Coates Photo tip #1 | Photoshop Edition: Frequency Separation tutorial

This is a tutorial for Photoshop CC 2015, but earlier versions work just fine.

Frequency separation is useful for portrait editing because it allows you to split your image into two layers. One is the “high frequency” layer that contains the texture of the skin and the fine details. The “low frequency” layer contains brightness information, colors, tones, etc. When you split these into their own separate layers then you’re able to focus your editing on clearing up skin imperfections while keeping the skin texture.

Step One:

Create the low frequency layer. Duplicate the background layer, label it “Low Frequency”. Then apply a gaussian blur from the menu by going to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur

Step Two:

Create the high frequency later. Duplicate the background layer, label it “High Frequency, set the blend mode to Linear Light, then put this layer above Low Frequency, and select it. Now in the Menus, go to Image -> Apply Image….

Set the layer to “Low Frequency”, set scale to 2, then select the settings below depending on your bit depth, which you can check in the menus by seeing what bit depth is selected under Image > Mode >

For 8 bit use the following settings:

  • Invert: Unchecked
  • Blending: Subtract
  • Offset: 128

For 16 bit use the following settings:

  • Invert: Checked
  • Blending: add
  • Offset: 0

Editing Tips:

For blotchy skin select patches of skin with the lasso tool on the low frequency later, then add a slight gaussian blur to even it out.

For skin imperfections use clone stamping on the high frequency layer while having Sample set to “Current Layer”

coates-photo-tip1

 

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Photoshop CC 2014 Cheat Sheet for Keyboard Shortcuts

Update May 28th, 2015: Wow, the cheat sheet reached #4 most popular image on Imgur today and has over 900,000 views, thanks to Petapixel.com posting about it. I never expected this! If you happen to have any fashion or commercial photography needs, check out my portfolio, and shoot me an e-mail if you like my work. Email is [email protected].

Update May 28th, 2015: Windows edition added, precision cursor added thanks to Benny

If you’re an avid user of Photoshop like me, you’ve probably noticed how much faster your workflow can be when you know the keyboard shortcuts for your most utilized tools. Here’s a cheat sheet that lists all the default keyboard shortcuts for Photoshop CC 2014. It’s also high resolution enough to be set as a desktop background. If I missed anything let me know!

Mac Edition

Adobe Photoshop CC 2014 Cheat Sheet - Mac

Windows Edition

Adobe Photoshop CC 2014 Cheat Sheet - Windows

Keyboard based on .sketch resource by Luis Herrero from SketchAppSources.com


 

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