Step 9: Using The History Brush Tool

To add some color back into the image, we are going to use the History Brush to paint the ornament back into the image by using the rich colors snapshot. Not only does this add some color, it eliminates all the grain that was put into the ornament when we blended layers.

■ To select the rich colors snapshot for painting purposes, click in the snapshot activation box next to the snapshot at the top of the History box, as shown in Figure 4.16. Clicking this box sets the history state as the source for the History Brush tool. To see what is shown in the rich colors snapshot, click inside the thumbnail. You can now see the rich colors we selected earlier. To compare the saturated version with the original image, click the packard-before.tif thumbnail. To go back to the current history state, scroll all the way to the bottom of the History palette and click in the last state — it should be Hue/Saturation.You should now be viewing a saturated version of the original image.

The source image for painting with the Art History brush is now the rich colors snapshot. Next we need to select the layer where we will paint. We could paint directly on the texture background layer but this would make it difficult to correct over-painting. If we paint on a transparent layer, these mistakes can be fixed, plus we can have tremendous control over how the painted layer looks and is blended with the texture background layer.

■ To make it easy to correct our paint strokes and to give us some extra control over the results, click the paint layer in the Layers palette to make it the active layer.

■ Choose Select ^ All (Ctrl+A) and then Edit ^ Clear to clear the layer to transparency.

■ Choose Select ^ Deselect (Ctrl+D) to remove the selection marquee.

We now have a transparent layer where we can paint the saturated ornament while allowing the textured background layer to show where we don't paint with the History Brush tool.

■ Select the History Brush tool (Y) by clicking it in the Tools palette.

■ Click the Brush Preset picker menu button (the second box from the left in the Options bar) as shown in Figure 4.17. Then select a brush size

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from the drop-down palette shown in Figure 4.18. I suggest starting off with a soft brush around 45 pixels in size. As you paint, you may want to change brush settings. Also, make sure the Options bar shows Mode set to Normal, Opacity to 100%, and Flow to 100%.

■ I now suggest that you maximize your working space and make it as clutter-free as possible by pressing F, F, and then Tab to hide the palettes.

■ To begin painting, press the left mouse button and begin painting inside of the ornament. As you move your cursor, you see that you are painting the saturated ornament onto the background image. If you make a mistake and paint outside of the boundaries of the ornament, you can select Edit >-Step Backward or Edit ^ Undo, or you can select the Background Eraser tool from the Tools palette and touchup anywhere that is needed.

If you click the mouse button often while painting, you can step back a stroke when needed and not have to erase too much of your work. Also, remember that

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you can press the Spacebar to get the Hand tool, which allows you to drag your image when you need to view more of it. Plus, you can zoom in to a size that makes it easiest for you to paint accurately. Using these tips, you should find it a real joy to paint on the image that is totally void of all tool palettes, menus, scroll bars, and so forth.

Besides painting with the History Brush tool, you may want to experiment with the Art History Brush tool. This tool is like the History Brush tool, but it paints with a variety of random brushstrokes much like those seen on paintings done by an Impressionist era painter.

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