Basic Photo Retouching in Photoshop 7

When working with Photoshop 7, it's easy to get carried away because the software is so capable. Some of the best and most productive things that you can do, however, are simple. These simple touch-ups will improve the look of the photos substantially and also improve your understanding of Photoshop and how to use it.

Photoshop Elements 7 is a more affordable version of the popular Photoshop software, which is aimed specifically at home users. Although this is a more limited version of the software, it's still very capable and there are lots of different things you can do to touch the photos up.

There are a number of basic photo retouch techniques which can be applied to your photos. Deciding which ones you want to apply will help to improve the look of your photos and make them a much higher quality.

Step 1: Fixing Imperfections

Adobe provides several tools for improving your photos by getting rid of imperfections; these include a healing brush and clone tool. Both of these tools can be used to remove any imperfections and elements of the photo you don't like.

Both the healing brush and the clone tool are effective at removing most imperfections, as long as they are small. This means that they can be used to remove pimples, scratches and sometimes even birthmarks. Select the clone brush and choose where you want to copy the part of the image from by holding down Control and Clicking. Then, you can use this as a normal brush painting over the imperfection which will be covered up with the sample you have just selected.

The healing brush is ideal for fixing slightly larger imperfections while the clone brush is better for smaller areas and imperfections.

Step 2: Removing Red Eye

If you are taking a photo with the flash on, then there's a good chance that you will end up with photos suffering from red eye. Red eye is caused because the light from the flash enters the eye where it reflects and bounces back, giving a red glow. This makes your photos look unnatural, which is why you should learn how to remove red eyes in Photoshop elements 7.

Select the red eye removal tool in Photoshop elements 7, and then use this to brush the pupil of the affected eyes. Various settings also make it possible to darken or increase the size of the pupils.

Step 3: Straighten Photos

If the photos were taken at an angle, then it's possible to straighten them by selecting the straighten tool out of the tool box. This makes it possible to rotate the photos so that they are then straight.

Select the straighten tool and then draw a line along something which should be straight in your im

Step 4: Cropping Photos

Cropping photos is one of the most simple things that you can do, but it can completely change the look of your photo. This makes it a very important skill to master. To crop photos in Photoshop 7, first click the cropping tool in the tool palette, then drag a box around the part of the image that you want to keep (and double click inside the selection). Try to make sure that the photo will be able to fill the page when it's printed out.

The crop tool is very easy to use; simply select the crop tool and then draw a box around whatever it is you want to keep in the image. Once you are happy, double click to remove the rest of the photo.

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