Applying Edge Sharpening to your Photograph

Applying Edge Sharpening to your Photograph

In some instances you really want to make the subject in a specific photo pop out at you. This can sometimes be achieved with a lucky shot but for the people who can’t seem to snag that perfect photo there are ways to complete this after the fact. This process can mainly be achieved by the simple sharpening of the edges in the portrait without even slightly sharpening the skin. This sharpening technique will detect all the edges and bored and will apply the sharpening effect only to the edges of the selected area.

First off you must locate the photo you are looking to edit and open it inside Adobe Photoshop. Once you have your desired image selected you will want to take the main layer located in the layer panel and duplicate it using the Duplicate Layer button. There are many ways to go through the process of sharpening a photo for this method you will want to go into the Filter menu and locate Sharpen inside there. Then you will want to click Menu.

We are going to focus on using what is known as luminance sharpening. This technique only sharpens the greyscale data while leaving the color portions completely untouched. In order to do this you will have to switch the image mode to LAB color. This process will undoubtedly change the image mode too much which will ultimately affect the image quality.

In order to bypass this problem you will want to make a duplicate of the image by clicking the Duplicate State button located inside the History menu. The History menu can be found under the Window menu located at the top of Photoshop. Once you have the new image file you will apply a sharpening by using the Smart Sharpen filter on the luminance channel.

You will now want to navigate through Image>Mode>Lab Color to convert the entire image into LAB color. Once you have completed this press Ctrl+1 to select the luminance channel of the photo. Once you have selected this you image will transform to greyscale. At this point you must go to the Filter menu and locate the Sharpen option. Inside Sharpen you will want to click Smart Sharpen. Once you have done this a dialogue box will open and allow you to sharpen your image.

While you are in the Smart Sharpen dialogue box you will want to select Window and tile vertically or horizontally, whichever you prefer. Doing this allows you to view documents, color and greyscale, at the same time. They should appear side by side on your screen now. Click on the window that contains the sharpened image and then click on the Background layer inside the Layers Pallet. Click and drag the layer to the window that contains the original and unsharpened image.

Once you have dragged the image you will see that you are left with two layers inside the Layer panel. You should have one layer with the sharpening applied and one that has no sharpening. If the sharpened image is too sharp you can proceed to create a layer mask for the affected are and use the provided tools to smooth the image out to an acceptable level. Some of this may take a little bit of messing around to get everything perfect.