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Photoshop is an umbrella term for the editing of images. It usually involves the enhancement of an image for reparative, quality or artist effect. There are now quite a few Photoshop programs and many websites and apps have a few photo editing tools. People use them all the time and think they are experts, but they often produce very crude efforts. Assuming that you are using an intermediate to advanced photo-shopping program, here are a few ways you can become far better at using it.
Read the tutorials that come with the programs
When you buy your Photoshop program, you will probably find a bunch of help files that comes with it. Or, you will find documentation on how to use it. These will not give you much advice in the way of technique, but will let you know what each tool, icon and tab does. Even if this information does not teach you much, it does give you access to all the functions of the program, so that you may give them a go and have a little play with them to see what they do.
Watch some good YouTube Tutorials
Many of them are created by amateurs, but they still hold some very good information and techniques. People have a way of finding new and innovative ways of using tools, and if you are lucky, you will see some techniques on YouTube that you will not hear about or read about from the people who designed the program. If you can grit your teeth through the poor production values of the YouTube videos, you may be lucky enough to find some great information, tips and tricks.
Adjust the orientation first
The orientation of the picture is going to give you an idea of how big the image is going to be. As you turn it one way or the other, you will see that part of the image is lost. You must alter the orientation first before you do anything else. Once that is done then you can crop the image if it needs to be cropped. If you crop the image first, then you will lose some of it when you switch the orientation.
Adjust the brightness and contrast
This is going to give you your base colours for your image. Adjust the brightness and contrast so that the image is both bright and the more vague sections are clearer. You need to do this before you make any further changes, because if they do this last then your other settings and colours are going to change as a result. This may end up giving your image an unwanted colour tinge.
Now adjust the colour temperatures
You are going to see some sort of tool for adding and removing the colour filters. These can be used to make an image look warmer or colder. They can also be used to remove a colour tinge. For example, if you take some image indoors under certain lights then they look yellow. You can add other colours to remove the yellow tinge and make the image look a little better. Test out the different colours to see which one makes it look the best.
Saturate if dull and un-saturate if the colours look imperfect
If the colours of your image look a little bit dull and lifeless then you can saturate the colours a little bit more. This will make your image come to life a little. However, if your colours do not look very good (maybe there is a glare or tinge), you can lower the saturation and play the imperfections down.
Touch up imperfections with a high level of zoom
Any imperfections should be dealt with on a very high zoom setting. You need to be as close to the imperfection as possible. You should copy sections of the surrounding colours in order to cover up the imperfections. The further you are away from the imperfection (zoom wise) then the more obvious it is that you have altered the image.
Use the split screen to compare your touching up
This is going to show you the changes you have made, and you should use this to stop yourself from over adjusting. Some people just keep going and going until their touching up look like a complete shambles. Check what you have done with how it used to look, and try to appreciate the fact that your touch-up looks better than the original.
Zoom in and out frequently to get the feel for your efforts
Doing this frequently will help you to spot where you have made mistakes, and will help you to gain an overview of just how well you are doing.
Making things too perfect will cause it to look fake
People with perfect white teeth and matt colour skin look silly and fake. If you do too much to the image then you make it look fake. Do not forget that “real” is imperfect.