It’s time for another fix-it-Friday, hosted by I Heart Faces, and I will be (attempting to) improve the given photo using Adobe Photoshop and giving a very basic, easy tutorial to follow along with.
My first thought on this photo was ‘I dislike that tilt.’ However, the tilt is so severe that rotating the picture wouldn’t really work. So I’m going to only rotate it about 10 degrees, even though Photoshop told met that to correct the tilt, I would need to rotate about 42 degrees!
So there it is, tilted 10 degrees. I’m going to go with an 8x12 crop for this shot, and try to put Mom’s eye in the upper right intersection in the rule of thirds, while avoiding having to stretch too much of the canvas.
So you can see above, I am going to lose some of the sky, and I’m going to need to add some foreground, but Mom’s eye is hitting that intersection in the ROT’s perfectly, which is what I wanted.
So now I need to fill in some of that canvas. For the top portion, I used my rectangle tool and selected a square piece of the sky. Then CNTRL T, and free transformed it. The bottom portion is tougher. The first thing I did was select the pink canvas with my magic wand, and did a solid color fill layer by going to Layer>New Fill Layer> Solid Color and eye dropper clicked on nearby grass for a close by color.
Next, I’m going to use my patch tool to get an approximation of what should be in that area (because the patch tool certainly won’t make this seamless).
And here it is after a few patches.
Not perfect, so I’m going to go in and use my clone tool and patch tool at 100% zoom and fix it up. Certainly, this is more work than I’m used to… Always better to get it right SOOC. But some people like tilts, and this works for them. Just not for me! Anyway. Here it is after a 5min cloning/patching job. I don’t claim to be an expert at this stuff, though!
So, on to the editing. The skin is cool, so gotta warm it up via my own action, which uses curves on both red and yellow channels.
They are underexposed, so I made them brighter and popped the colors a bit, using my own actions again. This one is called popper.
Mostly, my action just brightens and pops the color a bit. Nothing drastic. I feel like I want it pushed a bit more, so I duplicated popper.
Set the opacity down about 65% for that second popper, and masked back his shirt, as it had turned purple with the color pop. Its looking bright and cheery to me now!
The blown sky in the background is taking up an entire quadrant of my scene. I’d prefer it to have a little color. I duped my flattened background layer, and chose my gradient tool. This tool is excellent for getting color into a sky, in a non-photoshopped looking way. I start by duping my background layer with CNTRL J. Then I chose the gradient tool, and now need to choose the color that I want my sky to be.
I want a blue sky. So I went up to the top tool box and clicked on the gradient map.
After you click on that, you will come up with this dialog:
Double click on the the little triangle/box I indicated in the picture above. Choose a nice blue that you like. Your picture will then look like it is shown above, with your picture gone and replaced by a blue and white gradient.
To get your foreground back with your subjects, click OK. Then on your gradient layer, drop down from your blending modes and choose “multiply”. Also, drop your opacity down to about 10-14%, or to taste. Now you have a hint of a blue sky there!
It looks a little washed out to me, so I did a levels layer and brightened the mid-tones and brought in the shadows and highlights.
Finally, I used my burn tool, selected mid-tones and did a quick burn at 4%. And here is my before and after!
As always, let me know if you have any questions, leave me a comment, I’d be happy to answer them.