My New Years resolutions is to learn CS3, so I worked on this yesterday. Everything I did can be done in Photoshop Elements. I took this shot during the holidays. Let's talk about how to make it look a little better. Sophia was sitting next to a window and I used the flash on my camera with a diffuser. It came out a little dark. That is fine. We can work with dark. She picked her pose, I did ask her to raise her finger. :)
First thing to do is make a duplicate copy and change the blend mode to screen. Next because we have so much black in the background, we will take our paint brush on a new layer and paint away the ugly elements in the background with black. I also cropped to an 8x10 ratio. Remembering that we want her eyes in the upper third of the image. Makes a huge difference, doesn't it?
Now our image is a little to bright. I made a duplicate layer again and changed the blend mode to soft light. I do this on almost all of my images. It gets rid of the camera fuzzies. (play with your opacity)
*A major thing for me is to lower the saturation when working with a portrait.* I find it gives me the realistic feel I am looking for. I used a layer mask to bring her eyes back in from the screen layer. I added a Scrap paper as a background on a very low opacity. I used a layer mask to get just the parts I was looking for. Add some text and we are done.
Now we have something nice enough to put in a frame. Take a look at your images. Don't be afraid to get in there and play around. Always make a duplicate to start with so your original is untouched. If you don't like what you have done, throw all your experiments in the trash and start over. Make your own kreations!
Want a free layer mask as an add on to Photoshop Elements? :~)
Check out Grant's Tools.
Grant has a great Challenge that he post every Thursday. So if you go to his site, check that out also. It is open to anyone and it's a great way to get in there and learn your software. The challenge is for you to change the image, not compete with the other images.
I hope you learned something from my rantings today?
Wishing you all the best in the coming New Year!