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Game art in Photoshop – Making buildings Photoshop Tutorial

1.

Finding references and textures

 

The first thing I do is start collecting as many photos of buildings and city landscapes as possible. I look for textures and references, to get a sense of how a building was constructed and how I can recreate it with Photoshop. For this example I went through my archive of photos taken in New York, Los Angeles, Stockholm and Copenhagen among other cities.

 

 

2.

Preparing collected assets

 

When I find a texture that works for me, I begin skewing it and alter its perspective into what it would look like if the building was seen from its front. First then, you have something that is usefull to you. When thats done, I make sure that the image is square.

 

 

3.

Setting the perspective

 

After I have gotten my building’s texture where I want it, I immediately add a square on a layer on top of it, that will serve as roof. I leave it flat and vector looking for now. Then I tweak the buildings front, using the skewing tools, so that the perspective is almost straight from above but with the camera slightly tilted backwards.

 

4.

Adding details

When I have a base that I am happy with I move on and start adding details. For this building I felt like adding a little obelisk to add some interest to the building. I imagined what the vanishing points would be and drew a rectangular vector shape. I then grouped a stone texture I found on google to the vector shape. I also shaded and highlighted it slightly to add some depth.

Further I also added a sidewalk pretty much the same way I added the obelisk. I kept the sidewalks edges straight so that this building could be lined up with other buildings in my city.

 

 

5.

Define distance with shadows

 

To make it feel like the building stands out from its background I add a drop shadow in front of the building. A good thing to know about shadows, is that it hints on how tall the casting object is and what it looks like seen from the side or front.

Also, to make the building sit a little better, if you feel like it is floating, is to faintly paint under the pavement with dark brush.

 

6.

Next Step

Start drawing a couple more buildings. My library consists of 5 buildings. The more building you can construct and have in your library, the better it is. You city will feel less repetitive.

After you have your buildings, start adding details to the streets, like street lines, streetlights, stoplights, parks that divide the lanes etc.

To the right is was my final result looks like. It took me about 40 hours to build this entire city.

 

Questions?

My e-mail is christian@another-me.com. If you have questions or wanna discuss the matter Ill try to get some time over and be available for answers. Good luck and have fun!

Christian

Read the entire article including process and planning 

About the author

Christian Johansson is a New York based graphic

designer originally from Sweden. With a background and training at Hyper Island, School of New Media and a full time design position at Big Spaceship, New York, he has now been a professional graphic designer and animator for about 4 years.

 

During his time with Big Spaceship he has developed several online games for diverse clients, among others, Paramount and Sony Pictures.

Colin’s 10 Principles for Better Type Design

One of the biggest things I have seen destroy a nice design is bad use of typography. A block of text should be inviting to read and not look like a chore. I’m going to provide 10 principles and tips to help you avoid a lot of common typography mistakes. Remember these aren’t set in stone, they are suggestions, but as they say, “You first have to know the rules before you can break them”

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Colin’s 10 Principles for Better Type Design

Colin’s 10 Principles for Better Type Design

One of the biggest things I have seen destroy a nice design is bad use of typography.

A block of text should be inviting to read and not look like a chore. I’m going to provide a few principles and tips to help you avoid a lot of common typography mistakes. This isn’t a comprehensive article on the art of typography, it’s more of a “quick tips for better type design” kind of thing. I don’t like to use the word “rules”, because it makes people think they will go to jail for breaking them. I prefer the term principles, because they are a guide to help, not hinder you from great looking design. Remember these aren’t set in stone, they are suggestions, but as they say, “You first have to know the rules before you can break them”

1. Too many type faces 

One of the biggest mistakes that people make, is to use too many typefaces and styles. Try to limit any piece to 2 or 3 different type faces and styles. This means that the body should all be one font and size. Choose one header and stick to it, maybe a subhead as well. Don’t be afraid to make the fonts very different from each other. Using 2 very similar fonts can look like you made a mistake and accidently chose the wrong font.

Consider keeping color, spacing etc, consistent or it looks like drunk flies walking all over the page.

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2. Spacing

Be careful not to crowd the typography. If you are having problems fitting something in, resist the urge to squish it together. Select a condensed font, or just shrink everything down and allow some breathing space. This applies to the edge of the page too, allow some white space around the text.

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3. Alignment

Please don’t just throw everything center aligned (unless that’s a deliberate design decision). Think about using a grid. Have everything on the page in relation to something else. Use guides and clean things up. Don’t throw things in the corners of a page either, that looks like you couldn’t decide where to put anything. 3

 

 

4. Decorative faces aren’t always beautiful

You’ve found a nice decorative font, wonderful! Now, that doesn’t mean that it will reinforce your message, and at all costs, resist the urge to set paragraph text in that face. If it’s decorative, chances are, it has a history or a specific use, such as a headline or title. Often times, simple is better, that’s why fonts like Helvetica are so popular.

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5. Size matters

Really think about the size of the text. Titles are nice bold and large, but if you set your paragraph too large, it tends to feel cheap. Think about it. You go to a nice restaurant and the menus are often written in smaller print, it makes it feel classy. (Make sure it’s not so small it’s hard to read). If you are using heading and paragraph text, don’t be afraid to make the headings much larger than the body.

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6. Readability

Whatever you do, make sure that people can read your message. Dark text on a dark color, not a good idea. Even worse, tying to apply small type over a high contrast photo. Remember less is more, this has never been truer than behind text that is supposed to communicate a message.

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7. Color

What color is best for type? Generally, believe it or not, black or white is often best. Why would I say that? Because the grayscale tones are pushed to very strong values. If you use color, consider muting the saturation a bit. Brightly colored type can be difficult to read. Beware of vibrating colors such as a red directly on a green. Rainbow colored gradients are probably not your best choice.

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8. Grouping

Group related pieces of information together. This will clean things up a lot. Examples: Look at a movie poster, all the credits are grouped into an attractive block. This block can now be treated as a single design element. For examples of bad grouping, open the yellow pages.

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9. Leading

This is the spacing between lines of text. It’s much classier to open up the spacing. It’s more inviting to read when there is resting space for the eyes in between lines. As a rule of thumb, try to use at least 2 points higher than the type size. For example: 10pt type should have a 12pt leading for maximum readability.

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10.Kerning 

Kerning is the individual spacing between characters. Often when using Photoshop, with a cap followed by a lower case, the spacing is too wide. It should be even between characters. I like to do it this way, look at the first 3 characters and adjust the balance if needed. Now move onto character 2-4 and adjust #4 if you need to. Work your way through 3 characters at a time. After a while, you will instinctively see when the kerning is messed up. Don’t EVER change the aspect ratio of a character, don’t stretch or squish it. (I don’t know who put controls into software that allow you to do this, very, very bad) – choose a different font if you don’t like the shape.

PS Tip: To change the Kerning, place the text “I-beam” between 2 characters. Hold down the Alt/Option key and tap the left or right arrow keys to nudge the kerning. (The type has to be applied first)

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Try and apply these tips as you design anything with type. In fact, well-designed type should be able to stand on it’s own and look nice without any images. At best, you want your type to reinforce your design and pull people in. It should be inviting and easy to read. I know I titled this article “Colin’s Principles” they are really age old principles and most of them are common sense when you think about it.

How to Fly a DJI Phantom quadcopter drone, getting started

On-location video that shows how to shoot video and photos of paddle boarders with the DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ quadcopter. It covers preflight, calibration, flying and shooting. Learn how to fly to shoot the best drone photos and aerial video

INGREDIENTS

Difficulty 5/10
djiphantomvision
by Colin Smith

How to Fly a DJI Phantom quadcopter drone, getting started

Flying a DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ Quadcopter drone

On-location video that shows how to shoot video and photos of paddle boarders with the DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ quadcopter. It covers preflight, calibration, flying and shooting.

See how to warm up the quadcopter and do a safety check.  We then calibrate the copter to ensure satellite lock. This step is a good me sure to take whenever flying in a new location. Its important to have a good satellite lock to mark your starting position.

We then fly over the ocean to capture some video and photographs of paddle boarders early in the morning. In my experience, surfers and paddle boarders, generally agree to being filmed, just don’t get too close to them and don’t bother them. Get in, get your shot and then get out of their way. Whenever possible, get their permission first and have them sign a model release. They will generally agree to filming, especially if you offers to share the footage with them afterwards.

See some tips on flying to get smooth video and photos.

Check out the full training course: DJI Phantom Quadcopter drones; Aerial photography and video handbook

New Features in Photoshop CC 2014.2 (October release)

This tutorial touches on the best new features in the October 2014 release of Photoshop CC Learn about Libraries, Guide layers, scripted patterns and much more. Watch the video of Colin’s 5 favorite new features that are mainly for designers. Adobe has made large strides to help designers recently. Colin works closely with Adobe and will teach you the best practices for using the new features as they are intended to be used.

INGREDIENTS

Difficulty 4/10
tnpscc
by Colin Smith

New Features in Photoshop CC 2014.2 (October release)

This tutorial touches on the best new features in the October 2014 release of Photoshop CC Learn about Libraries, Guide layers, scripted patterns and much more. Watch the video of Colin’s 5 favorite new features of Photoshop.

Don’t forget to visit often as we are adding new tutorials every week as well as showing you how to use freshly released new features in photoshop. Because Colin works closely with Adobe, we can show you the best way to use these features, as well as what they are intended to do.

Photoshop CC 2014, best new features for photographers

This tutorial touches on the best new features in the 2014 release of Photoshop CC and how to use them. This includes using LUTs, Content aware fill improvements, focus mask, The new blurs “spin and direction” and more. Stay up to date with the Adobe new features here at PhotoshopCAFE. We publish tutorials within minutes of Adobe announcements and have in-depth course available.

tnphantom
by Colin Smith

Photoshop CC 2014, best new features for photographers

This tutorial touches on the best new features in the 2014 release of Photoshop CC and how to use them. This includes using LUTs, Contaent aware fill improvements, focus mask, The new blurs “spin and direction” and more. Watch the video and get up to speed quickly. Don’t forget to check out our CC super guide  for up to the minute news and feature tutorials.

To download a free LUT and learn more about the 2014 release of Photoshop CC, go to http://photoshopcafe.com/cc

 

 

Photoshop for Lightroom users

Learn how to create reusable layered templates, discover non-destructive layers and masks. Make time lapse sequences, do sky replacements and other compositing tricks. Find out the power of using pressure sensitive brushes and more in Colin’s whirl-wind tour of the creative side of Photoshop. This is a great jump start for Lightroom users.

hanger
by Colin Smith

Photoshop for Lightroom users

What am I missing? Photoshop for Lightroom users

 

Learn how to create reusable layered templates, discover non-destructive layers and masks. Make time lapse sequences, do sky replacements and other compositing tricks. Find out the power of using pressure sensitive brushes and more in Photoshop in Colin’s whirl-wind tour of the creative side of Photoshop.

Photoshop and Lightroom integration

Watch this video to discover how to best work between Photoshop and Lightroom. Find out how to keep your Lightroom adjustments fully accessible from Camera Raw. We will take an image from Lightroom, to Photoshop, Camera Raw, back to Photoshop, back to Lightroom and then apply some automated adjustments based on what we have done.

pslr
by kiwicolin

Photoshop and Lightroom integration


Watch this video to discover how to best work between Photoshop and Lightroom. Find out how to keep your Lightroom adjustments fully accessible from Camera Raw. We will take an image from Lightroom, to Photoshop, Camera Raw, back to Photoshop, back to Lightroom and then apply some automated adjustments based on what we have done.

Lightroom crash course in 15 minutes

Have you ever wondered what is the correct workflow for Lightroom? Discover how to build a catalog, tag and sort images. Filter through and find the best photos quickly. Make them look amazing and then duplicate those settings to a whole bunch of photos in a couple of clicks. All this in 15 minutes, from a real photo shoot in RAW, not staged stock images.

lr
by Colin Smith

Lightroom crash course in 15 minutes

Have you ever wondered what is the correct workflow for Lightroom? Discover how to build a catalog, tag and sort images. Filter through and find the best photos quickly. Make them look amazing and then duplicate those settings to a whole bunch of photos in a couple of clicks. All this in 15 minutes, from a real photo shoot in RAW, not staged stock images.

 

For More Lightroom learning, check out Colin Smith’s Award-Winning 13 Hour Lightroom 5 for Digital Photographers.

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Tiny planets in Photoshop, aerial drone photos from quadcopters

In this Photoshop Tutorial, Colin Smith uses aerial photos from his DJI Phantom quadcopter to create a tiny planet effect. In this tutorial, learn how to stitch panorama photographs from multiple photos and then turn them into the tiny planet effect. This tutorial is all about having fun and making something that is unusual. People love unusual things.

tnphantom
by Colin Smith

Tiny planets in Photoshop, aerial drone photos from quadcopters

I have been asked by a number of people how I create my tiny planet effect. I didn’t invent the tiny planet, it’s been around a while. I am however, the first to use this with aerial footage and I have come up with some unique and original techniques to get the best quality tiny planet. Using aerial panorama photos shot from a drone. The DJI Phantom quadcopter was used to shoot the images we use to make the tiny planet.

I have a lot of fun flying my DJI Phantom 2 Vision +. I have a review and some live flying for you to check out. I am also working on a training video that will tech you how to fly quadcopters as well as how to fly for photography and video. I”l tech how to shoot and edit photos and video in this upcoming video from photoshopCAFE. Join the Secrets list to be notified when I release the video.

Here are a couple of examples of tiny planets.

See my Gallery of Aerial  Drone Photos
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ti-tiny-blobe
Untitled_Panorama1

 

 

Jeromy Cox
cox

Leading comic book artist, Jeromy Cox (Spider-man, Batman, Superman) talks about his process for coloring comic books and what inspired him to become a comic book artist in this interview with Colin Smith at PhotoshopCAFE.

Jeromy Cox
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Jeromy Cox

Leading comic book artist, Jeromy Cox (Spider-man, Batman, Superman) talks about his process for coloring comic books and what inspired him to become a comic book artist in this interview with Colin Smith at PhotoshopCAFE.

 

Check out Comic Book Coloring here

Learn HDR in Photoshop, HDR photography

This free tutorial explains one of the hottest trends in photography; HDR. High Dynamic Range. Learn how to shoot, merge into 32 bit images, tone-map photos to extend the dynamic range and produce strikingly realistic or surreal looking results. Covers Photoshop CS3-CC.The ultimate HDR guide.

tn-hdr
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Learn HDR in Photoshop, HDR photography

I originally wrote this tutorial for Photoshop CS3, in the years since then, Photoshop has gotten a couple of big upgrades in the HDR area, and we are now at Photoshop CC. I have also learned a great deal more about the subject, so I decided it was time for an update. This tutorial will work for all versions, including CS6 and HDR in Photoshop CC. In CC Camera Raw was added as an option, more about that soon.

timessquare

What is HDR and why do we need it?

I n this tutorial we will take a look at HDR photography. HDRI (High Dynamic Range Imaging) was originally used in 3D and is now in full force in photography. Basically it’s the process of taking multiple exposures and merging them together into a single 32 bit image. Let me explain:

A camera is capable of capturing a limited amount of tones in a single photo (we call this dynamic Range, the range of tones that can hold detail between pure black and pure white). Typically we sacrifice elements in a photo when we set the cameras exposure. We meter for the most important part of the scene. For example let’s look at the series of images I shot at the Bradburry building in Los Angeles. The center image is a typical exposure, showing an average metering to produce the most detail possible. Notice that the detail outside the door is lost because it’s too bright. Also the detail on the stair rail is lost because it’s too dark. When you are at the location, you are able to see all these detail with your eye, this is because the human eye can see a larger range of tones than the camera can capture on the sensor or film in a single photograph.

tones

 

The solution is to take more than one photograph and bracket the photos. Shoot a normal exposure (center image), then under-expose (left) to capture the highlights outside the windows and over-expose (right) to capture shadow detail. Finally, merge these photos together to produce a single image with a larger range of tones that can now show all the details in the shadows and highlights.

This tutorial will show you how to complete this process with the minimum fuss.

Tips for photographing HDR

First we need to capture our source images with our camera. Technically you will need to shoot a minimum of 2 photos with different exposure settings to create a HDR. I personally get good results from 3 shots. I like to over expose and under expose by 2 stops each. I know this is a bigger bracket than some people are comfortable with, but for the type of HDR images I like to create (cityscapes), this works great. If you’re shooting people, you may want to reduce this to single stops.

Sometimes you need to capture more than 3 exposures. It really depends on how much contrast is in your scene. For the example of the Bradburry building, I captured a series of Photographs inside a dark building in Los Angeles with a sunny day outside a glass window. I needed 7 photots with 2 stops apart in order to capture the entire dynamic range of that scene. You might be able to capture a lower contrast enviroment such as a foggy day in a single frame. But once again, for the majority of HDR photography 3 shots are usually perfect. I set the camera for Auto Exposure Bracket and 2 stops + and -. Make sure that you only change the shutter speed. If you change the aperture, the depth of field will also change, producing unwanted blurring in your final composite. Use a tripod if you can, otherwise support yourself on a wall or solid object to reduce movement between frames.

Note: For real HDR, you shouldn’t use a single raw image and exposure it several times as some people suggest. This is unnecessary, as you can use the Shadow and Highlight recovery and adjustment brush in Camera Raw or Lightroom to bring out the same amount of detail in the photo. Also there has been misinformation circulating, using the term “Single Image HDR”. This is known as pseudo-HDR. You can’t get HDR (HIGH Dynamic Range) from a single SDR (STANDARD dynamic Range) photo. It’s like “single speaker stereo”, the digital informaition just isn’t there. You can apply a tone-mapped effect to a single image for a grungy feel. It’s psudo HDR, but not to be confused with true HDR.

For more details see the full 4.5 hour video HDR and Photoshop

HDR in Photoshop tutorial

Step 1

Start with 3 images. One normal exposure, the second underexposed and the third overexposed. In this case I used 2 stop bracketing. As I shoot a lot of city scapes I can get away with 2 stops, because I’m mainly shooting flat surfaces and banding and posterization isn’t such a problem. If your shooting rounded and curved surfaces you will want to lower your bracketing to get smoother gradients, although there is a lot of overlap already in the tones as a decent DSLR camera can capture around 11 Stops of exposure.

I set the bracketing on my camera to 2 stops. Then I set the shooting mode to burst. When I hold the shutter down, 3 photos will be captured. I shoot in the RAW format for the widest possible dynamic range. You can still create HDR if your camera doesn’t support RAW, but bear in mind a jpg is only an 8-bit file.

Make sure you shoot in Aperture Priority or in Manual. You want to bracket the exposure time, not the Aperture. If you change the aperture, the depth of field won’t be consistent and you’ll get blurring. Also avoid any moving subjects in the photo or you’ll get “ghosting” where something is only in one frame and will appear very strange in the final. If you look at the three image that I used here, the middle image has a lot of detail. However, the details in the shadows are lost in the boats and the city lights are too bright and lose detail information. The left image is under exposed to pick up the details in the highlights such as the buildings in the background. The right hand photo is over exposed by 2 stops to pick up the detail in the shadows, such as the hulls of the boats and water reflections.

chi-boatExample

Step 2

Time to merge the photos together into a single 32 bit image.

Choose File>Automate >Merge to HDR Pro. This works on Photoshop CS2 – CS6 (CS2 Doesn’t have auto align and it’s called “Merge to HDR on versions older than CS5). Choose either images or folder. I organize each set of photos in its own folder so I used the folder option. Select your photos to merge. Turn on Auto Align in Photoshop CS3+. Click OK. (Photoshop uses Auto-align technology that even allows you to create HDR without the use of a tripod!)

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Step 3

Your images will now be merged into a single photo. You can turn off individual photos by un checking their boxes on the left filmstrip. If you get some blurring caused by camera shake in the longest exposure, you may want to turn off that photo. If there is ghosting because of movement, click the box: Remove Ghosts.

(When the mode is at 16 or 8 bit you will see settings like this, if 32 bit is selected, it will look like step 4)

newHDR1

Step 4

The merged result is a floating-point 32 bit image. Change the mode to 32 bit. You can view the available tones by sliding the White Point slider. Note, this slider doesn’t change the image, it is there for you to examine the range of tones, because a monitor is incapable of displaying all the tonal detail in a 32-bit file all at once.

newHDR2

Note: In Photoshop CC there is a new option. “Complete Toning in Adobe Camera Raw”  This option isn’t in CS6. If you are on Photoshop CS6 and lower, jump to step 5 right now.

If you are on CC and the “Complete Toning..” button is turned on, you won’t be able to move the slider. Click the option off and you will be able to move the slider and continue with the rest of the tutorial just like in CS6.
However, when the option is turned on, you will be able to use Camera Raw for the Tone Mapping instead of the HDR Pro settings. In this case, skip to step 8b.

Screen Shot 2014-05-05 at 11.44.01 AM

However, I recommend learning both methods as they each have merit. The HDR Pro tone mapping (step 5+) will give you more control and enable you to create a surreal effect as well as powerful HDR controls. ACR (Camera Raw) has the advantage of being able to do very realistic HDR tonemapping without too much effort.

Step 5

You could do your tonemapping right now if you like, but I like to save a 32bit negative. Click OK to merge the photos into a 32 bit image. Now is a good time to save your file. Save as a psd, tif or open EXR.

If you are working with 3D and are wanting HDRI for IBL lighting, enviroments etc, save as open EXR as Maya and other 3D packages recognize this format. (you are finished here, photographers read on).

Step 6

In order to use the photos, you’ll need to convert them to 16 or 8 bit images. When we convert them we will create what I call interpretations of the photo. The reason I say this is because we have unlimited ways we can make the photo look. While we have this huge dynamic range available in 32 bit, we will no longer have those options after conversion. Always work from the saved 32 bit version, and then convert and save versions (personal interpretations). Avoid overwriting the 32 bit image, it’s our master and we may want to go back to it many times.

Choose Image>Mode>16 bit (or 8 bit). Now we get to play with some fun options. You’re now at the tone mapping part of the process. This is were all the creativity can ooze.

(If you want to make the adjustments without converting, choose view>32 Bit Preview Options. You can use several of Photoshop’s tools in the Image>Adjustments menu. The most important of these is the Exposure control)

You’ll see an HDR Toning Dialog box (HDR Conversion for versions before CS5). Exposure and Gamma is the default option. Best way to approach this? Set the gamma first, then adjust the exposure to suit. If you want an image with lots of contrast, lower the gamma. For less contrast raise the gamma. Finally, adjust the exposure to get the desired brightness. If you want more control, read on… otherwise press OK to convert.

newHDR3

Step 7

Change the Method to Local Adaption. (There are 4 available methods, but these are the only 2 with user input).

With local Adaption, you get some advanced Tone Mapping sliders and you can adjust the curves. The use of curves is optional as they allow you to fine tune the other settings. Set these like you would normally work in curves, but don’t be afraid to clip the histogram a little. You can clip because you’re working with a larger dynamic range than you’re used to. Bring out the detail in the image, but don’t forget to put some shadow in there or it will look washed out and fake.

Edge Glow
Once your happy with the curve, adjust the radius and strength sliders to make sure there are no halos in the photo. (Badly converted HDR images have a glow around the areas of contrast.) The radius controls the mask blur while the strength decides how strong to apply the effect.

Tone and Detail
Gamma: This is where you control the contrast. Extremes are washed out or super punchy.
Exposure: Controls the overall brightness.
Detail:This sharpens or softens the appearance.

Advanced
Shadow: Opens up details in darkest parts of the photograph.
Highlight: Recovers detail in the brightest areas of the photograph.
Vibrance: This makes the photo more colorful without over saturating areas that are already colorful. (It’s smart).
Saturation: Increases or decreases the overall amount of color. Be careful not to over saturate the colors as a rule. (Of course all rules can be broken on occasion).

Click ok to convert.

newHDR4

Step 8

Here we have a merged image from HDR. Photoshop is great for producing very realistic HDR images.

pstone

Step 8b

HDR, Lightroom and Camera RAW, (Photoshop CC)

A new development in the latest release of Lightroom. 4.2+ and Camera Raw in Photoshop CC, is the ability to work with 32 bit images. This is wonderful because you can use the adjustment brush to fine tune areas of the photograph while working in a 32 bit enviroment. The image below shows the result of working with the adjustment brush in Lightroom. Notice how I was able to craft the image. (The same is possible with ACR). Read on for instructions…
newHDR-lr

In step 4, we are in the Merge to HDR Dialog box.
1. Choose 32 bit from the Mode dropdown menu if it is in 8 or 16 bit mode.

2. Turn on the “Complete Toning in Adobe Camera Raw button”. The button at the lower right will change from OK, to Tone in ACR.

3. Click the Tone in ACR button. THe image will now open in Camera Raw. You can perform all the usual adjustments that you would do in Camera Raw, with the luxury of working on a 32 bit HDR image which has much more availible detail in the highlights and shadows.(Take advantage of the shadow and highlight sliders). See ACR Tutorial here

4. Click ok when Finished.

5. The image will still be in 32-bit mode. If you want to do further tonemapping, you can jump back to step 5 of this tutorial and work on your photo with the advanced tone mapping tools in Photoshop. Yes, you can double tone map an image with great results.

If you are happy with the current results and finished working on the tonal adjustments of the image, you just need to convert to 8 or 16 bit and finish off like you noramally would on a regular LDR (Low Dynamic Range) image.  Choose Image>Mode> 8 or 16 bit. The tone mapping options will pop up, to keep the appearance exactly as it was in Camera Raw, choose Exposure and Gamma as the Method. Set the Exposure to 0 and the gamma to 1. Click ok and your image is done. Congratulations.  (I know there is a lot to it, my 4.5 hour DVD makes it very easy to understand).

Note: If you can’t get the HDR Toning tools to open in Photoshop CC that’s because of a preference seting. Choose your preferences>File Handling. There is an option that says “Use Adobe Camera Raw to Convert Ducuments from 32 bit to 16/8 bit” If this is on, when you choose File>Mode you will see Camera Raw. If the Option is Off, Photoshop will use the standard HDR Toning options.

Lightroom

(More info and free video on editing HDR in Lightroom and/or ACR)

In order to work with a 32 bit file in Lightoom, you must do the following.

Screen Shot 2014-05-05 at 11-1.44.01 AM1. Merge to HDR as mentioned earlier in this tutorial.

2. Save as 32 bit file, be careful to save as a TIF, it will only work with a Tiff.

3. Import back into Lightroom

4. Use the adjustments as you would normally, but enjoy a lot more control and larger range of tones than before.

Step 9

If your desiring a more surreal result there are different plug-ins that you can use. My favorite is Photomatix pro from HDRsoft. You can just get the tone mapping plug in for Photoshop which works great.

Use the coupon code photoshopcafe to save 15% on Photomatix plugin and Photomatix pro

Using photomatix tone mapping plugin allows you to get highly detailed textures in your photographs. You merge in Photoshop as shown in this tutorial. Then choose Filter>Photomatix to apply tone mapping. Convert and save as normal.

newHDR5

Step 10

This image shows an image after tone mapping using Photomatix pro.

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Step 11

Here you can see comparisons between a single image, subtle Photoshop HDR and a radical Photomatix effect Whatever result your after, hopefully this tutorial has helped demystify the HDR process.

tone-mapped

Here are a few more examples of my HDR photography. Check out my Gallery for more 

lina_compgirl-station

rodgersbw

 

Here is another HDR shot of mine. This is a night scene converted to grayscale.

timessquare

Untitled_HDR2

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial!

Colin

Extra Resources

v4HDR2Check out Colin’s video training on HDR.

4.5 hours of training on HDR, Photoshop and photomatix, now in 2nd edition

HDR and PHOTOSHOP by Colin Smith

 

 

Click here to see more examples of my HDR or check out my flickr page.

See the new video by Colin Smith HDR and Photoshop

Photomatix pro from HDRsoft. 

More free tutorials by Colin videos on HDR

See more of my HDR on Google Plus

List of Auto Exposure bracketing by camera

Thanks for visiting PhotoshopCAFE come back for more 

Shane Hurlbut A.S.C
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Film maker: Terminator Salvation, Need For Speed, Act Of Valor….

In this interview, Colin Smith, asks Shane Hurlbut about the use of small DSLR cameras in shooting the movie, Act Of Valor. Shane then goes on to talk about what’s important for successful filmmaking. He also talks about current films he is working on and the single most important thing in film making!

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Shane Hurlbut A.S.C

In this interview, Colin Smith, asks Shane Hurlbut about the use of small DSLR cameras in shooting the movie, Act Of Valor. Shane then goes on to talk about what’s important for successful filmmaking.

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Dixie Dixon (Nikon Ambassador)
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Commercial Photographer

Dixie Dixon is a succesful Commerical Photographer, who’s skils are in demand around the world. Find out who Dixie is and what drives her. Discover how to be known for what you love in this interview.

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Dixie Dixon (Nikon Ambassador)

Dixie Dixon is a succesful Commerical Photographer, who’s skils are in demand around the world. Find out who Dixie is and what drives her. Discover how to be known for what you love in this interview.

Matthew Jordan Smith
matthew-jordan-smith

Celebrity Photographer
Matthew Jordan Smith photographs such people as Oprah, Michael Jordan and Tyra Banks. He has appeared on America’s Top Model a number of times. Here PhotoshopCAFE Founder Colin Smith, asks Matthew about his roots and what it takes to be a successful Photographer.

Matthew Jordan Smith
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Matthew Jordan Smith

Matthew Jordan Smith photographs such people as Oprah, Michael Jordan and Tyra Banks. He has appeared on America’s Top Model a number of times. Here PhotoshopCAFE Founder Colin Smith, asks Matthew about his roots and what it takes to be a successful Photographer.

Matthew Jordan Smith has worked with some of the top names in entertainment today including Halle Berry, Jennifer Connelly, Jamie Foxx, Mandy Moore, and Oprah Winfrey. Singer and actress Vanessa L. Williams, television personality Star Jones Reynolds and basketball legend Michael Jordan have all chosen Matthew to create their personal portraits while Pantene, L’Oreal, Revlon, HBO and Showtime are just a few of the international clients that have used his artistry to showcase their vision. Matthew has appeared as guest photographer and surprise judge on the hit TV show America’s Next Top Model numerous times. He has been the subject of television and magazine interviews including The View, Good Day New York, and BET. A native of New York City, Matthew resides in Los Angeles.

See his PhotoshopCAFE title, Inspiring Beauty

PhotoshopCAFE Design Challenge 12, Design a Blu-ray cover

This can include an original illustration, photograph, photomanip, collage, whatever you like, as long as Photoshop is used somewhere in the creation of the piece (and you have the rights […]

INGREDIENTS

olie-1
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PhotoshopCAFE Design Challenge 12, Design a Blu-ray cover

This can include an original illustration, photograph, photomanip, collage, whatever you like, as long as Photoshop is used somewhere in the creation of the piece (and you have the rights to the artwork used).

It’s on Blu-ray! It can be a thriller, comedy, action, adventure, sci-fi, mini-series, you name it. The twist? You must use something (anything) from Photoshop in the name (A tool, a filter, menu item etc).

Props for wit and cunning! Use any original artwork you desire. You may use any tools or platform you choose, but you must use Photoshop for at least 50% of the Image editing/design. Photos are acceptable, credit the photographer if you’re not the photographer.

SPONSORS

 Winners

Judging

1. Overall impact 40% of score
2. Concept 30% of score
3. Graphics skill 30% of score

The Judges: Avi Muchnick (Aviary & Worth 1000), Oliver Ottner (iService & Effectlab); Colin Smith (PhotoshopCAFE & Pixeloverload).Special Guest Judge. Russell Preston Brown (Senior Creative Director Adobe Systems)

Entry fee

Entry fee? Who charges an entry fee? We are against that kind of thing, so as always, it’s free, so spread the word!

Rules

2 entries allowed per contestant
You may comment on your entry, eg. concept, creation process, photo credit etc.
Anyone may enter (except judges)
All entries to be posted no later than midnight PST JAN 31, 2012.
No pirated or ripped images are to be used. If you are caught ripping for the contest, you will be banned from all future contests at the CAFÉ.
No pornography or profane language will be accepted.
No political or racist imagery allowed.
Judges decision will be final and no argument allowed.
Finally, Have fun!

Fineprint …

Any taxes and duties are the responsibility of winners.
Also (because it’s free to enter and we don’t get any money for this) International winners are responsible for shipping fees, fair enough?
No substitutions or cash value

Prizes

1st place

Adobe: Creative Suite 5 Design Premium VALUE $1,799

Wacom: Intous 4 Medium Graphics Tablet VALUE $369

Autodesk: SketchBook Designer 2011 VALUE $495

Nik Software: Complete Collection Ultimate Edition VALUE $499.95

onOne Software: Perfect Photo Suite 6 VALUE $299.99

PhotoshopCAFE: Training DVDs VALUE $299

and The winner will be featured on the PhotoshopCAFE homepage.

2nd Place

Adobe: PhotoshopCS 5 Extended VALUE $999

Wacom: Intous 4 Small Graphics Tablet VALUE $229

Autodesk: SketchBook Designer 2011 VALUE $495

onOne Software: Perfect Photo Suite 6 VALUE $299.99

NIK Software: Color Efex Pro 4 VALUE $199.95

PhotoshopCAFE: Training DVDs VALUE $100

3rd Place

Adobe: Lightroom 3 VALUE $299

Autodesk: SketchBook Designer 2011 VALUE $495

onOne Software: Perfect Photo Suite 6 VALUE $299.99

NIK Software: Viveza 2 VALUE $99.95

PhotoshopCAFE: Training DVDs VALUE $49.99

Honorable Mention (up to 2)

SketchBook Designer 2012 VALUE $495

onOne Software: Perfect Photo Suite 6 VALUE $299.99

Up to 30 Finalists

Autodesk: Sketchbook Pro 2011 VALUE $79.99

onOne Software: Perfect Effects 3 VALUE $99.99

How to make re-usable graffiti in Photoshop tutorial

Time to tag your images in Photoshop, here’s the tutorial on creating reusable graffiti in Photoshop.

INGREDIENTS

Difficulty 7/10
grafitti-tn
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How to make re-usable graffiti in Photoshop tutorial

I originally wrote this graffiti tutorial a decade ago. While the style still looks good, the usability sucks. Total update time, let’s make the graffiti on the text layer using all layer styles. The advantage to this is 2-fold. First we can reuse the layer style and secondly, we can change the text and the style will remain on it as we edit. (Non-destructive baby!)

Step 1

Start with an appropriate font and type the word, grafitti

graffiti

Here I used Tags Extreme. Download it here | Download the layer style for this tutorial

Step 2

Create a new custom gradient similar to this.

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Step 3

Open the Layer styles, by clicking the little “fx”at the bottom the layer panel. Choose Gradient Overlay on the left and open our gradient and set it to 90, tweak the scale if needed.

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This gives us the gradient color onto the type

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Step 4

Give it a small gray stroke by using the settings shown in the stroke option, size is 4

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Step 5

Because we are actually giving this a triple stroke, we need to be clever. Lets use the outer glow as a secondary stroke. )I do this all the time) Choose outer glow. Blend mode in normal and black. The magic happens with the spread and size. Make sure you turn on anti aliased, or it will look blocky.

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Double stroke in action!

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Step 6

We now need to create the 3rd stroke which is really a hard edges drop shadow, Opacity is al 100 and once again, the magic happens with spread and size. Set the distance to suit your Image. Tip: You can drag directly on your document to set the distance and angle.

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Cha! The graffiti is looking good!

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Step 7

Because it’s applied as a layer style on a text layer, I can change the text to say whatever I like.

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Step 8

Its really easy to add this graffiti to photographs. All you really need to do is change the blending mode to Overlay.

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train

I hope you enjoyed this updated tutorial (I actually completely re-did it). I have recently updated all the tutorials at PhotoshopCAFE because I now know quicker and better ways of doing things as well as taking advantage of the newer features in Photoshop.

Why don’t you Download the layer style for this tutorial

Come and visit us at the cafe and discuss photoshop techniques.

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