Exploring Curves in Photoshop - Part 2 | Marcin Mikus | Skillshare

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Exploring Curves in Photoshop - Part 2

teacher avatar Marcin Mikus, Retoucher and Photoshop Instructor

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Curves Skillshare Intro Part 2


    • 2.

      Understanding RGB Colors


    • 3.

      Basic Color Correction


    • 4.

      Matching Colors Using Curves


    • 5.

      Fixing Colors of the Image


    • 6.

      Working With Masks


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About This Class

Curves are most powerful adjustment layer in Photoshop that allows Your to control color, highlights, shadows, or adjusting the Brightness and Contrasts.

In this lesson I am going to teach You about color Lights – speaking specifically about Primary colors like Red, Green, and blue and secondary Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow. You will know how does the RGB color wheel works and what You achieve by working with specific color. So when You start working with color – You will have confidence of knowing – what You're doing. Even with such a things as fixing specific tones of the image.

From The practical things You will learn everything You need to do basic editing. You will know color theory. You will know which color will be right to choose for You own images. How to connect them, how to set the colors for highlights, shadows and midtones. Also – how to make You images outstanding by showing what's the best on them. At the end of the section, I will introduce You to Masks and working with them to control Your adjustments!

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Marcin Mikus

Retoucher and Photoshop Instructor


I'm open minded and creative Photoshop Instructor and interationaly published Professional Retoucher.  The area I'm interested in is photo retouching and photomanipulation. I believe that massive layers of imagination allows me to create interesting, nontrivial ideas.

I've been teaching Photoshop for the last seven years. I spend almost every day with photoshop and in time I was able to gain more and more knowledge about right ways of teaching Photoshop. After few years of teaching on youtube I felt it's the right time to come out with Premium Courses, where I can share some amazing ideas and make Photoshop fun! 

If you are looking for a place where you can learn photoshop retouching in the right way, this is the best place to be!

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1. Curves Skillshare Intro Part 2: Hi, my name is marching, and I want to welcome you to another class on most powerful adjustment layer in photo shop . Off course, I'm talking about curves. They give you amazing control on and just in shadows highlights contrast, brightness and color in photo shop. And what's more, if you learn curves in the right way, you will be able to proceed and retouch image from start to finish. In this class, we're going to talk about RGB colors in curve, so we're going to talk about color lights about primary colors like red, green and blue and secondary sand, magenta and yellow. You'll know how does the RGB color will works and what he achieved by working with specific color. So when you start working with color, you will have confidence off knowing what you're doing. Even with such a things as fixing specific tons off the image from the practical. Think you'll learn everything you need to do basic editing. You'll now color theory. You will know which color will be right to choose for your own images, how to connect them, how to set the colors for highlights, shadows and mittens. Also, how to make her image outstanding by showing what's the best on them. At the end of this section, I will introduce you to masks and working with them to control your adjustments. If you feel you're passionate about for the shop about retouching about processing the images, you cannot means this class. 2. Understanding RGB Colors: welcome in another section about colors, and we're going to start with some theory. No one likes theory, but this is super important for your future work. Knowing how RGB colors works, how RGB mode works in that also, what's what is color produced by light? Because this is what RGB mode is. This'll is combination off red, green and blue light. This is very important. The red, green and blue light, not colors against the blood background toe make colors visible on TV screens or, in this case, as we work on computer monitors. So we have three primary colors, and I already mentioned them. This is red, green and blue, and also we have secondary colors for each off this color. So in this case for red, we will have science for green. We will have magenta, and for blue, we will have yellow color. What's important about color produced by line is that the combination off primary secondary color at full intensively over here budget. It would meet on the middle produce wide light. I know that might sound a bit complicated, but thesis just colors, so you can easily see how the RGB mold works over here Other think that you will not ease but maybe on one example I'm going toe Move this to my image So it will be way easier for us to work. I'm just going to place these color will rgb color wheel over here and I'm going to start to work with this example. Let's open our curves and of course I'm going toe. It's big enough. So you're going to see everything I'm going to start. We've read tunnel. So look at the color. Will we have primary color which is red and even our curve saying that to us and secondary color, which is Cyan. So if we going toe, pull up our curve wherever up, we're going to see our primary red color. So in this case, if I'm going to move up the Reds on the highlights, as you can see under is making the highlights read. If I'm going to pull this up on the shadows, I'm going toe increase the reds on the shadows and opposite on this color will to read when I'm going down, um applying Sion. So I believe it's super simple and the same we can apply Sion for the highlights and also Sam for the shadow. So this is very basic work off our cars in curves. How does it work? And off course, you can manipulate this time curve between these two colors between your primary and secondary color. By creating your point on the curve. Let's go into some other colors, and then we will move to some work, and now we have red. So as you can see, our primary color is color. I'm sort, of course green. Our primaries green opposite will be magenta and easily to notice. As he can see, you can just move up. So the same as before up. We had lights down. We had shadows. Now we have up primary color down. We have secondary color and the same about blue, primary, blue, second or red. I know there is a lot of talking, but one more thing toe. Understand this color wheel? You see, when we combine our primary colors like red and green, we goingto achieve yellow and let's have a look. How does it work? And so as you can see the color, really, it's actually very helpful toe. Understand how the colors combine work, which results is going to give you. I wasn't trying, so you can trust my word. I might be liars on if it's not going to work. But let's try. I'm fully number the curve for the color green, and now I'm going to that Rhett and pulling this up. And when we got, we didn't get the green and red. But we achieve the color yellow so you cannot first, maybe sometimes use the color wheel. That going to help you understand is still and the same. We can try with green and blue. And, of course, we would achieve science. So that's the basics about colors in RGB, and that's our basic how the colors with our curves works because we are working in RGB moat. 3. Basic Color Correction: If we know theory, let's do some basic cholera advancements. Maybe improve some contrast and choose the simple image with very basic cholera See, including blue, including green color. So what we could do with curves toe improve this simple image Because for me, this image looks on beat washed out a beetle. So for sure, there is some things we could do. I'm just going to open the curves and I'm not going to start with contrasts because conferences something I like to work at their very And so what I would start with, I would go to Channel Blue. Why? I'm going to the Channel Blue Because when I look at the grass Damn, it's very simple to work with the grass, um, pulling color yellow because grass, especially this one contains a lot of your Okaroh. We have ground, so that would be a really nice improvement. And I would start from this point going a little bit down with that blue curve unless you can see this very simple step it actually pulling up some life, toe this front side off the image and for the sky I would improve some off the blue so very very simple curve. And this image actually has much better colors. Let's go in tow, ready this time. And once again, this will be a bit more complicated. The simplest think would be toe pull up some of the reds that way and bring up some sign from the sky. And that will work just good because pulling up the yellows over here, we actually call arise the trees which didn't look well. So I would go with very simple carve over him for the red color. You can see the sky is still staying My simple Ooh, I can't even give more Scient wheat and also our front has truly and beautiful colors. I wouldn't work much with green over here because that would be much more complicated things. The green summer somewhere here, just for them, for the lines, actually, um, with Dean. So I would I would go somewhere here. As you can see it more like me tones and I would go like this. But as you can see, that's quite risky and because it's very easily us, we have the same tones on the ground, so I would stay, maybe just give a few points to the green and at the end, as a last step, as I mentioned, would you be working with Contrasts? I'm going to do this Mannelly going down over here and clean this up. And with this very few and basic address mints have a look. How much we did. It was a bit washed out. As you can see, the colors right now are Reacher, the image house. More contrast, and it's more dynamic. So look what you have on on the image. Look which information we have so you can easily correct your image with the colors that you have affect the rights. Of course, always. You have to be very careful to not destroy something, but do small steps and everything for your work that will be perfect. And then we will be moving toe something, maybe more complicated. Toe different images. 4. Matching Colors Using Curves: in color. Correction. Very important for you to understand how the complementary colors works. It's a bit different. Them system then in RGB, and I recommend you to find some information online about these. There is plenty information about color theory, and I just want to show you days a color will, As you know in them. Photoshopped in Actually in any design in photography colors works in the opposite way, and you can see this in music videos. You can see this in a postures in movies everywhere, how the colors are connected with each other. If you have green lights, more likely you're going to have red lights as well. Why? Because these two colors works really great with each other, and they stay on opposite ways. As you can see on this color real, the green color stays in opposition to the red color. This same very often, You going to not is the blue color in the opposition toe very soft orangey color, and that's how it is on these color will. So that's how complementary color works, and every time you look at the image, I would recommend you toe. Of course, it doesn't mean that complemented complementary colors, always going to look great with each other because that's that's a different story. Complementary colors in most of the cases, always in most of the cases, we look great. Not all of the cases, sometimes the campuses and just not going toe work together, though every time I see, I'm trying to remember about complementary colors when I look at the image and I tried to imagine which colors will be looking a good with each other. And when I look at this image, I can see some of the blue Thomas over here, even if I see some of the red and blue tones and on the highlights. Of course I have some off them yellow colors, which I could maybe even improve. And maybe I will try some cold ones. But as you can see, I'm trying to think about the color composition, how it's going to look how I can make this a more dynamic, even though I'm not going toe change anything, confiscate image except the colors. So let's start with this image at the beginning. As you remember, I took down some of the highlights because it does didn't work for me, so I'm just going that way. That's very similar to what was before. And maybe I give it an even brightened up this'll area over here a little bit and what I'm going to do the same as before. I'm going to change blending month inte luminosity. So as you can see, I recover saturation and this image actually look much better right now, even in most of the cases when you're going to take down. The contrast is not going to look good. In this case it does. And now let's create this one. I'm going toe call contrasts because we work with contrasts, maybe or more with highlights and shadows. And then I'm going to open another carefully EP, and I'm going to work with colors and I'm going toe start with the blue colors and what I'm going to do here. I'm just going to see how the blue works over here on the world, and for now it's quite difficult to say. But I'm going to improve this over here, and I'm going to take this down for the highlight, just us very like remembering where color stands to each other as you can see for the bluest, soft, orangey but yellows with blue This case all we will look good and you can see it. This image with the yellow light has much more character. I rather trying to be a very soft with this. So I'm not going like really high, because sometimes it might give us result that we not necessarily want. I'm just going to improve this stronger just for the purpose of this course to make sure that you see the differences I would personally, I would go on bits often with this. And also I will go with color red and because I can see a some other a red color are on the areas more like meetings, some off them with the highlight, and the red will be actually working. Good. If I will improve this over here and go with Sam over here, maybe just a very small difference, as you can see, just like that. And and now, actually, the colors will look so much better because we have this orangey color on the highlights. And also we have this called color in the shadow areas. Even we couldn't get this that much as we wish to. So in this two steps, I did this in two steps. Let's put this to the group to put to the group. I'm just selecting these two layers by present control or command or shift on always and then control or command and G. So I created the group, and this is before and after, and this image looks so much the friend this he me just has so much more character. And remember, you don't have to stop just on these two curves, but you can, of course, create as many curves as you want. Personally, I don't like toe complicate my work. If I do some more complicated three touch ice plead, I plead, I create more on curve layers, but we will get to that point right now. Let's learn how to do call how to do color corrections in the really correct way 5. Fixing Colors of the Image: here we have this really beautiful image with this beautiful model. Her her are just perfect. And the color composition on this image is actually perfect. One thing is the tones could be maybe, um, bead on better. I feel I could bring up a bit more from the her maybe work a little bit on the grass, maybe sometimes on the face, because I think some more job could be done and we're going to use on Lee curves for it. We're not going to work with contrasts, but I just want to be focused on a fix in the tones off their image. So let's open the curve layer. And the first thing that my I catched actually was her. So I'm going to zoom these in. I already did, and I want to make them even more colorful. I want to bring more reds to them, but we will be mix in red with yellow color because red will give us a natural result. So I'm going to start with Channel Blue, and also I'm going to choose this hand to use my eyedropper teachers the color on as you can see when I'm looking for the her. Actually, the blue color exists just on them channels. Actually, it's picking only the shadow area off the goose. So it is going toe. Choose the random spot over here. It's quarter, maybe a bit less than that, and I'm going to go down with it. But I'm going to go down just a few points, maybe, and rest off it. Because what's important for me, as you can see, when it resumed this in and we go down, Yeah, actually make this image yellow and some of you could like it. I don't I think it's better to preserve the original colors. So what I'm going to do here, I'm getting back with the orginal colors. So over here I'm just getting some yellow colors, and I'm keeping as it's supposed to be, are on the grass off course. I affected the grass slightly, but it was impossible to avoid this. And now, after the Blue Channel, I'm going into Red Channel because naturally we have to work with it. Course the bag. Let's zoom in a bit more. Andi, what is going to happen? I'm going to choose this hand once again, and this time you can see that the A red light actually exists somewhere in the middle. So I'm just going to catch this on the maintenance and I'm going to pull this up. Of course not that man. Just you. Just so but slightly less, maybe even less than this. And then I don't really want toe affect all of the meetings. I want to preserve the shadows, which mostly will be probably the grass. So I'm going down here and also highlights, because what's important, I don't want to make the face look red. And this actually worked. When you look at this, what we did here, I wear her are much more colorful. They have more off these red color, but also we preserve other things. We didn't affect them dark, much another step, what I would do. And I'm not sure if I mentioned you that, but this face has already some some of the reds parts, and I feel we could maybe even out some spots over here, some going toe open, another for adjustment layer. Andi, The best way for it, of course, will be truths in the Red Channel and lets her look at the face once again with them. I drop her and I think and see the right areas. Wherever I'm going to find it, they exist just on the highlighted area. So I'm just going toe set up over here and I'm going few points down. Let's have a look. We call them in the face, but we don't want toe pull down the red color from the hair. So it will be very easy because as you remember, the for exist summer on this area. So I'm going toe set the point somewhere in the meet tons and just get it back. So okay, as you can see, the red spots from the face or fixed and her two stays as strong as they were before and the last thing I don't really want manipulate with grass. This grass has a lot off life, but what I see the flowers are beat to yellowish for me and the wide areas off them. Of course. And I want this color Toby really wide because it's not matching toe our model to do so. I'm just going to take down some of the yellow color and once again, I'm going toe open another perv adjustment layer and I'm going to choose blue color. So as you can see, I'm working with really a lot off adjustment layers because it just easy to work this way In this case where we fix the points to spread this all. I'm just going to choose this ha once again every time. As you can see, it thinks is Justin highlights and what I'm going to do, I'm just going toe, bring this up. And I was you were events and the dents somewhere here in this area. Off course we are taking down. So that was simple. Let's see, on this flower we brought up some of the white color and that would be our composition. I'm just going toe. Put this onto the group off course. You could rename your your layers because I have just curves one curves to curse tree off course. You can rename this and I would recommend you done because if you're going to do more complicated things, it might get a big Bessie so messy. So you don't want tohave on just curves. But here I would just call this her 2nd 1 waas face and here flowers To put this to the group I'm choosing 1st 1 shaved and the last one and then just control or command and G and we have the group. So this is the image before and after our her has more color. The flowers are whiter and the face has less off these red spots. As you can see, curves are ready, powerful if you want to fix even details. So this is just great. And that's just beginning. We've working with curves because in another lessons, you will know much more about creative work with curves. 6. Working With Masks: in this section, we were working with colors with red, green and blue off course, with curves with red curve green and blue curve. And at the end of that section, it's very important for me to talk about masks that will be sort of introduction to more advanced thing. You see, if you look at this image, we have some very simple and basic colors. That was the reason why. Interest this image and let's say you want to improve just one off them. For example, you want to improve the red houses over here or green one, or we want to improve the lines on each or contrast somewhere. The answer with such an issue will be masks. I'm not sure if you're ready. Know something about masks? If you do, If you are experienced with mask, just you can move on to the next section and for all others. One. Let's have some sort of introduction to the masks you see when you create your curve or another adjustment layer, you have these evil mask over him, and right now it has wide color white color express what is visible on this image. So if I'm going toe. Pull the curve up it. Everything will be visible on this image. They made just in total become brighter the same if I'm goingto take it down. Right? So keep this, are applying this. And if I'm going to invert this layer mask in the color black, it will become invisible because, as I said, the white color represent visibility. Black color represent invisibility. If I can say like this. So let's say like this and then press control or command and I and we inverted this layer mask. It doesn't mean something changed with your curve. Nothing changed. It's still here, but we covered our layer mask with color black. If this color will be more gray, it will be have visible. So it's like a range from white to black. Wide, 100% visible, 50% gray would be 50% visible and black is invisible. It won't be so easy randomly now to put a great color, and I don't want to pay. But how does it work? You can press, are corruption and hit on this layer, and you will see black. If you invert this, it will become while. So that's the visibility off our lamb as my can press are corruption to pull it back and we see our colors once again. So how we could work if we want these red houses Toby, more red. Let me arrest Are this curve and I'm going to choose red color of the curve. What I would do Just pull this curve up just like that slightly to bring the red Corrine off course. I don't want this everywhere. As I mentioned, I want this on Lee on these houses or maybe just on this house right now. So I would, in avert this layer mask by pressing control or command and I and then I'm going to zoom this in. And as you remember, how to make the think visible is toe paint over with color wise to bring this color white over here back so I would choose a brush and of course, everything. 100 flow and capacity brush Better keep it quiet soft to keep the soft edges and look what is happening. I'm just painting with color white. But the truth is, I'm not painting on the image with color wide, but I'm bringing the white color on the mask. So that is all off all the points off our layer mask. So let me paint is quickly sorry if I date enemy stakes, but let's have a look. And that would be our result, as you can see before and after so I could do the same with them or their house quickly toe make this equal. So I believe with this legal houses were super is example to show you how the mask works. And I believe it's quite obvious for you that you can do everything he's in. Using my sexually can bring any color. You can work with another color, etcetera. Let me create new a layer mask right now. So I'm not like a mask, of course. New curve layer with player months because we have them. And now I'm going to take her off this yellow house, Um, sort of greenhouse. I don't know. Why do so many mistakes and okay, let's on this in, and this time I'm not going to invert this straight away, but I'm going to paint with black color over here, so you will see something different. So now, as you can see, I'm going back to the original color. And if you haven't answers in your head right now, everything will be resolved very soon. So now I brought back the original color and everything on the images. Quite right. And what can I do right now? I can invert this once again. So white color off the layer mask become black and black color that is on layer mask become wide control or command and I and as you can see, I resolved what I wanted toe resolve. So right now let's jump income Some other example where we have when we don't have such an easy selection. And straight away I'm going toe jumped, occurs and before it was very difficult for us without working, unmasked to do something with this green color over here that would be super easy with mask . I'm just going toe pulled yourself no matter what, because I don't want to be forecast on details right now. But explain you working with masks. And I would invert this of course, control or command and I and painting with white color around over digress. Of course. Be careful at them flowers because you don't want I thank them. So So you have to pain all around. Be really careful with the flowers and all of the details that you actually don't want toe effect with this image, it's not so difficult. We would have some more troubles, probably with hair, because over here, as you can see, it's not men off them. And it would be a long and detailed work to work with the hair. So I would stay with the previous method with her trying toe work the best. How how it actually works for me. Let's have a look what I would do similar as before. I would just try the dropper somewhere here on the middle as we as we already talked before and go up with this just 34 b and actually affected maybe face. So what I would do in this case, I wouldn't try toe pained over the hair like mask everything and paint over the her. I wouldn't try to do this. What? I would try their door. I'm going to do step back out rather truth the black color and tryingto mask the reds I brought on the face. That would be much easier for me, don't you think? Because here I would have really detailed work with fair. So for me, that would be easier just to take down the Reds from what I brought. So as you can see, being aware off the mask of existing off the mask is super important. And remember, every time when you working with curves. And of course, now we're going to jump into more advanced section and you're going to know much more advanced selection and more advanced, more creative use off masks, working with curves, that going to give you really amazing resulted going toe speed up your work that going to make your work, give your work much more control on each image you're going to work with.