by Suzanne Smith
In this tutorial, we'll explore the many benefits of using lenses and masks to make image adjustments. We'll also look at how to create special tonal effects.
Lenses, which are the equivalent to adjustment layers in Photoshop®, let you preview special effects and image adjustments without permanently altering the image's pixels. You can apply lenses to an entire image or to the editable area of a mask. If applying a lens to a masked area, you can use the Object Pick tool to reposition both the mask and the lens within the image.
Lenses also offer the advantage of being adjustable on the fly. At any time, you can double-click the lens icon in the Objects docker to make further adjustments.
Since a lens sits above the background image on its own layer, you can easily remove an unwanted lens layer by clicking the Delete icon in the bottom right-hand corner of the Objects docker.
This lens ‘scatters' the image's pixels, creating a painted look similar to Pointillism.
Note: When saving an image that has had a lens effect applied to it, be aware that many image file formats will merge any existing layers to a single layer. In this case, the lens effect will no longer be editable when the image is reopened. To retain the editability of a lens, save the file first in CPT format which will retain the layer structure. You can then export out again in the required image format, such as JPEG, PNG, BMP, etc.
Note: Before drawing the mask, you can adjust its corner roundness on the property bar.
Increasing the pixels in the outer edge of the mask will soften the transition between the masked area and the background image.
The Gradient Map lens allows you to apply color to a black-and-white image, or to change the colors in a color image.
You can ‘stack' lenses on top of each other to create some amazing effects.
The lens now appears on its own layer in the Objects docker.
Refer to the previously completed Applying a lens to a masked area for a refresher on how to adjust the Gradient Map settings.
In the Objects docker, note that all 3 lenses have been stacked, one above the other on separate layers.
By mixing and matching multiple lenses, it's possible to create abstract and unexpected effects. For example, you can hide individual lens layers by clicking the Hide/Show icon next to a layer.
The stacking order of lens layers can also have a great impact on an effect. Here, the Gradient Map Lens layer has been dragged to the bottom of the stack, resulting in a dramatic effect.
Note: To discard any unwanted lenses, simply select the lens layer and then click the Delete button in the bottom, right-hand corner of the Objects docker.
With Corel PHOTO-PAINT X6, there are various options for applying tonal and special effects to images. You can use the Effect tool to perform local color and tonal corrections. The Effect tool is grouped within the Brush Tools flyout in the toolbox.
When you select the Effect tool, the property bar displays additional effect brushes, including:
Each effect brush provides sub-categories of nib shapes. For example, with the Smear Effect brush, you get access to a variety of nib shapes.
In addition, the property bar provides additional options when the Effect tool is active. You can choose a round or square brush Shape, adjust brush Size, specify Merge Mode (which determines how color blends with underlying image elements), specify the Amount (or intensity) of the effect, adjust Opacity, as well as toggle Anti-aliasing on or off.
If you apply effects to your image on a frequent basis, you may find it convenient to include the Effect Tools toolbar in your PHOTO-PAINT workspace.
You can leave the Effect Tools toolbar floating in the workspace or drag it to a docking position.
In addition to applying an effect to a specific area by using one of the Effect brushes, the Effects menu offers a wide range of effects that can be applied either to the whole image, or, to the editable area of a mask.
The following categories of special effects are available, each of which includes several different effects:
Note: Just like the lens effects applied at the beginning of this tutorial, when you apply a mask to an image, any effects are applied within the editable area of the mask.
The Help menu provides access to additional information on working with lenses and effects, as well as:
Additional Corel PHOTO-PAINT tutorial videos can be found in Corel's Discovery Center.
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