Brush Mask: Curves Dodge & Burn
So we've already talked about dodging and burning as it pertains to a gray layer. Now let's talk about dodging and burning with something like a Curves adjustment layer. Before when we talked about dodging and burning, we talked about dodging and burning on one layer, we filled it with gray, we used Soft Light Blend Mode to push and pull the lights and the darks throughout the image, remember that? So now what we're gonna need to do is I wanna separate those. I wanna make sure that my darks are on one layer and my highlights are on another layer. I wanna make sure that my dodge is on one layer and my burn is on another layer. So I'm gonna do that with a Curves adjustment layer. So if I click down here, I'm gonna go ahead and make one Curves adjustment layer, then I'm gonna make another Curves adjustment layer. And you see by default they come in with mass forming. I'm gonna change this one to Dodge. I'm gonna change this one to Burn. So with these selected I'm gonna go ahead and just t...
urn the eyeball off really quick on this one, click on this Curves adjustment layer, and bring up the curve to about right there. Now masks have a unique property just like every other layer as we talked about before, and that unique property is that you get two possibilities for each mask very quickly and very easily by reversing the data. So I bring that curve up. When I bring that curve up for dodging it's making the whole image lighter. So what I need to do is I need to protect the entire image. So I'm gonna click on this mask and press Control + I. That's invert, I'm gonna invert that mask from white to black. So now by inverting that mask to black I'm basically saying, "Okay, curve, "you can affect the whole canvas, "but wait a second. "Now I need you to not touch the canvas at all. "I'm gonna fill it with black "so that you don't affect anything that's going on "underneath this dodge layer." So I'll turn the eye on on the Burn for a second. Click on it, bring this down, make the whole image darker. Let's go about right there. And then I'll press Command or Control + I on the Burn. So now if you can guess what I'm gonna do, I'm gonna use white to paint on that mask. So instead of using black to just conceal things, I can use white to bring things back. So you have to-- With this, I think you have to kind of be on one side or the other. It's hard to really imagine a mask and how it works with both white and black working at the same time. So how I like to think about masks is whatever is black is not affecting my canvas. Whatever is white is going to affect my canvas. And that is typically how I think about it because if you ever try to thing about both categories where you're like that whole black reveals, white conceals-type thing, it's just too hard for me to wrap my head around that one. I need a really one quick, simple approach. Black will allow anything that's underneath to show through, and white allows the effect that I'm working on. And that's how I think of it. So now if I were to click on this dodge layer and if I press B for my brush tool, I've got a very large brush, so I need to make it smaller because I'm trying to dodge here, very meticulous dodging and burning. If you look at my layers palette, if I were to paint on this with black, it's not gonna do anything. But if I were to press X, the X key will switch me from black to white. If you ever find yourself in a rut with your palette down there and you wanna quickly change them from black to white, D will default those colors from black and white, and X will switch them. So whatever you're working on, if I press X I'm now painting with black because that's the primary color that you see down here in my layers palette, or in my color palette. If I press X I'm now working with white. So with this Dodge I can just start looking at this image and seeing areas that I want to draw the eye towards a little bit more. So I wanna draw the eye a little more towards this area. Maybe bring that up a little bit. Again, we talk about dodging and burning as being you the artist to make light where light was not, correct? So I'm dodging there to brighten that up, dodge there to bring that up. And the question is, here at this point, is Blake, you talked about that other Dodge and Burn layer and now you're showing me another one. Which one do I use? Well it really comes down to personal preference and what you choose to be the Dodge and Burn that you like. The quick-and-dirty Dodge and Burn is the one I showed you before which is the 50% gray layer using just the Dodge tool and the Burn tool. This is a little bit more tedious and it's more layer-intensive. It's not necessarily more labor-intensive, it's just more layer-intensive. You have two layers now to think about instead of one. Okay, so that will be a good Dodge. I'm just kind of dodging around areas to brighten certain areas up that I want to become a little bit more prominent. If I look at my Burn, again, I've already got the white selected, so now I have to click between these layers. It's not like before where we could just press Alt or Option. It's not gonna flip between layers like it would with the old Dodge and Burn. With this one we're gonna have to just manually click on our layers. So I'm gonna darken down some shadow areas. I might even darken down this back area back here. Darken down this, maybe darken down underneath these waves to make them look a little bit more violent. And really when it comes to dodging and burning, it's all up to you. It's what your eye sees, what your eye likes, and how you wanna push and pull the viewer around the image. So now I might dodge this area back here to brighten up that light that's coming in from back there and dodge these waves to brighten those up. So if we press Alt or Option and we look at this Dodge and Burn, that's what I did. I can click on the next one. That's the Burn, that's the Dodge, and they are still just maintained within their curve. The really cool thing about doing a Dodge and Burn this way, though, is that you're not restricted to just pulling the curve down or pulling the curve up. Now that you have the Burn selected here, as we pull this down we can make our dodging, we can make our burning, actually, a little bit darker or even a little bit brighter. We can even say, "Okay, we want the dark areas "of what that's affecting to be a little bit darker," and then brighten them up a little bit too. So it tapers the affect and uses the curve, the curve data, to manipulate that Dodge and Burn a little bit more. Same thing with Dodge. If I don't want this to-- Maybe I want it to be a little bit brighter. Brighter in the darker areas but not necessarily bright in the bright areas. Bring that down a little bit. So it gives you a little bit more control over what happens with the dodging and burning process than just I painted with white, I painted with black on a gray layer that's set to soft light. With this one you're using the curve and the advantage of all of the data that's available within that curve to push and pull that curve around the image. All the while, when we pull that curve all the way up, just remember we gotta invert that mask so it doesn't affect the canvas at all. And then we bring back that effect with white. So black will reveal all the stuff underneath. We reveal what we wanna reveal with white.
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Software Used: Adobe® Photoshop® CC® 2018