Tag Archives: PHSH

Puddles (PHSH Effect #19)

Happy spring!

As I said in the last PHSH Tutorial, I’ll be keeping with the rain effect theme for this one as well, and show you how to make a wet road reflection/puddle.

There are actually 3 different ways I’ve discovered to to do this, but this one is the one that works best with the Rain Effect I showed you last time.

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See how much more realistic the rain effect looks when you pair it with this wet road reflection?

Let’s show you how to do it!

 

Step 1

For this effect, you’ll want to start with a picture you’ve already applied the Rain Effect to, or are planning to add the rain effect to.

If you are using a picture you’ve already done the rain effect on, the first step is to hide the rain layer. To do this, go to the Layers Panel, and you should see a little box in front of the layer thumbnail that has an eye on it. Click it, and you should notice the layer will be ‘hidden’, as well as, the eye disappeared.

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Once you hide the rain layer, you’ll want to duplicate the image you’re using. To do this, hold down ALT and click and drag the Layer either up or down. Once you have 2 image Layers, you’ll want to work with the one on top.

 

Step 2

Next, (making sure the top image Layer is selected), you’ll want to go over to your Lasso tool, and select Polygon Lasso Tool from the drop-down menu that appears.

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Now, you’ll want to use this tool to outline the road (or ground), being sure to not include the trees. To do this, you’ll want to start by clicking slightly outside your work document, and then you’ll notice you are dragging a line.

Drag this line along the road in your picture. If you have a not-straight line, you can click at any point to ‘fix’ part of the line to the picture. Do this until you have selected the whole road, and brought your line back to the beginning point of your selection.

I realize that might sound a little confusing, so I’ve shown you using a red line how I did this on my picture.

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Once you bring the line back to your starting point, the line you made should start flashing and be dotted, as if you used the Selection Tool to select it instead. (But you can’t use the Selection Tool, because that tool only allows you to select things in either a square/rectangle or circular shape)

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Step 3

Now, you’ll want to go down to the Layer Mask button, which is located at the bottom of the Layers Panel, to apply a Layer Mask to the layer.

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You’ll know the Layer Mask has been applied when a black and white thumbnail shows up next to the thumbnail of the image. Then, you’ll need to click on the Link picture that is between the two thumbnails. This will, (not surprisingly) un-link the Layer Mask.

 

Step 4

Once you’ve done that, make sure you click on the image thumbnail (the thumbnail that’s closest to the eye), and then you’ll want to Flip Vertically. To do this, you can click on one of the Transform squares that are around the image, then right-click and select Flip Vertically from the drop-down menu.

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After doing this, you should see the image is upside down, and is showing only in the road selection you made.

If not, or if the image is too high (as was in my case) you’ll want to just lower the image, until the edges of the road line up with that of the non-flipped image. Or, until you feel it’s low enough.

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Step 5

At this point, with the Layer Mask being aligned, the picture should look like a mirror perfect mirror image. Now, if you needed to add a mirror reflection to an image, you’d be done by this point.

However, we’re making a puddle, so we’ll need to use our Eraser tool. Go up to the top panel and change the Brush Size to about a Medium size, and set the Hardness pretty low. You’ll also want to change the Opacity to about 96%.

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Now that we have our Eraser set, it’s time to form the puddle shapes. To do this, you’ll want to just start erasing any part of the flipped picture you don’t want to keep.

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Do this for the entire flipped image, until you’re happy with the way your reflection is looking. You can erase as much, or as little of the image as you’d like – it all depends on what you want the final image to look like.

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Step 6

Once you’re happy with what you have left, go up to Filter – Blur – Motion Blur, and make the Angle 0, and the Distance something small, like 6. The Distance will entirely depend on your image, but try to keep it on the smaller side.

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You want to add just enough Motion Blur for the image to look slightly blurry, since we are creating this reflection for a lighter rainfall.

If, for example, you were adding this to a heavier thunderstorm picture, you could make the Distance greater, as that would make the reflection look more blurry.

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Step 7

Once you’re happy with the amount of blur your reflection has, you can go ahead and unhide your Rain layer, to see how the image looks with all the effects together.

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This looks pretty good, but see how un-hiding the Rain made the picture lighter? You could keep the image lighter if you wanted, but, to me, it doesn’t look as realistic, because it’s often cloudy/dark when raining.

To fix this, you can go up to the Adjustments Panel, which sits on top of the Layers Panel, and then click on the Brightness/Contrast icon, which is the icon that looks like a sun/moon.

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In the Panel that pops up, you can now lower the Brightness and/or Contrast of the image, until you’re happy with the final product.

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And that’s it!

You now have a great, more-realistic rain picture!

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As always, don’t forget to Save both a PHSH file so you can come back in and Edit things later, as well as a JPEG/PNG file for showing off on social media.

You’ll have 2 months to practice this Wet Road technique, before we pivot to almost the exact opposite side of the effects spectrum: Glitter!

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Make It Rain! (PHSH Effect #18)

Welcome to the first Photoshop tutorial of the new year!

I hope you’re well rested and ready to tackle the 5 new effects I’ll be showing you throughout this year.

First of which, will be this cool rain effect!

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Now, obviously, this effect will look best on a photo that looks like it would have rain on it, like in the picture above. That said, you can use this effect on any picture, though it might not look as realistic over a sunny day.

This effect, like many of the others I’ve shown you, isn’t that complicated once you break it down, and, is actually pretty easy.

Let’s get into it!

Step 1.

To start, pick a picture you’d like to make it rain on. It can be any image you want, but, as said above, this effect will look better on certain images than others.

Once you have your picture picked out, create a New Layer (you can do this by using the New Layer button at the bottom of the Layers panel). Next, we’re going to fill the new layer with the colour black. You can do this one of two ways: you can either go up to Edit – Fill, and then select Black and click Okay, or, you can use your Paint Bucket and dump black onto the layer.

Either way, the layer should be completely black.

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You can also rename the new layer to something you’ll remember what it is, like ‘Rain’ – naming your layers is always helpful when working, but especially important the more you start working on more complicated projects.

 

Step 2

Once the layer is filled with black, go up to Filter – Noise – Add Noise. In the dialogue box that comes up, you can fill in the following values:

Amount of Percent: 25%

Distribution Mode: Gaussian

And, make sure the Monochromatic box is checked.

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Once this is done, click Okay to add the Noise. At this point, the black layer should have white speckles all over it – like the ‘fuzz’ that used to show up on an old TV when you went to a channel you didn’t get.

 

Step 3

Now that you’ve added noise, you’ll need to go back to Edit – Transform – Scale. Then, in the Width/Height values that appear in the top menu (on the same line used to change a Brush size/hardness), change the values to either 200/200 or 400/400, depending on the size of your document.

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Alternatively, you can just click and drag the layer’s bottom corner to make it larger, in the exact same way you scale a picture to fit your document/work size. The layer doesn’t have to be specifically that big, just make sure it’s slightly bigger than your work area.

Once you resize, the Noise/dots should (slightly) resemble falling snow.

This is to ensure a more realistic look – because rain is coming down from the sky, if you take a picture when it’s raining, the drops won’t be perfectly lined up with the top/sides of your picture – the rain began way above the scope of your lens. This helps ensure there are ‘half’ raindrops.

 

Step 4.

Now we’ve got our rain the correct size, we’ll need to make our picture/image viewable through it!

To do this, go to the Layers panel, and click on the Blend Mode drop down menu, and select Screen. This should allow you to see your image through the Noise layer.

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If this doesn’t work, make sure your Noise layer is on top of your image layer in the Layers panel. If it’s listed underneath your image, just drag it above, so it’s the first layer in the list.

 

Step 5.

Next, to make those dots look more like falling rain. To do this, go back up to Filter – Blur – Motion Blur.

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The values you input here will depend upon the image you’re using, as well as what you want the final image to look like. If for example, you want it to look like it is heavily raining on your image, you’ll want to go with a more dramatic angle, and a larger distance.

On the other hand, if you want there to be light rain, you can go with a less dramatic angle, and a smaller distance, as I did in the image.

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That said, I’ve noticed a Distance of 75 seems to be the lowest that works while still looking like ‘rain’. Go ahead and play around with both values until you’re happy with what it looks like, though.

Once you’re happy with what your rain looks like, click Okay.

If you really want an image to look stormy, I also recommend using this Noise/Motion Blur effect more than once, with varying Distance/Angle attributes, so it will give the impression of a much heavier rain fall.

 

And that’s it!

If you notice your image has become too bright after applying the Rain, you can go ahead and either try lowering the Rain layer’s Opacity, or, you can go to the Adjustments panel (should be sitting on top of the Layers panel), and click on the Brightness/Contrast option, and change those values until you’re happy with them.

Once you’re totally happy with what your rain looks like, don’t forget to Save both a PHSH file (.psd), and a JPEG, or PNG of your work! Saving a PHSH file will allow you to go back in and make changes if you ever need to, without having to start all over.

And, while this effect isn’t too time consuming, or hard, it still sucks to have to start from scratch when wanting to change a Photoshop project.

Go ahead and practice this effect until you become comfortable with it, because in April, I’ll be keeping with this rainy theme, and showing you how to make Puddles:

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Like this tutorial? Check out the rest of the series here!

Sneak Peeks of Posts for 2022

Happy New Year everyone!

I hope you all had a relaxing break and are ready to get back to it.

This year, I wanted to do something a little different. Instead of jumping right into a brand new article on the first day, I thought instead, I could do a post that would show you what’s to come.

I figured this would be good for two reasons:

  1. It gives you guys adequate time to get excited for what’s to come, and
  2. It gives me an extra week to get some posts scheduled.

I’m (mostly) kidding on that second point. But, I have been doing lots of research in my time off from posting and, apparently, people like to feel like insiders, and like to see teasers of what’s coming up, so they can build the anticipation for the thing, have time to prepare, etc.

And while my blog doesn’t put out heart-stopping excitement, I still thought it might be cool to try out.

So, below, you’ll see some previews of posts to come.

Enjoy! (And get ready)

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - Photoshop Tutorial Series - Puddles (PHSH Effect 19) - Puddles Example Pic - phsh tutorial, photoshop, tutorial, indie author, writing tips, book covers, book cover tips, photo manipPuddles (PHSH Effect #19, Coming Apr. 4th)

AterImber.com - Writing - Throw Away Fics - Make It Count - SPN Fanfiction, Supernatural, Sam Winchester, Dean Winchester, Crowley, Bobby Singer, Crobby, fluff, indie author, reading, reading material, Patreon, short storiesMake It Count (Unlearning Series Fic #9, Coming May 9th)

Lens Flares (PHSH Effect #21, Coming July 25th)

AterImber.com - The Veg Life - Vegan Tips - Vegan Fast Food KFC Edition - KFC Preview - veganism, vegan tips, vegan fast food, food blogger, food reviewer, KFC, plant-based, meat-freeVegan Fast Food: KFC (Coming Aug. 22nd)

Curses (Coming Oct. 14th)

Who Gives a Crap Review (Coming Mar. 28th)

AterImber.com - Writing - Throw Away Fics - The Long One - SPN Fanfiction, Supernatural, Marvel, crossover, Dean Winchester, Sam Winchester, Thor, Loki, indie author, reading, reading material, Patreon, short storiesThe Long One (A SPN x Marvel crossover, Coming Sept. 2nd)


Like seeing teasers of what’s to come? Sign up for my Patreon and never miss another exclusive!

Shattered Text (PHSH Effect #17)

Welcome to the last Photoshop tutorial for the year!

I know there haven’t been too many this year, but that’s for two very good reasons! 1) I’ve expanded the website to include different things, and thus am trying to be fair in my cycling through of each interest, and b) I’ve been busy and need time to learn more effects to show you!

At the time of writing (20.11.17), I’m almost out of effects to share, and haven’t had time to learn more. I mean, it’s 2020, can you really blame me for not having time? But, don’t worry! I’ve got a pretty good handle on scheduling (yes, I had scheduled all of 2021 back in 2020), and I’m not writing a book (or should I say ‘haven’t been’? … This is the part of writing posts in the future that gets confusing!) this year, so I should have plenty of time to teach myself some new effects.

So for now, you can go digging through the old tutorials, and practice this effect while you wait for new ones. Also, if you aren’t already, keep an eye on my Twitter, where I’ll share updates on what’s happening, so you can stay in the loop.

Okay, I think that’s enough rambling, now onto the effect!

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This effect, like many others, probably looks complicated, but isn’t really, it’s more time consuming than anything else. (But we’ll get to why in a bit)

Step 1. 

On a new project/document/file (I swear one day I’ll learn what it’s called!), type whatever text you want to shatter. For the purposes of simplicity, I’ll just use the word Shattered.

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You can do this effect on any font/colour, but if you want it to really look good, I suggest using a thick font, like Arial, and to change the word colour to white/off white. (So it looks more like glass) Then, change the background colour from white to black. I’ve also centered the text, but again, this is optional. It all depends on what you want the final product to look like.

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After changing the font, to make it extra thick (so we have more room to work with the effect), you can also change the Font Style so the text looks even thicker. I picked Black, but the Bold, or even a different really thick font should work.

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AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Tutorial Series - Shattered Text - Step 1 D2 - phsh, phsh tutorial, photoshop, photoshop tutorial, phsh effect

Step 2.

See how much better that’s already looking? Now, I want you to pick a center point on your word, and, using the Ellipse Tool, draw a small circle at the point. This will be used as the impact point, and will serve as the central part for when we begin to shatter the pieces. To keep things simple, I’ll use the bottom of the middle letter.

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AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Tutorial Series - Shattered Text - Step 2 B - phsh, phsh tutorial, photoshop, photoshop tutorial, phsh effect

Step 3.

Now, using the same tool, switch to the Line Tool, and draw straight lines radiating out from the circle, to begin dividing the word into pieces.

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Keep going until you’ve fractioned off the whole word. Hint: Holding down SHIFT while drawing the lines will keep them totally straight.

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Step 4.

Now to make things easier, select all the lines and circle you just made (either hold CTRL and click on each layer in the Layers Panel, or press and hold SHIFT and click on the first and last shape layers), then right-click and select Merge Shapes from the menu. This will collapse the guide we just made into 1 layer.

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Once collapsed, feel free to re-name it Guide or something similar, so you know what it is. To rename a Layer, double click on the Layer Name (the word beside the thumbnail picture) and type whatever you want to name the layer, then hit Enter to make the change.

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Step 5.

Now to actually make the shards. First, right click on the Type layer, then select Rasterize Type. This will make the text no longer editable with the Type tool, but will allow us to cut and crop it as if it’s an image. (Which is what we need)

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After this, using your Pen tool, begin to cut out the shapes of the shards following the guide you created. (Make sure you do this on the word layer, and not the guide layer) You can also lower the Opacity of your guide layer, so it’s less distracting.

When using the Pen Tool, you’ll want to make points at the edges of the selection. Make triangles when clicking, then right-click and click ‘Make Selection’. Then, using the Rectangular Marquee Tool, right click on the selection again, and this time select Layer via Copy. (You can also do this by going up to the Layers tab in the top menu, and then going to New – Layer Via Copy)

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AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Tutorial Series - Shattered Text - Step 5 E - phsh, phsh tutorial, photoshop, photoshop tutorial, phsh effect

Repeat this until you have separate layers for each section made by the Guide.

Step 6.

Now that you have all the pieces you’ll need on separate layers, comes the fun part. Hide the original text layer, so just the pieces are left visible.

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Now, starting with 1 of the sections, slightly move it so it’s not touching the rest of the pieces, this will make it look broken. You can also slightly turn the pieces as well, if needed.

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AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Tutorial Series - Shattered Text - Step 6 C - phsh, phsh tutorial, photoshop, photoshop tutorial, phsh effect

Continue to do this for all the pieces, keeping in mind the circle from your guide is the central point, so all the pieces should look like they ‘broke’ from there. Also keep in mind, sometimes less is more, and the effect may look better without drastic changes, but this will depend on the look you’re going for.

Also, once you’ve moved all the pieces, hide your Guide layer, so you can see what it looks like.

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Now all the pieces are where you want them, you can go ahead and save yourself the PHSH file. (Which I always recommend, but especially recommend for effects that take multiple layers!) Once you have an editable PHSH file saved, you can go ahead and delete your Guide and intact Shattered layer, and then you can flatten and save as a PNG or JPEG file.

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And there you have it! Another effect is done!

This looks pretty great on it’s own, but, if you want to really give it some oomph, arrange your text on an image of broken glass pieces. If needed, (depending on your background), you can also Bevel and Emboss the text pieces so they appear to be raised, and, you can also add an Inner Shadow as well. (Both of these are techniques I’ll be showing in later tutorials.)

Adding these extra steps are totally not needed, but can add a little extra ‘wow’ factor to your cover, depending on the look you’re going for. And, like most of the other effects I’ve shown you, this Shattered text technique works in a LOT of different contexts.

This is the same technique I used on the Broken cover, to make the title look like it was written across the mirror. It’s less shattered than what I did in the glass shards picture, but still works.

Play around with the fracturing to see what works for you.

Like I said at the beginning of the tutorial, this is the last one for this year, but I’ll be back some time next year with a brand new set of effects! So go ahead and practice, because while I don’t know exactly what I’ll show you, I do know the effects/techniques are just gonna keep getting harder from here. So make sure you take the time to master the early ones!


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Making a GIF (PHSH Effect #16)

Don’t be scared! Making a GIF is not nearly as complicated as you may think!

Well, okay, that’s not technically true. It can actually get complicated, but that’s completely dependant on what you want to GIF. Don’t worry though, because this is just a tutorial, I’ll be keeping things simple, and you can always practice and work your way up to complicated later.

In the interest in keeping things simple, I’ll just show you how to make the GIF I teased in the last tutorial.

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Also, real quick, ‘GIF’ stands for Graphics Interchange Format. So, the proper pronunciation is to say it with a hard ‘g’ sound, not with a ‘j’ sound. Now that you know what it stands for, I hope you will start saying it correctly, because now you don’t have an excuse. (Unless you say ‘jraphics’, but I’m gonna go ahead and assume you don’t)

Okay, now that that’s out of the way, let’s get started!

Step 1.

First things first, set up a new document/work file in Photoshop, and make it whatever dimensions you want. Then, using the Type tool, type some words for us to GIF, and make sure you type them all on different layers. Since I’m showing you the GIF I teased last time, I typed out This is a GIF on 4 separate layers. But it can be any text you want. (Or it can even be a picture, but we’ll get to that later)

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Step 2.

Next, go up to Window (in the top menu with File) and click on Timeline from the drop-down menu.

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Once you click on that, you should see a banner come up on the bottom of the window, this is called the Timeline. There should be 1 ‘frame’ with your layers already in it that popped up as well.

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Step 3.

Now that you have the Timeline open, you have to place each layer onto different frames. This is actually much simpler than it may sound. First step, is to take them off the first frame. To do this, simply go over to your Layers Panel, and hide the layers you don’t want visible in the first frame. (Click on the eye beside the layer to hide it)

The only thing visible in the first frame should be the word This.

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Step 4.

Now we have to make more frames. To do this, click on the Duplicate Frame button in the timeline. It is the button that looks like the New Layers button.

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To make this the 2nd frame, we are going to hide the This layer, and un-hide the is layer. You do this in the exact way you did to hide all the layers, but the hidden layer won’t have an eye next it. That’s okay, just click in the little square, and the eye and layer will appear, making the layer un-hidden.

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Continue to duplicate, and hide/un-hide layers until you have 1 frame for each layer. If you get confused, look at the frames – you should be able to see in the frame preview that there is only 1 word in each frame.

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Step 5.

Now that we have all the frames correct, we can check how the GIF looks. To do this, click on the 1st frame (to start the GIF from the beginning), and then click the Play button in the Timeline. Your frames should then ‘play’, and you can see if you need to fix/change anything.

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Step 6.

If you think your GIF is moving too slowly (or too fast), you can change the speed by clicking on the arrow that’s under the frame, next to the time, and then select the time you think will work best for you. Keep playing with it until you find a speed you need, and to check the speed, just Play the frames again until it looks right for your needs. (For the most part, I’ve found the default of 0.5 seconds to be sufficient)

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Now that you’ve got the timing right, you may want to change the Loop type as well, so that it continuously plays, instead of just playing once. In the Timeframe box, under the frames, there should be a Loop dropdown. Click on the drop-down menu, and select Forever from the list. This will make your GIF play in a continuous loop, well… forever. (If the default is already Forever, you can ignore this step)

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Step 7.

Now that you’ve completed your GIF, it’s time to save. But wait!

You can not save a GIF in the same way you’ve been doing (Flattening then saving as a PNG/JPEG). Well, okay, actually you can save it like that, but then it won’t play.

If you want to save the GIF to actually play, you’ll have to go up to File, then find Save For Web in the drop-down.

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In the dialogue box that comes up, make sure GIF is selected as the format, and leave everything else the default.

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Then, click the Save button on the bottom of the box, and then from there you can give the file a name and save it to wherever you need to, like any other file.

And there you have it! You now know how to make a GIF! I told you it wasn’t that hard. And the cool thing is the steps are exactly the same no matter what you’re doing.

So, say you want to make a picture move. Let’s say you want to make a rocket ship take off.

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The steps are exactly the same, except instead of using text, we’re moving a picture. And, it takes more frames. Also, because it’s just one picture (minus the booster flames), all I’m doing is moving the picture slightly between frames, so it appears to be flying.

Here’s what the PHSH work file looks like:

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Each time I moved the rocket, I placed a Guideline where the nose was, so I’d know how much to move it in the next frame. You can see here that I also changed the play speed twice. In the first few frames, it’s set at 0.2 seconds, and then after the ‘booster’ (flames) comes out the bottom, I changed it to 0.1 second, so it appears like the rocket sped up.

Go ahead and play with this technique – it is one of the more fun ones. You guys have until October to keep yourselves busy with GIF making, after which, I’ll be showing you how to create:

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Like this tutorial? Check out the rest of the series here!

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Changing Eye/Skin Colour (PHSH Effect #15)

I know, I know, ‘you’re revisiting effects already? Does that mean you’re out of ideas?’ No, no it doesn’t. There’s no need to worry, I just thought I’d revisit this one, because I actually discovered an easier/more effective way to change someone’s eye colour, and this technique can be used to change the colour of more than just eyes! You can also do skin colour, hair, and pretty much whatever else you want!

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For this tutorial, we’ll be using the below black and white picture of an eye, but feel free to use any picture you like. Since you’re just starting, I’d recommending choosing a black and white picture to practice with, but note that this technique does work on pre-coloured pictures as well.

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Step 1:

Okay, by now you should know Step 0 is to always open a new work file, and to place your picture onto the document. After this, go over to the bottom of the Tools Panel on the left-hand side, and click on the button that’s under the Colour Swatches.

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Step 2:

Once you clicked that, go to your Paintbrush, and change the size/hardness of it, then begin to paint over the part of the picture you want to change the colour of. (In this case, it’s the iris) When you begin painting, it may turn red-ish/orange, don’t worry! This happens just to show you the part you’re painting. It won’t stay orange after you’re done this step.

For eyes, I like to try to get the size of the paint brush as close to the size of the iris as I can, so that I can paint with just one click, so the edges aren’t ‘bumpy’. Also, don’t worry about painting over the pupil for this step. We can clean up the paint later.

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Step 3:

Now that you’ve painted over the entire part you want to change, click the button under the Colour Swatches again, and you’ll notice the red goes away, and there should now be a slow-flashing dotted line around your image – this is showing that you’ve selected it.

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Step 4:

Go up to Select – Invert, this will now select the part you painted, instead of the part outside of that. (Don’t ask me why it defaults to selecting everything you didn’t paint, I have no idea)

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Okay, at this point, you can now change the colour by one of two ways:

Way #1:

Step 5:

With the iris still selected, go to the bottom of the Layers Panel, and go to where you’d make a colour a background, and select Solid Colour from the menu.

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Step 6:

After selecting the colour you want, at the top of the Layers Panel, there should be a box next to the Opacity drop-down that says Normal. Click on that to bring down a drop-down menu, and then select either Screen or Overlay from the menu. (Use whichever one makes the colour look the best)

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OR

Way #2:

Step 5:

Now that the part you want to change colours is selected, go to the top of your Layers Panel, and you should see a panel sitting on top with tabs in it, that are labelled Adjustments, Color, and Swatches. Click on the Adjustments tab, and then click on Hue/Saturation from the pictures listed. Hue/Saturation looks like a colour picker, and is beside the thing that looks like scales.

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Step 6:

After clicking Hue/Saturation, a panel should pop out, with different sliders on it. To change the iris colour, you can play with the Hue and Saturation sliders, until you find a colour you like. If you find that the colour is too subtle, (even with the Saturation on full), try checking the Colourize box at the bottom of the panel. This may help.

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(Back to both ways)

Step 7:

Once you have a colour you like, go to your Eraser tool, and erase the pupil, and if there is colour outside the edges/area you want to be coloured, erase that, too. If you used the Solid Colour method, you may get a dialogue box that comes up that says something about rasterizing the layer, or that it won’t be editable anymore, just click ‘okay’.

Once you have the edges/pupil all cleaned up, you’re done and ready to save!

I wouldn’t say this technique is easier than the other one, but this one is a lot more versatile, and as I said above, can be used on more than just eyes. It also makes it look more realistic, in my opinion. Once you’re happy with the pupil, why don’t you try to colourize the skin colour as well?

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Go ahead and play around with this effect, to see how it works best for your needs – the next tutorial will be coming Aug. 30th, so you’ll have plenty of time to master this one!

Next time, I’ll be showing you how to make a GIF! Oh, yes.

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Check out the rest of the photoshop tutorial series here!

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Blood Drips (PHSH Effect #13)

A quick disclaimer:

While this tutorial isn’t too realistic (we’re not adding this effect to a person or animal), I still want to say that if seeing blood makes you nauseous, faint or is in any way triggering for you, please skip this tutorial, or continue with caution.

The purpose of these tutorials is to be helpful, not to negatively affect a persons’ health or cause anyone any harm.


This is the last PHSH tutorial for 2020, so please feel free to check out the other tutorials while you wait for the next one, which will be coming some time next year.

Keep an eye on my Twitter account for posting updates and anouncements!


Since we’re in October now, I thought what better PHSH effect to teach you then to add blood drips to an image?

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It also just so happened to work out that this is the 13th tutorial – it’s like it was meant to be!

As with most of these other tutorials, it isn’t actually that hard, once you know how to do it. There’s just a few very precise steps you need to follow. And, as always, practice makes perfect, so the more times you do it, the better you’ll get!

Let’s get into it.

Step 1:

This will either work on text or an image, but for the sake of this tutorial, I’m going to stick with a plain text layer. The technique is the same whether you’re doing a basic picture or something more complicated, so it’s best to start simple, and work your way up.

Starting with Step 1, which is opening a new document, and adding some type/a word to a layer. To keep with today’s theme, I’m just going to type Halloween. The colour doesn’t matter, but it may look more realistic to use a closer-to-blood colour.

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Step 2:

Using your brush tool (and a shade of red), hold down SHIFT and make vertical lines coming out of the ends of the words. (Holding down SHIFT will make the lines perfectly straight) You’ll also want to vary the length of the lines and the size of the brush you use, so it looks more realistic.

Tip: Before you use the brush tool on your Type Layer, you may get a dialogue box that says something like ‘you must rasterize this layer before proceeding, and it will no longer be editable as a Type Layer’. Just click ‘Okay’. This just means you can’t use the type tool to edit the layer anymore, but that’s okay. If you mess up you can always delete this layer and make a new Type layer.

Or if you like, you can paint the lines/drips in a new blank layer, so you don’t mess up the text.

Example:

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Compared to:

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Seris - PHSH Effect 13 - Blood Drips - Varying Length and Size - phsh, photoshop, phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial

See the difference? The varied length and size already is starting to look like blood!

Step 3:

Now that you have your lines, we’re gonna go up to Filter – Liquify.

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You may get a dialogue box that says something like ‘Liquify supports hardware acceleration to improve performance. Verify that ‘Use Graphics Processor’ is enabled in Performance Preferences.’ Just click okay, and then once it opens, set the following values in the Tool Options panel on the right hand side:

Brush Size: 40

Brush Density: 25

Brush Pressure: 48

Brush Rate: 28

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The lines you made may show up by themselves in the Liquify panel, this is okay! It’s just because I painted them in a different layer than the Type Layer, just in case I needed to change something.

This technique will work whether they’re attached to the word or not.

Step 4:

Now that you’ve set the Tool Options, select the Pucker tool from the left side menu, and drag it down the line you made, stopping just short of the end. Do this for all the lines you made. To do this step, we don’t need to keep the lines perfectly straight, because blood doesn’t drip in a perfectly straight line. So, try your best to make the lines look a bit ‘wiggly’ or just non-straight.

You may also have to hold the brush an extra second above the bottom, just so this part is the most puckered. (You can also change the Brush Size if needed)

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Step 5:

Now to make the actual blood droplets, use the Bloat Tool (directly underneath the Pucker Tool) and hold on the ends (or wherever you want blood drops) until you get the desired blood drop size.

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AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Seris - PHSH Effect 13 - Blood Drips - Bloat 1 Line - phsh, photoshop, phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial

Repeat on all the lines, and then once you’re done, click Okay. If you need to, you can always re-pucker parts of the lines, or if you accidentally puckered part of the line too much, you can use the Bloat Tool to make it more even.

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Step 6:

This is looking pretty good, but they’re still not quite as realistic as they could be. So now, we’re just going to add a simple Drop Shadow to the layer.

If you need help in doing this, head back on over to my Drop Shadow tutorial.

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Be sure to un-check the box marked Use Global Light, and then play with the Distance, Spread and Size until it looks right for your document. You can also change the Opacity to 100%, and the shadow Colour by clicking on the colour square, and selecting a new colour.

I’m going to make the new colour a darker shade of red, instead of pure black.

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Once you’re happy with how the drop shadow looks, click Okay.

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If you did the blood drips on a separate layer like I did, then you will also have to add a Drop Shadow to the word Halloween (or whatever word you typed), because as you can see right now, it looks a bit odd to have a drop shadow on the blood, and not on the word.

These next few steps are optional, but I feel it helps take things a step further, and makes the effect look better. However, this completely depends on what you’re adding blood drips to, so it may not be needed. This is why I always suggest playing around with the effects, so you find what works best for you. That said, this is a Halloween themed tutorial, so I think the extra steps below help add that extra ‘creepy’ vibe.

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Step 7:

We’re going to go back into the Blending Options, and this time we’re going to click Bevel and Emboss.

Set the Levels to the settings below:

Inner Bevel

Technique: Smooth

Depth: 590

Up

Size: 10

Soften: 7

Shading:

Angle: 120, 30

Highlight Mode: Hard Light, Opacity: 63

Shadow Mode: Overlay, Opacity: 80

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AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Seris - PHSH Effect 13 - Blood Drips - Bevel and Emboss Halloween - phsh, photoshop, phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial

Then set the Contour to the below:

Gaussian (Round one that looks like a hill)

Range: 0

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Step 8:

And finally, we’re going to add a Gradient Overlay, with the below settings:

Soft Light

Opacity: 24

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And add it to the Type layer as well:

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Seris - PHSH Effect 13 - Blood Drips - Gradient Overlay Halloween - phsh, photoshop, phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial

And to add just that little extra ‘oomph’ to the image, I’m going to change the background colour to black, so the red colour really pops.

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As always, don’t forget to save your work! (Both as a PHSH file, and as a JPEG/PNG)

Then you can use the image to show your friends, and keeping the photoshop file is always a must, just in case you forget how some of the steps, or if the picture file somehow gets corrupt, or you need to quickly go back and change something.

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And ta-da! That’s it. Not too hard, eh? I would suggest to practice this technique with different text, and then once you feel comfortable, to move on to actual pictures. Since this is the last tutorial of the year, you’ll have lots of time to practice!


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Spot Brightening (PHSH Effect #12)

Spot Brightening is a very important skill to have. Sometimes – for whatever reason – an image will come out with a dark spot, or will have weird lighting. Spot-treating images can be an immensely helpful tool in your PHSH arsenal, especially with summer right around the corner, you know you always get that one Beach Day pic where there’s too many shadows.

And, like most of the other effects I’ve shown you, it’s secretly really easy once you know what to do.

I’m going to use the teaser image from last month, even though most of it is dark already. I think keeping the images consistent is helpful when needing to look back at the effects while you practice them. So, for simplicity sake, we’ll be using the Match image:

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Step 1: Start a new Work File/Document/Whatever-You-Want-to-Call-It in PHSH and drag/drop the image into it. Don’t forget to resize so it fits into your work space.

Step 2. Using the Elliptical Selection Tool, select the head of the match, and a bit of the flame.

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Step 3. With the head still selected, go up to Image – Adjustments – Brightness/Contrast

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Step 4. In the Brightness/Contrast box, slide the Brightness slider toward the right to brighten the selection. Sliding it in the opposite direction will make the selection darker.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Spot Brightening - Brightness Dialogue Box - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, picture manip, photo manip

Step 4. Once you’re happy with the Brightness, click Okay to make the transformation stick to the picture – or, if you are in the Brightness/Contrast by accident, you can always Cancel to undo the change. (One of the great things PHSH has for most of the effects is the Live Preview, so while you’re playing with Brightness/Contrast, colours, etc. you can actively see what you’re changing on the image)

If, for instance, you need to make the selected area brighter than the slider will let you, you can hit ‘Okay’, stay on the selected area and then re-brighten it to whatever you need.

For instance, I brightened the picture at first to +64:

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Spot Brightening - 64 Bright - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, picture manip, photo manip

But if I needed it brighter, I could go back in and:

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Spot Brightening - 27+ Bright - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, picture manip, photo manip

And so on, and so forth, until my hearts’ content:

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Spot Brightening - 91+ Brightened - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, picture manip, photo manip

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Spot Brightening - 45+ Brightened - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, picture manip, photo manip

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Spot Brightening - 150+ Brightened - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, picture manip, photo manip

You could basically do this until there is just a white hole in the middle of the picture.

Yep, that’s literally all there is to it.

I mean, there is another way you could do this – but that involves a hell of a lot more steps and Layer Masks – it just gets waaay too complicated. Which, truthfully, was the way I learned how to do it first before figuring out this easy way, and since these tutorials are here to make your lives easier, I’ll just refrain from sharing that overly-long pain-in-the-ass way.

Thank me later!

Aaand I don’t want you to get disappointed or anything, but this will be the last PHSH tutorial until October. Since I’ve started No. Mad. I’ll be focusing more on that for the next few months. Think of this time off as extra time for you to practice all the effects you’ve learned thus far.


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Opacity (PHSH Effect #11)

Now that we’ve begun to get into some of the harder/less beginner-type effects, it occurred to me: I never addressed one of the simplest effects you can use to up your Photoshop game: changing a pictures’ opacity.

This can be super helpful if you need to add a background to your image, or need to add layers of pictures upon pictures.

So let’s get into it:

Step 1. You’re gonna need some pictures.

Let’s say you want to add this

To the background of this:

Step 1 is to open both the pictures, and a new document/project for you to work on.

Step 2: Drag the images into your working document, as I showed you in the Intro.

Step 3. Resize them so they fit into the document.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Both Pics Opened - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Now, we’re actually first going to have to use a different technique. Because the foreground picture with the shell already has a sky background, we’re going to have to remove that. To see how to do this, you can go look back over this tutorial.

Actually, never mind – I’m going to be using an even simpler way.

We’ll still be using the Quick Selection tool, and selecting the shell and the sand.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Selected Shell and Sand - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Now, instead of going up to Selection and doing the Refined Edge stuff, we’re just gonna right-click, and click on Select Inverse.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Selected Inverse - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Go to the Erase tool, and erase the background.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Erasing Background - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

And boom! Don’t forget to go back to the Quick Select tool, right-click and Un-Select the selection so we can move on. This is basically a faster way to erase, so it’s great to have in your arsenal. (Especially if you’re doing collages, it will shave a lot of time from your work)

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Erased Background - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Step 4. As you can see, the sunset picture doesn’t cover the entirety of the work file. This means we’re going to have to use another technique I already showed you: Content-Awareness Scaling.

For this picture, the Alpha 1 layer is going to be the sun, so it doesn’t get all stretched out.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - CAS Sunset - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - CAS w Shell - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Now that the sunset takes up the whole background, the shell looks out of place, and the sun is too low. So we’re going to drag the sunset picture up, until the shell is at the edge of the water.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Shell at Edge of Water - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Yes, we probably didn’t need to Content Awareness Scale the image as much as we did, since we just needed a bit more sky, but it’s always good to have too much of an image than too little. If you wanted to change the image location again, you would be able to.

Step 5. To make the Dark Background, we’re going to add a Colour Layer under the other two pictures.

Because this is the darker background, we’re going to use a dark grey.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Colour Layer Select - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Colour Layer Colour Selection - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Colour Layer UNDER - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Step 6. And now for the part you all came for: changing the Opacity of a picture.

The Opacity filter is in the Layers Panel, on the top right.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Click on the little drop-down arrow to change the opacity of a picture. This will make a picture appear more or less see-through.

Because we want to be able to see a bit of the background through the pictures, we’ll be lowering the opacity just a bit.

Make sure you’re changing the opacity of the correct layer.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Background Opacity Less - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Foreground Opacity Too Low - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Notice how if you make the Opacity of the Shell picture too low, the background pic will start to show through? This can be useful in collages, or if you need to overlap a bunch of pictures, but for this simple tutorial, it’s too much. I’m going to lower the Opacity to just 90, so that we get some of the dark grey of the background, without the harsh line of the sunset picture showing through.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Foreground Opacity Just Right - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Now, because the sand is a much lighter colour, you may choose to Burn the picture as well, if you really want to get it to match.

You don’t always end up with a similar to Burned effect, like in the Light background.

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Light Background - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

It depends on the pictures themselves, mostly and what the colour schemes already are.

One good thing about adding the Colour Layer is that if you don’t like the background colour that is showing through, you can always change the colour to get the desired effect.

For example:

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Red Background - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Changing the background colour to Red gives the picture a warmer feel

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Opacity - Blue Background - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

Whereas Blue gives a completely different vibe.

Play around with the colours and Opacity percents to see the different effects you can get.

Once you get the background colour you want, you’re done! Just be sure to save your work.

That wasn’t too hard, right? And you got to practice some other effect skills – see how the skills build on top of each other? Most pic manips will require some combination of the effects I’ve shown you, so it’s good to practice combining them to see what you can come up with, and which effects you like best.

Next month I’ll show you how to take this:

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Spot Brightening Match OG Image - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip

and brighten a specific spot on an image, like this:

AterImber.com - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Spot Brightening - phsh tutorial, photoshop tutorial, phsh, pciture manip, photo manip


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Burning a Picture (PHSH Effect #10)

Happy New Year everybody!

I hope you all had a relaxing holiday season (or at least, had time to unwind now that it’s over) and are ready to dive head-first with me back into the tutorials.

To kick off the new year, I’ll be showing you how to use the Burn tool. It’s pretty straight forward, but if you need a quick refresher, go skim back over the Intro. It’s alright, I’ll wait.

…. You back? Good.

Okay, so using the Burn tool like I said is pretty straightforward, fortunately, this is one of the PHSH tools that’s aptly named. Using this tool will do exactly what the name implies: it’ll burn the picture.

If that sounds scary, I promise it’s really not that hard. You can control the intensity of the burn, so you don’t end up ruining the picture. Which is great, because sometimes, you just may want to go simple and say, darken the picture.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture -Burned Edge LIGHTEST

(Don’t mind the red background)

You could mess with the white balance or other picture exposure, but messing with those tends to be much more complicated.

Or, you may want to go for a more extreme manip, like actually making the picture appear to be burned:

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Burned Picture Done

Or you may need something in the middle. Regardless, it’s a very straight forward tool to use.

Let’s get started.

Today, we’ll be working with my I.D. pic, simply because I think it looks good burned. Pictures that tend to be darker and have lighter edges usually work better for this effect, but again, it depends how far you’re going.

 

Step 1.

Alright, so to start, you’re gonna need the un-touched picture.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - AterImber I.D. Picture w/ White Background

Once you have this in a Layer, you may want to change the background colour from white, just so it’s easier to see where the edges of the picture are, so you can be more precise.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Changed Background Colour

The colour of the background doesn’t really matter, especially since we can change it once you’re done, but I find it’s easier to work when you can see where the edge of the picture is.

 

Step 2.

Alright, now that we have the picture, we’ll want to select the Burn tool from the left side Tool Bar. It’s the picture of a hand in a C shape, directly under the Blur/Sharpen/Smudge tool.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Burn Tool Location

You may have to click on the box and manually select Burn from the drop-down menu. I believe the default image may be the Dodge tool, which looks like a lollipop.

 

Step 3.

Once you have the Burn tool selected, (and the layer you want to use the tool on selected), you’ll notice some options came up at the top of the application, in the same space where the Eraser options are.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Burn Tool Options

The drop-down menu with the circle in it is the brush size, similar to the Eraser, you can make it bigger or smaller by using the sliders. The Hardness slider underneath will determine how hard/feathered the edge of the tool will make. (These are both exactly the same as for the Eraser tool)

For example, if the Hardness is on 5%:

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Hardness 5%

Or 90%:

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Hardness 90%

 

For the burn tool, it works the same:

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Hardness Burn 90%

(90% Hardness)

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Hardness Burn 5%

(5% Hardness)

There’s also the option to change the Range. This will change the area of the picture you’re targeting. You can choose from either the Highlights, Mid-Lights or Shadows. I discovered that if you (for example) only target highlights, there will be a point where the image won’t get any darker. (I presume because it’s gotten rid of all the highlights)

When I was experimenting for the tutorial, as I did this, the picture didn’t get any greyer until after I changed what I was targeting. I recommend you play around with this, as it depends on the picture. I’ve tried changing the targeted areas in the past for other projects, and I saw no difference at all, as if the tool wasn’t working.

And the last option will be the Exposure. Next to the brush size, this is the most important part of using the Burn tool. The Exposure will determine how dark the section will get. I recommend not starting at 100, unless you want the entire picture to go near all black on your first go. I usually start small, and then up the Exposure depending on the look I was going for.

For the picture above with the burned-by-fire look, I used 100% Exposure on the edges. The rest of the picture, to just darken it, I used about 10-20.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - 100% Exposure Burn

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - 10% Exposure Burn

 

Step 4.

Now that you know the options, let’s show you how I did the Soft Burned or just darkened picture, and then the Burned By Fire picture.

So, for the Soft Burn, I kept the Exposure low, about on 10, and I feathered the edge of the brush. Because I rubbed the tool all over the entire picture, I don’t actually think the Hardness made a difference, but since I was being ‘soft’ it just seemed to go.

Okay, so, set the brush size to really big (I used 300-400), and (while keeping the Exposure low) click and drag the brush over the entire picture.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Light Burn First Line Drag

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Light Burn All Dragged

And boom! Soft Burned pic is done. Told you it was easy!

Now for the Burned By Fire picture, it’ll be the same thing. We can actually continue on from this picture, since it’s already burned.

 

For the Burned By Fire pic:

Now that we’ve got the whole thing looking a little singed, we’ll want to up the Exposure to about 50 and reduce the brush size (I reduced it to 130).

We’re going to just go around the edges of the picture now, similar to when we made a Border. You can leave the Hardness down at 4% for this as well. A lack of hard edge will make it look more realistic of a burn.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Burned Border Light

Now we’re going to do that again and again, until the border becomes almost black. So, keeping the stats where they are, continue to go around the edges until it becomes blackened.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Dark Grey

At this point (it took me about 10 go a-rounds to get it this dark) you should up the Hardness to about 40-50 as well. We’re going to be concentrating now on just getting the edges black, so we’ll need to contain the burn a bit more.

After changing the Hardness, keep going.

Also: don’t worry about making the outline too clean cut straight, it’s okay if it’s a bit of wobbly lines. Again, it adds to the realism of if the picture were burned, and we’ll be erasing the very edge of the photo after anyway. And, as you’re going, make sure to round the edges of the corners slightly.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Rounded Edges

After a few more go arounds, you may notice that the border isn’t getting any darker any longer. Mine wouldn’t get darker than this:

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - No More Dark

That’s because we’ve been burning with the Highlights selected. Now we can change to either the Midtones or the Shadows. I like going to Midtones and then to Shadows, just because I like to do them in order. Again, I’m not entirely sure at this point, but since we’re trying to replicate what I did, we gotta do it the same way, right? Right.

Okay, so after selecting Midtones and going around a few more times, mine stopped getting darker again at this point:

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Mindtone Burned

At this point, you need to switch to the Shadows, and then keep going until the edges turn all the way black.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Shadow Burn

Okay, now that we got the edges, I think you can tell, the all over burn job we did at the beginning no longer matches, does it?

No worries, we’re gonna go back over the entire picture now. We had to wait to see how dark the edges were going to get, juuust in case we messed up.

Remember: You can always make the picture more burned, but it’s harder to un-burn it.

Alright, so to go over the entire picture, change the hardness to softer, the brush size to bigger, and the Exposure back down to about 10. And, you may need to switch the Range back to Highlights. If you try to go back over the lighter part of the picture with the Range still on Shadows, it may not work.

You don’t want to make it too much darker, but it has to match the edges. Try to get it to look as realistic as possible.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Reburned All

Now, you could leave it like this, but, for a little extra realism, I like to erase the hard edge of the picture. How often have you seen a burned picture with perfectly intact edges?

Exactly.

Switch from the Burn tool to the Eraser tool, change the size of the brush again (smaller), and keep the hardness semi-low. (50-60-ish)

Now – carefully – erase the very edges of the picture, and make sure to round the corners a bit. Again, this erase job doesn’t have to be perfectly straight.

AterImber.com - Writing - Writing Tips - PHSH Effect Series - Burning a Picture - Erased Edges

And boom! That’s everything.

Don’t forget to take out/change the background so you can save the picture by itself, or drag it on over to whatever file you need it in!

This way of burning pictures does take longer (obviously) but depending on the look you’re going for, it’s also a more realistic effect.

You can pretty much use this burned technique on any photo. And of course, you can make the burned/blackened edges bigger or smaller if needed, so you can erase more of the picture for a more burned up effect.

Have fun practicing this technique until next month.


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