Performing a Basic Color Makeover (continued)

$ Click and drag the Highlight (right) end of the curve down until the Green value reads approximately 242 in the Sample #1 section of the Info palette.

You are adjusting the highlight end of the curve as that is the portion of the image you are measuring and correcting.

Again, keep your eye on the Info palette.

% View the Color Sampler tool to review the RGB values of the driveway.

You'll discover that, even after your use of the Curves dialog box, your driveway RGB values are R=52, G=78, B=81 — they're definitely still not neutral — which means that your image is still in need of some color correction.

Since you do not have a specific target value for the driveway (such as the 242 value for the diffuse highlight), a good rule to follow in a circumstance like this is to use the intermediate value (the Green value of 75) as your target value

^ Choose Red from the Channel drop-down menu in the Curves dialog box.

When working with this channel, keep your eye on Sample #2 in the Info palette.

& While monitoring the Red value in Sample #2 in the Info palette, click and drag the middle of the curve upward until the Red value reads approximately 75.

Note: Here you are moving the middle of the curve rather than specifically the three-quarter-tone portion because you're assuming that this color imbalance exists throughout all the internal tones of your image.

* Choose Blue from the Channel drop-down menu in the Curves dialog box.

Green is the benchmark, so you can skip him and go to Blue.

( While monitoring the Blue value in Sample #2 in the Info palette, click and drag the middle of the curve up until the Blue value reads approximately 75.

) Click the OK button in the Curves dialog box to apply all the curve-based neutralization corrections.

This completes your neutrals-based color correction, a simple but effective makeover. Contrast your final image with your starting one. Note how the stucco is whiter, the blacktop is blacker, and the image contrast and color saturation are much improved.

Chapter 4: Color Makeovers

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