Smart Objects: Selective Blurring
So we're going to keep continuing on with using smart objects, and the first technique we're going to do is we're going to create a selective blur in order to create a shallow depth of field after the shot okay, so I'll go ahead and collapse my adjustments panel so we can see my layers panel and let's just take a peek in the layers payable to see what's going on so at the bottom of the stack, I've got an original image and right here I've got a gaussian blur filter going on and see how it is stacking up in the layers panel sort of like a layer style and the beauty of that is if you decide you don't I want that feel to reply to your image, you can click and drag the filter itself to the trash can icon at the bottom of the layers, paid a lot throw it away if you want a filter on a smart object, you also get an automatic mask that lets you mask the effects of the filter. We're not talking about masking the image layer like we've been doing thus far. We're talking about hiding the filter o...
n lee so that's how we're going to create are shallow depth of field effect or a background blur effect is by hiding the blur from the focal point using the mask that comes along with running a filter on a smart object another great thing about using smart objects and filters together is that you get opacity control of the filter after you've ran the darn thing in the way you do that is you double click this tiny little icon to the right of the filters name and it brings up a blending options box that has opacity control so smart filters allow our our filters to be even more flexible than they've ever been before. Previously, the only way he could rent filters non destructively is to duplicate the image layer, but now we have better options, so go ahead and email and we'll take a look at how we created this, so I'm gonna go ahead and turn off the visibility I of the layer that I created for you, so we will start from scratch, so I'm going to click on the background layer and the first thing we're gonna do is we're going to convert it for smart filters case we're going to try it up to the filter menu and we're going to choose convert for smart filters all this is really doing is converting that image layer into a smart object that's all it's doing so you could have just has easily opens this image as a smart object if you knew that you were going to apply this effect okay, so that command lives in the file menu choose file openess smart object okay, so that's another way to do it, but I usually forget to open my images as a smart object so then I nine times out of ten end up going up under the filter menu and choosing convert for smart filters straight away, so as soon as you click that photo shop is going tio alert you that the selected layer is going to be turned into a smart object and can say yes, thank you photo shaw I appreciate that warning and you know photo shot made it into a smart object because it has this extra little badge at the bottom right of the layer thumbnail the next thing we want to do is go back up to the filter menu and we want to choose our filter that we're going to run, so for this effect, we're going to choose filter blur, gosse ambler and we're going to blur the heck out of the image so I'm gonna grab this dialogue box and dragged away from my image so I can see and then I'm going to drag the radius up quite a bit okay? We're going to blur the heck out of it. Another great thing about using smart filters are rather running filters on a smart object is that I don't really have to be concerned if I push the blur too far in this technique because I know in advance that I have opacity control through the filters, blending options so I can afford to be a little overzealous and my blurring or a sharpening in the technique that we're going to do next so you want to bore the heck out of it, then go ahead and press ok, so now our whole image is blurry, but if we look over here in the layers panel, we got this big old white some they'll automatically ok, so here's the filter that we ran and here's this big old wife em nail this thumbnail is the mask that you can use to hide the effects of the filter, so I'm going to give it a single click to activate it and again, you know it's active because it has that extra bracket around it on the mat or an extra white outline around it on a pc. So soon as I have the mask active, we're going to do what we've been doing with layer masks for the last two days we're going to press b to grab the brush tool and then we're going to run the little rhyme through our head. Black conceals white reveals, so you need to make sure that you're painting with black so if I take a peek at the color ships at the bottom of my tools panel, I can see that black is indeed on top, so I'm good to go you also want to make sure that you are using a soft edge brush for this technique because you don't want a hard transition from the blurry image to the in focus image okay, so I'm using a soft brush but if you don't know if you are not you can take a peek and the options bar and just look at the icon in the brush preset picker this guy right here and if it looks soft or slightly blurry on the edges and you do have a soft brush if you don't have a soft brush, go ahead and click the downward pointing triangle and you want to choose one of these soft brushes it doesn't matter which one just choose one of them because you can change brush size with the keyboard shortcut when she mouse over to the focal point of your image then you can give that little triangle another click to close that panel and now I'm going to use my right bracket key to significantly increase the size of the brush in my goal is to make that red to within the center of this photo in focus so no hide the blur from that area so just think of that red tulip is whatever your focal point is in your image so with my brush really large I'm going to go ahead and click one time and that's going to give me a nice soft transition to the blurry filter and then I'm going to lower my brush size or decrease my brush size and then I'm going to continue to paint a little bit on top of the focal point just to make sure that none of that blur is left in that area when you click once with a really big brush the spread of the mask is kind of wide which is what I want because I wanted to really soft transition from the in focus part two the blurry part but you can't really know if if your focal point really is all in focus or in other words if the blur has been completely hidden from your focal points so that's why I go down and brush size and then make sure by painting across my focal point so if this was a portrait that I would make sure to pain across the face to make sure that no blur was left on to the face and that's all there is to this technique it's a really really easy one now if I decide right now that the blur is a little too strong I can double click my filter options over here in the layers panel this like on right here give it a double click and you'll open the blending options for that particular filter and here's your opacity control so if he decide that blur is a little too strong that you could drop the opacity a little bit and again, the beauty of this is, if you say this document as a native photoshopped file, all of your layer stay intact, so if you print it or give it to a client, you decide. Yeah, well, I wish I hadn't reduced the opacity that blur actually liked it, you know, blurrier, then you can come right back in here, double click that icon again and take it right back up to one hundred percent so unbelievably effects, flexible editing here and then, if you decide you don't like the technique that you just performed at all, then you can throw the filter away, so I'm gonna use the filters, visibility I to toggle it on and off to show you before and after. So there's the before there's the after so a different kind of emotional response to this photo rather than that photo, this one is a little bit more dreamy, a little bit more soft. And then, like I said, if you said you don't like the blur, then you can click the filter itself, click and drag its name down to the trash can and it's gone just like that, and you haven't had to close the file and start over okay, so let's look at that same technique on sharpening, but before we do that let's talk just a little bit about the different uses for a gaussian blur like this let's say you're dealing with a portrait and the person that you shot has uneven skin tone you can apply a blur not not is is significant it is a blur is the one I just did he could apply a small amount of blur and you can only let the blur be revealed on their skin and that will smooth that skin tone right out okay if you've got somebody who's got a aa lot of wrinkles and their self conscious about it you could use that effect teo you might on lee let the blur reveal you know on very small areas and porcher it at a very low intensity but it can just kind of soften porcher a little bit if they want that glamour soft glow we kind of look so all kinds of wonderful uses so we'll go ahead and close this image and we will look at another one so we're gonna do it again here this is a fun little image so this is what we're going to create a little holiday fun with some hot chocolate so I gave this one a pretty significant blur in the background because I wanted the focal I want viewers to go right to my subjects faces because the backgrounds a little bit busy and giving it that blur gave it that extra dreamy holiday magic kind of feel and I went into full screen mode by pressing f I'll turn on my keyboard shortcuts so you can see that so pressing f one times goes in the full screen mode where you cannot see your, uh background of your desktop pressing and again puts the image on a black background impressing if one more time takes you back into the screen mode from whence he came, so go ahead and turn off the visibility I hear of the layer that I created for you so we'll just do this again so either choose file open a smart object and open your image or when you get the image open, choose filter convert for smart filters father stops going to alert you that you're about to make a smart object go ahead and click ok now you want to go back up to the filter menu choose blur gosse ambler blur the heck out of it drag that radius slider to the right I'm gonna go ahead and leave mine and twenty two point to you and over here in the layers panel you can see that here's our filter it ringing in its own little space not harming original image at all and we have a mask that lets us hide the blur from the parts of the image that we don't want it to appear on now we'll say that the only downfall of running multiple filters on one smart object so for example, if he wanted tio blur part of the image and sharpened part of the image, you would need to create two smart objects because while you can keep running as many filters as you want on a single smart object, he only get one mask. So if the sharpening needs to be revealed on different areas than the blurring, then you would need to duplicate your smart object and run the blur filter on one of the smart objects in the sharpened filter on another smart object just to get to different masks. Okay, so now our next step is to click to activate the mask. Do you make sure you do that or you're going to be painting aah! Black paint on top of your image, which will not be good. So now we've already got the brush still active over here in the layers panel, I still have black as my foreground colored ship. Black conceals white reveals I still have my soft edge brush, so now I can come over here to the image. I'm gonna zoom out a little bit by pressing command or control minus so I can see the faces of my people in my image and then press the right bracket key to go up and brush size, make it a little bit bigger and click wants to make that soft transition from the blur you can click a couple of times if you want to, but I usually click once or twice with the big brush, and then I go down and brush size and just pain across the most important part of the image the face is if you have people in your picture and that just insures that their faces aren't blurred at all and that's it. So even if you don't get a shallow depth of field, which means you're the things that are closer to your and focus in the background is blurry in camera, you can always do it here in post yes, if, uh, you put all smart objects in a group, can you use a smart filter on the group or only if it's directly on the smart object track? Landless smart object? Yeah, layer groups are fantastic way to organize your layers panel when you get when it gets kind of long in the tooth, you could put a bunch of layers into groups, and then you can collapse that group because it looks like it's in a folder, so those air kind of handy. Ok, so we're going to do the same technique again, but we're going to do it with a sharpening filter can we? Can we ask you a couple questions sharing the wheat er, starting with a couple of people had asked why would you jail adams and taser eighty seven why would you not use smart filters for everything? What the drawbacks I don't know that there's any drawbacks so any time I do when a filter I always use smart filters always the only drawback if you have multiple filters to run on a single smart object is that you only get one layer mask like I just said so you would need tio duplicate the smart object and then that way you can you know do separate masking for the filters if they need them sam cox had asked canopy cities saved with smart objects be open in photo shop elements yes, you can open it in front of shop elements and you'll see the smart object in the layers panel but I don't think you can really do anything with it you cannot create smart objects and elements but she can certainly elements all open up any file and photo shop and even if it's slow let's say an adjustment layer that photo shop see us five has the elements does not have you'll still see the adjustment layer but you can't double click it to edit it in fact the little layer thumbnail we'll have a little red slash through it it's a sad little red slash says you can't touch me you can't edit me but you can see me bloom bloom aj had asked what is the difference between gossip gambler and blur I honestly don't know I heard one time that golf sandler was named for the guy who invented it and then I read somewhere else that that wasn't true, so I didn't know what to think so that's a great question maybe somebody out there in the great interwebs knows the answer to that question question from leslie glee photo how do you blend the smart objects? Is this incapacity thing? How do you blend smart object? How do you blend the smart objects? I'm not sure I understand the question I think maybe it was when you were talking about how you would have to create multiple ones for the different filters like if you want to do sharpening versus blur and is there do you have to blend them? No, you know video there and when we're question from caroline, christine or smart filters only in c s five negative smart filters of material for a while I believe cs too is when we got smart objects so smart filters is just you're turning your image layer into a smart object and you're running a filter on it that's smart objects you know and smart filters you're really the same, you know, kind of entity you're just running a filter on a smart object he has two yes they've been around for a while cool we ask one more question before we move on, okay killed you ask could you ask her to explain the difference between simply duplicating a smart rajab rajab blood object layer with control jay and using new smart object? Be a copy by right clicking on the layer in the layers palette and what advantage each method has over the other. Yeah, yeah so that's just a tiny little dip back in the yesterday which is completely fine. So let me open up an image that will help explain that you remember yesterday that we looked at my twitter background page and I have a couple of but covers here and let's say I want to add another one if you duplicate a smart object, then it is linked to any of the other smart objects from that that you've duplicated okay, so I started out with the cs four but cover I brought in and is a smart object I resized I rotated it I added a drop shadow at a tiny little stroke around it I did several things to it. Then I duplicated it and just doing the straight duplication via commander control jay will create a linked instance of that smart object. So if you change one of the smart objects than every linked instant it's of it, every dip lincoln of it will change as well. This is hugely powerful stuff if you are dealing with a graphic that appears in multiple places within the same design I see this all the time in magazines j d powers and associates awards there was a man and and I saw the other day for I think a washer and dryer in evidently these this washer and dryer had won all these jd power and associates war awards so the designer had taken a slew of those little awards at different sizes and stacked them all up in front of the washer and dryer and then there was another one down near the body copy at the bottom of the ad so you can imagine how powerful that would be if you've got a graphical element that appears in several different places at different sizes within the same photo shopped document if you need to change one of them then all of them change but the re sizing that you've done to each individual link instance also remains so instead of having to replace that logo and then try to get it back to the sizes you've had it you simply swap out the content of one of the links smart objects and the rest of them update so link smart objects are great when you have repeated graphics in a single piece unlinked smart objects or great when you need to do something like what we're about to do in this twitter background so what I wanted to do was I wanted to create a way where I can bring in new books as I write them our new covers but keep the same treatment without having to recreate it. So I created unlinked smart objects and the way you do that isthe we'll just do it together here so remember our our layer selection technique from day one if we have the move tool active and we control or right click on an item than photo shop will tell us what layer lives on so I'm gonna use that trick and so here's here is my layer of this book cover right here the c s five cover so what I want to do is duplicate that smart object in a way where it's not linked because I want to swap it out with a new book cover so I'm gonna choose layer smart objects new smart object via copy the v a copy part is what creates an unlinked instance so you can access that from this menu or you can access it by control or right clicking on the layer name of the smart object it's in there as well. So here it is new smart object via copy so as soon as we do that I get another smart object but it's not linked to the original so now I can take the move tulle skirt that book cover down and now when I control or right click near the layer name of that smart object and choose replace contents and the navigate to where the book cover lives. So here's the eye photo eleven book cover so when I clicked place, it updates that instance of the smart object, not both of the other covers, which is what it would have done had I just copied or duplicated the original smart object that was a long explanation, but hopefully that makes some of the smart object discussion that we had late in the day yesterday makes sense. So now that the next thing I could do is I need to create another pushpin. So I'm going to use this a straight duplicate there, and then I can drag it down to the other book cover in all of my push pins are linked because I didn't know what color I wanted those push pins to be. So if I control or right, click on the layer name of one of those push pins and I choose edit contents because I placed it ahs illustration photoshopped would actually open up illustrator open up that art and I could change the color of that push pin, and when I click command s for saver control s for save in illustrator, then when I come back to my father shot file, every one of those linked pushpins will now become the new color. And I didn't have to place any of them again. I didn't have to resize any of them again so smart objects are hugely helpful, not only for smart filters, but for content. That's repeated.