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question about gaussian blur skin smooting

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Old 04-15-2002, 12:43 PM
DJ Dubovsky's Avatar
DJ Dubovsky DJ Dubovsky is offline
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That's great. If you have any troubles with getting used to layer masks you can always ask questions. As you can see we are a pretty friendly bunch and eager to lend a helping hand.
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Old 04-15-2002, 11:28 PM
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DannyRaphael DannyRaphael is offline
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Location: Near Seattle, Washington, USA
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Alternatives to consider

Hey Jon...

Late to the party (just finished working on my TAXES!), so a belated welcome, too.

I, too, am a hearty supporter of layer mask techniques. Once I started using them, I felt I'd discovered an exceptionally flexible (and non-destructive) method for experimenting w/o screwing up an original layer!

In addition to the selective application using black and white as DJ noted above, you can also use the opacity and blend mode settings to further fine tune the effects of the layer (with the layer mask) and the layers below it. Just what you need, right? More options, more flexibility.

Besides painting white or black on a regular layer mask (I normally "airbrush" B or W for feathering/blending purposes vs. the hard edge one with get with a regular paintbrush), one can use the same techniques on adjustment layers as well. Doing so enables one to selectively apply "the adjustment" to layers below.

To illustrate with a not-very-practical example:
1. Create a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer on top of any color layer.
2. Drag the Saturation slider to the far left, resulting in a grayscale image.
3. Now choose the airbrush tool (pressure: 25%-35% or so) and a fairly large, soft-edged brush set to black.
4. Start painting on the adjustment layer...
See how the color starts coming back (or more accurately, how the black suppresses the desaturation effect) on the layer below? Works the same with any adjustment layer. It's a great way, for example, to bump up the saturation of lips and eyes w/o affecting the rest of the face.

OK...enough on layer masks. You're probably tired of the pitch by now.

Back to blurring, for $200, Alex.

A couple other filters that are in the same ballpark as Gaussian Blur, but achieve slightly different affects with varying degrees of control are:
* Blur/Smart Blur (tries to retain edges while blurring the rest, with varying degrees of success)
* Noise/Median (ditto)
* Noise/Dust and Scratches (a different spin on smoothing)
Depending on your needs the effects you're trying to achieve, these may (or may not) come in handy in your blurring arsonel.

Anyway...good luck and again welcome aboard.
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Old 04-16-2002, 09:01 AM
Jon Jon is offline
Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 39
Thanks loads Danny. That is one area that I could use as a real tool to my workflow....selectively work on a given area, like in your example of just the lips. I can see myself needing a tool like that alot...rather than use the selection tool to temporarily work on an area. I enjoy working with a bunch of bright, creative and enthusiastic people like this group!

The journey is the reward..........Steven Jobs
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Old 04-16-2002, 11:40 AM
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winwintoo winwintoo is offline
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Location: Regina, Saskatchewan
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the light just came on :!:

As some of you know, I've been confused by masks for quite some time. Well after reading this discussion and following some of the examples, the lights finally came on and I think I see what you all have been talking about!!

Thanks for your patience!

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Old 04-16-2002, 12:21 PM
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DJ Dubovsky DJ Dubovsky is offline
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Hey good for you Margaret. It was the same way for me too. One day all of a sudden the lights came on and they were easy to deal with. After that, I use them in everything. They are powerful tools and well worth the efforts to better understand.
Danny's post illustrates just how flexible layer masks can be. He really explains things well so they are easy to understand.
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Old 04-17-2002, 03:47 AM
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Ed_L Ed_L is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: northwest Indiana, about 45 minutes from Chicago, IL
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Sometimes I think it's like a crossword puzzle. You can look at something for a long time, then the "Aha theory" pops in! And it feels so good!

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Old 05-16-2002, 04:31 AM
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Mike Needham Mike Needham is offline
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Posts: 542
I havent read through all these posts (naughty me), but when needing a glamourised effect I normally duplicate my layer, gaussian blur my duplicate by about 5-15 depending on the severity of the effect, then change the layer mode to overlay and if required turn the opacity of the duplicate layer down a touch. This technique can be made more adaptable by layer masks and a big brush where you dont want it.

But hopefully this method still retains some of the vivacity you want (do hope I didnt replicate too much)
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