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Photoshop in Focus

There are many different tools in Photoshop that can be used to accomplish the same basic goal. Which tool ultimately gets used is up to the user's taste and comfort. To get a sense of how retouching can be done, open a scanned photo you might have with some obvious damage—a tear, a scratch, some dust. Whatever. (Surely you've got one.) Alternatively, if you don't have a scanner or a scanned image, find a photo that has some sort of defect. (If you don't have any, we know lots of people who would love to hire you.)

  1. In the History palette, click the Create New Document from Current State button twice to make two copies of the opened image.

  2. In one copy, find the defect, and, with the Clone Stamp tool selected, pick an appropriate brush size. Select source pixels in close proximity to the defect, and then paint them over the defect to get rid of it.

  3. In another copy, use the Healing Brush to do the same thing. Find source pixels that are the same basic color as what you'd like to replace the defect with, and select them as your source pixels. Then paint on the defect. How did that work in comparison to the Clone Stamp tool?

  4. In the third copy, use the Patch tool to select the defect, and drag it to some clean pixels. How did that work in comparison to the previous use of the Clone Stamp tool and the Healing Brush?

  5. Try the preceding steps on different types of image defects—simple globs of dust, scratches, tears, stains, and so forth. As you experiment, you'll quickly get a sense of not only how each tool fares with each type of defect, but also which one you're most comfortable using. After all, the proof is in the final image.


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