Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography

Lesson 58/60 - Selective Color Adjustments


Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography


Lesson Info

Selective Color Adjustments

I've added atmospheric stuff, we've added things and stuff, it's looking not too shabby, I am down to start playing with color. So now I'm gonna go, let's do, I like selective color. It's kinda fun. I'm totally gonna jump into Nik Software, it's gonna happen, but I like to play in here a little bit first, anyways. Cool tones looking not too bad. The cool tones is gonna balance out this nicely. This is actually looking a lot better, just like that. Well then. (chuckles) Happy accident. I'm gonna turn this off first, and I'm gonna just quickly do a detail extraction. I'm gonna slide the color up. Detail extractor, there we go. That's way too much, looks HDR, it's awful. Totally gag worthy. But if we pull it up a little bit here, I know I'm gonna mask it out of the sky, like I did before, because I don't really want tons of detail in the sky, but I like what detail extraction does to my subject, bringing it in to even it out with some of the stuff that's in the scene. Knock up the contras...

t a little bit. Not too bad, gonna hit OK. Gonna create a layer mask. Turn the flow up. Let's get that out of that sky a little bit. I don't really want it there. Before, after. I'm okay with it being in the cloud a little bit, just not as hardcore as it was. I have that selective color adjustment, it's looking pretty awesome. Hey, that's what I call a happy accident. (chuckles) Even better, let's turn that down just a little bit. Nice. Neat. That happens sometimes. (chuckles) I've lost some of the atmospheric work that I put in there, so I'm going to take this atmosphere layer, I'm going to duplicate it. I'm gonna drag it to the top again, because I like what that does for that little bit of separation there. I'm gonna turn it down even further, but I don't want to lose that. This is really starting to come together quite nicely, I think it's working out not too bad. I'm gonna jump into color effects again. We're gonna load up. Go into cross balance. Go away, come on. Thank you. Now remember things that are closer up sometimes can be warmer than things that are further away. Day two, my brain is like, nope, we're done. (chuckles) But if we play with this here, and I up this up a tiny little bit, and then we remask out those clouds, so we copy that mask for the clouds and we have the cooler clouds in the background, this could look actually pretty rad. So I'm gonna go OK. And I have this mask here from detail extractor, so I am going to hold Alt, click and drag that up here. So now this is not good enough, and it's a little bit too strong. (vocalizing) First thing I'm gonna do is I'm gonna make the sky super blue, which it's too blue right now, in my opinion. Click that. We're looking not too shabby. Now I'm going to invert this and I'm going to take a really big brush at a lower flow, and I'm just gonna wiggle it across the whole screen. Maybe that will lighten it up a little bit. I'm basically bringing back in some of that tungsten tone into the shot. That's looking better. It's a little too much that time though. Lower flow. That's better. That's not too bad, it's looking all right. Let's play with this a little bit. I'm gonna go color balance. Once again, this is not the end-all, be-all of editing color. Totally just sliding around here, seeing what's kinda fun. I'm gonna add a little yellow to my highlights, shadows, let's add a little bit of cyan, little bit of blue. Too much, there we go. Alright, this is the Bob Ross-y part, I get it guys, it's cool, it's boring. (chuckles) I'm gonna open up a curves here. Gonna just flatten this a tiny little bit. So this is a little bit strong. Gonna bring that back a touch. I'm actually gonna see what happens if I put my curves there underneath this. Nah, not too much. The order of your adjustments makes a huge difference. Huge, huge, huge difference. Lots of things can make big changes there for sure. Last thing, I think I'm getting pretty close here. I'm gonna go hue/saturation, I'm gonna slide down my saturation a tiny little bit. Whoa. Go away. Give me my room back. (chuckles) So I'm gonna put the saturation back at zero. I'm gonna just lightly desaturate a little bit, and I'm going to leave the saturation a little bit stronger on her, because she is my subject, my little walking mermaid. So my mask, let's see here, little bit more. My mask is very, very, very subtle here. It's so, so, so small. Let's add just a little bit more. That's our mask right there. We can probably bring that down a little bit. Cool. Let's see how that looks on your screen. Not too shabby. What do you guys think so far? Anything that I missed? Like the hair strands, that was pretty awesome. (laughs) I see here, curves could maybe be a little bit less. Not too bad though, not too bad.

Class Description

With the right Photoshop know-how and studio shoot experience, you can merge fact and fiction into a reality that lives up to your imagination. Renee Robyn has made a career of turning everyday photos from her travels into eye-catching images. Robyn will teach you how to add people and other elements to your existing landscape photos using ethereal custom effects.

Join us for “Creating Your Reality with Composite Photography” and you’ll learn:

  • How to choose or set up a shoot for your background image
  • How to direct posing during a shoot, and work with directional light in studio to make your subject fit into the background image
  • How to composite your subject into your image using Photoshop

Photo compositing allows you to breathe interesting ideas into your photos. Open your hard drive, walk into your memory, and turn past experiences into fantastic new realities.


1Class Introduction 2Why You Should Sketch Your Composite 3What to Look for in Your Background 4Posing Your Model 5Communicate with Your Team 6Elements of Compositing 7Learning from Failure & Criticism 8On-Location Safety Tips 9How to Nail the Right Perspective for Your Composite Photo 10Gauging Light & Exposure On-Location 11On-Location Posing 12Cliff Shoot Location Final Thoughts 13Tips for Culling Images 14Culling Images Q&A 15Preparing Your Image for Composite 16Composite Image Cleanup 17Adding Background Image to Composite 18The Difference Between Flow & Opacity 19Composite Sky Elements 20Using Curves to Color Match 21Adding Atmospheric Depth to Image 22Using Color Efex Pro to Manipulate Color 23Using the Liquify Tool 24Color Theory & Monitor Calibration 25Adding Smoke Layer to Image 26Selective Sharpening 27Crop Your Image 28Goal Setting for Digital Artists 29Review of Location Composite 30Understand Angle & Height for Your Base Plate Image 31Base Plate Focus Point 32Base Plate Lighting Tips 33How to Use a Stand-In for Base Plate Image 34Capture On-Location Base Plate Image 35Student Positioning Demo 36Base Plate Sketching 37On-Location Sky Capture 38What to Look for in a Base Plate Model 39Building Composite Model Lighting 40Composite Model Test Shots for Angle Matching 41Composite Model Shoot: The Art of Fabric Throwing 42Composite Model Shoot: Working with Hair 43Composite Model Shoot: Posing Techniques 44Composite Test with Final Shot 45Lighting Setup Overview 46Culling Model Shoot Images 47Adjusting Skintone Colors 48Merging Background with Model 49How to Mask Hair 50Creating a Layer Mask with the Brush Tool 51Creating Shadow Layers 52Removing Visual Distractions with Stamp Tool 53Replacing Sky with Layer Mask 54Drawing Hair Strands and Atmospheric Depth 55Creating Contrast in Your Composite 56Adding Atmospheric Elements 57Using Particle Shop 58Selective Color Adjustments 59Cropping, Sharpening, & Final Touches 60Closing Thoughts


Dino Maez

i have to say, the class was AMAZING! in every way from the tricks and technique's of mastering this art form to the personalized attention given by Renee. through the class you are able to learn information that would normally take the average person years of trial and error. Renee gives you the gift of benefitting from her her experiences and what she has learned THE HARD WAY! Renee is an outstanding instructor full of passion for what she does, and with a strong desire to not only improve the art, but more importantly, pay it forward, by sharing her knowledge with others. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the event in person, truly a once in a lifetime experience for me, the staff at creative live were THE BEST! they are helpful in every way and really made this event something special, i can't say enough about the experience i had and would highly recommend that anyone who has the opportunity to go down for a class, it will be an experience that you will never forget. but the best part of creative live is that wether you are there in person or wether you are watching from the comfort of your own home, you are involved in the class in REAL TIME, you have the ear and attention of the skilled artist giving the instruction, being there myself i can tell you that Renee was regularly given questions and comments from the viewers via the creative live staff and she would respond to them as they came, in that way you are very much apart of the class you are never left without getting that personalized attention of an amazing artist or that specific question you have answered, and even better you have the option to purchase the class and have it as a constant resource in your tool kit that you can refer back to at any point that you need a refresher or want to recall that special technique that was demonstrated. thank you thank you to renee and all the staff at creative live you have a life long member in me. and i would recomend that everyone take advantage of this valuable resource dino maez

Sheldon Carvalho

Awesome class. I've been following Renee for a very long time. I love her work and to finally see her work and get an image done from start to finish was quite something.. I love the way she sees things and the way she treats her work and all fellow creative. I would recommend this to everyone interested in getting into composting. Looking forward to creating and making my own art work. But it now :) Have fun creating. :)

Tristan Wilhelm

Very good class. I enjoyed the very friendly, approachable and quirky style Renee teaches with. I did feel, as others have said that she could get off on bunny trails and tell stories and I was glad for Creative Live's option to speed up the video. But great tips and it was extremely helpful watching it how she would do it. Thank you much Renee, and also, I'm a PC user that unites with you.