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2.1 Creating the Composition

Hello everybody and welcome. My name is Simeon, and this is for Tuts+. Welcome to the first lesson of mastering sports illustration and design. Okay, within this lesson what we're going to do is, look at creating the initial composition for our sports poster. I thought it would be a cool idea for us to look at some quick selection aspects to quickly mask out the background from our sports characters and this'll aid us in our composition. Okay, so we've got two files open here. We have the central quarterback, which is going to be the main and most prominent player within the poster and to the right we have the running back cut out. All we're going to do is cut out the quarterback so that we have the background masked out just as we have with the running back here. So first thing we're going to do is just going to go to full screen mode. In regards to the quarterback and we are just going to run through a few of the shortcuts. So we are going to do quite a bit of zooming in and out. If you got Mac or PC, it's Ctrl or Cmd+ to zoom in and it's Ctrl or Cmd- to zoom out. Also, we are going to be, for example, moving our character quite a bit. So if you want to move the character, then go back to the tool that you're using for example, using a pencil, just press the space bar down, and you can move the photograph left or right, up down, as you wish, and then you can go back to using the tool you was previously on. Okay, those were two of the main tools that we will be using. But as we go on, I will be sure to announce or highlight any shortcuts. That is for any of you who aren't familiar with them, okay? Excellent. Now the first thing we are going to do, is just duplicate our background layer. We're just gonna to that cutout. Okay, excellent. Now, what we're going to do is just Quick Selection, so we'll Select the Quick Selection tool. Now we've got spacing of 25% which is fine, hardness of 30% which is fine. And size will be increased up to around 70 pixels. Okay, excellent. So now we are just going to literally just highlight our and zoom in a bit to see the edges to make sure it's selected properly. Okay, so, here we can see we've gone on the outside a little bit. What we do is we will hold down the Alt key and that will give us a minus sign and we will unselect that. Okay, excellent. So there we go. All right, so we just keep going now. Just select the whole quarterback here. At this point, it might be a good idea just to zoom out. What we'll do is we'll just select everything and then we'll go around the edges and just refine it, like we said using the minus feature so around these edges. Let's just have a look, cuz we see that sometimes where the colors go from. Going from dark blue to white, doesn't pick it up quite as well as we'd like. So, here again, if we want to make our brush smaller we just press the left bracket key. And we just hold down Alt key, and then just minus that selection until we get a tighter one. Okay, that's awesome. So sometimes it's a good idea just to go around the outsides first, and then we can sort out what happens in the middle, there we go, afterwards. Superb. Okay, so we're gonna make our brush smaller again here, but just between the layers because we need that to be a bit smaller, press the minus key. Now we'll just tidy that up. Okay, excellent. Okay, awesome. And let's just tidy up the outside here now. Okay, excellent. Let's go in around the right side so we'll follow that principle again here. We just want to make our brush a little bit smaller so we can tidy up this area here. And if we have a look at the actual quick selection brush, what it does is, it goes over a little bit and then it calculates where the edges is and then it creates a nice, smooth edge for us. For example here, and we'll just minus that away. Here we go. Okay, so just keep going around the outside. Outside arms selection looks pretty tight, so just keep going around the outside here. And then if there is any little bits in the middle, we'll just quickly select those also. Okay, excellent. Just going up here on the actual helmet, we select those areas around the edge. There we go. Okay, so, just having a look at the actual top of the helmet. It needs a little bit of tidying up, so we're just gonna quickly go along and do that, so we've minus subtract brush. Just touching on it a little bit and then we're gonna do a quick selection and it'll do the rest basically. Okay, excellent. All right, so we're just gonna now increase our brush size to about 100 and just get the inside parts that we might have missed. Okay, now we just need to get this area here. Let's zoom in and have a look, how that looks. Okay, so, there's a tricky little bit here. Just going to select that to complete. Okay, awesome. Right now, we'll just zoom out and have a look at our selection. If we look at the top, we see the refined edges, but I'm just gonna click that. Now this shows us the different backgrounds that we can have in regards to the view mode. There's overlay which gives us a red and there's a black background. What we're gonna do is we're gonna go for the black background at the moment. So we'll click that and there's a smart radius filter. What it does is, it smooths out the edge. So if we zoom in and have a look at our smart radius, our image is 1.9pix. Let's go back to see how it was at zero. And we see we've got the outline edges. So if we go up to about 1.5. Okay, that's awesome. That looks pretty good. And there's also a de-saturation, de-saturate color. That's what I was talking about earlier when you've got the outside edge color, we can actually de-saturate that. Just to give you an example. So now we see sort of the white lines that were there are gone. So we will leave that on. Now, basically, what we are going to do, is we are going to output it on a new layer with a mask. And we are just going to click OK. All right. So I'll just turn the visibility off of the background layer. Now we can see we've got our image cut out there. Okay. So that is how you mask out the background using the Quick Selection tool and a refined edges feature. And in the next lesson we'll go on to creating the initial composition and starting the line work in illustrator. I look forward to seeing you in the next lesson.

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