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Trying to create mask

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Old 10-05-2005, 04:42 PM
RamonaMarie RamonaMarie is offline
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Question Trying to create mask

I know I'm just a beginner, but I think of myself as highly evolved and able to follow directions. I've been watching and reading several masking tutorials all day and can't get this little guy (now 58) fully selected so I can change the damaged background. This photo was pasted down in an album and then taken out, so the blotches are paste and paper from the other side. I think it's just easier to change the background altogether than try and clean it up (plus I'll learn something new). I was led to a tutorial by Russell Brown from someone on this site helping someone else. He suggests using channels. I also looked at tutorials on masking from (channels also). I get the jist of things I think, but the upper left corner of the background on my photo seems to be the same color as parts of the boy's face. No one channel has all that much distinct contrast. I used the Create New Fill or Adjustment Layer as instructed. If I try to make the subject go black, I get the left corner of the background. If I try and make the background go white I lose a whole lot of the boy. I don't want to use the magnetic lasso because it looked awful and I really tried to be careful. I thought I had a strategy for this when I started this morning, but obviously I need a contingency plan. Please help. Oh, and remember, I'm a beginner so if you'd be so kind as to talk to me like a toddler I might be able to follow along. Thanks for all help and suggestions ahead of time. If you need more info let me know.
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Old 10-05-2005, 10:36 PM
leuallen leuallen is offline
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Go back to Russel Brown's site and look for his tutorial on Extraction. It works well on an image such as this. The tool is located under Filter->Extract.

One tip, after you extract the image you may find chunks missing around the edges where it goofed. Use the history brush, with the source set to the original image, to paint back the missing bits. Use the eraser to kill bits it included and should not have.

Here is very quick extraction on a white background to give you an idea of what you can get.

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File Type: jpg boycoat-LL.jpg (94.3 KB, 21 views)
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Old 10-05-2005, 11:43 PM
Craig Walters's Avatar
Craig Walters Craig Walters is offline
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i found it just about as easy as anything else on this one to just manually mask it. it's just one simple outline with no stray hairs or lines of any kind. so, it's fairly simple to just paint around the boy with a mask and select it out to a new layer.


edit: oops. forgot to post the result.
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File Type: jpg boycoat-1-k-1.jpg (91.8 KB, 21 views)

Last edited by Craig Walters; 10-06-2005 at 12:01 AM.
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Old 10-05-2005, 11:53 PM
berwin berwin is offline
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I would use the polygonal lasso tool at the pixel level, 300% more or less. To gain higher temporary contrast, apply a levels, curves or contrast layer to make sections more visible. Work on a section at a time and save the selection. Then as you need different contrast, deselect and change the settings of the adjustment layers. Then recall the previous selection, go back to the polygonal lasso tool and Shift-click (add to the selection) to do the next visible section. Then save the new selection under the same name as the old , replace channel. And so on, should not take too long.

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Old 10-06-2005, 03:06 AM
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Gary Richardson Gary Richardson is offline
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Hi RamonaMarie,

Just used the extract tool in PS7 for this one.

Background not quite right for the lighting, was just put in to illustrate extraction.

For an image like this, where the contrast between figure and background is good, there's a number of ways to select. Play with them all, and find what you feel most comfortable with. Any of the "Auto" methods will always need hand finishing.
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File Type: jpg boycoat copy_filtered.jpg (86.7 KB, 22 views)
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Old 10-06-2005, 01:45 PM
RamonaMarie RamonaMarie is offline
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Thanks so much for all the help. I really love this place. It's like a Master/Apprentice relationship. I would never have thought people would be so helpful and sooooo talented.

Thanks again.

Got to try out all the suggestions. I will keep you posted.
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