Post Production Technique from Mario S. Nevado
I’m going to share one of my all time favorite post production techniques.
It originated with methods taught by Mario Sanchez Nevado. I found my favorite technique on his blog in the summer of 2015 and have been using it to some extent in almost all my pieces since. (You can read my interview of Mario here)
It is a simple procedure and creates some great atmospheric effects.
Before & After:
First, create a stamp of all visible layers Ctrl+Alt+Shift+E on a PC, or, Com+Opt+Shift+E on a Mac.
Now make it a smart object by right clicking on the layer and selecting “convert to smart object”. Although this is an optional step, I highly recommend it for reasons that will become clear below.
Set the layer to Soft Light blend mode. This will have an immediate and dramatic effect, but we are not done.
Apply a Gaussian Blur to the layer. In Soft Light mode you can blur quite heavily! Try going way up and see what effect you like. And, because you made the layer a smart object, you can double click on the effect later and adjust the blur as much or little as you want (Gaussian Blur is a destructive effect when used on a non-smart object).
Now play with the opacity of the Soft Light blend until you have an atmospheric effect you like.
Try the same thing with Screen mode instead of Soft Light and see what you can come up with. I have found that less blur is more effective in Screen blend mode.
Also, remember that you can always mask out the effect if it is too much in some areas of your canvas. I often will partially mask out the effect around eyes, faces, and hands. I like them a little more focused.
I’ve had such a fun time playing with this technique that when I interviewed Mario I had to ask if he had more tricks up his sleeve. He did not disappoint. You can find out what he recommends in the exclusive Shift Art interview with Mario.
Comment below with questions or show off your work using this technique!
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