Localized Sharpening

Localized sharpening is one of the easiest and most effective of the power sharpening techniques. Leaving some of the image unsharpened will make the sharpened areas of the image stronger and more noticeable.

1 Duplicate the background layer for your image (your image should be flattened earlier in the print prep); select Layer>Duplicate Layer, and name the new layer "Sharpen Layer." Select Filter>Sharpen>Smart Sharpen to sharpen the new layer.

2 Run the Smart Sharpen filter as suggested in the previous section on "Sharpening."

3 Add a layer mask to the "Sharpen Layer;" click on the add layer mask icon at the bottom of the Layers palette. The new mask will be white everywhere, revealing the sharpen layer everywhere.

4 Select the paintbrush tool, select the default colors and switch these so that the foreground color is black, and paint over the image where you want to hide the sharpening. This allows the sharpening to focus on the important parts of your image.

Edge sharpening If your image has lots of grain or other texture, you may need to perform edge sharpening in order to sharpen well without also sharpening the grain. Grain is common in images shot on some color or b&w negative films, especially high-speed films. The instructions for edge sharpening are available on the web site.

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