This week, I’ll be showing you how to Content Awareness Scale and image. Which is a really fancy way of saying we’re going to learn how to resize an image, while protecting a part of the foreground that we don’t want to distort.
If you didn’t, please check out my PHSH Intro post, as this one builds on what was learned there. (Also, if you need a refresh of how to add an image to the PHSH document)
Okay, so, for this tutorial, we’ll be using the cabin picture I used on my Holiday Treats book.
Please right click on the image, save it, then open it in PHSH, so you’re starting here:
Alright, now that you’ve got that, we’re going to change the document size to 6inx9in. Resize the image to fit into the newly sized canvas.
Okay, now the first step is to use the Selection tool to draw a box around the cabin. (Feel free to use the Guidelines to help you if needed)
In the right hand side panel, see how you’re currently in the Layers panel? Click over to the Channels panel, then go down to the bottom and click the New Channel button. This will create a new Channel with just the cabin. It’s fine to leave it named Alpha 1, the name doesn’t really matter.
Now that your document is the right colour, and we’ve created Alpha 1, switch back over to the Layers tab. You’ll notice now that you’ve switched back, the Layer you had previously selected is now greyed out, instead of blue. That means it’s no longer selected. To re-select the layer (so we can keep working) you’ll want to click on the Background layer, then click back to the picture layer. It should now be selected/highlighted blue.
Using the Selection tool again, right click in the box you made and click on Deselect. This will get rid of the box around the cabin – now that we’ve created the Channel, we don’t need the cabin to be selected.
Now we’re basically back to how we started, except we’ve got an extra channel. This is the part where we do the actual Content-Awareness Scaling. (CA Scaling)
Going to the top Menu, click on Edit, then scroll down to Content Awareness Scale and click it.
See the box on the end there that says ‘Protect’? Click the drop-down menu and select Alpha 1. This will… well it’s gonna protect the cabin from stretching while we resize the picture.
This is the fun part, now we’re gonna stretch the picture, and the cabin won’t be affected.
To do this, click on the box on the bottom in the middle, and hold down ALT as you slowly drag the sizing box down.
You’ll notice that the top of the picture is moving too, that’s what holding down the ALT key does – allows you to move both sides at the same time.
Keep dragging the image until the top of the box disappears off the canvas.
Once that happens, go over to your Select tool, click it. A dialogue box will come up and ask to apply the changes, click Apply. Then, drag the image down from the top of the canvas, lining it up with the bottom.
Notice how much bigger the background is? But the cabin stayed the same size! We didn’t get the picture to the exact dimensions of the canvas, but that’s okay.
To get the picture to the right size, we can just go back up to Edit – Content Aware Scale, and do it again until it matches the canvas size. Don’t forget to Protect Alpha 1!
(For this sizing, we don’t need to hold down ALT, because we just need to stretch the top to the top of the canvas, we don’t need to resize the bottom.)
Ta-da! Now, is the most important part – save.
This is a pretty handy PHSH skill I wish I had learned before doing the cover for my book.
For a side-by side comparison, here’s the cover when I first did it (before I knew how to CA Scale) and after I learned.
See the difference? The first one you can definitely tell that I stretched the image.
That’s why this is one hell of a PHSH skill to know how to do, and, it’s not that hard, either. Once you practice and do it a few times, you’ll be able to do it no problem.
Next tutorial, I’ll show you how to add a Drop Shadow to text:
Look out for that May 6th.
Like this tutorial? Check out the rest of the series here!
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