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  #21  
Old 06-21-2007, 05:30 PM
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maverick911 maverick911 is offline
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Re: Background Help

HELP! I have to say I thought I was reasonably intelligent until I started trying to use masks! I have made a more accurate selection around the Tiger and across to the sides with the Pen Tool and somehow managed to Clone the grass around the Tiger. Now I have a line across the image where the mask is which I need to blend somehow but I cant get it to work on both the masked and unmasked areas even though I have unchecked the mask. Should I have to Flatten the image in order for this to work?
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  #22  
Old 06-22-2007, 05:26 AM
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Re: Background Help

You shouldn't have to flatten.

Is "Sample All Layers" checked?

Regards,

Michael
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  #23  
Old 06-23-2007, 03:31 AM
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Re: Background Help

No it isn't. Thanks Michael - clearly a giant leap forward for me. However I still have a line across to the left above the tail, where I made a selection with the pen tool which I can't do anything with. I have uploaded screen shots of PS here would you take a look at my set up and tell me where I have gone wrong. Thanks
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File Type: jpg screenshot2.jpg (93.6 KB, 8 views)
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  #24  
Old 06-23-2007, 07:55 AM
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Graphics23 Graphics23 is offline
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Re: Background Help

From the screenshot of your Layers palette it looks like you're attempting to edit an area that's being masked. So the edits you're making are probably just hidden. You can toggle the masks on and off by Shift-Clicking on the mask icons in the Layers palette. Turn the masks off and see if your edits are now visible.

If you're new to using masks I recommend keeping them as simple as possible. The first thing I noticed when looking at your Layers palette is you have two masks on the working layer. It's hard to tell from the screenshot but it looks like the two masks are covering the same area. I would eliminate the vector mask and focus on becoming comfortable using pixel masks.

You can turn the vector mask (rightmost icon) into a pixel mask (middle icon) by Ctrl-Clicking on the vector mask, this will create a selection. Use Ctrl Shft I to invert the selection. Then click on the pixel mask and fill with black. Finally, drag the vector mask to the trash.

Combining vector and pixel based masks is a very powerful technique. The goal of which should always be to have razor sharp and soft blurry edges in your mask at the same time. If this is not needed then the job can be done with either type of mask alone.

If you want to avoid all this and just get on with fixing that line the easiest thing would be to create a new blank layer on top and clone into that layer with the "Sample All Layers" option.

Good luck,

Michael
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  #25  
Old 06-23-2007, 05:31 PM
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Re: Background Help

Thanks very much for your trouble Michael, I will give it a go.

Mark
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  #26  
Old 06-24-2007, 02:59 AM
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Re: Background Help

Well I gave up on this after 2 hours (maybe there is something wrong with my copy of PS :o)) When I toggled the various layers damage appeared on the Tiger, so I flattened the image and had a go at the Simulating Depth of field with Lens Blur Tut, but it has affected the pixels around the ears. I used the Quick Selection Tool. After 6 hours on this, the original image is looking more attractive by the hour!

Last edited by maverick911; 06-24-2007 at 03:11 AM.
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  #27  
Old 06-24-2007, 08:08 AM
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Re: Background Help

Hi Mark,

When I reach a point of extreme frustration due to a perceived lack of progress, I take it as a sign that it's time to switch gears.

So I'll stop working on the problem image and begin a new project.

If the frustration is bad enough I'll even step away from the computer (gasp).

You're experimenting with techniques and tools which are new to you. It takes time to develop new skills and your mind/body can only absorb so much at once.

Take a break. Either work on something completely different or better yet engage in some physical activity. I find a hike in the woods can really help to clear the head.

Don't get discouraged. Believe it or not, frustration of this nature is a good sign. It means your mind/body is preparing for a new level of understanding. Learning to recognize this and not fighting it will get you through it much better than banging your head against a wall.

Regards,

Michael
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