How To Edit A Horses Hue And Lighting
 By T W I   •   14th Apr 2011   •   5,078 views   •   11 comments
Once you have pasted your cutout horse onto the new background, it’s time to work on the horse’s lighting! Knowing whether to lighten or darken, add a tinge of green or a hint of red all comes with experience. If you are new to photomanipulation, I recommend taking a look some experienced manipulators’ work to see how they adjusted their horse to fit the background.

Software: Photoshop Elements | Skill level: Intermediate

How To Edit A Horses Hue And Lighting

In the before sample above, it looks like the horse’s overall lightness is pretty well suited to the background. Bump up the lighting just a tad however, because of the snowy-white glare of the background. There are two ways to do this. One way is to use the levels box and the other is to use the brightness/contrast box. The main difference between them is that the levels box adds just a little bit more contrast to the overall feel of the horse. I recommend trying out both before committing to one or the other.

I ended up using the brightness/contrast box because I felt like with a glare there wouldn’t be so much contrast as just raw light shining on the horse. I pulled the little slider only up to about 10.

Clearly, the horse’s color clashes with the background color. If you’ll study the background for a moment, you should notice that it consist of mostly blue hues.

With this knowledge in mind, pull the little temperature slider in the quick menu to the left, towards the blue side. Don’t pull it very far, leaving some of the red tint still on the horse. Basically all we’re doing is just changing the highlighted areas on the horse to a bluer hue.

How To Edit A Horses Hue And Lighting

The horse’s prominent red color is certainly out of place in the snowscape background, so go to your hue/saturation box and put the little dropdown menu to ‘reds’. Pull the saturation slider to -25 or whatever saturation diminishment you think is appropriate for your stock.

How To Edit A Horses Hue And Lighting

The horse should now be looking a lot more natural in the new background. If you like the way it looks, you can leave the horse at this. The next and final step might not work with every background, so depending on your stock it’s fine to stop here.

Your background must have a uniform color in at least one major area for this technique to work. If it is dotted with shadows or rocks with any contrasting shade, it will not turn out looking very realistic.

Duplicate the background layer. Take the move tool and stretch it so that the area with the uniform color is greater than or equal to the size of the horse. Take a look at the screenshot below for a general idea of how far to stretch it.

How To Edit A Horses Hue And Lighting

Select the whole canvas (‘CTRL’ + ‘A‘) and click on the horse. Not the horse layer, but the actual cut-out horse. This should change the selection from the canvas to the outline of the horse. Now go to your marquee tool.

Right click and a box should come up. Choose “Select inverse” from the available options. Making sure that the layer highlighted in the layer box is still the duplicated background, press ‘CTRL’ + ‘X’ to remove everything within the selection.

Using the layer box, pull what's left of the duplicated background overtop the horse layer. It should be the exact same size and shape as the horse layer below it.

Change the blending mode to something like soft light or overlay. Screen can sometimes work too, however you’ll need to pull down the opacity pretty far if you choose this mode.

And you should be done with adjusting the horse's hue and lighting! By no means is it blended perfectly into the background, so stay tuned for some upcoming tutorials on how to finish the process!

How To Edit A Horses Hue And Lighting
Horse News More In This Category:  Graphics      Horse News More From This Author:  T W I
Falling Up  
Good article!! I LOVE the last one. WOW!!!
  Apr 14, 2011  •  3,524 views
Cruisin Past Curfew  
Love the article! These manips. are great! My favorite one is the sample one, that one is so pretty :D :O
  Apr 15, 2011  •  3,331 views
Interesting tutorial! I like your technique though I would caution not to OVERDO the hue/saturation adjustments, because in the example it looked a little washed out to me (though, maybe I'm just being picky, hehe.)

Great work though - I always like reading your tutorials and seeing your work. You're really good!
  Apr 15, 2011  •  3,364 views
Very helpful article. I must come back and look at it the next time I do another graphic. ^^
  Apr 15, 2011  •  3,331 views
Love the article! Great manips!
  Apr 16, 2011  •  3,351 views
T E M P E S T  
Great article!
  Apr 16, 2011  •  3,368 views
Awesome tutorial, I'm definitely going to refer back to this when making my graphics (:
  Apr 19, 2011  •  3,504 views
great article
  Apr 19, 2011  •  3,359 views
Untamed Heart  
this helps soooo much!!!!!!!!!!!!
  Apr 21, 2011  •  3,351 views
Wonderful Article as always !
  May 2, 2011  •  3,347 views
  Nov 18, 2011  •  3,370 views
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