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2.1 Document Setup and Background

Hello and welcome back to the Advanced Retouching Techniques course. I'm Nils Morehead and you're on lesson three. In this lesson, we'll be doing the basic setup in terms of the far dimensions and also creating our general background with the night sky and our hills. First step we're going to do is create our new document. So in Photoshop go to File, New. We're going to do that at a size of 2,000 pixels by 2,800 high, a resolution of 300, which is the standard print DPI, dots per inch. If you want to do a bit bigger, if you want to get a bigger print out of it then go ahead. But because this is for learning purposes, keep that out of that site, okay? Okay, so starting with, we're gonna bring in our images. Now you can put up some guides if you want, but I'm not going to, we don't need that. So I'm gonna bring in, first of all, this I'll bring over my folder over here. So I've dumped all the images into this one folder. So let's bring in our sky first of all, into a new document. The stock holder name there, get rid of that. I'm gonna bring in the image into our main document. Okay. So this is our background. Ctrl+T and I'm gonna resize this slightly. Leave it there for now. Now because this is clouds you can distort it however you want. And it will still probably look quite good. Ctrl+T. I'm just gonna drag this in a little bit. Get a bit more detail of the clouds coming in. Bit more on the side here. Bit from the top. Get a bit more than that. Okay, that's looking good. Zoom in a bit. Now we're gonna bring in our main background elements. So I'm go to that folder and let's bring in this landscape here and this one over here. So let's put that one in there. And this one over here, okay. So now the images are in your document, what we're gonna do is resize them and get them lining up perfectly. So with the right one's a bit bigger, we're going to match that. So about there. I'm actually gonna flip these, but for the detail on this right hand one, to be on the other side. So I'm gonna Edit, Transform, and I'm gonna flip horizontal. Let's drag this over here. I want to bring in the right hand one and just try to match this up as best we can. I lose a bit of detail at the top there, but it'll blend in with the clouds so we don't really need to play with that too much. You can stretch it if you like. We're not too bothered about the distortion. Cuz as you can see, the river's not joining up here. But because there's going to be things in front of it other than grass, we're not going to bother about that. It's completely fine. Okay, so what we do need to do next is get rid of the sky. So, on this left one, get your magic wand tool and hit wand on the sky. Now, I've got tolerant of 60, which is pretty good because of this detail. So as you can see if we play around with different tolerances. Let's try 10. Get on there. Set in much less. You can hold Shift and keep clicking to get more of the sky, I'm gonna leave it at a good tolerance. Try 50. Okay, so that's great. So, before we actually mask that out, we want to make sure we're not getting any of the image. So as you can see, we actually are. You see the selectors we've got here. So to get rid of that, go into quick mask mode because there's this little button underneath the colors. So, and then with a black brush, just go over those. Or make it a bit easier with the lasso tool, here. Just go around the mountain and then edit, fill, make it black. So on the quick mask mode, black actually reveals. So there we go. That's that. And then before we actually go ahead and mask it out, you wanna go inside the image a little bit. What I mean by that is, get rid of this blue artifact. So go to select, modify and expand by about two. Okay, and then hit the mask option. So, if you get in this that means you masked out that [INAUDIBLE]. We don't want that. So on the mask, go to control or command on the. And then invert set. Let inverse. So that's it. [INAUDIBLE] space is that. So now we're ready to blend in these two mountains. I did the other one quickly, exactly the same method with the left one. Do the same to the right. Okay, so now, let's blend them together. But first of all, we can see the notice, the difference in color. So, the one on the right is a bit more yellow. So we want to get rid of that. So with hue and saturation layer, if you can't see the adjustments, get a window and then adjustments. And then bring up the adjustments to saturation. Attach that to the bottom layer, this one here. Which is holding Alt on the keyboard, between the two layers and it'll make it click the mask. Go on that one, on the hue and saturation, and then we're gonna select this yellow. So obviously yellow. Now we could just go like that and it'll probably work. But to make it a bit more accurate, go to your yellows and then get on the Add color picture icon. And to keep selecting different colors and you'll add it to your chart of colors. Now we can also expand these little white bars here and it'll get even more partly yellows, even more selection. So on the hue, change this to the green. I was trying to match on the left, so might wanna darken the lightness, it's a bit darker. Something like that. I think that's pretty good. Then click OK or X out that. And we're ready to go. Okay, so that's looking good. So now we're gonna plan the theater. Now the first step is to just do a rough plan down the center. So get a black brush, full of it. It makes a full flow simply right down the middle. That's obviously not a very good blend but it's just for now, just so we know that we've got all that in. We're not having any straight edges. So now, with a smaller brush, the lower opacity and maybe 50%, something around there, to the top. And really carefully start blending these together. Keep loading the brush size. I just keep at it. The brackets on your keyboard that help with there on the sizing, increasing the size of your brush. Start adding these in. Start blending the two images together. So add some bricks there, some stains. Maybe and find a rock, a big rock. Blend in to even out all these here. This is a lot better. Get rid of that stone wall there. I'm gonna drop there. That looks good. Okay. And not there. Zoom out, see what we're looking at. Looking good to me. So that line's looking good. That's fine, gander at the bottom. Now we're not gonna worry too much about the bottom because there's gonna be like the bottle in front of there. So I'm not too worried but just do it roughly. You'll know when it's right when you zoom out and you can't tell where you've done the work. So it's looking pretty good to me. I'm liking it. So next step is to get rid of this ugly white bit of background we haven't filled in. So, make a new layer. Now on this layer, we're going go to the clone stamp tool. Sample all layers, and we're gonna hold Alt on our keyboard and select the area you want to copy. So let's do this section over here. Alt on the keyboard, click there, in there with the brush, just fill that in there. Again, this is gonna be completely covered, so we're not gonna worry about repeating pixels or anything. So that's the general image. Okay, so now to make the sky dark, and turn it into a night scene. So, let's go below to our sky here. First of all, make a new layer. Fill that layer with a dark blue color. So somewhere around here. Let's make it more bluer, on there so 092A57. Click on the background. Change the layer style to multiply. It's getting a bit more darker like a night scene but not quite yet. So you go to blending options, right click on your layer and then options, and then at the bottom here this is blend if. What that means is, if I bring this bar across. If it's gray, it will reveal itself if you bring this across. But if we hold Alt on our keyboard and do exactly the same thing, it's splitting it up. So, you can see there's two now. So, it's gonna slowly bring it back. You don't wanna do it all the way to the cross, but just a little bit. It's just add a little tint to tit. Okay. Add a color balance. Now we're gonna add in a lot of blue, a bit of magenta, a bit more cyan. Okay so, 30 minus, minus 30, minus 13, 25, something like that. Go to highlights, you'll get the same cyan, more, blue, something like that. Just get a bit more dark. And then add in a selective color adjustment layer. Now the colors on here, they act as white equals basically the highlights, neutral is the midtones, and blacks is obviously the shadows. So with the neutrals, bring out the black slightly. And again with the blacks bring in the blacks again slightly. Just a few points. Okay, so the last step is add in a black and white adjustment layer. Change the layer style to multiply. And what we're gonna do is, I'm going to lower the opacity of this, okay. And then on the mask, get a black brush, unmask and just take out the center just a bit. It's a bit dark and black, here we go. Get that bigger. So that's our night sky basically. Okay, so next, let's group our layer just to make it a bit more tidy here. So I bring this up a little bit. So this group together are sky layers, so hold the top layer down to the bottom layer, holding shift+Ctrl+G and that groups them together. Rename that, so double click, sky. Delete this background, cuz we don't need it any more. This white background. You've got the sky there. The same with the mountain. So hit on the bottom one to the top, holding Shift and then Ctrl+G to group. Name these mountains. Okay. So, now, I wanna try and match the darkness of the sky. With the background, with the mountains. So adding a levels adjustment, attach it to the mountains by going between the two layers again, holding Alt, as you can see, got this little icon up here. Go to your whites over here underneath. And then bring that down a little bit, so we can darker here. And bring out the mid tones, bringing down the highlights a little bit. I'll bring up the highlights, so it should say. Bring that down. Maybe a bit of black as well, get the shadows. It's looking good. On second thought we don't want to really bring out the highlights cuz it's quite dark in this scene so let's leave that there. And let's match this Autumn white point with the mid tones. I think that's getting a bit closer. Something like that. Looking good. Okay, so obviously we've got quite a dark scene at the moment. But when we bring in the other foliage and the tree and all that, it will look a lot better. So now we're going to get rid of this horrible, ugly line. So start blending in the mountains with the background, with the night sky. So on the mountains there, on the actual group, the whole group, add a mask, so you can add masks to the groups, it's pretty good. And then get a black brush, a small one, about this size, 185. Get a low opacity, low flow, and literally just start going over the tops of your mountain. Okay. All right, it'll start to disappear. Changing the layers, the size of your brush using the brackets on your keyboard. Now, you don't want to completely remove it. You want to have a hint of a mountain in the night sky, like that. So again, when you get lower down you don't doctor as much. But you get the idea. I'll do it down the middle there. So basically this adds a bit more shadow to your mountain, making it a bit more realistic. Now when we're doing this, we don't want to completely flatten all the highlights. If you see where we're actually gonna put the moon, which would be about here. The moonlight will reach points such as here, such as here, such as here, here. So we don't want to completely remove all the highlights. So on that levels adjustment layer, they can mask, this button here and then with a black brush, a soft brush, doesn't matter really a pass at your flow. Make it quite low so at 50 and just go over a certain parts, with a big brush. Reveal some of those highlights back into the design, the image, mountains. Go back and forth if you've done too much. Little bit too much there. So I added a bit of highlights there. Maybe on the top ridge here. Get the brush smaller. Little bit bigger again on this section here. Anything you think which will pick up a bit more light, adding that back in basically. So as you can see, we're creating a lot more detail by doing this. And it's not just completely flat. Same here for the other side. You don't want it to look really flat. We want to have a lot of dynamic detail, a lot of highlights, a lot of shadows. Okay, so if we zoom out, we can see what we've done. Okay, so that's it for lesson three. Please join me in lesson four to continue this course.

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