Contrast is usually at its highest when a scene is backlit. In this image there wasn’t much that could be done to lighten the shadows. I exposed so that the highlights weren’t too badly burnt out and didn’t worry too much about the shadows. Contrast […]
Where on the Curve are you?
The Curve dialog in Photoshop hides some surprise features that aren’t immediately apparent at first glance. In Photoshop CS3 and later, one surprise is that you now have the adjusters under the chart that you’re used to using in the Levels dialog inside Curves. So it’s easy to perform a Levels adjustment in Curves – the reverse isn’t true – Levels can’t do a Curves adjustment. So I don’t use Levels for increasing tonal range in my images anymore – Curves does everything I need.
Second tool is the sampler. If you want to add contrast in a particular area of an image it helps if you can find that area on the curve. Simple. Just move across and hold the left mouse button as you wave your mouse pointer over the area of your image to sample. When you do this, you’ll see a marker move along the curve showing you where those pixels are in the curve. This is the area you want to steepen – the steeper the curve, the more contrast in that area. So pull the curve above the area you want to affect upwards and pull the curve below that area downwards to steepen the curve and you’ll get more contrast in that area of the image.
To add markers to the curve – Control + Click (Command + Click on the Mac) on a point in the image and you will add a marker on the curve indicating exactly where those pixels are to be found. You can use the marker to anchor the curve so it doesn’t move when you pull the curve above or below it or drag on the marker to change the shape of the curve at that point.
If you’re confused about the difference between the Lighten and Screen blend modes in Photoshop, here’s how they work: The Lighten blend mode compares the pixels on the effected layers and selects the lightest to display. The Screen blend mode multiples the pixel values on […]
Layers are a key tool to working successfully in Photoshop. Here are my 10 best tips for working with them: 1 Create a layer in Photoshop To create a new layer in Photoshop, choose Layer > New > Layer or, better still, click the Create […]
How many times have you created a neat effect on an image using Photoshop and then wanted to duplicate the effect on another image? The problem is that unless you’ve taken notes about what you’ve done, it is often difficult if not impossible to remember […]
After many years as a keen amateur photographer, I decided to start a small landscape photography business called Lakescenes which I ran alongside my main job as an IT Manager. As business increased, I found myself working long, but rewarding, hours just to keep up […]
Rob Sheppard is a naturalist, nature photographer and videographer who says his favorite location is the one he is in at any time. He is the author/photographer of over 40 books, as well as a well-known speaker and workshop leader, and a Fellow with the […]
Gary Hart has photographed California’s natural beauty for over 30 years. Gary’s photos and writing have appeared in many publications, most recently Outdoor Photographer and Sierra Heritage magazines. You’ll also find his images in greeting cards, postcards, calendars, and many galleries and private collections throughout the world.
Originally from Poland, based in London UK, Jaroslav has background in Fine Arts, degree in Architecture, and wide array of experience. Being an Architect taught him how to be resourceful and to solve complex problems with simple, yet innovative solutions. Constant passion for graphic & […]
Next time you’re in the countryside at night do yourself a favour: look up. If it’s clear and conditions are right you’ll see a seemingly infinite number of stars twinkling like diamonds on a sheet of black velvet. As a visual pleasure it’s hard to […]
Colour can be distracting. Stripped of colour an image is entirely about the subject (unless of course the entire point of the subject is its colour…). This is particularly true of portraiture. Black and white arguably conveys the inner soul of the subject more powerfully […]