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This looks to be a good technique for pulling detail out of dark/shadows of an image.
I have attempted to duplicate this technique using Hidden Tools but can not get it. I think the trick is in getting a desaturated or greyscale image in one of the layers but not in the others, but I have been unable to make it work.
Anyone care to tell me how to do it, or if it is even possible in PSE.
If the only part of this you are missing is getting a grayscale representation, all you have to do is use the Add Luminosity tool (from the book). You can also work with the free tools using highight and Shadow masks -- perhaps along with Layer masks to help blend the images. Use a Levels correction for the mask instead of curves if you go this route.
Let me know if you need more detail.
Here is how I make a gray version in Photoshop, and I think this can be done in Elements too:
1. Copy Background to new layer
2. Add another empty layer above this
3. Fill top layer with with 50% Gray
4. Set top layer to color blending mode
5. Merge top layer down
You should now have the original Background layer and a gray version above it.
Or, you can get almost the exact same result with a free B/W plugin here:
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