How to select eyes in Photoshop?

"Eyes are the mirror of the soul" - said the classic and was absolutely right. Any portrait first of all attracts to itself with a gaze, and only then attention switches to other details. Therefore, the main task when processing a portrait image is to emphasize this particular part of the face. In the article below, we will tell you how to highlight eyes in Photoshop using standard editor tools without using particularly complex techniques, so beloved by professionals. And, believe me, the result will be quite acceptable.

We have a plan, Mr. Fix...

First of all, we open our picture. Enlarge the image to a convenient size and center the object's eyes.

Note. We work in Photoshop CS4 ver. 11.0. In principle, any edition of the program will do, starting with Photoshop 7.

Now we need to estimate the amount of work and draw up an action plan. Chaotic attacks will not lead to anything good. We carefully analyze the photo and find the following defects:

  • red streaks (vessels);
  • spots on the squirrel;
  • dull, expressionless pupil.

All these points can be taken as the basis of an action plan.

  1. Preliminary preparation.
  2. Removing the sclerotic vessels.
  3. Lighten the spots on the squirrel.
  4. We achieve a bright, expressive pupil.

So, let's get started.

Carrying out artillery preparation

First, make a copy of the base layer by pressing Ctrl J

. This is our insurance policy and short-term working layer at the same time. The next step is to transfer the eyes to a separate layer. To do this, enter the "Quick Mask" mode (Q) or click on the mask icon at the bottom of the layers palette

, select a standard, semi-soft brush (B)
, do not touch the settings , default colors (D)
    . And we begin to paint over our eyes. Special accuracy is not required here - we will always have the opportunity to correct our actions. In the screenshot, all steps are marked with arrows and numbered.

    Note. To decrease the hardness of the brush, hold down the Shift key and then successively press "{". The "}" key corresponds to the increase. These parameters are adjusted in 25% increments.

    The result of work in the "Quick mask" mode should look like this:

    Press Q again and enter the normal mode. Use the Ctrl I combination to invert our selection.

    Press Ctrl J, copying the eyes to a new layer. If we turn off the visibility of the underlying layers, we will see this picture from a horror movie:

    For more information, let's call this layer "Eyes". To do this, double-click on the layer with eyes and in the field that appears, simply enter the name we need. This is how we highlight them. Then apply the key combination Ctrl Alt Shift E. Thanks to this, we bring the result of our previous work to a new, top layer ("Layer 2"). Moreover, all the underlying layers remain intact, that is, in which case we can always return to them.

    Note. By the way, this is one of the many undocumented features of Photoshop. You will not find this command in the program menu. In the History panel, it appears as Print Visible.

    Not very convenient when the workspace is cluttered with many necessary, but secondary parts. In our particular case, this refers to the layers palette. Let's put all the unnecessary in the box. To do this, again select the former working layers and use the key combination Ctrl G, the menu command "LayerIt will only affect the white (selected) area of ​​the mask layer.

    And the effect itself will look like this:

    Looks a little unhealthy. So our next step is to make the deliberate natural. To do this, apply blur. Go to the "FilterAll that remains is to pick up the eraser (E), set it to maximum hardness and erase the upper part of the stroke that falls on the eyelids.

    The last shot

    We already wrote that the stroke is the final step. However, it is worth adding one more little touch. Let's make the iris more saturated without changing the overall tonal balance.

    First, we will again display the result of our work on one layer Ctrl Shift E ("Print visible"). We get a new "Layer 3".

    Now let's do a small combination.

    1. Open the "Pupil" group.
    2. Hold Ctrl and click on the "Curves 1" adjustment layer mask, loading the iris selection. Please note - all this time we are on "Layer 3".
    3. Press Ctrl J, copying the selected iris to the new "Layer 4".

    Now we are all set for the final chord.

    Double click on "Layer 4". The Layer Style window appears. Put a check mark in the line "Color overlay". Click in the right part of the window on the square with a color sample, calling the "Select color..." window. Our lady's eyes are gray with a bluish tint. We will strengthen it. Therefore, we choose a pure blue color:

  • place markers approximately in the center of the blue segment of the color scale;
  • drive the exact color selection circle to the very top of the right corner of the main color field;
  • click "Yes", confirming the choice.

So far, everything is really bad. Spooky zombie look. Nothing, now we will do everything well! On the right side of the window, change the Blending Mode to Darken (darkening), and set the Opacity to 15 - 20%. All changes are immediately visible in the image. If you are satisfied with the result, then click "Yes" and exit the "Layer Style" window, applying the settings made.

Note. The settings can be canceled or changed at any time by double-clicking the layer again to bring up this window.

As you can see, highlighting the eyes in Photoshop is not as easy as it seemed at first. However, it should be recognized that the end result is worth the effort. We look at the final picture and are proud of ourselves. Good luck!