Alpha Channel

This was all about working with Alpha Channels.  Unfortunately, I picked a photo that had a dark background which made it hard to finish my project correctly.  I had to cheat a bit – I’ll explain later.  I opened up a photo of a young woman.  I then clicked on the Channels tab.  I clicked and held down the CTRL key on the RGB channel.  This selected the luminosity of the image.  I then created a new Channel.  I then filled the selection with white.  Then I inversed the selection by choosing black from the pop-up menu.  I next filled the selection with white once more.  Then to darken her hair and shadows on her skin.  I chose black again from the pop-up menu, but this time I changed the blending option to soft light.  The next step was to go to the filter gallery to choose distort and the diffuse glow.  This add some graininess to the photo while also giving her face a soft glow.  I wanted her hair to be darker so I selected a soft brush and changed the blend mode to soft light.  I then painted on the dark areas I wanted to be darker.  With the blend mode set to soft light the lighter areas of the photo were ignored while I was painting.

Here is where it all went wrong.  When I tried to create new document to drag the Alpha Channel into, I was supposed to then colorize the photo with a slight purple-red tone.  But because I had a dark background it turned the entire background purple-red.  It looked awful.  I couldn’t figure out how to get my finished product to save without it reverting to the original photo.  So, I used the print screen button on my keyboard.  I then cropped the screen shot and saved it as a .jpg.  I then opened up that .jpg in Photoshop to add the text layer.  I think I’m going to have to try it with a photo with a white background to see if I can do it properly.

Here is how mine turned out:

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