Thursday, November 11, 2010

Photoshop Painting: To Smudge or Not to Smudge...

...that is the question.

Painting in Photoshop is loads of fun.  The undo feature lets you step up to 15 paces backwards in time, which can be epically useful when you make as many mistakes as I do.  You are limitless in materials, you can spread endless digital paint (of any color imaginable) and have as large (or small) a canvass as you'd like.  You can literally do anything.

And you can also fall into the Photoshop traps like I did yesterday.  Particularly easy to slide into is the smudge trap.  It's a nasty one.  You're short on time, things aren't blending the way you'd like them too -15% opacity is too low and 20% is too high, and you don't want to find the right spongy brush that would solve your problems because you don't want to download anything new...  So you send your cursor over to the smudge tool button and click it.


Unless you're really good, your painting will look like it was dumped in smudge oil and any life it had will die.  Bummer.


Turns into this:

It's definitely salvageable, but it is always depressing to realize that something you've spent hours on is too smooth.  It's just freaky! She looks like she's plastic.

So I caution you, smarter-than-I viewer, do not fall into the smudge trap. Use the tools given to you wisely and do not depend on the smudge tool to fix your inability to paint (as I did).

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