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Blurring the Background of an Image in Photoshop Elements 11

It seems everyone 'gets' why we sharpen our images, but I often get asked why we might go the opposide way and blur them. It just seems strange, why would you take a perfectly good looking and sharp photograph and make it look less defined, less detailed. Well there's a couple of reasons as you might expect - one of which we'll discuss in this video. However, instead of just looking at 'why' we'll look at 'how' as we explore the 'Lens Blur' filter and all of its various setting and controls.

Sharpening for Print

The sharpening filters in Photoshop Elements attempt to mimic the focus of a camera lens, creating the appearance of sharp and defined objects. Trouble is, nothing can successfully mimic the lens element of a camera when the photograph is taken, if the details aren't there when you took the shot, Elements can't just create them from nothing. Instead it uses a trick to deceive the viewer - and as it turns out, it's a very good trick.

A Beginner's Guide to Photoshop Elements 11 - Now Available!

 

Today we proudly announce our latest video series ‘A Beginner’s Guide to Photoshop Elements 11’ – our 12 hour training title that covers everything from importing and organising your media to editing and then printing files using a local inkjet printer.

This video serves as the introduction to our training title 'A Beginner's Guide to Photoshop Elements 11' -  a course of over 80 videos organised into 14 chapters covering everything from the Organiser to the 'Expert' editing mode. The whole series lasts 12.5 hours and is available now. Take a look at this video for more information.

Working with Levels

The Levels command allows us to directly manipulate the shadows, midtones and highlights of a photograph, which in turn helps us to correct contrast and colour issues either rampant in our images, or just laying dormant. It's without a doubt the toughest tool to master in Photoshop Elements and requires a lot of patience and practice to master. Throughout this video I'll show you the concepts and tried-and-tested techniques that help to make Levels easier to learn and use with your own photographs. Once you do master it though, you'll be so glad you took the time and gave it go!

Auto Levels

Levels is one of the most powerful image-editing tools in the whole of Photoshop Elements, and it comes with three rather nice automatic siblings - Auto Levels, Auto Contrast and Auto Colour Correction. Individually, they all examine the image, set black, white and grey points, and make tonal and colour adjustments to suit the array of brightness levels that already exist. That may sound complicated, but that's the beauty of the auto options - they do all the hard work for you and produce respectable results. In this video, I'll show you exactly what they do, and how they do it.

Coming Soon - A Beginner's Guide to Photoshop Elements 11

We are pleased to announce that our next video series ‘A Beginner’s Guide to Photoshop Elements 11’ will be released in late December 2012. Work on the training title is currently underway.

Ever heard of a one-click wonder? Well, this is a one-slider wonder! Capable of magic, and quite often delivering on the promises it makes. With just one push or pull on that slider, you can have the photograph looking sharp, colourful, and perfectly exposed - yes, it really is that good. There is though a drawback. Less control, an imbalance between effects, and it doesn't always make the photo look better. This tool is the ultimate battle between control and convenience, as we'll discuss during the tutorial.

The Shadows/Highlights Command

Ever taken a photo that comprised of dark shadows and bright highlights? No? Are you sure? Ah, I thought so. I don’t know a photographer who hasn’t stumbled upon this little problem at some point, and cursed the black shadows or blown out sky. Amazingly enough though, we can usually dull down those highlights, and brighten up the shadows using the Shadow/Highlight command - and it works like no other tool available. This one is definitely worth noting down, ready for the next time...

Enhancing Colours in a Photo

Enhancing Colours in Photoshop Elements 10 is simple thanks to the Guided Edit Mode. As you'll see in this video, we simply need to know where our options are, and how to make best use out of them. Here, we'll create a dramatic sky above the Eiffel Tower and finish it off by adjusting the lighting of the shot.