Adobe’s New Photoshop Elements 2018 – The Photo Editor


Adobe has released their latest version of Photoshop Elements. They have changed the official name to Photoshop Elements 2018. Previously this version would have been named Photoshop Elements 16, since the latest commercial version in stores is Photoshop Elements 15.

Welcome Screen

 

CLICK HERE to view their announcement. Announcing the next version of Elements in Fall has become a ritual with Adobe. I have been using the beta version for the past several months, and PSE 2018 has several new features that I am sure will be popular with new and old users alike.

In the coming weeks and months, I will be posting tutorials on several of the new features, but for now, here is quick rundown.

If you are familiar with earlier versions, you know that PSE 2018 includes both the Organizer and the Photo Editor modules. In my PREVIOUS POST, I did a quick overview of what is new in the Organizer. In this article I will do the same for the PSE 2018 Photo Editor module.

Photo Editor

As you can see from the figure below, the Photo Editor workspace has remained the same. For those of you who are using PSE 11 or later versions, you will find yourself right at home.

photo ed expert

As is generally the case with these annual updates, PSE 2018 is an incremental upgrade to PSE 15. Most of the work in the Photo Editor has been adding new Guided Edits. A couple of new and exciting tools have also been added.

The new tools are the Automatic Selection Tool, and the Open Closed Eyes Tool. The new Guided Edits include Water Color, Double Exposure, Shape Overlay, and Background Changer.

Automatic Selection Tool

This tool is has been added to the other selection tools previously a part of the Photo Editor. It can be accessed from both the Quick and Expert editing workspaces.

Auto Select Tool

Basically, how you use it is to draw a rectangle or oval around the object you want to select. Once you let go of the mouse, PSE 2018 makes the selection. Depending upon the background, the initial selection will need some fine tuning, which you can do with the other Selection Tools available.

In the example below, there is a somewhat complicated background, so the selection is going need fine tuning. For more solid backgrounds, the new Auto Selection Tool can get quite close to the final selection.

Auto select sq

Auto sel applied

Open Closed Eyes

We have all been in a position where we are taking a group photo and we have a great photo, except one person has their eyes shut. That is where the new tool, Open Closed Eyes comes in. The figures below outline the process. The tool is quite flexible as to where you obtain the source photo.

eye shut tool

eye open panel

before after eyes

PSE 2018 Photo Editor includes four new Guided Edits. Guided Edits essentially lead you step-by-step through the process of creating the final effect. Some of the Guided Edits are relatively simple and others can be several steps. Pretty much all of them can be further tweaked from within the Expert mode of the Photo Editor.

Watercolor

The Watercolor effect is found in the Special Edits group of the Guided workspace.

watercolor effect

It’s an example of a multi-step Guided Edit..

watercolor panel

watercolor before after

Double Exposure

This effect is found in the Fun group of the Guided Edits workspace. Again, this edit includes several steps to guide you through the process.

Double Exposure Panel

Given the right picture and your creativity, very interesting photo interpretations are possible. As you can see from the figure below, my creativity needs some (ok, a lot of) improvement.

Again, this Guided Edit includes several steps giving you plenty of opportunity to personalize your final photo.

The figure below displays just how many layers and operations are employed. It also illustrates how the Expert Edit mode is available to further edit the photo to reach the desired result.

Double Expose example

Shape Overlay

The Shape Overlay is another Fun Edit within the Guided Edit workspace.

shape overlay panel

The figure below shows the various things you can do with the result of the Shape Overlay Guided Edit. In fact, this screen is typical for other Guided Edits, including sharing the resulting photo.

shape share

Replace Background

The final new Guided Edit introduced in PSE 2018 is the Replace Background. This one is found in the Special Edits group.

replace background panel

Notice in the figure below, in addition to selecting a preset, as I did here, you can also select one of your own photos for the background.

replace bkgrd example

This particular Guided Edit is one that you may use quite often, in contrast to others in the Guided Edit workspace that you may use only infrequently.

Well there you have it. This new version of PSE 2018, although an incremental upgrade, probably has something for everyone.

Over the coming weeks and months, I will be posting tutorials, both written and videos, on the new PSE 2018, as well as Premiere Elements 2018 (PRE 2018). Stay tuned.

Until next time.

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Tweak Your Colors With Photoshop’s Selective Color Command


In this post, I want to highlight a technique to selectively adjust color in your images. There are many ways to do this. This technique does require using Photoshop CC or an earlier version of the program. Photoshop Elements does not have the command, Selective Color, that this technique uses.

I learned about this technique from a video tutorial by Blake Rudis of F.64 Academy. The link to the video is shown below. He also provides free Actions that automate using the technique on three different style of photos.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzdEfrmdMwc

In Photoshop Elements, the closest you can come to the Selective Color command, is using the Hue/Saturation command, and selecting individual color channels, rather than just using the Master Channel. But as Rudis points out in the video, this is not the same as the Selective Color approach.

Additionally, the technique can be used to provide subtle changes, as well as more pronounced changes to a photo, as is illustrated in the comparison below. It is normally applied after the primary adjustments to brightness, contrast, and color have been applied to the image.

Sel Color Before After

So, if you have Photoshop, give this technique a try, let me know what you think, and post a link to your image here.

Until next time…

Copying a Selection From One Image to Another Using Photoshop Elements 15


This is a topic that is always one that generates a lot of discussion and in various photo editing forums and Facebook groups. It continues to be a popular topic, not only because it is something that we all want to do some time, but because recent improvements in photo editing programs and new programs are beginning to employ AI-enhanced tools to make the selection. And it is the quality of the selection that will make or break the final result.

In this tutorial I will go through the steps to select the image in the first photo and then copy it to the second photo. I start with using the Quick Selection tool of PSE 15, and then fine-tune the selection with the Selection Brush tool. I do mention the Refine Edge tool, but I have chosen to leave a more detailed discussion of it for another time and dedicated tutorial.

Below are the two initial photos. I want to copy the little girl into the picture of the sky to make it appear she is standing on clouds. True, it is not very creative, but the steps are there waiting to be used for someone with more creativity and skill than I have. This process includes several steps, so the tutorial is longer than most of mine.

Photo Examples 13-127

Photo Examples 13-197

Here is the final result.

Photo Examples 13-127_edited-1

With a little more work, I could have faded her feet out a little to add to the realism of the effect, but hopefully you get the idea. But to reiterate, the better you make your selection, the better your result will be.

CLICK HERE to access the PDF tutorial file.

If you found this tutorial helpful, please star-rate it here and share it with your friends on social media. Also, do not hesitate to add your questions, alternate techniques, and tips, as well as your examples to the comments here.

Until next time…

Highlights of Lucy’s Pioneer League Track Finals Events


 

This post is somewhat of a change of pace for my blog.

The link below is to a video I made of the highlights of my granddaughter’s events from the Pioneer League Track Finals meet. Lucy is normally known for her soccer play as the goal keeper on her Beach Development Academy soccer team.

As it turns out, she is also on her West Torrance HS Freshmen/Sophomore track team. She did quite well as shown in the video.

Lucy’s Highlights – Pioneer League Track Finals

I edited the raw video footage using Adobe’s Premiere Elements 15.

Overview of Photoshop Elements Organizer Workspace


The Organizer’s workspace (screen) has evolved over the past few versions. One of the new features is the new search screen. This and other features are surveyed in this video. Using the various Views and features will be covered in detail in future videos and articles.

pse-15-org-overview-title

If you found this video helpful, please watch for new videos and tutorials coming soon.

My Basic Photo Workflow Revisited


Your post production workflow – the steps you take after uploading your photos to your computer – is always a topic that is worth reviewing from time to time. As the technology, software, and your knowledge change, you will probably find that your workflow also changes.

About a year and a half ago, I posted an article that summarized my workflow. Looking back it, there are a few things that I have changed. In this post, I will describe the current steps I generally do. To see that article, CLICK HERE.

In this post, I describe what the basic steps are after I have uploaded my images to Photoshop Elements 14.

2016-07-20_9-39-20

Here is my current workflow that uses both the PSE 14 Organizer and its Photo Editor, with Photoshop CC added to the mix when needed. The description begins as soon as I have imported photos and videos into the PSE 14 Organizer.

  1. The first thing I do is tag my photos. If the subject matter is pretty fixed, this step takes only seconds.
    1. For example, on a typical weekend of watching my granddaughters’ softball and soccer games, I may find that come Sunday evening I have 500 images and several videos on my memory card. I already have the tag structure and tags defined. It’s just a matter of selecting the right images and dragging them over to the appropriate tags.
    2. If the input batch is from a trip or similar event or photo shoot, I will at least tag the images at the Category level, and then come back later to sub-divide them into Sub-Categories, and Keyword Tags.
  2. I use Events, Places, and to a much lesser extent People views – the tabs at the top of the screen.

 2016-07-20_9-48-29

3. I next screen the images using the Full Screen View option (F11) in the Organizer.

I skip over any videos I have imported at this point.To cull out the best photos I use the Organizer’s Star Rating feature using:

1 = Delete

2 = Needs work, or is member of a burst, HDR, or panorama sequence.

3 = These will most likely be included into an Album for a slide show, or DVD I plan to make at some point. They may not always be the best photos in the world from a technical standpoint, but are needed to better tell the story. I will also give the best photo of a sequence 3 stars.

4 = These are pretty good for me, and probably are the ones that I will most likely end up printing.

5 = Rarely awarded at this stage

After Step 3, I still have many images that have not been rated. They will remain in my Catalog.

4. I now screen the video clips that were uploaded in the grid view. I double-click on the video file and play the video in the enlarged window that appears, rather than in the full screen mode.

2016-07-20_10-54-04

5. If I am interested in the location where the photos were taken, I will then use Places view to pin point on the map the photos and videos were taken.

My current camera can embed the GPS data into the image files, so while taking the photos I turn this feature on for at least a couple of shots. I do not leave it on all of the time, because it drains the battery significantly.

If I forget to do it, I will take a couple of shots with my iPhone, and use these photos to identify the location using Places.

If need be, like when I have shot only video, I will manually add the location of the photos using the Places view.

2016-07-20_10-13-32

6. At this point, I have finished the vast majority of my keyword tagging of my images. I then write the Keyword Tags and other metadata to the image files – File > Save Metadata to Files. If you do not do this, only those images that have been at least opened in the Editor will have the tagging and other metadata written to the file itself.

2016-07-20_10-26-01

7. I then delete all of the 1 star images/videos from the Catalog, as well as the hard drive.

8. Next comes editing those photos and videos that are either in a sequence (2 Stars) and those that have 3 or 4 Stars.

Since I shoot RAW, I will naturally do my initial editing using the ACR.

Normally, that is all the editing I need to do. I fact, that is my goal, for individual photos.

If I can do that, I do not need to save an edited version. My changes are recorded in a small .xmp file.

2016-07-20_11-32-49

9. To print the photo or make editing changes requiring, for example selections or layers, I will open the image in Elements’ Photo Editor.

Occasionally, I will send the RAW image directly to Photoshop CC’s ACR to take advantage of its added tools and/or Photoshop CC itself. However, this will require that a dupe (actually a Version Set) of the RAW file to be generated, which will take up additional disk drive space.

10. The final step of my basic workflow is to periodically do either a Full Backup or Incremental Backup of my Catalog and all of the media it contains (File > Backup Catalog).

This pretty much summarizes my basic workflow. Generally, after Step 9, I put together my photo projects, whatever they may be.

I would love to hear your thoughts and workflow steps that you use or in PSE or other programs.

How to Change an Edited RAW Image Back to Its Original Settings


One of the great advantages of shooting RAW images is that you can always return an edited image to how it was captured by your camera after you have edited it. In this quick video tip, we’ll demonstrate how to do that using the Adobe Camera RAW (ACR) editor in Photoshop Elements 14.

However, the steps are the same in earlier versions of Elements, as well as in Photoshop CC.

YouTube Title