Learning layers and masks

Learning layers and masks - student project

A few years ago, we had a stray mommy cat visiting with her adorable new kittens.  I've always thought that she must have delivered her kittens in that little hideaway at the top right corner.  As we were both curious about each other, I was allowed a certain "very still and quiet" distance, but no more.

This photo needed a bit of help:

Learning layers and masks - image 1 - student project

It's difficult to know yet what each particular photo needs.  I am looking forward to the day when I know more easily -- there are so many different choices! :D  This was a very helpful class!

Below, I duplicated the photo and used the multiply blending mode.  I lightened the photo in curves, and then hid the lightness with a black mask; I then brushed it back in on the black fur (because I thought it brought back some depth and texture to kitty).  I added a yellow boost from the drop down menu of a hue/saturation adjustment layer; I thought it added a little warmth.  Finally, I added some brightness with a brightness/contrast adjustment layer -- because I thought maybe it was a little too dark.  I think I may tend to keep my photos too dark.  I reduced the opacity a little bit on those last too adjustments.

I do think kitty's white fur is a little too bright...or white.  I was wondering if there was a way to turn down just the highlights in the white fur...without having to brush it in.

Learning layers and masks - image 2 - student project

In the next photo, I played with the mosaic tiles filter.  I duplicated the layer and used Multiply -- and reduced multiply to about 75%.  Here, I also upped the brightness, but reduced the opacity to about 50%.  Finally, I cropped this one, so that kitty isn't so much in the center.

I think it kind of looks like a puzzle.  It would be quite a difficult puzzle to have to put together, though! :P

Learning layers and masks - image 3 - student project