Coffee With Amanda: Retouching Under-Eye Circles

I am excited to post a new retouching tutorial written by Amanda. Thank you so much  Amanda!!!  Please go check out her links on the bottom of this post.  She has some amazing editing and blogging resources.  And did I mention she is a PSE expert? 

Me







Today I am going to share how to lessen under-eye circles using two different approaches. The reason I am showing two techniques is because sometimes one works better than the other, and sometimes they work well together too.




Here is my shot, straight out of the camera.




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Step 1: Create a duplicate layer
by pressing 'control' and 'j' ('command' and 'j' on a Mac).

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Step 2: Activate your clone stamp tool by clicking on it in the tool bar or pressing 's' on your keyboard.

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Step 3: Change your brush blend mode (1) to Lighten, then reduce the brush opacity to around 50% (2). Make sure you have a soft brush (3). If it has a halo you are good to go, but if it has a hard edge, you need to change to a soft one.

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Step 4: Increase your brush size until it is roughly the same size as the under-eye circle (use [ ] keys to increase/decrease brush size). Find an area on the face that has good lighting and skin tone and press 'alt' and then click ('option' on a Mac). Go to one under-eye circle and do a short stroke. Repeat the process for the other eye, but make sure to resample.

Sorry I don't have screen prints for this, my program wouldn't record the brush circle.

Here it is after doing the above steps:

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Step 5: Reduce the layer opacity to bring back some of the under-eye circles. You want your subject to look realistic, right? ;-)

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Here is the picture after I reduced the opacity:

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NOW for the second technique. This is going to use a color and we will paint over the under-eye circles.

Step 6: Go to your background layer and create a blank layer (Layer, New Layer in menu bar, or 'shift' + 'control' + 'n,' or the little blank layer icon in the layer palette).

(I turned off the clone stamp layer for the tutorial, so you could see just the effects of the second technique).

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Step 7: Activate your eyedropper tool by clicking on it or pressing 'i' on your keyboard.

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Step 8: Set your brush to a (1) soft brush (has halo), (2) Normal blend mode and (3) opacity about 35%.

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Step 9: Click on an area of skin that is what you want the under-eye skin to look like. You will be able to see the color change by looking at your color palette.

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Step 10: Brush only over the under-eye circle area.

Tip: you may need to sample the color for each under-eye circle if one side is shaded like on this picture. I used the eye dropper on good skin near one eye, brushed on the color, then activated my eye dropper tool and sampled skin near the other eye and brushed on that color.

Here is the picture after using the color technique.

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Step 11: Again, lower the layer opacity to bring back some of the under-eye circles.

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Shot after reducing layer opacity:

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I hope these techniques prove useful to you. I do have a video tutorial going through both steps; to view it, click HERE.

Here is my final version of this picture after giving a good clean edit.

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Me
Meet Amanda! I am a "Pioneer Woman" of sorts, although not nearly as talented, witty or culinarily gifted as the real one. I grew up in the suburbs or on military bases, but ended up in country on a cattle and chicken farm an hour from any sizeable town. I am a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom to four children, ages 11 to 4.

My photography journey started last spring, and it has quickly become a passion. Most of my subjects are my kids, the cows, my mother-in-law's flowers and my weeds (they're prettier in a picture than in real life). I enjoy editing (with PSE 7) and continue to learn daily. The tutorials I write are very basic and well documented so that brand new users can learn how to use their editing software.

I recently started Everyday Elements, online workshops and video tutorials for PSE users. Also, I have a photography resource blog, PhotographyHaven where you can find lots of free actions, tutorials, workshops and more. You can view my personal pictures at Moving Forward or my Flickr stream.

5 Comments:

CraftCrave July 29, 2010 at 8:02 AM  

Just a quick note to let you know that a link to this post will be placed on CraftCrave today [29 Jul 12:00pm GMT]. Thanks, Maria

Catherine July 29, 2010 at 12:33 PM  

Ahh! Thank you! :) That was so helpful and worked perfectly. :)

~Catherine

Twyla Gariepy July 29, 2010 at 8:59 PM  

does this work with serious purple undereyes like mine?

amy! July 30, 2010 at 5:51 AM  

thanks for sharing...and not to sound to picky...I'd love to see b4 and after shots..together at end of post.

Tanja November 4, 2012 at 7:09 AM  

This is so awesome! I have never been able to get it right with the clone or patch tool until now. Makes me soooooo happy! Thanks for sharing!