I thought last week’s fix-it was tough until Carebear upped the ante. :) The photo this week has similar issues to last week: extremely overexposed and underexposed areas. I can see why a mom would want to save this picture, though. Just look at that expression on Little Beast’s face! There wasn’t much I could do about the overexposed areas, so my goal was to remove as much overexposed area as possible and lighten up the underexposed areas. I tried so many things on this photo, that I’m not sure whether I’ll remember every step. Here’s a run-down of what I remember:
1. The first thing I did was reduce the noise using the free Community version of Noiseware.
2. Adjusted hue to remove some of the pinks.
3. Filled in the overexposed portion of the cheek by duplicating the layer, using the healing brush tool heavily on the top layer and then reducing the opacity to blend in with the lower layer. This creates a more natural look.
4. I flattened the layers. I duplicated the layer twice and changed the middle layer to screen blending mode. I then created a layer’s mask (free action from Coffeeshop) on the top layer and brushed in the shadowed layer to lighten it up. (Then flatten)
5. With the lightening up, I found that this poor boy was getting what looked like age spots. I hate to create blur in a picture that lacks sharpness, but I needed to downplay the brown spots. I again duplicated the layer twice. On the middle layer I used Gaussian blur until the skin looked smoother but not overly fake. Again, I created a layer’s mask on the top layer, and brought in the blur just in spots that needed it. I did my best to stay away from areas that needed the sharpness. (When done, flatten.)
6. I ran the new (free) S-Curve action from Coffeeshop and reduced the opacity. I feel this action adds a bit of warmth to the picture.
7. I then cropped the picture to eliminate some of the severely overexposed sections of the picture.
8. I touched up sections of the photo with the blur tool to help downplay some of the noise that remained.
9. Finally, I used a free Defog action to sharpen up the picture overall.
I have been waiting for the perfect picture to create a particular scrapbook page. I’ve had a look at the upcoming fix-its, and this one fits the bill the best. I created a scrapbook page based on this inspiration:
I used a tutorial from my favorite digital scrapbooking store, Designer Digitals. Cassie Jones writes tutorials that focus on different scrapbooking techniques. I was afraid when I bought this that I wouldn’t learn anything new. I was wrong! This tutorial taught me shortcuts for some things I was already doing, and I also learned a few new things along the way. Another cool thing is that included with the tutorial are all the elements (designed by Katie Pertiet) you need to mimic the exact layout that Cassie creates.