Balloons make it FUN

Dudley Orange Pomeranian Wearing a Birthday PArty Hat

Kelly Richardson Images has an assortment of props, such as the balloons in photos shown in this post, that are photographed and isolated in Photoshop. These prop images can be licensed with the pet images. As you can see ballooons make it much more FUN!

Yellow Labrador Puppy Birthday photogrpahed on white, wearing a birthday party hat.

The image right: Yellow Labrador Puppy photographed with yellow party hat isolated on white background, balloons, and balloon curly ties under foot were added to design in separate layers.
You can license these images in “pieces” as individual layers (upon request) and move them around anywhere in the photo to suit your product sizes, whether it be a horizontal or vertical space you are trying to fill up.
Here is another example form the new Pomeranian Puppy Shoot with adorable Pom Puppy photographed with Birthday hat on its head, background color and balloons were added in Photoshop.


Lighten up your Holidays Colorizing Tutorial

Kitten Playing in Red Box ChristmasSEEING TOO MUCH RED? Let’s have some fun! Try this colorizing tutorial to lighten up your holiday.

It would be a shame to pass on this cute kitten image because there is too much red – just look at those BIG eyes- this is a PURR-fect photo. We can simply change the image to Sepia and then colorized it to a more natural look.  But don’t stop there,  we can change the color to green! Here is how!
Begin by opening image in photoshop. Duplicate original. Add a new adjustment layer: Hue/Saturation. Use the HUE slider to change the color of the box- I chose to change the red to green.
1. To change to Sepia: Add an adjustment layer: choose Hue/Saturation, and this time go to preset box and scroll down and choose Sepia.  The entire image will now be changed to Sepia tone.  Click on the white box in the layers palette next to the Sepia adjustment layer, this is the mask.  Get a soft black paint brush to paint back in the color. If you want a lighter shade, not so bright, more retro, natural color look, change the paint brush opacity to 30% and flow to 50% to paint away the sepia color from the areas of the photo you want to see color in.  (Change paint brush to white to paint the Sepia back in if needed, or use history to undo.)  The more you repeat the brush strokes the darker the color will come in.  If you want to retain the full brightness and saturation of the original image, keep the opacity of the brush at 100% and flow at 100%.
2. After you have changed your red  image to sepia with colorized red box,  you can change the red to green. Here is how:  add a new adjustment layer: Hue/Saturation. Use the HUE slider to change the color of the box and crinkle paper – I chose to change the red to green.

Bright Red Christmas Kitten Card Retro Kitten Christmas Card Changing Colors in Photoshop Kitten in Box

How to Make a Watermark Brush

watermark an imageHOW TO MAKE A “WATERMARK” BRUSH
In previous tutorial, I have explained how to make an action to place a watermark exactly in the center of your image. You can batch edit and watermark hundreds of images at a time with the action. So, why would you want to make a watermarking brush? It is useful for times when you want to customize the watermark, placing it in a more strategic place on the image, make a statement with different colors, and/or change its size easily.

how to make a watermarkSTEPS: Click here to get downloadable PDF howtomakewatermarkbrush with screenshots

  1. Open photoshop – go to file> new. Create a new page. For a long signature, I create a page that is approx 3000 pixels wide and 1000 long, resolution: 300 background: transparent click ok
  2. Ctrl-j to cuplicate layer, then click text tool. Type text for your watermark. To make a copyright symbol, simply hold down alt and type 0169 and a copyright symbol will appear. ©typeyourname Adjust font type, size etc to your liking.
  3. Right click right side of text layer and menu will appear. choose convert to shape.
  4.  Go to edit select define brush preset, name it and click ok
  5. To add watermark to photo: Open image in photoshop, ctrl-j to duplicate layer. click create a new layer.
  6. Press D and make sure foreground color chip is black. go to brush tool select “watermark” brush. click on new layer, click once to stamp on image in black. If you prefer the watermark to be less visible, change the flow of the brush to a lower percentage, then stamp it. Stamp size can be changed easily by changing the size of the brush. color can be changed in this way too.
  7. Done. Your new brush should be in the brush sets. and you can stamp your watermark on anything, in any color or position you want! Shapes from the shape menu can also be used, as well as a handwritten signature!Thanksgiving Kitten Basket

How to make a Photoshop Pattern for Christmas

Christmas Kitten Santa Hat Greeting Card
IMG_2501 Rescue Kitten Khloe, Image Available NOW

Learn how to create beautiful patterns using Photoshop, the secret behind my latest Christmas Designs – My gift to you for the Holidays! Happy Photoshopping!

Photoshop has pre-installed patterns, however you may not find what you need. You can simply make your own patterns. Here is a quick and easy tutorial on how to make your own Photoshop pattern.

STEP 1: Open a new photoshop document: go to File- New. Use a square dimension such as width: 300 pixels x 300 pixels resolution 72, make background contents transparent.

STEP 2. Add Guides Through The Center Of The Document. This will indicate the exact center of our document. Go to View > New Guide.
Select Horizontal for the Orientation, then enter 50% for the Position. Click OK (you’ll see a horizontal guide appear through the center of the document)
Go back up to the View menu and choose New Guide. This time select Vertical for the Orientation and again enter 50% for the Position.

STEP 3. Make your pattern. You can create very complex patterns in Photoshop, or they can be as simple as, say, a repeating dot or circle. In this example we will use a circle to create a polka dot pattern. Draw a circle in the center of the document by click and hold on the Rectangular Marquee Tool, then select the Elliptical Marquee Tool. With the Elliptical Marquee Tool selected, move the crosshair directly over the intersection point of the guides in the center of the document. Hold down Shift+Alt (Win) / Shift+Option (Mac), click in the center of the document, then with your mouse button still held down, drag out a circular selection. Holding the Shift key as you drag will force the shape of the selection into a perfect circle, while the Alt (Win) / Option (Mac) key tells Photoshop to draw the selection outline from the center.

STEP 4. Fill the Circle with color. Go to Edit > Fill. This opens the Fill dialog box, choose a color to fill the selection with. Click OK to close out of the dialog box. Photoshop fills the circular selection with color. Go up to the Select menu at the top of the screen and choose Deselect.

STEP 5. Make a copy of the layer Go to Layer > New > Layer via Copy.

STEP 6. Apply the Offset Filter. (With just this one circle added in the center of the tile, we could save the tile as a pattern, but let’s make it look a bit more interesting before we do that- Apply The Offset Filter.  When designing tiles to use as repeating patterns, there’s one filter you’ll use almost every time, and that’s Offset.)   Go to Filter > Other > Offset. This opens the Offset filter dialog box. The Offset filter moves, or offsets, the contents of a layer by a specified number of pixels either horizontally, vertically, or both. When creating simple repeating patterns like the one we’re designing here, you’ll want to enter half the width of your document into the Horizontal input box and half the height of your document into the Vertical input box. In our case, we’re working with a 300 px x 300 px document, so set the Horizontal option to 150 pixels and the Vertical option also to 150 pixels. At the bottom of the dialog box, in the Undefined Areas section, make sure Wrap Around is selected. Click OK to close out of the dialog box.    In the document window, we see that the Offset filter has taken the copy of the circle we made in the previous step and split it into four equal parts, placing them in the corners of the document. The circle remaining in the center is the original circle we drew on Layer 1: One of the circles has been offset by 50%.Circle Pattern Photoshop

STEP 7.  Define The Tile As A Pattern. With the tile designed, let’s save it as an actual pattern, a process Photoshop refers to as “defining a pattern”. Go to Edit > Define Pattern.
Photoshop will pop open a dialog box asking you to name the new pattern. It’s a good idea to include the dimensions of the tile in the name of the pattern in case you design several similar tiles at different sizes. In this case, name the tile “Circles 300×300″. Click OK when you’re done to close out of the dialog box. The tile is now saved as a pattern!

STEP 8. Create A New Document We’ve designed our tile and defined it as a pattern, which means we can now use it to fill an entire layer! Let’s create a new document to see if it works! go up to the File menu and choose New. File- New enter 1000 pixels for both the Width and Height. Leave the Resolution set to 72 pixels/inch, and this time, set the Background Contents to White so the background of the new document is filled with solid white. Click OK.

Step 9. Add A New Layer
We could simply fill the document’s Background layer with our pattern, but that would seriously limit what we can do with it. Place the repeating pattern on its own layer. Click on the New Layer icon at the bottom of the Layers panel: A new blank layer named “Layer 1″ appears above the Background layer:
A new layer has been added to the document.

Step 10. Fill The New Layer With The Pattern Photoshop Circle patternWith our new layer added, let’s fill it with our pattern! Go to Edit > Fill > Pattern.  This opens the Pattern Picker, which displays small thumbnails of all the patterns we currently have to choose from. The circle pattern we just created will be the last thumbnail in the list.  Select the “Circles 300×300″ pattern in the Pattern Picker. Click OK to close out of the Fill dialog box. Photoshop fills the blank layer in the document with the circle pattern, repeating the tile as many times as needed.

Christmas Kitten Snowflakes Card
IMG_2496 Rescue Kitten Kimmy Image Available NOW

Autumn-a-tize this photo! Autumn Photography Tips…

Thanksgiving Kitten CardHere are Autumn Photography Tips for anyone that wants to “Autumn-a-tize” a photo. Let’s see how I can  “Autumn-a-tize” this cute kitten for Thanksgiving Day…

I have searched my galleries for something I can use for FALL.  I wanted flowers, and a really cute kitten- something that looks like a nice Thanksgiving Day Centerpiece for a beautiful all natural table with a “Pottery Barn” feel.  I found this adorable photo of Khloe, a rescue kitten that was fostered a month or so ago.

Mother's Day Kitten Flowers

As much as I love the bright watermelon color, it is not right for Fall, and certainly does not fit the “natural color” palette.  Let’s see how I can  “Autumn a-tize” this photo!


Original IMG_1592 taken on a bright watermelon colored striped background, bright watermelon colored basket, with flowers.  Canon Eos 5d Mark II, EF100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM at F2.8, 125ss,  ISO 250, window light with one monolight bounce light off ceiling. This is the original image before any color changing.

The first thing I did was select the pink striped background. Then I duplicated it.  I hid the layer below. On the new duplicate layer I selected only the striped portion that I wanted to paint. I painted it all the darker pink stripe color.  I added a layer mask to it.  I unhid the bottom layer to see the kitten, clicked on my layer mask and used a soft black paint brush to clean any of the painted background that may be visible on my image below.  Next I created a new adjustment layer: Hue/Saturation layer and changed the Hue to a beautiful Autumn orange.

Next I followed the steps in the Photoshop CS6 tutorial for Retro Christmas Kitten .  The steps are described here: I created a new adjustment layer: Hue/Saturation and changed the preset mode to Sepia. Then I added a mask, used a soft black paint brush and painted away the sepia from the areas of color I wanted to stay. Then I created a new fill layer and chose pattern-I picked a denim textile pattern.  I changed the blend mode of the pattern to soft light.  I used the pattern layer mask with soft black brush and painted away the pattern off of my subject. Now little Khloe is ready to make her Thanksgiving Day debut!

Photoshop Change Colors
IMG_1592 changesatorange/paintedstripes


Autumn Kitten Card
IMG_1592 orange/sepia/pat

Photoshop Secrets – smooth out backgrounds

Kitten in HammockMaking Beautiful BETTER…

If you like this Image, wait until you see how it was made with a little Photoshop Magic. Here are some  of Kelly’s Photoshop Secrets Revealed… PSD Tutorial: Smooth out background, add a blue sky with two examples attached.
BASIC PHOTOSHOP CS6 WORKFLOW: Please note: this PSD tutorial is not for beginners.  I am assuming you have photoshop experience and understand the concept of a painting with a mask, and using layers.
Kitten in Hammock
Here is the image before PSD (never before seen unedited version- yikes!)  **Most of the time, the shadows and wrinkles in the fleece blanket can be smoothed out ahead of time and clipped down tighter to help, however this image was taken on a messy background.  I will demonstrate in this tutorial how to smooth it out in photoshop.
Fleece backgrounds are prone to wrinkle when played on, however, for me they are still a practical solution.   Fleece blankets can be picked up at the dollar store in almost every color and kittens love to play on the soft surface.
Kitten in HammockEasy fix in PSD:
**Sometimes the only thing you need to do is use the guassian blur tool to smooth out the pock marks in the fleece, but in the case of big wrinkles, painting may be the best option. Here is the workflow: Duplicate the layer first. On duplicate layer, use selection tool and select the background fleece around the subject, duplicate it. On that duplicate layer, select the transparent area, then select inverse, then paint out the blanket wrinkles with the color of the blanket. When finished painting, deselect. Then, go to filters, guassian blur- adjust settings to your liking. Reveal under layer with subject. Use a mask on your painted layer to paint with black and paint away any blur that interferes with underlying subject layer. Save all layers in PSD format.
Kitten in Hammock blue sky PhotoshopNOW, Let’s make Beautiful BETTER! Go out and photograph the beautiful blue sky, with a few clouds (raw). In Photoshop, drag the sky layer to your other open psd image, as a layer on top.  Add a mask to the cloud layer and paint away the areas of the cloud that cover your subject. Use a soft brush and play around with the brush flow. This Image is one of many beautiful kitten hammock images that can be found in the image-bank 2016 Spring Collection.
EQUIPMENT/PHOTOSHOOT:  Canon Mark II EOS 5D, Canon Macro Lens EF 100 mm L IS 2.8 SETTINGS: F 2.8 SS 125 ISO 100, shoot in RAW.  Shoot gray card and custom set white balance. Lighting set-up: Window light with 1 monolight flash bounce off ceiling. Homemade hammock, blue fleece blanket background. one sleepy kitten and an awesome assistant (my daughter!)
Following is another cute image that lends itself to a beautiful blue SKY! This image is one from a shoot of several butterfly net images that can be found in the image-bank in the 2016 Spring Kitten Collection.
Kitten Stuck in Butterfly Net
IMG_3248 unedited out of camera, fleece blanket has pock marks and needs to be smoothed.
Kitten Stuck in Butterfly Net
IMG_3248 edited background smoothed out with guassian blur tool, and in severe cases, painted blue
Kitten Stuck in Butterfly Net blue sky in Photoshop
IMG_3248 sky added on top

The Power of Isolated Images

Isolated Image with different colored backgrounds
The Power of Isolated Images IMG_8532

Designers and publishers love isolated images with copy space where they can add text or background images, or just add a simple color to suit their product needs.  For manufacturers, an image on white can be easily adapted to a variety of product shapes – different sizes of notepads, bookmarks, etc. If one wants color, any color, and any pattern, it can be popped right in the background if the image has been isolated properly, with little or no work.  This makes for a very attractive purchase with an image that has so much versatility.

Though it seems like it would be an easy task, creating a blown out white background is trickier than one might think.  It’s all about the lighting. You must learn how to avoid the drab grays that you can get without enough light, shadows are difficult to isolate out if they blend in with the subject. There are countless tutorials online that shows proper high key lighting set-up.  I use a light table that lights the subject from underneath to achieve a perfectly white background all around with approximately 5+ studio lights.

Of course, there is Photoshop. With CS6, one can use the refine edge tool and drop out a background very efficiently. But consider, it is always easier and less time consuming if the subject is properly lit to begin with.  Dropping out a background taken on a colored background is much more difficult and time consuming. The color tends to attach itself to the subject – there is always a reflection of color that can never really be dropped out. It is much easier to simply shoot on white if those are your intentions for the image.

Isolated images have endless possibilities – if you can imagine it, you can create it!

Chihuahua Dog on Boogie Board

Chihuahua Dog on Boogie Board Surfing
Whizbee Puppy Surf

Christmas Pet Designs in July

It’s Christmas in July at Kelly Richardson Images! In preparation for the Christmas Season 2015, we are busy 24/7 creating new Christmas Designs for products such as greeting cards.   Some of these can be done in the “Photoshop” studio.  Here’s how to jazz up and “Christmatize” studio pet images with new backgrounds. This is an example of what I mean: Golden Retriever telling secrets Christmas Greeting CardThese little pups were so busy telling secrets, there didn’t even notice the santa hats I placed on their heads in my digital studio.   This image can stand alone on white as a beautiful greeting card.  However there are some instances in which a background should be created to enhance the image and tell more of a story.  This can be a big challenge.  Here is another Christmas in July new design hot off the press to illustrate this idea:Puppy Christmas Greeting Card letterThis will have a greater impact, and has been “Christmatized” much more with the added design elements.  Each element has been created in photoshop using shape tools, text and brushes.  The hardest part is coming up with the idea for the elements to add.

I have another really cute image of a pet on a sleigh.  What can I do with that? Possibly use my beautiful sky background, with some snow, trees, a few snowflakes… Here is what I came up with: I was compelled to add the santa hat to make it look more “Christmatized” – but what about that happy smile? Unfortunately there is only so much you can do in Photoshop! Perhaps the text for this greeting card should read, “IS IT OVER YET?”

Christmas dog on sleigh Greeting Card*to see 50 more BRAND NEW CHRISTMAS IN JULY Greeting Card images with new background designs contact Kelly for access to the exclusive image-bank.