Darkening and Lightening Skin


Skin. The Complete Course


Lesson Info

Darkening and Lightening Skin

So here is my nice kind of macho portrait of my martial arts instructor here this is nathan er and and I'm not exactly sure how it's looking on our monitors here you can kind of see uh he's he's a little pasty looking and we kind of I like to give him a little more of a swore the kind of movie macho sort of, you know, skin color, skin tone and if we do the same thing like way were doing with bernard were bernard we're trying to lighten the skin in this case I think what we're going to be doing is darkening scan let's just check thie individual channels to see what's happening in that regard so I'm gonna go down there is my red channel what do you think my red channel has it's I've broken toe white here uh and this is kind of like very common when you're using in camera jay pegs and you're looking at the history graham and you think you know yeah, I'm okay the hist aground looks like I'm not clipping anything I'm far enough away um because you're not looking at individual channel hissed...

a grams you're looking at a composite that these other channels of so much darker that it's very easy to overexpose in the red channel when you're taking pictures of people if you're if you're what your check is the history ground that's why? You know I said it like on the first day at that picture with the tape over the lcd it was more about the history graham than anything else you can't always rely on it this was the kind of trouble that we got into here and since skin is mostly red this is really contributing a lot to the overall uh lightness or darkness of his skin that's that red channel so this is I like to I like to think of it in terms of friend or foe we're looking for the channel that's our friend which one is our phones? So we have that say faux here this is our enemy okay friend or foe better right at least we have tone on his face but for the darkest rendering I really wanted to give him a nice tan the blue channel in this case is is is really dark enough and and so let's let's just try let's try that let's put him let's do a channel mixer adjustment with the blue channel on top and see uh what happened so I make my channel mixer adjustment and I was select um blue filter so black and white blue filter I get one hundred percent of the channel and there we go now all I have to do is change the apply mode to luminosity on dh there you have a nice dark much better tan look okay what's what's the problem in this picture now that's what we started with is what we get yeah, his nice dark macho give color became baby blue now it's done some interesting thing for his eyes lightened up his blue eyes so that that might be nice but you know, this is kind of a big no no he's not gonna be happy with that picture, you know, like I don't have no sissy blue g you know, so it would be nice to be able to, like, take care of that now I can you know, I've got a layer mask here pretty easy I could paint this out, but I'm too lazy to even do that. So I'm going to show you kind of a neat little trick to take the effect off that blue so there's this, uh, there's a hidden little thing here and the layer options fly away here okay, is this little thing called blending options? Um, so we're going to select blending options and this gives us a whole other method of controlling how the layers interact uh, probably a bit on non intuitively it opens up the layer style dialogue, which is the same thing you used to get to your your layer styles, all those bevel in and boss and all that kind of stuff but we're going to ignore this this part of the dialogue and just concentrate on the center part which is our advanced blending options okay so right now what we're going to really look at here is this blend if portion this blend of portion down here and um weaken these two radiance representing the luminosity values in this layer and the luminosity values in that letter so when we're looking at gray we're just looking at the combined luminosity of the color image so that's the combined luminosity of all three channels but you can also look at the luminosity of individual color channels um and we're going to actually be playing around with the red channel I want to show you why you know just so you make make sure I understand this uh before this adjustment in the red channel uh if we look at just the red channel I've got what looks like a really good mask here for that blue g it's black and then everything else in that red channels really pale so but anything that's really blue is already massed out its black ok so I'm going to take advantage of that so using this this blending options were turned it back on goto blending options um and I'm gonna work in the red channel the underlying layer does not have this adjustment but it has its black wherever this is blue so the thing you're going to do is pull this little black slider over and you see how it's it's masking off that effect automatically and put over until you know I've I've revealed the dark g in the underlying layer ok, I go over far enough I start to peel off the effect way up here you know where the red channels pale but down here it's on ly blue that is darker than this point in the red channel now along the edge here where there's there's this kind of transition between the lighter values in the darker values we can kind of see some pixel it picks elation kind of happening little speckles it's because we're transitioning right at a specific value at sixty four levels everything darker than sixty four levels is being revealed so I'd like to make a little gray daesh in there so that it ramp smoothly so the trick there is to hold down the option key and pull apart that little triangle and it will kind of smooth out that transition okay I gotta turn on turn mouse was a back on but I don't miss those keys drug um okay, so now my I've sort of automatically mast it had done all the work for me those blending options and uh you know, I've got the dark and in effect in the skin that I that I need okay, that makes sense any questions now from reserve some chatter on the first good after that fashion tv ad estess sisters as well from singapore talking, asking about how to create a bronze skin. Bronski, that bronze skin? Well, yeah, you're kind of attempting to create more of a tan. Look, uh, this this technique can be applied in that way. Usually the blue channel has a lot of contrast and is much darker in skin. So when we apply this luminosity this way, we could get kind of that bronze in effect, the other part of it is just kind of color, you know, howto get that bronze color, which is a little more a little more kind of it. So it's, kind of a little more yellow and a sort of more consistent color across the skin. Part of the thing makes skin don't look like skin tone is color modulation or some areas are a little redder, and some hair is a little more yellow to get that kind of artificial bronze look, you usually want to kind of wrap a very much more consistent color into into the image. Um, and let's see, one way of doing that, uh, would be to use, um, let's see, let's, use a, um grady in't. Okay, great. In a just not city with no that's, not it way great map, okay, so I'm gonna I mean is a great map so this is this is also kind of a way of applying a uh sort of color toning effect into the image wasn't kind of slightly off topic here but so here I've got kind of a coppery color um I'm gonna customize I'm gonna make a custom grade in here okay um on let's make what I'm doing is I'm placing the's grady it stops here so I've got now the shadow grady in't selected here if I change the color now to you know, dark let's go black with this okay? And I could play around with transition effect here I'm trying to pick a a mid tone uh grady and color so my brightness I want to be at fifty percent let's make this a little more saturated color keep this set fifty go up in saturation a little bit and then this really probably should be white so what the grady it map does is it takes the tonal values and just re maps them with new colors so this is re colorizing his skin to, you know make it sort of artificially you have to play around with a color I wasn't really prepared toe create recreate this effect, but since that question was asked this is how I would approach it would remap the color using the greatest map to create this very consistent kind of bronze color and apply that over the skin of the image which we can do the same thing if we go into our blending options here now we can blend using the red channel and blend it out from this underlying image here same way uh and you know, maybe blended out of the hair um let's see? Well, I might have to mask that off a little bit maybe change the the capacity so it's not so heavy handed maybe fifty fifty and we're you know we're kind of it's like it's like kind of painting makeup over the person you're really re colorizing their skin you know and it's that it's the odd sort of a consistent color look which gives it that sort of artificial bronze effect so let's now go back and we'll start we'll look att bernard again ah and here again our issues are still you know what I really want is to light him up a little bit so friend or foe right? Bender phone okay, well, right what clearly this is not the direction we want to go. Uh green is probably this is sort of interesting and in a color image sixty percent of your luminosity is going to come from the green channel just the way it works sixty percent of luminosity always coming from the green channel which is one reason why on the bare pattern to the ccd cheer pounds has twice a cz many green pixels as it does either red or blue. So there's two thirds like almost sixty percent of luminosity. So they devote more of the pixels on the chip to the green channel. If that's not a big hint that luminosity is more important than color, I don't know what isthe um so in the color mix, this overall brightness is going to be coming sixty percent from the green channel, thirty percent from the red channel in ten present from the bleuchamp. So blue is contributing very little to thea overall luminosity. But red is only contributing thirty percent. So when we look at it how much brighter the red channel is here, we're going to get a really boost in brightness by using the red channel luminosity over over the image. And we have good, you know, we have good tonal range in this channel. It's light to dark it's not that there's. No real problems because we didn't over expose this. So you know again going back to that question do we overexposed dark people? You can to a point. But then you you can run into trouble in the red channel. Because you think you're just you know, making it brighter but look how much brighter the red channel is in the green channel right? So you know, if our goal is to lighten his skin clearly we want to do something with that red channel maybe not, you know, one hundred percent but let's just see what happens. So the simplest thing again uh channel mixer we'll use our preset here um black and white red filter and we'll apply that in luminosity mode and just see what happens okay, so the luminosity here I'm I'm feeling like this is this is causing the problems going too far, which is not really a surprise when we look at where what's happening here were we are sort of smoothly breaking toe white, right? But the attempt to preserve the color when we apply this luminosity of the color image uh is kind of a little problematic so I'm getting up what to me is like just kind of a little bit to salmon e it's like too saturated or something something odd is happening if we look now at the color channels this is why so after that channel mixer adjustment has been applied it's forced parts of the red channel two white so we're not actually replacing the luminosity of just the red channel, but we're adding overall luminosity and so that's adding this brightness into the red, green and blue so I'm kind of brightening up the red channel with the red channel okay, so you got to be kind of careful it it's easy to go too far so uh weaken dallas back I don't need this much brightness and probably if I'm I'll just find the place where it starts to look ok on that might just be like like this I'm still I'm still brightening this I just don't need to go so far you know I'm hardly I'm not affecting the black background and I'm hardly affecting that blue uh he's going a very dark blue blazer and um I think we need some help there to help him separate against the background so let's look at our channels now and again sort of try now we're not concerned about the skin so much but uh you know, maybe, uh maybe the blaze it's a little better there and what course in the blue channel it's much lighter, right? So this this is easy we now already know how to do that. So we're gonna go to the channel mixer and we're gonna do a black and white with blue filter is our blue channel and change the luminosity ok, which is doing exact opposite now it's dark in the skin and lightning the jacket so we're going toe invert the mask so I do command I and I've inverted the mask, and I'm just gonna paint over this. Make a nice soft brush in the bracket keys here on dh. I should be painting with white at one hundred percent. I'm strengthening my my room line. Um, I could paint down into into the rest of this, uh, but now we're going toe. Now we're going to play around with this let's. Um, I want to brighten up the blue jacket more and it's, not nothing is close to getting toe white in the blue channel on the jacket, it za light gray, so I can actually push the blue further. You'll see. My highlight comes out even more. And since it's, still black in the background there, it's not having. I can't see the paint marks on the background, so I don't have to really worry about anything else there.

Class Description

Skin. Everyone has it, everyone wants it to look good, and if you're a photographer who shoots people, you need to be able to light, shoot, and retouch skin. Hollywood photographer Lee Varis has shot celebrities, movie posters, and magazine articles where the skin has to be perfect. He is the author of the popular book Skin, and he's coming to creativeLIVE to share his knowledge with you! Lee will take you beginning to end through multiple shoots with different types of people covering how to pose and light them well, and will then cover in-depth how to post-process in Lightroom and Photoshop. You'll learn how to fix blemishes, smooth out wrinkles, and address other skin concerns so you can make your clients look their best.



Skin tones correction and portraits editing are new to me. This course provides a set of tools for me to improve my portraiture work. Lee doesn't just show you how things are done, but also the reasons for the corrections. The delivery is a bit dry because the topic is quite technical. You can have a break between lessons, if it becomes too overbearing for you. I highly recommend to take this course, if you are planning to do portraits, head shots, or even senior pictures.