With Paint Shop Pro
Digital Airbrushing with Paint Shop Pro is
a different animal from the makeover tools. The
Makeover tools are pretty much automated with some adjustment for the
strength of the tools.
For those of you who want to dig into a project and make all of the
decisions then the digital Airbrushing technique is for you.
is adapted from a Photoshop technique so what that means is this -
pretty much anything you can do with Photoshop you can also do with PSP
(for a lot less money).
So here you are with your nice new Nikon
D40 or Canon
Digital Rebel and you have some face shots that need a bit
Here's an effective way to do some nice Paint Shop digital airbrushing.
subject (wife, girlfriend, whomever) will be thrilled!
This is a nice 4 step process that will result in a
nice end product.
This is the image that will be used in this tutorial.
Its a nice big image so grab yourself a copy if you want to work along
with the tutorial (Right
Click > Copy Image (Firefox) or Copy (Internet
Explorer), open Paint Shop Pro and then Edit > Paste As New Image.
So - open you image, duplicate the background image (you are going to
really, really want the duplcate image later - trust me on this) and
now its time to start Digital Airbrushing ...!
Remove Obvious Blemishes
I said no Makeover tools were going to be used in this digital
airbrushing tutorial - well I was wrong.
In this closeup of the left eye we can see some things that could
be removed. This person obviously plucks her eyebrows and
little stubbies of missing eyebrow can be seen - not nice.
The Blemish Remover
is the easiest and fastest tool to remove those unwanted stubbies - so
thats what I used. If you are a do-it-yourself purist then
you can achieve the same results with the Clone Tool.
The Blemish Remover did a fabulous job, don't you think?
This is an immediate improvement, however we can still
- Eliminate Little Specks and
next thing is to do is remove any little speckles or lines.
can be accomplished in a number of ways.
Select Adjust >
There are a lot of options there (as you can see) and it is best to try
out the different ones to find the one that produces the best
results with your image.
I chose Median Filter
with a filter
aperture of 5.
At this point the image has had blemishes removed and any little lines
and speckles have been eliminated.
is a problem, however. If you compare the eyes (this one to
previous one) you will easily see that some of the important spectral
highlights in the eye have been removed and the eyelashes and
eyebrows now look kind of fuzzy and these are not really a good thing,
Fear not - we will fix them later.
Now we need to soften the image with a ...
Gaussian Blur and Noise
This is a nice easy step that takes no time at all.
Add a Gaussian Blur
to the whole image. Experiment with the
radius to get the results you want. My image has a Gaussian
Blur radius of 4.0.
OK - so now add a wee bit of noise to add some texture to the image.
Use with the filter you used earlier - Adjust
> Add/Remove Noise.
- at a value of 4.0.74
- Median Filter
And this is how the image looks after the Gaussian Blur and Median
OK - so now we have a noisy blurry picture. Now here comes
the fun part.
4 - Bring
Back Areas That Need Bringing Back
(like eyes and hair and lips)
So far we have managed to take a reasonably good image and
eliminate things that needed eliminating as well as things we want to
keep (like the spectral highlights in the eyes).
Our digital airbrushing Paint Shop style is coming along nicely.
the important parts of the image (like the eyes) are now soft and
blurry and something needs to be done to return them to their previous
These layers are very useful and tend to strike fear into the heart of
most beginning Paint Shop Pro users.
Mask Layers act something like a stencil - they can be used to reveal
or conceal what is beneath them in the layer stack.
These are the Mask Layers options...
Hide All -
hides whatever adjustments you have done allowing you to paint the
adjustments back in.
- keeps all of the adjustments you have done so you can paint out the
adjustments where you want.
Sounds confusing? Yes it does - but using them will help
clear up the
Here is the working image to this point (with both eyes) ...
In this situation I prefer to keep the adjustments made to this point,
that is ...
- Blemish Remover.
- Remove Lines and Specks.
- Gaussian Blur.
- Add Noise.
Rather than paint them back in and that will be done with a Show All Mask Layer.
Here's how ...
Layers > New
Mask Layer > Show All - and this is how the Layers
Palette looks ...
As you can see the Mask is white so to reveal what is under the mask
you need to paint with black.
With this image the eyes, eyebrows and hair need to be returned to
their previous glory so that is where the painting was done.
This is where a Wacom Tablet really shows its worth.
The eyelashes are really quite fine and they need to be treated
individually - yes - each little eyebrow. A Wacom Bamboo or
Intuos and a lot of zoom makes digital airbrushing with Paint Shop Pro
easier and accurate.
This is the image after some close painting work around the eyes,
eyelashes and hair.
There you have a Paint Shop Digital Airbrushing - and - the
It is, I guess, an
improvement on the original.
I say I guess because we always have to remember that no one is perfect
- not even the models we see in advertising.