Flight Lessons… Say Goodbye to Red Eye!

Hello to everyone in Tangieland! Every last Tuesday of the month we’ll learn about different tips and tricks for photo editing. To make a good photo even more fantastic or even to clean up a not so great one, you have to learn some basics of photo editing! We’ll go over things from simple (yet powerful) to advanced (uh, still powerful), and get those photos ready for framing or scrapping in no time!

This week in our Flight Lesson, we’ll be discussing how to get rid of that nasty plague, red-eye. Red-eye is one of those things that can ruin the most fantastic of photos, but don’t worry, we’ll get rid of it for good tonight! :o) As always, there are a million ways of doing one thing in every program. Tonight we’re going over how to use the red-eye tools that come with your program, and I’ll briefly discuss a few other techniques at the end. Again, I’m writing these and using examples for PS and PSP, but you can apply most of the PS techniques to PSE if that’s what you’re using. Let’s get started!

This is Jenna, straight out the the camera. Isn’t she adorable? :o)

You can see that beautiful blond hair, those cute baby chubs, those devilish red eyes… wait. Those red eyes are making her gorgeous blue ones look posessed! Lets take care of that, shall we? ;o)

First things first, open the photo in your program of choice. You want to make sure that your image is showing at 100%, so that you can get all of those little nasty red pixels out of there! My image has been resized for this tutorial, so it’s already showing at 100% size. In PS, head to your navigation menu (on the right) to zoom to 100%. In PSP, click the zoom in button until the percentage on the photograph says 100%. Then select the red-eye tool from the menu on the left.



You’ll now have a new set of options on the top of your screen. PSP makes it easy and just asks what size you’d like your red-eye selection to be (the amount of pixels round that you want the tool to be), but in PS you have two options to decide on; amount to darken (a percentage) and size (the percentage of the selection that you make… it’ll make sense when you use it ;o) ). Let’s start by just using the default numbers, which is always a good place to start I think! You can always hit undo and change your numbers after you try it. So here’s what your menus look like:



Leaving the settings on the defaults, lets use the tool.

PS: click the mouse somewhere around the eyeball of your subject, then hold it down to drag and make a rectangle around the pupil. You may have to do this more than once to get rid of the red-eye, or you can play with the settings a bit if you’d like! :o)

PSP: The default size number is usually 10pixles. If you are editing a photo for printing or a large one for scrapping, this may not be big enough. Since my photo has been resized to 600pixels wide, a selection of 10 pixels could have probably done the job, but I increased it to 15 to make my life a little easier. ;o) Once you determine what size you need, click on the pupil with the tool. I find that clicking once usually isn’t enough, and sure enough with this photo I had to use the tool 3 or 4 times on each eye. If you go too far, just click undo! :o)

And that’s it! That is, by far, the easiest way to get rid of red-eye in a photo.

As I said above, there are other ways of achieving it. There are actions (specially made mini-programs that you can download and run in PS for things that you do often) that are made for red-eye reduction, and for that VERY stubborn devilish look, you may want to try what a friend of mine does. She zooms in to the point of being able to see each pixel, and recolors them one by one. Now, you may want to save that for drastic situations, since it can be extremely time consuming and a bit frustrating. But if that’s what you need to do, it can certainly be done! You can also make a selection of the red portions of the eye using the lasso or eliptical tool, and use an adjustment layer to change the hue of it. We’ll be discussing adjustment layers in future installments of Flight Lessons’ photo editing tips and tricks, so be sure to stay tuned for that one… it’ll be a good one!

Thanks for joining me today, see you all next week! :o)

Signing off,

Heather (heatherbid)


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