Adobe® Photoshop® CS6 New Features

Lesson 18/47 - Selecting Skin with Color Range


Adobe® Photoshop® CS6 New Features


Lesson Info

Selecting Skin with Color Range

The first thing we're going to start out with today again with a superhero photos the first thing we're going to look at is selecting skin with the color range command now the color range command has been around for years, however, and see a six we have a new option that helps us select skin tones or flesh as it were, and today is all about changing reality, so we're going to be taking a shot and completely changing it all day long, so we're gonna have a lot of fun. So let me go ahead and toggle the visibility often on of the layer that I created for you, so I'm in a little bit so you can see the difference on these little superheroes faces what I did was I dark in their faces just a little bit? Can you guys see the difference? It's subtle, but but the difference is they're so let's take a look at how I did that you'll notice over here in my layers panel that I've gotta curves adjustment layer going on and remember adjustment layers is your way of telling photo shop a this next change ...

or adjustment I'm going to make please make it on its own layer so that I don't harm my original image I can lower opacity of the changes a little too strong so on and so forth, so I made this mask here, which is allowing the curves change that I made a little bit of a contrast boost here to affect on lee the white areas. So the white areas, if you think of this mask thumbnail, is a miniature of the whole document, the whole photo, but it was pretty easy to tell that ok, well, whatever changes going on with that curves adjustment layer is being shown through the faces through the hands and actually the one of the stars on their superhero costing. So I did not start out with a selection of any kind. I use the color range command and that's it so that's what we're going to do right now, I'll zoom back out so you can see turn off the layer I made for you. Here we go so now let's open the cull, arrange dialog box it lives in the selectmen you think of it as a selection helper, so it kind of makes sense that it's in the select menu so go ahead and give that menu. Click slide on down to color range and you get a dialogue box. The first thing you need to do to use this tool to select skin is tio use the select poppet, meet me at the top of the dialog box and here's the new option and cia six right here skin tones case you want to go ahead and give that a click to turn it on when you turn that on amusing and just a hair more when you turn on skin tones, you get another option here in the form of a check box and it's called detect faces and one of the things I love about photo shop is that notice how when I hover over that check box I haven't even turned it on you get a nice little tool tip it gives you a fairly decent description of what the heck that particular setting does and that's a nice reminder because there are a lot of settings and photoshopped, to say the least, so when you turn on detect faces but a shop tries to find blobs, if you will of skin tones in around ish kind of shape and in the same that's got to be a face, so we'll go ahead and turn that on, and you can see the selection preview here in the dialog box and it's it's fairly big police you can see kind of what your selection is looking like, so we'll go ahead and turn on to dick to take faces and let's look at how this preview changes when I do that see how their faces got a little bit more white, I'll turn it off and back on again so it's trying to find localized blobs of skin tones to help you create your selection yes. How does this work with various skin tones? Save other it ethnicities that's a great question. Not very well okay, to be honest yeah don't expect this is not a magic tool. Yeah, so other ethnicities it doesn't okay job since caucasians are lighter in quite er which usually has more contrast between hair and other things like that it just does a better job try it and again this make it better and better with each version of the program. All right, so now let's look at the fuzziness slider the fuzziness slider let you include more or less in your selection and it's a pure experimentation kind of deal so you want to drag it to the right and see how more areas are being including this election because the white areas denote the areas that are going to be selected with me get out of this dialogue box. So this is a trial and error kind of thing it's going to be different on every photo. So for this particular one I can get a pretty decent selection of just the faces and just the hands by dragging this fuzzy a slider down pretty far and again the white areas in my previous box here are what's going to be included in my selection when I click ok now if you have a syriza photos that are very similar let's say a siri's of wedding shots of the bride and your family or what heavy and you find a particular setting here fuzziness let's say along with the tech faces and skin tones turned on that works well for those photos you can save that setting as a preset so that when you open up those other photos you don't have to go through all this again okay so when you get it just right you can save it is a pre set by using the safe button right there so let's go ahead and take a peek down at the bottom of this dialogue box and see what other options we have this election preview poppet menu that just lets you control this box right I hear and how you want your selection toe look as you're creating it if you are getting a decent selection of the opposite of what you want you can turn on the invert button see how far the shot flip flop our selections and now what was included in this election is not all right so let's zoom back out and let's click ok and let's take a peek at our selection so there we are ok whether or not that does a better job than just using the quick selection tool which allows you to paint a selection onto an image by color we use that a couple of times yesterday you're just gonna have to try it on your own photos but we need to do a little bit of front ending to this selection and there are a bunch of different ways we could go about doing that. One of my favorite ways is to use something called quick mask okay, I know there's some in the studio audience that we're looking forward tio figuring out how to create in fine teen selections a little bit more so quick mask is a really great tool to have in your bag of tricks what you do is you press the q qi q for quick mask okay and immediately you get a red overlay that shows you what is not included in your selection all right if you were watching on the tools panel over here on the left hand side of the screen as soon as I pressed the cuchi this button right here activated okay or it darkened as if it were pressed in that is your quick mask mode button so you can either press cue to go in and out of quick mask or you can press this button right here looks kind of like the icon for a layer mascot the bottom of your layers panel so and if you forget what the keyboard shortcut is you could just have her over that button and get a little tool tip in the queue that's in parentheses is the commands keyboard shortcut so this is a way quick mask is a way for you to pain eight to fine tune your selection, okay, so what we're going to do now since we're in quick mask mode is I'm gonna press be to switch to the regular old brush tool. This guy right here, that's, the plain old brush tool has been around forever, and I want to peek up in my options bar and make sure that I've got a soft edge brush active and, you know, it's, a soft edge brush because you want to activate one that's got fuzzy edges doesn't matter which one of these ok, so now I can come over to my document in the last thing you need to do before you start painting is you need to take a peek at your color chips the bottom of your tools panel in quick mask mode, we can paint with black or white to add more or subtract from our selection very, very quickly. Ok, so for example, if I come over to the little girl's face and my goal is to have her complete place be white in other words, I don't want any of that red overlay showing on her skin taken to start to paint and it's the opposite of what I want, so right now I would be removing that area from the selection so I'm going to flip flop my color chips by pressing the ex key it's a good keyboard shortcut to remember, and now when I paint, I am including that area in the selection so quick mask in conjunction with the brush toole let you paint to finding a selection, so I don't want to mess with her hair, so I'm going to switch to painting with black, which is going to remove the hair from the selection, the painting metaphor I find to be really easy to use. So that's, why I like going into two quick mass to do things like this? Are we here in the little boy's face? I'm gonna switch to painting with white, and we're going to make sure that we've got all of his faith ace in this election here and then, since some of his hair is in this election and I know it's in this election because it it's doesn't have that red over lying on it, I'm gonna go ahead and press x again and just paint over that because I don't want to darken his hair, and then I'm using the space bar to move around within my image as I'm zoomed in using the bracket keys to adjust brush size, so we're going to press the right bracket key to go up in ties. Left bracket key to go down in size there are a million other keyboard shortcuts for brush size in photoshopped however, I am a creature of habit and those are my favorites, so now I need to make sure that all of his hand is included in the selection, so I'm gonna switch to painting with y begin, here we go and let's you call that done, let me remove this part of the cape by switching from the selection by switching to paint with black, and we're gonna call that fine. So now when you press cue the second time this texas cook mask mode and you see your selection, see now I've got a much cleaner complete selection and once she learned the keyboard shortcut for going in at a quick mask, and if you use the keyboard shortcut to grab the brush tool, which is b and then you use the keyboard shortcuts for brush size you confined tunis election that you created with tell arrange very, very quickly. All right, so now we're ready to create an adjustment layer to change the skin in the image so let's trot down to the bottom of the layers candle and click the half black, half white circle that opens the adjustment menu and we're going to choose curves we could just as easily cheese levels for what we want to do you hear the property's panel automatically opens, and I'll zoom back out so he can see the image too dark and their skin. I don't really want to change the color of their skin so much, I just wanted dark and it just a hair at a little bit more contrast you can use some of the wonderful priest says that air available from that poppet mini toward the top of the properties panel when you've got a curves adjustment, layer active there's a bunch of presets, and they're and they're useful things, they may not work on every photo but it's worth giving them a shot, so we're going to come down here and I'm going to choose medium contrast and watch the faces of our little superheroes to see how they change, see how they darkened just a little bit so you could try different process to see if that gives you the look that you want and it's also a great learning tool when it comes to curves, because the preset alters the curve. So if you make note of the points, that photo shot puts on the curve in the way they're either moved up or down in the actual curves preview, here you begin toe, learn what that kind of curve can do to your image, so a little bit of a learning tool as well and using these presets ok, one more little tip here I've got just a little bit too much red in their faces more than I would like to see, so what I'm gonna do is from the channel poppet menu above the actual curve. We're going to choose the offending channel. Okay, so now the next thing I do to this curve right here, even though it's a straight line is still called occur, the next thing I do is on ly gonna affect the reds in my image, so if I want to lessen the reds, just a hair when I can do is set a point in the middle of this curve and it's neat that photo shop cia six puts that curve in red, so it's, another visual indication of what channel you're about to miss, is it? So if I click to put a point smack dab in the middle of that curve there and then use my down arrow keys to nudge it down, I always use my arrow keys on the keyboard when I'm creating a curves adjustment. Because curves works a little bit like a dimmer switches, you know how if you raise a dimmer switch, the lights gradually come up. If you lower dimmer switch the lights gradually go down the point, she said, on a curve are as sensitive as a dimmer switch k in other words, very small movements in a curve point can bring forth large changes in your image so that's why I used my era keys instead of the mouse because I tend to overdo it when I used the mouse okay, so I'm going to manage this point down just a little bit and see how the red is coming out of their faces as I do that I'll bring it back up I don't want to bring it down that far, but trying to make a point here so if I increase if I dragged that point upwards, I'm introducing more rid as I'm edgett downward with my arrow keys I'm getting rid of a little bit of the red, so I don't want to get rid of too much just enough where you don't think that their faces are blown out so now let's take a look the performing after by toggle ing the visibility I often on so there's our before and there's are after and so that was with various election okay, we use the color red color range and cia sixes new skin tones and detect faces options within color range so let's look at how to do that on another image because repetition is good, right? No photo shop there we go s so here again we've got the same kind of situation here's our before in our after so I warmed up our pasty superheroes cnn just a little bit you know sometimes superheroes don't get to get outside in the daytime so tan is not high on their priority list so let's take a look at how to create this case we're going to click to activate the photo layer and we're going to go up to this select menu and choose color range executed overs we can actually see our dad gum image why the color change command doesn't come up in the properties panel um I wish that it did but maybe maybe the preview wouldn't be is large but then again the curse previews pretty big so that's my request today be for cia seven I would like color range available as an adjustment layer in the properties they'll thank you so let's change this select many to skin tones and then we'll turn on detect faces automatically turned on this time because the last time I picked skin tones from this pop up menu I turned it on so photoshopped remembers that and tries to be oh so helpful so let's turn it off real quick just to take a peek at how the selection changes so here's off and here's on so as we change the fuzziness sliders we drag it to the right we get more and more those skin tones in our selection so in this particular image detect faces didn't really do anything and again that will all very on an image my image basis so again, if you drag the phrasing the slider to the right, you're increasing the areas that are in your selection, you're adding, and if you drag it to the lift, your decreasing so you want to find kind of a happy medium, you don't want to select too much. You don't want to go overboard with this fuzziness slider, because then you would have a lot to remove from your selection once we close the dialog box, so I'm going to leave it set about right here around thirty for this image, and we'll click ok now we have a little bit of cleanup work to do. Some of hiss throw area are not included in the selection, so I want to add that again we're going to use quick mask, which is a great way to use the brush tool to find two in a selection quickly, so we're going to press cue to pop into quick mask. We're going to take a peek at the color chips the bottom of our tools panel hey, black is going to remove areas from the selection, okay, so you want to paint across areas you don't want to change here? I've got a little bit of the red overlay of quick mask showing up on his throat, which tells me that that is not included in this election, so I'm gonna press x to flip flop my color chips and just to make sure that I've got all of his face in here because we're gonna give him a little bit of a tan so he's not quite so pasty now I want to exclude the hair from this election, so I pressed x to flip flop my color chips so I'm painting with black used the bracket keys to change brush size and zoom in a little bit by pressing command plus or control plus on a pc in order to see his hands and now I have a little bit of the red overlay on his hand, so I'm gonna press x to flip flop my colored ship so then painting with white and then as I paint across his fingers, I'm adding all of those tones those pixels to my selection absolutely love using quick mask minute I use it all the time. It is worth noting, though, that since its keyboard shortcut is q you do you have to be careful if you just accidentally hit q on your keyboard. A lot of your photo shop tools and menu items will cease to function because you will be in quick mask mode and if you just hit the cuchi and you did not have any kind of selection on screen, absolutely nothing changes in your document there's no indication that you're in quick mask mode except for the little button on the bottom of the tools panel and the words quick mask in the documents tab so that's just a little trouble shooting technique for you tip if photo shop seems to have lost its mind and nothing is functioning you know make sure that you haven't accidentally popped in the quick mask mode because that can't happen okay, so we're going to call this election good enough this's a pretty picture okay, so we'll press cue to pop out of quick mask mode and see our selection is all cleaned up now so now to warm him up if I don't necessarily need to create change contrast or anything like that I'm just going to use a warming filter and those were happily available as an adjustment layer, so we're going to trot down to the bottom of our laters panel once again and click the half black half white circle this time we're going to choose a photo filter photo filter is a really handy tool to use when you just want to do a quick change in the color of lighting so if you want to warm somebody up like we're about to do or if somebody looks too warm and you need to cool them off and you can introduce blue tones instead of gold tones so we'll go and give that a click photo shop opens it up and see a six in the new properties panel and you've got a wonderfully handy pre set menu here that has edelson gobs of different filters in there also a metal bits you can see his face, so as we go through the different filters, I'll turn up the density a little bit you can think of density is strength. Why doesn't say strength is anybody's guess so, as I get through the filters, you can see the change happening on his face see how that's a cooling filter, which introduces blues you can see the color that it's using right here in this little color, which lodge so we could quickly go through here and find filter that gives him a little bit more of a warm glow, and we can use the visibility I to toggle the change often on, so you can see if you like your work or not, and if you don't find a color and the presets menu that works well for you, you can always introduce your own color by clicking the color swatch, and that simply opens the color picker okay preserve luminosity, it means you're going to keep the brightness or lightness values of the area and changed you can see what happens when I turn that off see how it darkens his whole face well, by leading that on, I'm retaining all of the lightness and brightness values that air in his skin tones in most cases when you're dealing with humans, at least you know you want to leave that on if you're dealing with other objects it just depends on the live ing that was in the shot, so give it a shot with it with it often on and see which one looks better all right now let's go back to our layers panel another great thing about using these adjustment layers is that if you decide by toggle in the visibility often on that the warming filter looks good but it's a teeny bit too warm well, you can always just dropped the opacity of that particular layer at the top of the layers panel ok, so you can use the opacity setting right here to change that or you could simply go back into the photo filter by double clicking it's layer thumbnail and that opens the adjustment back up in the properties panel and then you can change the density if you would like tio so a couple different ways to find tune that effect so here's our before and are after so one more for good measure and then we'll take questions on this technique so here's another one this time what we're going to do is add a little bit can't let little bit of contrast a bit more here, all right make my layers paying a little bit wider so you can see what's going on so we'll turn that layer off again will click to activate the layer that contains the actual pixels it's worth noting that if you buy this course and you're using these exercise files at home if you have the adjustment layer active and then you try to go to the color range dialog box, you're going to get unexpected results and photo shop will skyrocket because there's no pixels on that adjustment layer so do be sure that you're on the layer that actually contains pixels the photo ok, so we are now so now we'll try it back up to the select mini choose color range again we're going to change the select menu to see a six his new skin tones option and boy howdy for this image we pretty much don't have to do anything I mean it did a great job and that's what I mean this the success that you'll get with this new command will vary your mileage will bury s so we can let's toggle the detect faces often on for this particular image leaving detect faces off actually does a better job because it doesn't include as much of her hair best challenge because her hair is darn near the same color as her face so you can't fault photo shopped for including some of her hair in there again use the fuzzing the slider to tweak the selection we're going to call that good click ok pop into quick massimo by pressing q there's any areas that you need to remove from this election, such as her hair let's, go ahead and paint those with black. There we go and then I'm gonna remove the red overlay from this area in her face. I'm gonna include that area in this election by pressing the ex key and painting with white, and then quickly come through here using my keyboard shortcuts to find him the selection. I just want to make sure I get all of her arm and I accidentally included a little bit of the background in this election so I can quickly fix that. Hopefully you're seeing what a difference using keyboard shortcuts can make in your productivity. I'm a huge fan of keyboard shortcuts, alright let's call that good press cue again to pop back out of quick mask mode, and then we're going to create our curves adjustment layer use the half black, half white circle at the bottom of the layers panel in here again, let's just cycled through the presets and see if there's one that we like. Ok, so all kinds of things you can do, so we'll turn this often on to see the before and after let's say I like that better and that's how to use the new skin tone option in color range.

Class Description

Lesa Snider returns to CreativeLive for an intensive Adobe® Photoshop® CS6 tutorial. Whether you've already upgraded or are still deciding, Lesa shows you practical yet non-destructive editing techniques you can use every day. This 3-day course is a perfect companion to Lesa's previous Adobe® Photoshop® CS5 tutorial on CreativeLive.

Lesa dives further in-depth into advanced filters such as Puppet Warp, Liquify, and Lighting Effects, which all take advantage of the new processing power of Adobe® Photoshop® CS6. Lesa also spends a full day covering Adobe® Photoshop® CS6's brand new video features.

Software Used: Adobe Photoshop CS6


Alvin Lim

Lesa's methodical way of coaching is done with ease and clarity. Together with John Greengo and Sue Bryce, she is one of my favourite mentors in CL. I purchased her CS5 and even before finishing it got the CS6 intensive class. Now Photoshop is no monster to fear but a powerful monster to create impact-fully beautiful photos. Good for both beginners and advance users!