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Landscaping Gardening with Paint Shop Pro X2

Landscaping Gardening with Paint Shop Pro X2 - Michael Bates does a little bit of gardening in Paint Shop Pro X2 to make the surroundings of his photograph better.

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Corel Paint Shop Pro & Painter

Image one gardening tutorialTaking a photograph of a stately home or castle is a fairly common practise. but sometimes the surroundings don't do the building justice. I don't like the scrawny bush that has occupied the centre of this photograph, but there is something we can do about it. We can fix this sort of issue quite easily with Paint Shop Pro, and of course a similar technique can be used to remove other obstacles in different pictures. Anybody can pick up the Clone tool and fill an area, however you'll get tiling if you aren't careful, so here I'm going to show you how to use it whilst minimising the obviousness of your interference.Picture 2 Gardening tutorial

Step 1. Open your image, right-click the Background layer in the Layers panel and select Duplicate. Then right click the new layer and select Rename and give it a name like Fix or Edit so you can tell which layer is which.

Step 2. First we need to be close enough to the image to see what we are doing, but not so close as to have no idea how everything we are doing blends into the rest of it, so activate the Zoom tool by pressing Z. Then decide where you want to start working, click and hold the left mouse button and drag out a rectangle; this is the area that will fill the screen once you release the mouse button, so make sure you have it big enough to give you the vantage point you need. If you end up being too close just press the right mouse button a couple of times to zoom out a few steps.

Photo 3 gardening tutorialStep 3. Now we can begin removing the bush in the centre of the image, so select the Clone Brush tool by pressing C and we can get started. If you need to pan around the picture at all, you can do so quickly by holding the space bar to change the cursor to a hand and clicking then dragging the picture as if you were moving the paper around.

Step 4. The Clone Brush has pretty much the same options available as the Brush tool, and for this sort of work where we need everything to blend nicely we should set the Hardness to 0. You can set the size as you need by holding the Alt key and clicking/dragging like you did to pan around before but moving the mouse up and down. I also set the step to 1 so as to get the smoothest possible painting, but by default the tool was set to 4, so there is very little noticeable difference. Make sure you use Aligned Mode to keep things simple; with this activated the source will move with your brush as you move it, even when you aren't painting. Whereas with this switched off it automatically snaps back to the original location you set, which is not advisable for this sort of work.

Image sixStep 5. Now I'm going to start with the wall; right-click a point not covered by the bush to set it as your source, then paint as you would normally to fill in the areas covered by the bush. You also need to be careful where the source moves as you don't want to duplicate the bush inside your wall or anything like that, so keep an eye on both parts.

Step 6. If you look carefully at the previous screenshot you will see there are actually now a series of protruding bricks at exact intervals down the wall. This is exactly the sort of thing we are trying to avoid as it gives away your editing. What we want to try doing is removing those, so set a new source nearby and paint Image 4over them with plain brick and do this again for any other repeating details. The repeated brickwork is ok in this particular wall because of the style and shape of it; since it is a corner it is sure to have a straight line of highlighted bricks anyway, but repeated details like lumps, holes and gravelly textures need to be separated out and removed depending on how noticeable they are. Here I removed the lumps and the sampled different bits of the gravelly area to the right to create more variation and remove the tiling in the area I have just painted in.

Step 7. Now for the grass. We want to do the same thing once again but where possible try to follow the lay of the land. However, at this point we are just trying to fill the area with the colour and we'll fix the details properly in a moment. Paint over the bush with various sources, leaving the base where the shrub is actually planted for later.Image 10Image 5

Step 8. As you can see in the previous screenshot there is a lot of tiling here, so what we need to do is start looking at the lay of the land and bringing in varying samples from the surrounding areas to create some realism in our fixed area. If you look at my image there is a band of yellowing grass running alongside the hill to the right, but it ends somewhere behind the bush, so I need to continue that and then finish it off. I also need to remove the tiling and bring in more variation from other parts of the field, making sure everything stays in perspective. What is usually a good idea is to sample something nearby, and then replace the original area with piece of grass a few yards away. This way the area you have edited will definitely be in perspective and the piece you have cloned is no longer right next to it for the edit to look like a duplicate.

Step 9. Finally we are going to remove the base of the plant and the soil that was surrounding it. The reason we didn't do this along with the rest of the edit was because we didn't know what was going to be behind the plant until we created it. This meant that we didn't know what we were going to be connecting the original grass in front of the bush to in terms of the grass behind it. It also meant the bands of grass and lay of the land were difficult to create with any confidence as well. Now we can use the Clone Brush to cover this too, just as we did with the rest of the grass we just created. Fill it with colour then make it more varied by paying attention to the shape of the hill and the perspective it creates and sourcing from other parts of the image. Once that's done you have your finished image.Finished ImageImage 10

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