advanced photoshop

Quick Tip: Graft hair in Photoshop

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Tips & Tutorials, by Anna-lisa Saywell

Enhance details in your model shots, including hair, eyebrows and eyelashes, using Photoshop’s Transform tools

Quick Tip: Graft hair in Photoshop

Grafting is when you borrow one piece of an image and place it in an entirely new area. This is common in commercial retouching when swapping out fabrics and, more importantly, model details. Professional retouchers will use a combination of masking, transforming and blending mode techniques to achieve realistic results.

Such methods are readily deployed, as they offer far more control and flexibility than the Clone tools. Even with the advancements to Photoshop CS6, we’d still recommend working in this way. Swapping out Warp tool application for the new CS6 Liquify tool, when adjusting grafted hair shape and direction, is a great alternative.

Here we’ll show how you can achieve commercial effects ever-so simply in your own digital imaging projects. One thing to remember is that if you are using pervious versions of Photoshop you may encounter some distortion when using the Transform tool.

Step 1: Hair grafting

Quick Tip: Graft hair in Photoshop

Hair grafting is often applied to fix gaps in your model’s hair, especially with the fringe. Remedy this by applying the Lasso tool around your borrowed area, copy, paste and place into your new area. The Transform>Warp tool will help you reshape and Curves can be applied to correct.

Step 2: Eyebrow grafting

Quick Tip: Graft hair in Photoshop

Again use the Lasso tool to select elements that have been copied, pasted and replaced. Set a Darken blending mode to integrate any skin edges, further enhancing with an applied layer mask. The Warp tool should once again be applied to transform shape and direction.

Step 3: Eyelash grafting

Quick Tip: Graft hair in Photoshop

This technique takes more time, as you work individually with separate eyelashes. Copy and paste adjacent lashes, reposition them along the lip of the eyelid and again set the layer blending mode to Darken. You can quickly edit existing skin fringes with a small soft Erasure Brush tool.