Photoshop is the world-wide standard for photo enhancements, but with so many features it can be tough to know where to start. The easiest way to approach picking up new skills is to get out there and practice different techniques. It can be very overwhelming, however, knowing where to start and how to find resources.
The following collection of tutorials covers basic photo-enhancing techniques using Photoshop. If you are new to the terms and tools, these tutorials will give you excellent exposure to the vernacular of the Photoshop world and open you up to a whole new set of tools to explore. Use a reliable private cloud solution to safely store and access your photos and your creative work.
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Often a photographer will take a photo and later, while editing, colors appear washed out or dull. These two color correction tutorials go beyond using the auto-correct features available in Photoshop and show you how to really drill into detailed color-correction techniques.
This is an excellent video tutorial with an included outline "cheat sheet" for how to do very technical color-correction on a photo. The instructor walks you through, step-by-step, on several techniques. At under 10 minutes long, you will save hours after giving this tutorial a run.
A thorough walk-thru of several color correction techniques with excellent explanations and examples. Check out the Color Channels Technique described as it’s one of the best we’ve seen for explaining both the process and the theory behind color correction.
Scaling and Replacing Content
Ever take what you thought was the perfect picture only to find later that something going on in the background needs to be removed or one of the subjects needs to be repositioned? Photoshop has new features that allow you to make these moves!
This tutorial covers the concept of content aware scaling, which is a critical tool for cleaning up photos and moving subjects around. The video covers several other techniques worth seeing that may be better suited to your needs.
This happens to everyone. Red eye is when the flash or other light sources cause the subject’s eyes to have that awkward red glow in and around the pupils. Photoshop has a Red Eye Tool, but it’s somewhat buried and can be used improperly.
Russell Brown is a Photoshop god and shows in under two minutes the best practices of how to use the Red Eye Tool. What used to be a serious pain is now a click and fix away.
If you work with models or any commercial projects that have people as a subject, you’re going to want to know how to touch up images. You can clean up blemishes, tweak hair fly-aways, and much more. These tutorials cover the various tools of the trade like the Clone Stamp Tool and new Patch Tool.
Here’s a fantastic tutorial covering multiple tools as a basic way to dramatically improve a photo. The Clone Stamp Tool, Liquify tools, and the Healing Brush are just a few topics covered. Definitely worth the time.
More brilliant work by Russell Brown, here. He covers an excellent use of the Patch Tool for removing large portions of images. Similar to the above scaling and replacement, this is another tool to use for image clean up. It applies to detailed image touch up as well as large scale changes, like the one used in this video.
High Dynamic Range (HDR)
More clients are looking for HDR photography or to create/convert images to have an HDR look and feel. If you’re not familiar with the concept, there are three ways to capture HDR images: (1) use a camera that can take RAW format photos and edit later, (2) take three pictures — over-exposed, under-exposed, and normal — and then edit later, or (3) use techniques using a single image to create the HDR look. These tutorials cover each method.
This is a very simple tutorial on using RAW photos and covers some basic ways to get an HDR look in post editing. If you didn’t shoot the images in RAW format with HDR in mind, this tutorial will be especially useful.
This tutorial does not cover the details of how to merge multiple images as much as it discusses several ways to do the same thing. Strengths and weaknesses of each approach are reviewed and will give you several tools with which to approach the same problem.
Only have a single image to work with and want to get that HDR look? You have some options. This tutorial shows a common technique for getting a single picture to look like an HDR image. No long technical discussions here. Just a simple method that gets good results.
Any Basics Missing?
What other Photoshop basics are missing? Anything that should be in this list?
See more photo manipulation samples from various Flickr groups.