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Photoshop® CS4 Bible by Dan Moughamian, Simon Abrams, Stacy Cates

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14.2. Darkening

Just as there are many ways to lighten images or parts of images in Photoshop, there are many ways to darken images, or make them less bright. This section will discuss similar techniques that were described in the Lightening section, but it will talk about how to use those techniques to darken.

14.2.1. Using curves to Darken

All of the following techniques require a Curves adjustment layer. To make a Curves adjustment layer, do the following:

  1. Activate the layer that you want to be just below the Curves adjustment layer you are about to make. (An adjustment layer can affect only the layers below it.) You can activate a layer by clicking once on it in the Layers palette — clicking next to the right side of the layer name is best.

  2. Do one of the following:

    • Click the Create a new fill or adjustment layer button (the half-black, half-white circle) at the bottom of the Layers palette and choose curves.

    • Click the curves button in the Adjustments palette.

  3. You can then perform the techniques described below. For some of the tasks, you need to activate the Curves adjustment layer and adjust it in the Adjustments palette. For other tasks, you need to activate the Curves adjustment layer and work with it in the Layers palette.

Note that the color mode of the image determines whether you need to move the curve up or down to darken the image. Color mode can be changed in the ImageMode menu. You can preserve more colors in an image by adjusting it in RGB or Lab color mode. When ...

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