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Adobe Photoshop CC Bootcamp

Lesson 36 of 118

Brush Mask: Vignettes


Adobe Photoshop CC Bootcamp

Lesson 36 of 118

Brush Mask: Vignettes


Lesson Info

Brush Mask: Vignettes

Let's take a look at some practical applications of how we can use masking. So, one of the ways that we can use a mask here is with something like a custom vignette. So, with a custom vignette, vignettes are things that you can find in things like Adobe Camera Roll, lightroom, just about every program or plug-in that deals with photos has something to do with a vignette. You can always do something with a vignette. But a vignette in itself handled just by a slider works from the center of the image and works its way out to the edges of the image. It doesn't give you a whole lot of leeway outside of that. So with your own custom vignette, you can apply exactly what you want your viewer to narrow their vision down into. So I'm gonna do this custom vignette in two different ways to show you the difference between something like a pixel based vignette and a adjustment layer based vignette. So I'm gonna add a new layer here, and I'm gonna press shift F and that's gonna get us to our fill di...

alogue. And in that fill dialogue, I'm gonna change this to black and just press okay. So by default, we have a flat, black layer that is actually a pixel based layer filled with black. It doesn't look very good right now and definitely does not look like a vignette. So I'm just going to drop the opacity a little bit to control this layer a little bit. Now it's starting to look like what a vignette could look like. And let's go ahead and, go ahead and change our blend mode. Let's see if soft light will work. That's a pretty interesting vignette. It's a different type of vignette. So, if I click on this layer, well just call this Pixel Vignette. If I can spell it correctly. There we go. We're gonna add a layer mask. You add a layer mask by pressing this button right down here that actually looks like a white sheet of paper with a hole in it. It almost actually already looks like a vignette for us. So if I go to my brush, I definitely don't wanna use my dog paw brush. So I'm gonna go ahead and go up here to my brushes and change this back to the default of the soft edge brush that I have there. Now, this soft edge brush is set to 15 per cent and a size of 200. I can change that at anytime. If I press the right Rakiki, it's gonna make that brush bigger. If I push, press shift and left and right Rakiki, that is going to change the hardness of this. So this was set to 50 per cent. If I press Shift and left Rakiki and move it all the way down, and now we go to that brush preset, notice how the hardness is set to zero. I'm all about efficiency in speeding things up. So these hot keys are definitely helpful. Shift, shift and left Rakiki adjust the hardness, left or right Rakiki alone adjust the size. So I'm gonna make this brush rather large and notice how I'm clicked on the mask and my brush palette over here is black and white. But when I click on this layer, it's set to blue and white. Well, Photoshop is smart enough to know you don't wanna paint on a mask with blue because blue doesn't control how a mask works. So right there, I've got black and white as my presets when I click on the mask. So all I have to do at this point is just start clicking on this and now I've got my own, custom style vignette because what I'm doing there by painting with black on that black layer's mask, I'm telling that vignette, when I put that black hole in the middle of that mask, it's saying that this portion, this painted black here, will no longer affect the underlying layers. So it's allowing those underlying layers to show through that effect that we have. Looking at a mask, everyone will see what it looks like with it turned off and we don't wanna delete it. If you press Shift and click on that mask, it's going to temporarily cancel it out. And you can see by the red X on there that it's not necessarily gone; it' just temporarily missing. If I click on that, Shift-click on that again, it's going to release it. If I press Alt or Option and click on that, It's gonna allow me to see exactly what that mask is doing to my photograph. Alt or option click on that again, and now I'm now released from that. So that would be a pixel based vignette. I think I even spelled that wrong, didn't I? Yeah, so it's a Pixel based vignette. That's a pixel based vignette. Let's look at something like an adjustment layer based vignette because they are very different. Refer to come up to a solid color fill and fill this with black. We now have a black color fill. It's different because it's not a pixel based shape fill. If we were to press V for the move tool on this and move this around, notice how it's not going anywhere. Because as I said before, an adjustment layer is a calculation based layer that knows no balance outside the canvas. The difference with this mask is that this is a pixel based mask. If I move this, look at the difference. See the sides? That's why typically, if I'm gonna do anything with these vignettes, I'm not necessarily going to do the shift F5 in fill because if ever need to move that layer, I might get this little hard edge look that's going on here because when we Shift F and fill that canvas, we're just filling that layer, that pixel-bound layer with black. When we use an adjustment layer, we're telling it that we know no balance. Just go wherever you want with that black area. Let's go ahead and drop that opacity a little bit, drop this down to about there. And then we'll go ahead and click on our mask and if I paint with black, I'll make my brush a little bit smaller, there we go. We're now revealing what's happening underneath on a pixel- on a adjustment based layer rather than a pixel based layer because it knows no balance. If we ever need to move that, so if we were to press V and move this, all it's going to be moving is our layer mask and not necessarily the data that's creating that vignette. Along with masking, along with these vignettes, one of the great things that you can do is, have you ever seen an Adobe Camera Roll where it says Protect Highlights in a vignette? I think that's a really great thing to do because what's happening right now with this vignette is we're getting what's called tone-compression happening in those the stain-glass window above there. And if I wanna reveal those highlights through there, I don't necessarily need to tediously go in there and mask all those because as we learned before, we have that beautiful thing called Blend F. So if I double-click on this vignette, I can look at this image, look at my vignette and I ask myself, what do I want to protect in the underlying layers? Well, I want to protect the highlights in the underlying layer from being affected by this vignette, so if I pull this and move this over, you start to see that that vignette is now going to apply itself to the rest of the image but it's going to very handsomely make sure that our highlights are protected from that effect. So that' would be what I consider a really awesome vignette in Photoshop very quickly and easily made using just a, either a pixel based layer or that adjustment layer.

Class Description

Adobe® Photoshop CC® is a valuable tool for photographers, but it can also be intimidating. In this all-inclusive 20 lesson course, you’ll go from opening the program for the first time to creating images that really stand out. Join Blake Rudis, Photoshop expert and founder of f64 Academy, as he shows you how to maximize your use of Photoshop. 

Topics covered will include:

  • Class Introduction & Bridge, Adobe Camera Raw, Setup Interface, Cropping and Layers
  • Layer Tools, Masks, Selections, Clean-Up Tools and Shapes & Text
  • Smart Objects, Transforming, Actions, Filters, and Editing Video
  • Custom Creative Effects, Natural Retouching, Portrait Workflow, Landscape Workflow, and Composite Workflow

Don’t let the many aspects of Photoshop prevent you from maximizing your use of this amazing app. Blake will help you develop the confidence to use your imagination and create the images that you will be proud to share with your clients.


Adobe Photoshop CC 2018


  1. Bootcamp Introduction
  2. The Bridge Interface
  3. Setting up Bridge
  4. Overview of Bridge
  5. Practical Application of Bridge
  6. Introduction to Raw Editing
  7. Setting up ACR Preferences & Interface
  8. Global Tools Part 1
  9. Global Tools Part 2
  10. Local Tools
  11. Introduction to the Photoshop Interface
  12. Toolbars, Menus and Windows
  13. Setup and Interface
  14. Adobe Libraries
  15. Saving Files
  16. Introduction to Cropping
  17. Cropping for Composition in ACR
  18. Cropping for Composition in Photoshop
  19. Cropping for the Subject in Post
  20. Cropping for Print
  21. Perspective Cropping in Photoshop
  22. Introduction to Layers
  23. Vector & Raster Layers Basics
  24. Adjustment Layers in Photoshop
  25. Organizing and Managing Layers
  26. Introduction to Layer Tools and Blend Modes
  27. Screen and Multiply and Overlay
  28. Soft Light Blend Mode
  29. Color and Luminosity Blend Modes
  30. Color Burn and Color Dodge Blend Modes
  31. Introduction to Layer Styles
  32. Practical Application: Layer Tools
  33. Introduction to Masks and Brushes
  34. Brush Basics
  35. Custom Brushes
  36. Brush Mask: Vignettes
  37. Brush Mask: Curves Dodge & Burn
  38. Brush Mask: Hue & Saturation
  39. Mask Groups
  40. Clipping Masks
  41. Masking in Adobe Camera Raw
  42. Practical Applications: Masks
  43. Introduction to Selections
  44. Basic Selection Tools
  45. The Pen Tool
  46. Masks from Selections
  47. Selecting Subjects and Masking
  48. Color Range Mask
  49. Luminosity Masks Basics
  50. Introduction to Cleanup Tools
  51. Adobe Camera Raw
  52. Healing and Spot Healing Brush
  53. The Clone Stamp Tool
  54. The Patch Tool
  55. Content Aware Move Tool
  56. Content Aware Fill
  57. Custom Cleanup Selections
  58. Introduction to Shapes and Text
  59. Text Basics
  60. Shape Basics
  61. Adding Text to Pictures
  62. Custom Water Marks
  63. Introduction to Smart Objects
  64. Smart Object Basics
  65. Smart Objects and Filters
  66. Smart Objects and Image Transformation
  67. Smart Objects and Album Layouts
  68. Smart Objects and Composites
  69. Introduction to Image Transforming
  70. ACR and Lens Correction
  71. Photoshop and Lens Correction
  72. The Warp Tool
  73. Perspective Transformations
  74. Introduction to Actions in Photoshop
  75. Introduction to the Actions Panel Interface
  76. Making Your First Action
  77. Modifying Actions After You Record Them
  78. Adding Stops to Actions
  79. Conditional Actions
  80. Actions that Communicate
  81. Introduction to Filters
  82. ACR as a Filter
  83. Helpful Artistic Filters
  84. Helpful Practical Filters
  85. Sharpening with Filters
  86. Rendering Trees
  87. The Oil Paint and Add Noise Filters
  88. Introduction to Editing Video
  89. Timeline for Video
  90. Cropping Video
  91. Adjustment Layers and Video
  92. Building Lookup Tables
  93. Layers, Masking Video & Working with Type
  94. ACR to Edit Video
  95. Animated Gifs
  96. Introduction to Creative Effects
  97. Black, White, and Monochrome
  98. Matte and Cinematic Effects
  99. Gradient Maps and Solid Color Grades
  100. Gradients
  101. Glow and Haze
  102. Introduction to Natural Retouching
  103. Brightening Teeth
  104. Clean Up with the Clone Stamp Tool
  105. Cleaning and Brightening Eyes
  106. Advanced Clean Up Techniques
  107. Introduction to Portrait Workflow & Bridge Organization
  108. ACR for Portraits Pre-Edits
  109. Portrait Workflow Techniques
  110. Introduction to Landscape Workflow & Bridge Organization
  111. Landscape Workflow Techniques
  112. Introduction to Compositing & Bridge
  113. Composite Workflow Techniques
  114. Landscape Composite Projects
  115. Bonus: Rothko and Workspace
  116. Bonus: Adding Textures to Photos
  117. Bonus: The Mask (Extras)
  118. Bonus: The Color Range Mask in ACR


a Creativelive Student

Amazing course, but don't be fooled into thinking this is a beginner's course for photographers. The problem isn't Blake's explanations; they're top. The problem is the vast scope of this course and the order in which the topics are presented. Take layers for example. When I was first learning Photoshop (back when we learned from books), I found I learned little or nothing from, for example, books that covered layers before they covered how to improve/process photographs. These books taught me how to organize, move, and link layers before they showed me what a layer was actually for. Those books tended to teach me everything there is to know about layers (types of layers, how to organize them, how to move them, how to move them two at a time, how to move them two at a time even if there are other layers between the two you're interested in, useful troubleshooting tips, etc. ) all before I even know (from a photographer's point of view) what it is the things actually do. The examples of organizing, linking, and moving mean everything for graphic designers from Day One, but for photographers not so much. Blake does the same thing as those books. Topics he covers extremely early demand a lot of theoretical imagination for a photographer who doesn't already know quite a bit about what he is talking about. Learning about abstract things first and concrete things later only makes PS that much harder to understand. If you AREN'T a beginner, however, this course is amazing. I thought it would be like an Army Bootcamp, taking you from zero and building you into a fit, competent Photoshop grunt. Now I think it's more like Army Bootcamp for high school varsity jocks. It isn't going to take you from the beginning, but the amount you'll get out of it is nonetheless more than your brain can imagine. I've been using PS for years to improve my photographs, and even to create the odd artistic composite or two. The amount I've learned in the first week is amazing, and every day I learn something -- more like many things -- which I immediately implement to improve my productivity and/or widen the horizons of what I can achieve. If you ARE a photographer who's a Photoshop beginner, I'd take very seriously the advice Blake gives in the introduction: Watch one lesson, and practice the skills and principles you learn in that one lesson for two weeks. THEN watch the next lesson. You can't do that of course without buying the course, so it's up to you to decide whether you'd like to learn Photoshop and master Photoshop all from the same course. Learning it first and mastering it later will cost more money, but I think you'll understand everything better and have a much more enjoyable ride in the process. As for me? I'm going to have to find the money to buy this course. There is simply way too much content in each lesson for me to try to take on all at once, but on the other hand I don't want to miss anything at all that he has to share.

Robert Andrews

Blake Rudis is the absolute best in teaching photoshop. His knowledge and how he presents the instruction is clear and concise - there is NO ONE BETTER. Yes, his classes require some basic skills, and maybe I'd organize the order of (or group) the classes in a different order, but, let me be clear - if anyone is to be successful or famous in the Photoshop world, it should be Blake Rudis. I strongly recommend his teaching. I started photography and post processing in 2018, and because of this class, I'm know what Im doing. The energy you get when you create something beautiful is profound, it makes you bounce out of bed (at 4AM) like a 5 year old, to go create. It's a great ride! Thanks Blake, & Thanks Creative live.

Esther Gambrell

WOW!!! I've been purchasing CL classes for several years now and have watched HOURS of "How-To Photoshop" classes, but this is the first one I've actually purchased because of the AWESOME BONUS content!!! SERIOUSLY??!!?!? A PLUG-IN??? But not only that, Blake is SO easy to understand, and he breaks down concepts in different ways to connect with different people's learning styles. I REALLY appreciated this approach because I am a LEFT-BRAINED creative that has an engineering background, so I really connected to what Blake was saying. THANK YOU FOR THAT! There are TONS of Photoshop courses out there, but I found this one to be the most helpful in they way Blake teaches concepts so that you know WHY you're doing what your doing. I feel like he taught me how to fish with Photoshop to feed me for a lifetime instead of just giving me a fish to feed me for one day. This is the BEST overall PS course out there!!! Thank you!!!!