Photo Editing - An easy Guide on how to edit with Layers and Masks in Adobe Photoshop | Daniel Gastager | Skillshare

Photo Editing - An easy Guide on how to edit with Layers and Masks in Adobe Photoshop

Daniel Gastager, Professional Landscape Photographer

Photo Editing - An easy Guide on how to edit with Layers and Masks in Adobe Photoshop

Daniel Gastager, Professional Landscape Photographer

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6 Lessons (1h 3m)
    • 1. Intro - Working with Layers and Masks

    • 2. Chapter 1 - Setting up your Workspace

    • 3. Chapter 2 - Layer Basics

    • 4. Chapter 3 - Local Contrast Adjustments

    • 5. Chapter 4 - Local Color Adjustments

    • 6. Chapter 5 Selections and Blend Modes

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About This Class

In this class, you will learn how to work with layers and masks in Adobe Photoshop. There are so many different possibilities in Photoshop to edit your images, but I will show the most important to improve your landscape and nature photos. There're only a few steps needed to bump your editing skills to the next level.

Chapter 1:

I will show you how to set up your workspace for photographers, so you don't get distracted by all the stuff you don't need. It makes your life in Photoshop much easier from the start.

Chapter 2:

Here I will explain the basics about layers and all you need to know about their different features in photo editing. I will also talk about the importance of a non-destructive workflow.

Chapter 3:

In this video, we will dive deeper into the importance of contrast adjustments. I will talk about global and local contrast adjustments together with adjustment layers and layer masks. You will see how some simple techniques affect the style of your images.

Chapter 4:

Color is probably the most important in photo editing. In this video, you will learn some easy techniques you can use to improve your photos by adding color contrast and working locally on different parts of an image.

Chapter 5:

In the last chapter, you will learn how to use selections in your photo editing to process the sky and the foreground separately. I will also talk about the usage of different blend modes to improve your post-processing workflow.

Sample images we will be working on:




Meet Your Teacher

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Daniel Gastager

Professional Landscape Photographer


Hey guys! :) My name is Daniel Gastager, birth name Fleischhacker, and I'm a newly married professional landscape photographer and photo editor based in Rosenheim/Germany.

I'm in photography for over seven years now, and I do use Adobe Photoshop on a daily bases. I love traveling, but I also love shooting beautiful images in my backyard. Photography is a great passion for me, and I love every aspect of it.

It's not just in the field surrounded by beautiful mother nature; it's also about the technical perspective like photo editing in front of my computer. That's where you can get creative and set yourself apart from other photographers.

I won several awards, such as the German national award at the Sony World Photography Awards, six gold medals at the Epson... See full profile

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1. Intro - Working with Layers and Masks: Hello, everybody. Welcome to my second sculpture class, where I will show you everything about the basics off layers and masks in adobe for the shop. If you always wanted to know how to use Photoshopped, or let's say you felt intimidated so far about all the functions and possibilities you have inside there than this class is the right for you. Because I tell you what you don't need. All those fancy tools and the adjustment possibilities you have inside photo shopped to create a good looking image, especially as a beginner. It can be hard sometimes to figure out what you actually need. Toe work, riff and what helps you to improve your landscape photography and it only a few simple steps toe bump your images already to a whole new level, and that's what this class will be about. I will show you all the basics you need to know about layers and masks, toe work with contrast and color adjustments globally and locally, we will work on three example images so I can show you how those techniques work on each image. Because guess what. Every single photo is different. My name is Daniel Flash, aka I'm a professional photographer for over six years now. And at the same time, I've seen a photo shop teacher for almost my entire career. At the beginning, I had the same problems. I couldn't figure out what photo shop was about and what adjustments I needed for my own images. So I tried everything. It was overwhelming, really quickly. I wished I had a tutorial like this in the past so I can see what I really need for my landscape photography. So now I wish you a lot of fun with my skill share class. Feel free to ask me any questions you have and show me your results. I'm really curious what you can do. My simple steps and how your images look afterwards. So have fun, guys. And see you later. Bye. 2. Chapter 1 - Setting up your Workspace: Hey, guys, welcome to the first chapter off my tutorial about masking and layers in photo shop, and it's actually not a big topic right now, but I will show you how I set up my workspace in Adobe Photo Shop. So have a smooth experience and no distractions by anything. It's really important because yeah, you don't want to have, like, pick around, don't find stuff right away. So there's some two or three small steps. Not much, actually, since Photo Shop is really intuitive already. But like I said, I will show you how I set it up and then we're good to go. So let's jump right into it. All right, So here's a sample image from one off the shots that will show you later, Um, but right now it's about the workspace. Ah, first of all, you can see this is the default setting, and I don't like it. It's really distracting. And so many things to click on and look at. Yeah, it's it's confusing. So what we will do? First of all, we will go to the right corner up here, and then we will click on photography Really simple. And now you can already see that we have much more space here for our image. And yeah, it's already easier to look at, and what we will also do is we will click on the Channel section here and there. You have, like, one off the most important things in photo editing, in my opinion, and that's the luminosity channels and the Color Channel. And based on those channels, we can create really, really precise masks, too. Work locally on your image, and that's the topic we will talk about in the future class, for sure. But it's also important for selections and general masks because they will also appear down there. So yeah, really important. And that's the reason why we want to drag it up there and now we already have but much better work space than we click on layers, and that's actually it. We will just give the channel. It's a bit more space, and so we have, like, better overlook. So that's actually it. The history Graham. It's at the top, which is also important. It represents your total values, from the dark tones on the left to the bright tones on the right and the mid tones. Of course, in the middle, in this case, you see we have a lot of mid tones, not many dark tones and a few bright tones only. But that's just an example. But it's also important that you can watch this since yeah, it shows you really quickly when you go like overboard with your editing and the last step we want to do here in this chapter is we go to edit and to color settings and we will pick s RGB color space down here. Since we only editing for weapon right now s RGB is fine since that's the color space like most browsers use and actually all the websites use. So it's the easiest to pick that to have like the best output from start to finish for your rep Rosa, when you are into printing and you have a good enough monitor, then pick Adobe RGB or even pro photo RGB, since there are much bigger color space and the represent more fine color details. But like a said rep arises, don't support it when it's safe. Only a few things supported though we are to be and not every single website. So we would like a set only talk about it. So it should be right now. So and then that's press, OK? And that's actually it. So now we can get started with our editing and everything set up and, yeah, see you in the next chapter. 3. Chapter 2 - Layer Basics: Hey, guys. So welcome to the second chapter, where we will talk about the basics off layers and masks in Adobe Photoshopped. And as already mentioned in the intro, I won't show you like every single step you can do in photo shop because, in my opinion, that's not important. It's important to know what you can use as a landscape photographer or as a nature photographer, um, to make you images better. And I think it's enough to have, like, four or five steps in your toolbox, because for the shop has like 1000 ways to do things. But you don't need to know everything. And that's what my classes here about. I was sure the basics and there the good stuff, in my opinion. All right, so let's jump into this shot here. It's I took it last year. Not this year, actually. Sorry, 2019 uh, in the Dolomites. It's one of the most beautiful mountains over there, and it was, ah, cloudless planted. But I still really liked it because the red glow on the rocks was amazing. And that's the reason why I decided to work. If it here in the layer basics and, yeah, let's just get started here. So first of all, when you look at the right side, you have the layer here called background. That's actually you're basically the first layer, and you don't want to work on this one because you can on Lee. Redo your adjustments in the history history panel up here, and it gets full really quickly. So when you do a lot of adjustments, uh, it adds up, and then at some point, you can't go back at the beginning. Well, you can always go back to the start, but let's say like one of your first steps will be hidden and we don't want to do that. So we will never touch the background. Leo, basically. But what we can do is we can make a copy off the background layer by pressing control J, and now you have layer one, and that's the first layer we can work with. And a layer is basically a sheet of paper where you can draw on but do things. Or let's say, in this case it's a photograph. This is like and we can draw on the photograph, or it's also can also talk about it like it's negative film on Let's say, not negative from its film and you want to develop it and you do it on the film itself. I've was never I'm a digital photographer, so I don't know much about film, but I'm just trying to explain, so you understand what the layer is. But I think let's keep the piece of paper example. It's a bit better and weaken drawn in, however we want. For example, we can go to image and go to adjustments, and then we go to a brightness and contrast adjustments, and now we can crank up the brightness or we can go down with it when we want a bit dark. You look, for example and we can also go up if the contrast or go down with the contrast. Okay, so, yeah, you see it? Let's say in this case we want to talking to the little bit and we want to add a bit of contrast and they repress Okay, so now we have a new layer with a new adjustment on it, and when we turn it on and off here on this eyeball, then you can see it changes the image. The problem of this layer is it's a new pixel based layer, and when you add pixel based layers, your file size gets really big fast when you look here at the bottom hoops. When you look at the bottom, you see it's like 172 megabytes, and when we delete this layer, no, sorry, the base layer is 172 and with the new layer we have 344. So it doubled already just for some simple contrast adjustments. And you can imagine this adds up really quickly, and then you have a huge fire suddenly, so we want to avoid using pixel based layers too often. In some cases we have to, but we don't have to use it for simple color and contrast adjustments. I will show you another way in a second. And if you already know this, you can probably skip this chapter to the next one because it's like I said really about the basics. So yeah, forgive me, but when you knew to it, I hope you will learn something new, of course. All right, so let's delete this layer. We don't need it, So let's just press delete and there we have our background layer again. Um, actually, I will create another one. Press control J. But I will show you what pixel based layers are good for. For example, stamping. This is not a tutorial about stamping now and fixing stuff. I'm not perfectly good at it. And but as an example, I will show you what I mean. Let's say when you zoom in, there's a hut up there in the mountain really cool and you don't want that hut. I don't know why, but let's say you can press l to get the lasso tool. Pick it over here and then you draw around the hut, and when you goto edit Phil and you pick content of air impress Okay, then Photoshopped does the job for you. Mostly, it does a good job sometimes. Then you have to redo it. Let's say you draw another line. Got to edit Phil, content aware. Leave the rest here. Press OK. It's not perfect, but issue. When you assume out, you see that's a good use for a pixel based layer. You can't do that on the another layer, which will show you later so there it is when you turn it on and off. Yeah, And what's important, in my opinion, in a good workflow is when you do, like, stamping or fixing dust spots in the sky. And so ever, uh, then do it first at the beginning because I will show you later what happens when you create pixel based layers at the end or in the middle off your workflow because it kind of destroys. Um, the nun destructive working. When you want to do that. In my case, I like to do at the beginning because I like to work non destructively. What this means is something of a show you and discuss. Um so yeah, like I said, when you turn it on and off, then we see it's gone or not. But we will delete it because I want to keep that hot. Okay, um, another use for a pixel based layer is, let's create another one, and you want to goto filter and then camera raw filter, for example. It's basically an option which photo shop gives you so you can go back to the camera raw settings. You don't have to true raw, but you can still do some settings that you can do in light room and so on. But this tutorial is not about light room, but I hope you know some basics already so you can now drink again with on the contrast. Slider use highlights shadows. So when you're familiar with that, then you can still used in photo shop form or precise adjustments. I like to do it. I thought it's press OK, and that's also something we can do in a pixel base layer. But let's say Let's bring it back. Let's say we want to redo the adjustments we just did. The only thing we can do is we can lower the capacity when we want to enhance it, or we go to the History history panel and go back. But let's say we want to get back into the layer the filter. Then we need a smart object. And what is this? We were basically create a new layer, and then we're right. Click and then we will click convert to smart object and what this does. It gives us the ability to go back to the filters re previously used. So, for example, a camera raw filter or also a sharpening filter. So let's go to filter camera raw and it's at contrast and exposure. Impress. Okay, and we see Booth. We overdid it a bit. So what we will do is we will double click on the camera raw button down there, and now we're back in. And then we can redo the mistakes we just made, for example, something like that. You see, that's a cool way to use pixel based layers. And that's like the only way how I use pixel based layers in the middle off and workflow, not at the beginning, like stamping layers. Also on okay. Another example is, ah, sharpening method. I will show you real quick. It's not about shopping right now, but let's just go to smart shop and pick a huge amount. Press OK, that's assuming and turned a smart shop and off and on that you can see and let's say you don't like the sharpening effect. Double click on Smart Shop and yeah, you Beck, and you're going to redo things. And you can, of course, always deleted If you don't like it. Perfect. So that's a quick X course to ah, smart objects all right. But enough now about picks. The base layers, but we will do next is we will create an adjustment layer. And that's like the best way to add adjustments to an image. That's why it's called Adjustment Layer, I guess so. To get there, we will click on this little icon down here in the middle, and now we have our adjustment tap and this you can see you're already. You also have the brightness contrast adjustment, which we all also have appear in. Image adjustments, brightness, contrast. The difference is I have to apply those to a pixel base layer and down there it's an adjustment layer, which means when I click on it there, you see, it's Ah yeah, an adjustment with a white mask on it. And now I can make the same stuff, which I did with the pixel based layer. But the good thing is, it barely increases my father size, and I can you at those up really easily and now we can actually also No, no, actually but now weaken already. Start with the masking topic since yeah, we have it here. The mask is pretty much, let's say of Indo. There's like a saying and photography and photo adding, Which says White. We re reels. Black conceals. That means means white is an open window. Black is a close window, so when we close the window by inverting, the mask will be pressed control. I you don't see what's beneath it, but when you make it white again, then you see what your adjustment us. I hope it's understandable. And when we press B, you get to the brush tool, and this helps us to paint on the mask and to, let's say, conceal different areas. Often image. We will talk about this in the later chapter, but just real quick here. When I paint black on this mountain top with, like 77 opacity or 100 doesn't matter, then you see, I hide the adjustment and I can do the same thing that let's say, um, we have to go back to my wife. Mask it. Let's say we will make the mask black So everything's concealed, the windows closed. We don't see anything. We can partly open it by painting white on it in different areas. And that's the powerful. Yeah, let's say ability off masks. They help you a lot to work locally on your images and to make adjustments only to certain parts where you want it and not like to the whole image itself. Okay, so let's delete it. And the other is actually it with our basics about layers and masks. Um, so we can summarize. We have pixel based layers and adjustment layers, the pics of bass players, a good for stamping and ah, yeah, let's say you want just want to make adjustments on it, but it's actually not recommended. And but you can off course also use them for smart objects. That's actually the most powerful way to use them. Uh, where you can open certain filters and, yeah, always redo your adjustments, which you made with those filters, cause you can go back to it actually so really powerful and the other adjustment. But the other layer we use our adjustment layers so it barely increases your file size. And, yeah, you can use as many as you want. Make the same adjustments like you can do on pixel based layers, except for stamping and sharpening and so on. But I mean contrast, and you know this stuff and you have masks for its paint on it, conceal or re real different adjustments on certain parts of an image so really powerful. And we will, of course, life deeper into it in the next chapters, where will show you how to work locally with colors and contrasts. And then we will talk about more, um, adjustments you can make with those layers. Okay, so So you do. 4. Chapter 3 - Local Contrast Adjustments: Hey, guys, welcome to the next chapter. We will show you some techniques I like to use to, at contrast to an image and toe work locally using masks which we learned in the previous chapter what masks are now we will use them a bit more. So let's jump right into it. Uh, here's an example image from sighs on in the Italian Dolomites. More someplace, and what I want to show you here is how a food there emphasize different parts off this image by using local contrast adjustments and also general contrast adjustments. So let's go to the adjustment panel. And in the last chapter you saw how use brightness, contrast in a really basic way. We will use that again. Now, In this case, we will lower the brightness because when you watch here, it's a bit too bright for my taste. So I want to lower the brightness a little bit. But at the same time, I want to keep contrast. So it's not too washed out, but only in small numbers. And what we will do now is we will press control I for Windows. And what is it for? Mac control? Mr. Command command. Sorry, command I to invert it. So now we have the black mask again. Everything's concealed. And now we will use the brush tool by pressing B. And now we will paint on the black mask to re well, the adjustment in certain parts of an image. So to do that, I will, uh, go over here and we will make sure that it's a really smooth basque. And to do that, that's a little trick when you all click and when you right, click at the same time. Then you have this red ball over here, and when you go to the right or to the left, you increase the size off your brush. And when you go up or down, you in Greece, the hot the hotness and you don't want to really hard brush here. It's like when you're just using a stone to paint lets when you see when I paint Here, you have all those weird edges, and from the heart brush there doesn't look good at all. And when you look at when you press Ault and you click on the mask, then you see what you did. It's not good. So we will go back, and what we will do now is we will press be again for the brush and now we will make it really smooth, really smooth with, like 100% opacity. So you have two options. Toe change the opacity. You can work with the capacity off your brush and the capacity off your layer. So when some adjustments are too strong for you, you can always redo it a little bit. In this case, I like to work with the capacity off the brush so we will go down to like, let's say, 55 and then we can painted in here in the sky exactly where we want it. And we will try to not hit the trees too much because we only want to dark in this part of this guy. All right, let's see you hit the trees a little bit and you don't want that so you can always repaint black on it to conceal the adjustment again. So we will press X to switch the colors here, or you can also click on the arrows here and now we will paint blood back our previous a mask so it's black in this area again. Okay? Really simple. And when you use a really small, smooth Russia's you can see here you have really fine edges. And then you don't have this weird looking effect, which we had before. All right, so what one? What do we want to do next? Ah, next. We will use a curves adjustment. And curves are really powerful in photo shop that basically represent your history. Graham, when you look at the top right here, you see your history, Graham, and the curve looks pretty much the same. So that means on the right side you have to black tones the doctor owns. And on the left side you have the bright tones, and in the middle you have mid tones and you can work with certain parts off this. Yeah, history Graham here. So, for example, when you drag d'etre line up, it means you manipulating your history, Graham. So you're dark tones become brighter. Yes, you can see. And when you look, move it to the right. That means you shrink them down. So you're dark tones become darker. We don't want that in this case, and you can do the same with the bright tones. When you drag it down, you make them docker. So you turned down the brightness. And when you go to the left, you shrink. You make the history graham smaller. That means it gets more contrast. In this case, we make the bright tones brighter, and I think we want to do that. So we will grab this here and go a bit to the left. And we will overdo it, because when we invert the mask, control I now everything is concealed. And when we use oh, a brush again we can use, let's say again, 55% opacity or maybe 35. And now we can painted in certain areas. Often image, for example. I want to enhance this light spot. So what will we do? We will painted here in the light sport and maybe also this part off the grass. And also he in the valley. Where does the sun was hitting it really nicely. And let's say this side here off the images, too dark because he wanted nice and balanced real pain. The bid off our bright tones over there. But when we assume in, we have to watch out that we don't blow out highlights in the sky. Otherwise we will lose the information. And let's say that the trees are be too dark here. So we can also paint a bit bright tones here and also there and maybe add a little bit of contrast with 11% here, troll sky back and also here on the mountain. Okay, And when we turned the layer on on my own off, you already see a big difference. And what we're basically doing is we're just using the light, which was already there. That means we're emphasizing the light spots and maybe darkening a bit off the dark spots to add contrast. But when we do it locally, we have more control than by just using it on the whole image. So that's a powerful way. What I also like to do is I like to use curves for darkening the mid tones. So when we drag here in the middle, you see we can't really go to the right of the left, since it's the middle. But we can drag it down or we can drag it up so it's brighter because it's also affecting some off the dark tones and a lot off the bright owns. Since we dragging up the middle, the edges are affected as well. It's like 1/2 circle, so we want to darken it a bit. At the same time, we want to maintain the highlights. So what we will do is we will drag Ohio that slider and bring it to the right. So it's a bit contrast here and also go up if the black so its not too dark so you can see you can do a lot with one curve. Actually, you can affect darks, mid tones and highlights at the same time, the knowledge inverted. And while we do this, you already see the power off adjustment layers. You can stack them up really easily and do more and more adjustments to an image. So let's say, for example, and that's what I meant before with a nondestructive workflow. It's a good example here right now, so let's say we want to turn off this layer. We can still do that. But if we added the pixel based layer by clicking control old shift E, that's the shortcut to do that in the middle of a workflow. Then you can do is control J because otherwise you would duplicate the adjustment. Layer controlled chain always duplicates the layer you just selected, but when you want to add a completely new pixel based layer, you have to press control all shifty. All right, so let's say I have this one here and I go to image adjustment and brightness. Ah, contrast Adjustment on. Let's see, we will make a brightness adjustment in the contrast adjustment. Something like that. No, we did that. And now we want to change something on the layers beneath. And let's say we want to turn it on and off. Oh doesn't work because off the big pixel based layer it destroys the nondestructive workflow. It creates like a whole ah, whole new workspace from the beginning on, and we don't want that, so we will delete that, and we want to work further with adjustment layers. At some point, we can't avoid using pixel based layers, as is that before. Maybe we want to add a certain camera, raw filter or so later on. That happens. But I think the more comfortable you get a few editing, the more it's okay to add pixel based layers in the middle of your work floor because you know that your adjustments you made before are fine. You don't have to change them anymore. All right, so it's press control. I tohave it white, so everything is visible, and now I want to remove it in certain parts. For example, I paint black in this forest here, also bit here in the sky. I want to keep it a bit there because I like the contrast happening there, maybe a bit here and there. So it's not too dark, all right. It's always important to watch out that tones don't get too dark or too bright. And when you are in the middle off adjustments when you're clicking on this year, you see that your instagram looks really weird. But when you create a new layer than its fixed again, it's always shows the precise well use on a pixel based layer northern on an adjustment layer. But doesn't matter in this case, Um, and it's also one off the reasons why we first darkened this part off the sky here, because if we didn't and when we add contrast later on, it can happen that it blows out quickly, like the tones get to pry too fast and we don't want that. All right, so one more step to use contrast adjustments is the levels and basically again presents the Instagram. And now we have to slide us on the rights and in the middle and on the left. And it's up to you if you prefer your levels, all curves. I like to use both, but some people only use levels and some guys only use crops. I think that both powerful in their own way. So in this case, I want to dark in the mid tones a bit more. Now I want to go really extreme. I want to dock the mid tones a bit more and then Brighton the highlights. So you see, you have, like, a really contrast the image. And at the same time, when you go down here to the output levels, it's like the same of the curve. When you dragged up, now you're lifting the shadows a bit. All right, way to contrast E as you can see in the sky. So let's inverted. And now we will again painted Onley in certain parts. In this case, I will use the right color again to reveal the adjustment from the closed window. So with capacity, 55 is fine and we will again paint on this grass here and also in the valley. And the good thing is, when you start with 55% capacity and you make a breaststroke, then you have the adjustment. And when you make another breast stroke, you add up until you're back to 100. But it's a good way to be. Yeah, really precise. You can also start with, like, 10% capacity and then brush it and really slowly when you are not comfortable with it. Okay, let's use it a bit in the sky and redo with a bit here and this part off the clouds And also this were part All right, that's it. And now we will group our layers by shift, clicking down from top to bottom and press control G. And now we have everything. Ah, together and we will call it adjustments. And when we turned this group on and off, then we can see what we did with yeah, all those layers. And I think it's really powerful and it helps you to see if there's still something you want to fix. In this case, I might want to add another level slayer and make a really extreme bright adjustments. And some blacks to maintain, contrast, inverted and then painted. He and this left hand his right corner. So because it's too dark, in my opinion and also a bit here, re do it over there and that's it. So that's so that's how I work. I like to make really extreme adjustments, which I don't like on the whole image. But when I painted in locally, it's really helpful and powerful to increase. Yeah, the appearance, the look, the mood, that's how I work. Okay, so maybe turn it on and off. You see the difference. I think it's a big difference. And now we can, of course, always work with the overall a pass iti. If we don't want to be too strong and that's also a good way to use groups, let's say we will use 85% and when we assume in, I think it's a bit too bright over here so we can go back to the adjustments from before and painted black again to hide some off the adjustment. In this case, it was the levels adjustment. Okay, that's it. So what did we learn in this chapter? You learned my favorite techniques To add local contrast, I like to use curves levels and also the brightness contrast slider that both at all three really powerful. And that's actually the only three I used to add. Contrast. You don't need more, in my opinion. And when you overdo things at first and then hides the adjustment to paint it in locally, it's the best way to have the most control off your editing in your for landscape for us. All right, so I hope you enjoyed and see you in the next chapter by 5. Chapter 4 - Local Color Adjustments: well, come to Chapter four. Guys here will show you how I at color to certain parts of an image. So pretty much the same, like in the last chapter. But now with color. So we will book locally again. Let's just jump right into it and look what I mean. Ah, so here we are back to our image, and what we will do now is we will go again to adjustment layers, and we will go up here to color balance. This is a really powerful adjustment layer. It allows you to work with the mid tones, the shadows and the highlights itself separately. So let's say I want to add more yellow to the highlights. In this case, I will drag the slider to the right and to the left story and add more yellow and also want to add more red. Let's see, And when we turn it on and off you see, it mostly affected the highlights, but sometimes also the mid tones. And when you don't like that, what do we do? Repress control? I to invert. We will pick up a brush again and paint white with, let's say, 55% opacity and painted only to the parts where we wanted, because even when it says highlights, it bleeds into other areas, often image. It's easy to look when be. Look at the channels here, for example, Directional. As you can see, the color red is not just in the sky. It also believes in into other parts. Often image, and that's what it does with adjustment. So when I add red tow highlights, as you can see, it also believes in other areas. Because Gray doesn't mean it's not selected. It means it's just less select. It's so we will painted in locally. And what we also want to do now is we had another color balance layer and be work with the dark's because what I like to do is I like to keep the shadows a bit cooler and s. You saw the highlights a bit warmer to create this nice color contrast, and with this image in general, another general, especially with this image, it works really well because you have this contrast already in the raw file. Okay, so let's add a lot of blue to the shadows, and maybe also some say n and it's too strong now because it also Dawkins. The image now cause blues a dark color. So control I to invert and we will painted on Lee where we want it. That's saying this part here also here and, uh, trees. And when we assume in between the huts and also in the hills over here and the trees and maybe a bit in the sky with less capacity. All right, turn it on and off. Big difference. And let's say we also want to work with the mid tones. As you can see, I like to create separated layers for the different tones because then I can mask in and out every single toned by itself. Let's say I make mid tones, highlights and shadows and one layer, and when I want to mask something, I'm ask out everything. But I don't want that. So I make it separately. In this case, Midtown's now and let's say the overall image is a bit to read, so let's add some scion and maybe some green, but I don't want it everywhere, because the Midtown's bleed in into the highlights and also into the shadows, cause they're mid tones. So let's invert the mask again used to brush tool, and we will only brush it. But we wanted, in this case, the end of alley. That was a bit to read. Okay, and then we group this control G. It's called it color balance. It's time going off. Big difference. Perfect. And since the colors have brightness well used to since. Like I said, yellow is a bright color and blues that are color there also add contrast. And if you don't want that, you can change the blending mode. I will talk about this in the next chapter a bit more, but just to show you quick when we have normal selected, it's normal. That means color and contrast is adjustment adjusted. But when you want to a just only color or only contrast, you pick color or luminosity in this case color. And there you see the difference. Now we only added blue, but no contrast when we go to normal. We also added contrast, so that's like good way to overcome contrast adjustments which you don't want want when he actually only insisted to change the color but mostly alike would blue. Thus with the contrast, So I keep it normal. Since we have a nondestructive workflow, we can always go back to our brightness adjustments, and we can add a little bit off brightness again by raising up the mid tones and painting it in, Let's say, here in the trees or so if it became too dark, that's the good thing about this. Yeah, nondestructive workflow. All right, so next step to book with color is the photo filter. You see, I like to use mostly the warming filter or the cooling filter. This case will pick the warming filter. Excuse me on you see, it warms the whole image. I don't want that. So what we will do? We will invert it. And now we will paint it on Lee to the sky because I like this one effect up here and maybe also here and maybe here. So where actually Light is already hitting it? So this is again another local adjustment to change color. It's really settled, but that's what makes the difference. And I couldn't do the same us. Let's save off ruling. Let's invert it and painted in certain parts in the shadows. Onliest Mitch. All right, so it's group Dad and it's called it Photo foods and one last way to change color, which I use. It's the hue saturation, and there you can pick the Yeovil saturation. We'll blow it or you can work with certain color channels. Let's say you only want to separate the reds, the only de saturate the reds and you and so on. Greens, blues and whatever. Let's pick yellows. Let's say that too saturated so we can reduce them or what? They're not enough saturated, so we can in Greece them increase them. In this case, I want to increase the saturation of a little bit, and I also want to work with the hue, so it means the color tone. So if we want, we can make the yellows a little bit cooler. So we shifted a bit more to blue. All. We want to make them a little bit warmer, so we're shifting a bit more to regret. Let's say we want to shift him to read. You see, you can change the image really quickly and destroy it, so we will only do it to really settle. I personally don't like greens. Well, it's a cool tones in yellow highlights, so I like to add a little bit of red, okay and where we can also pick the blues. Let's say we want to saturate them a bit more and yeah, that's it, actually. So that's another good way to change colors. And of course, we could also inverted and paint locally if you want, but in this case, we don't going off a little bit more saturated. But we didn't saturate like the whole image since I think green. That's really let's say greens look saturated really fast and also blues. So when you increase the overall saturation, everything will look like way to ah, separate it quickly. OK, but that's it with color and we actually done here now. So I summarize again. I like to use the color balance layers separately for mid tones, highlights and shadows. I like to add blue tones to the shadows and warm tones to the highlights and balance out the mid tones and also like to work with the photo filter separately for highlights and shadows. And the hue saturation slider is something to fix the overall saturation saturation and maybe at something to certain parts. Okay, so help you God guys learn something. You in this chapter and we will now jump to the last one where we'll show you how to make selections on layers and what different type off blend modes are also available to change the mood in your image. Okay, so let's see you there by 6. Chapter 5 Selections and Blend Modes: Welcome to the last chapter. Congrats if you made it so far. It's a lot of stuff to learn and yeah, called quite a complicated topic. But I hope you guys learn something. You already and got some tips for your own images. In this last chapter here, I will show you how we work selectively on the sky and the foreground separately. By using the selections in for shop selection to Andi. I will also show you how different blend modes affect the layer and which ones I like to use the most. Okay, so let's just jump right into it. So here's the image. We want to use that as an example. I took it in the Dolomites. It was a wonderful evening on this case. I want to enhance the mood in the sky of it. So I want to darken it. But I don't want to darken the whole image. So what? I will pick first this brightness contrast and we will darken the image and add some contrast again. But as you can see, I'm affecting the whole landscape. I don't want that. So when I inverted and used two techniques, we did before with a brush and painted only in the sky. It can happen that we overlap with the landscape. When you are like a really precise painter and drowned along the yech with ah heart brush, you might be able to do it, but it will take you way too long, so there's a easier way for sure, and I will show you how so. Let's delete this year impressed W So now we will. We have the quick selection tool and what this does. It's elects the sky or the foreground, whatever you want and makes a selection by using those marching ends here, you can see Oops here I will use the cross on the top, but I don't care. It's too small anyway, So when we know, add brightness, contrast layers, you see it already made the mask which we selected. And when we now lower the brightness, you see, it only effects the sky, not the foreground. Andi, when we assume in, we maybe see some mistakes like here, because the selections are not always perfect, but I'll show you a way to make it better. Well, let's say two ways, so we will go back to our selection. Here it is. And then we will click on Select Here on top and we will go to Select and Mask, and now we can refine it. So first of all, we were click The red overlay tops the best, in my opinion. And then we will, assuming a bit. It's already made a final selection. So now we will click on Smart Radius and pick like 10 pixels. This means, ah for the shovel search in this radius if it can, and hence the edges. And you see it does actually a pretty good shop. 12 picks is was the right amount and now we compress. Okay, so it means in the area of 12 pixels, it searches for refinements for your selection, and then it applies it automatically. And it works really well when you have hard edges like this. So now we go again. Click again on our brightness, contrast adjustment and we will lower the brightness. And now it looks much better on the itch. Perfect. So now we made this selection only to the sky, and let's say we want to add some contrast to make it pop again. But what's important, though, is that you don't talk that you don't lower the brightness off this guy too much because in disguise to dark compared to the foreground, it looks unnatural, so you want to balance it a bit. So what you can also do is you can group this adjustment by pressing control. G and Adam asked to the group by this icon here. And when you now paint on this mask with Black Yuri real the adjustment by not destroying the layer. That means in the paint black, Let's say, with 33% soft around the edges here to make the sky a bit more even I'm not up there. Well, let's say down here I removed a bit off it without touching my selection down there because when I don't have a group, still it the group. And when I paint on this mask with black, I get the same effect. But in destroying the selection, you concede Manet use more opacity. Well, let's say that paint bite you see you destroy it, and I don't want that. That's the reason why I like to do this on a group that's a pro tip. Okay, that's the way how I like to use elections. So when you have, like a clear whole horizon line, it makes it easy for you to edit the sky separately to the foreground. What I've also could have done this. Let's go to this mask and let's control click on it. Then you have to selection again. Let's use another brightness contrast layer. Let's hides the selection from before at the adjustment, and now I could again use brightness contrast if I want, but I can also use a blend mode I showed you in the last chapter with a blend motives, re picked color or ruminants. That means color only adjusts color and ruminants only contrast dominance. But I also have two or three others, which I like to use. In this case we can use Multiply, Multiply means it darkens the image, as you can see here, and the cool thing about changing a blend motors. You now still have the ability to work with the layer with the adjustment layer so you could actually through the dark it or you can add a bit of brightness back and also more contrast. And when you turn this on and off compared to this looks much better, in my opinion. Would you? Also can do is let's say you will use another layer or in this case, I can show you actually, one more layer type, which I didn't show you in the basics because it's actually useless, mostly at least for landscape photography, and that's a blank layer, but we can use it together with blend modes. In this case, let's say we used to blend mode. Multiply now it doesn't do anything not multiply. Sorry, overly overlays. A strong color, a strong contrast adjustment. So now when we pick a brush and black or white color, black means we darken. White means we're frightening. Let's say we want to brighten this year 55% opacity. And when we have overlay selected as a blend mode, we add contrast and we're brightening and, as you can see, its way to contrast him bright. So let's redo it by pressing control Z and let's add like, 11% capacity. And now it's more settled. Let's say only up here, and we can also do this year down in the grass when we want to enhance this light, which is shining a bit on the landscape. And when we paint black, you re actually darkening and at the same time adding contrast. We're not just simply talking, so overlay is a really powerful way. Toe paint in locally without having to use adjustment layers when you actually have the opportunity to use the blank layer. So those are my two favorite blend modes. It's overlay, and it's multiply. You can also use soft light if you want. It's also a contrast adjustment, but it's not a strong is overly. As you can see here, it's a bit softer memory. So many near you can maybe see it. That's overlay. That's soft light. All right, so let's sum it up. You saw how I made selective adjustments only to the sky or to the foreground, and at the same time, I showed you the creative way off using blend modes. So I like to use multiply overlay and soft light when I make local adjustments. So it's a really powerful way, and the good thing about overlays or let's say no, sorry. The good thing about blend modes are when you use a blend mode on a adjustment layer, then you can still use the adjustment layer itself. So you have two effects. At the same time, I can show you one more thing. Maybe so. Let's go to levels and its use. The blend mode, soft light. You see, it adds contrast to the whole image. I don't want this completely and not that strong. So we will lower the capacity to like 25% and now it looks much better. But let's say we want to add a bit more contrast to the docks. So what we can do now is we can only pick this slider here and increase the contrast in the docks separately. Well, it's a additional too soft light blend mode. Remember, he turned his on off. It's really contrast, you know, and what would What could we do? We can invert it by pressing control I to conceal everything again. And then we can paid with white to reel it in different parts. Let's say we want to really tear on the mountain to make it a bit more punchy, and also he and the valley. So we have more contrast, and also this mountain. It's always good to add tones to where you already have contrast That means when you see dogs in an image, emphasize it. If you see bright seven in an image, emphasize it this way. You create contrast in a natural way and really precise and locally. Okay, so that's it. Now, guys, I hope you learned some new steps as already mentioned. Uh, feel free to leave me a comment. We'll send me an email, whatever you want. I'm also curious, curious about your projects. So when you created something for yourself, show it to me. I want to see it. I want to critique it. I want to give you such suggestions Or maybe will just get a thumbs up. Doesn't matter. So don't hesitate. Send me whatever you have hope. Those techniques help you guys to improve your own images. And yeah, maybe it took something. Let's say a little bit of fear away from photo shop and that it is actually way more powerful than light room because you can work with different layers so locally. That's why I love for the shop. So, yeah, Like I said, I hope you learned something and lets you next time. So by