Tag Archives: photoshop

Compositing and Painting in Photoshop CC

Final Literacy Poster

Final Reading Poster Using a Composite of 5 images.

In lieu of a video I decided to put up another behind the scenes tours of one of my composite pieces. I’m going to give you a sense of how this poster came together. This isn’t a tutorial per say, but rather a tour of the file for those that enjoy working in Photoshop.

The image is essentially a composite of five shots:

  1. My son in bed with a book
  2. A plastic dinosaur my son has
  3. A plastic dragon he has
  4. An old shot of the moon I had in my collection
  5. A picture of jelly fish I shot this summer at Ripley’s Aquarium in Toronto

Now naturally I did a bit more than just compositing/Photoshopping the shots together, but I will hit some of the highlights of the piece.

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Creating Water and Splash Effects in Photoshop CS6

Splash Dance Photo Manipulation Tutorial Title Image


In this brief behind the scenes I will show you some of the secrets behind the piece seen above. I can’t necessarily do a tutorial on it because it wasn’t a recipe achieved by a series of steps, but rather this piece was the product of some experimentation, failed attempts, and then just letting my inner artist loose. At a certain point I can’t say  what I did specifically, but upon review of the PSD I wanted to offer a behind the scenes of this piece.
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Episode 9 – Processing Raw Files in Photoshop (ACR)

Show Notes:

In this weeks Photoshop Tutorial I show how to use Adobe Camera Raw (ACR) to process images. This is my own personal Camera Raw processing workflow. I will demystify the histogram, sliders, panels and other options in Adobe Camera Raw and introduce you to the techniques that let you intelligently adjust your images exposure. In this video I use a file that is about a stop and a half underexposed and show you not only how to correct this, but also how to fine tune the exposure, white balance and colour to produce a high quality final. I also show you how to use ACR for adjusting the Tone Curve, Noise Reduction, Sharpening and selective colour adjustment. All the techniques shown can also be applied in Lightroom 5 as the tools are the exact same.

Files Used:

Download the file I used in this tutorial here:

http://bit.ly/18yhOVO  – Camera Raw Sample File (18.9 Meg .DNG Adobe Digital Negative File)

Subscribe to my Channels:

Vimeo – https://vimeo.com/shawnkent

Youtube – http://www.youtube.com/user/ShawnKentPhotography

Podcast – http://itunes.apple.com/ca/podcast/shawnkent.net-photography/id687084409

Thanks for watching!

[Edit: My apologies to my Vimeo and Podcast audience. Some upload issues this week delayed release on these channels. Should be more consistent in the future.]

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Episode 8 – Fix Photograph Highlights in Photoshop (Luminance Masks)

Show Notes:

In this weeks Photoshop video tutorial I provide a basic introduction to using a luminance mask to recover blown out highlights in an image. In the video I use a RAW file of a forest floor where the sky is overexposed and shining through the tree tops. Luminance masking is an interesting technique that allows you to selectively adjust the highlight tones (portions of the image that have a luminance of 50% or brighter). The reason that I use this technique for images that require highlight rescuing is that it produces better results than simply processing the image through Adobe Camera Raw and attempting to recover the highlights that way.

Files Used:

Download the file I used in this video to practice the technique here:

Luminance Masking Sample File (34 meg .CR2 Camera RAW File)

Further Reading:

If you enjoyed this tutorial and want to learn more I recommend these links:


Subscribe to my Channels:

Vimeo – https://vimeo.com/shawnkent

Youtube – http://www.youtube.com/user/ShawnKentPhotography

Podcast – Coming Soon!

Thanks for watching!

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Focus Stacking Tutorial for Photoshop CS5

Photoshop Focus Stacking Tutorial

This tutorial is available for download in PDF format with RAW sample images at the following location:


File Size: 216MB – File type: Zip Archive – Contains: PDF, Sample NEF files, Example PSD

This tutorial is also on youtube here:



One of the greatest challenges in macro photography is dealing with depth of field issues. In my line of work I often have to provide technical photographs of circuitry. I typically use a top of the line macro lens like the Nikon AF-S Micro-NIKKOR 105mm, for these photographs. Even though this lens produces amazing images, I am forever striking a balance between elaborate lighting setups and limited depth of field (DOF). Presuming I even produce enough light to shoot at the maximum DOF of f32 for this lens, I still find at these extreme close-ups depth of field can be an issue.

Thankfully post processing techniques provide us with a tool that makes all of this a bit easier. Focus stacking is not that different than HDR. In essence we are taking several images with one variable adjusted (in this case focus) to create one image. The result is an image that gives a resultant image with greater depth of field than the source image.

This technique can be used in all sorts of macro photography, from nature photographs to microscopy. Thankfully the technique is made painfully simple with modern imaging tools. There are a number of tools that can achieve these results (CombineZM, Helicon Focus, Magnification, etc.) however we are going to use Photoshop CS5 for this tutorial.
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