and/or adjust color options in your editing software. If you have specific questions, feel free to contact me.
Boys in the Tub Comparison
You can click HERE to be re-directed to the previous lesson and link up.

Good to Wow

Happy Thursday!