Hi & welcome to my PS blog! This blog is for full PS although some steps will also work in PSE. Most actions, unless stated are not PSE compatiable. I do try to make an action for PSE from time to time. I hope you have fun here and learn some things along the way. If you have any questions, just drop me a comment! :O)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

NEW Workflow Action set share....not PSE compatible....

Hey everyone! Well our area is much better now in regards to the fire...FINALLY! The air is still pretty bad outside, but the fires are no longer dangering our area! The weather is MUCH cooler and the humidity has gone up a lot too, all of which are helping the AMAZING fire fighters gain some control! What a reflief finally! So I took some much needed time in CS4 to create my NEW workflow action set.

As I get more comfortable in PS and more confident with my knowledge and ability, my workflow changes. I find that I am doing the same steps to my images. I had some actions recorded already, but found I was tweaking them more than I'd like. So I created a NEW set with the steps I currently do! And as we are always evolving, I'm sure there will be more in the future. But for now, I'm content with this set! And the GREAT thing is that I am no longer using pay actions that I cannot share! I've learned from these great pay actions and tuts online, and have come up with a formula that fits MY needs! And I just have to say because I can, I have not copied these pay actions! Lol! I have taken some of the things I've liked about them, tweaked to my taste and added a lot of my own flare in them! So now I can finally share them with you FAB people!

These actions aren't perfect and I am NOT a pro by ANY means or even close! But this is just what works for me and what I use all the time!

So I'm sure you are wondering WHAT is in the NEW set! :O) If you don't care, scroll down to the link at the bottom. But if you are just starting out, it might be a good idea to read on!

The NEW set includes the following actions...

*MZ's All in ONE...this is the action that I run on 98% of my images. I run this first right after I tweak in ACR and open in CS4. If I know for sure I'm going for a creative edit from the beginning, I may not run this and go to my creative action sets. But many times, I still run the All in ONE action, then run my creative actions.

Layers in the All in ONE are...

Duplicate photo layer for noise reduction or patch work
High pass sharpen...set to 75%
Strong S Curve...set to 30%
Slight S Curve...set to 30%. I know I know...why 2, it's just my thing! :O)
Basic Levels...may need to lower highlight slider and adjust midtone slider.
Dodge/Burn layers...Black mask, paint white where you want to reveal, brush opacity 10-20%.
Mask out Blue cast...I've mentioned my issue with blue casts in my shadows/whites/blacks. Black mask, paint white where you want to remove Blue casts, brush opacity 100%.

*MZ's Selective Color Cast Correction...this action uses the technique of a Selective Color layer (did a tut on this on the blog) and works in the neutrals (which is the key to looking natural) of each color that it removes...or actually replaces! ALL layers have a black mask attached. So you have two choices, invert the mask to white (ctrl/I while the layer mask is active) to have effect on the entire image, then play with layer opacity OR you can paint where you want the color removed for selective color casts. Select brush tool, foreground color set to WHITE (opposite mask color) and paint with a brush opacity between 10-20% where you want to remove the offending color. Low brush opacity is KEY to keeping a natural color correction process! You can then still play with layer opacity. Any colors you do not need to correct should be turned off or deleted to keep file size down!

The layers in this action are...

Remove Yellow...which adds blue!
Remove Blue...which adds yellow!
Remove Magenta...which adds green!
Remove Green...which adds magenta!
Remove Cyan...which adds red!
Remove Red...which adds cyan!
Gotta love the color wheel. Once you get it, it's awesome! :O)

*MZ's Warmer/Cooler...this is just a basic curves layer to add warmth or to cool down an image. There are only 2 layers in the set and both are turned off. To activate, just click on the eye to turn in on. Then you can mask if needed or play with layer opacity!

Layers in the action are...

Warmer...Curves Adjustment layer adding yellow and a hit of red.
Cooler...Curves Adjustment layer adding blue and a hint of cyan.

*MZ'S Sparkly Eye POP...This action duplicates your photo layer, so run on a flattened image. I've already shared this action on the blog, but added it to this set since I find I use it a bit more. ALL layers in this set have a black layer mask. You need to paint on each layer you want to use to have the effect show. I HIGHLY advise going LIGHT with this action and PLEASE do not give your subject crazy wonky eyes, it DOES NOT enhance your photos! Ha! When I use this action, I usually keep my brush opacity between 10-20%. On the sharpen layer, I do usually paint at 100% brush opacity and lower the layer opacity to 50% or less! But you can use a lower brush opacity and just paint more! Whateva floats your boat!

I won't go over all the layers in this set since I already did a post on the blog and it's pretty self explanitory what each layer does! :O)

*MZ's LAB Color POP Action...This action will duplicate your photo layer, so run on a flattened image. I usually color pop toward the end of an edit once I've got my exposure contrast etc where I want it and any color issues corrected (please color correct if needed first or your color pop will be wonky). It will duplicate your photo layer, go into LAB mode (does not flatten the layers), pop colors in LAB curves channels a&b, then convert back to RGB (does not flatten the layers), will set layer opacity to 30% and add a white layer mask. You WILL NEED to mask out skin!

*MZ's B&W Gradient Map...this is a simple and quick 1 layer action that gives you a b&w gradient map. SO easy to do on your own, but I thought I'd add it just in case. If you use this, I HIGHLY suggest running the All in ONE first, then this. Then you can tweak the layers of the All in ONE and see how it's effecting your b&w. For fun, try lowering the opacity of this layer for a fadded look or play with blend modes. MIX IT UP! :O)

*MZ's Luminosity USM (unsharp mask)...I use this on EVERY SINGLE IMAGE I edit! I always do ALL of my editing first and do not run this action until right before saving as a jpeg. This action will duplicate your photo layer (so run on a flattened image), will apply the USM, then will go into the Edit>Fade USM menu and change the blend mode to Luminosity. You'll see tho that they layer blend mode is still set to normal, don't worry! What I love about this technique is that it only sharpens the Luminosity of your shots and not the colors. So it won't make your colors wonky or give you over sharpening halos. It works WONDERS on eyes, but can be a bit harsh on the hair. So sometimes I'll mask out the hair at 30% brush opacity!

*MZ's Resize for Blog 800 wide...Since my blog width is 800 pixels wide, I just created a quick and simple resize. This action just goes into your image size dialog box and resizes to 800 pixels on the wide side! I HIGHLY suggest to duplicate your photo first so that you do not accidentally save a smaller size over your full size image!

*MZ's Resize for Blog 400 wide...I use this action when I am doing vertical shots and I want to put two vertical side by side in a new 800px wide canvas. I will resize both to 400 pixels wide, then copy/paste them into a new canvas! I HIGHLY suggest to duplicate your photo first so that you do not accidentally save a smaller size over your full size image!

MZ's Sharpen for the web...Run this after you've resized your image. This action will duplicate your photo layer, sharpen for the web and attach a white layer mask. If any areas are too sharp, mask them out and be sure to play with layer opacity!

NOTE...on the 2 sharpening actions, larger photos can use a higher opacity and smaller photos will need a lower opacity!

And that is everything that is included in this set!

ALL actions are fully adjustable and are grouped in a folder for your convenience! Remember, actions are ONLY a starting off point. YOU NEED to adjust the layers to suit your taste and image. No image is the same and each needs their own recipe! Play with layer opacity, masking if needed, and blend modes! You can toggle layers on/off to see how they are effecting your image and don't be afraid to turn off/delete some layers. Be creative and make it your OWN! Actions should also be a learning tool. So dissect them. Know what each layer's blend mode and opacity are set to. Go into the settings and color channels (if applicable) and learn what this action is doing to your image. It's the ONLY way to really make it your own and eventually be able to come up with your own workflow that is tailored to you!

I am also working on 2 more action sets. An Overlay set that will give you lots of fun easy to use overlays for many different creative effects. Some will be lighter wash feels, and some will be deeper richer feels. And I'm also really loving the SOFT Cross Process look and am learning how to do it on my own from various different sources. So I'm really excited to get this set going too!

And now for my MZ's Workflow Action set download!

***All actions on the blog from me...MZ (MomaZiggy) are FREE (and always will be) and you may use them for personal or business. But please do NOT share them with others, send them here to the blog to download them. The ONLY reason for this is NOT for traffic (I don't even have a counter lol) but so that anyone needing help or tuts etc, can see the blog and look around. I'm not into fame and fortune (lol) just want to help others that may need it! And please do NOT sell these actions or claim them as your own! I work hard to help others, so please play by the rules! :O)***

Please don't hesitate to post any questions and I'll be happy to help. I hope you enjoy the set and get a lot of use out of them!

And because a post is better with a pics, here are a few from the Santa Monica Pier...


ks photography September 2, 2009 at 2:57 PM  

WOW! Thank you! You have gone to a lot of work for us! I'm excited to give them a try!!
p.s. hopped on here from two peas...so glad you are safe from the fires! I'm hoping the rest of the fire season keeps us all safe...

amymom24 September 2, 2009 at 3:49 PM  

You. are. AWESOME. Thanks so much!!!

Alesha September 2, 2009 at 3:53 PM  

thank you so much, I can't wait to try them out.

scrapulous September 2, 2009 at 4:16 PM  

Thank you!

Melissa September 2, 2009 at 4:31 PM  

You rock!!

LiaL September 2, 2009 at 4:58 PM  

Not PSE compatible? :( so sad!

Mindy September 2, 2009 at 6:06 PM  

Love your Santa Monica pier pics! Any chance you may be able to bring these to us that are PSE compatible sometime in the future? :)

Brian, Shelya, and Blythe September 2, 2009 at 6:59 PM  

Thanks Crystal! You're just so awesome :-)

~~JAZ~~ September 2, 2009 at 7:02 PM  

Thank you so much!! I can't wait to try it out!!

momaziggy September 2, 2009 at 11:24 PM  

Hi everyone. You are very welcome for the set and I'm just starting to work on one of the 2 I have planned, possibly a 3rd! :O) Too many ideas, too little time!

Sorry that these aren't PSE compatible. I used LAB Mode, Selective Color Adjustment layers and a bunch of Curves Adjustment layers in the various actions in this set. I probably COULD get them PSE compatible, but there are 10 actions in the set. So I'd have to do each one seperate (which takes a LOT of time), figure out how to make them the same in PSE and well, I have 2 kids and baby sit another and need another 20 hours in the day as it is. Lol! If I can find the time I'll try. But the blog is mainly full PS actions. I will however from time to time post a PSE action! So sorry guys, not enough time in the day to do it all! But I hope this doesn't prevent you from coming back to the blog. Some tuts/tips etc will work in PSE!

Suzihastwo September 3, 2009 at 12:59 AM  

I'm so glad to hear you and your family are doing well with the fires.

You are the action queen! I love your tuts and actions and I use them all.the.time. You are so generous and letting us play for free. Thank you and can't wait to try them out!

Jeannie D. September 3, 2009 at 4:28 AM  

I know what you mean about not having enough time in the day!
These are awesome actions but...I have pse6 so sad :( would love to see what you could come up with for that program sometime would be very interested in them.
Jeannie D

Jackie's Shot September 3, 2009 at 4:41 AM  

Your help here is so very generous and I am so thankful. Love your carnival or amusement park pictures with your processing. Thank you for the big share. ~Jackie

katieFLapple September 3, 2009 at 4:56 AM  

Thanks so much for sharing these! :)

Catherine September 3, 2009 at 8:06 AM  

You are so talented and so GIVING! I am going to blog about you and your website today! Thank you so much!

Catherine September 3, 2009 at 8:06 AM  

You are so talented and so GIVING! I am going to blog about you and your website today! Thank you so much!

Jennifer O. September 3, 2009 at 8:17 AM  

Can't wait to try them out!

Julie Law September 3, 2009 at 11:44 AM  

Thank you so much! Such generosity is awesome to see, in this day and age :D

Jennifer September 3, 2009 at 8:17 PM  

THANK YOU!!! Yet again-awesome!

Alysha September 4, 2009 at 8:10 AM  

Thank you!!! i'm soooo excited to try it out!!!

Teresa September 4, 2009 at 10:11 AM  

THANK YOU Crystal! I really love the pier pix and enjoyed the blog. Can't wait to see what you come up with next. :-)

Ragan September 11, 2009 at 8:07 AM  

Wow, you rock! Thanks so much for sharing :)

Kevin & Ashley September 15, 2009 at 11:41 AM  

I am so glad to hear that your family is safe from the horrible fires!

You are such an amazing person to share all of your talent with us! You ROCK!!! I have to say that I was SOOOO excited I downloaded them & started playing with them before I could even comment! They are awesome! I am in LOVE! You have taught me so much! I can't thank you enough for your sweet work & generosity!

momaziggy September 15, 2009 at 3:10 PM  

You are SO welcome Ashley and I thank you for being so generous with your appreciation. It's because of people like you that keep me going and helping! So thank YOU! :O)

Linda October 7, 2009 at 3:00 PM  

I have been playing with your actions and have to tell you that they are probably the most useful actions I have ever used...pair this up with your tutorials and I promise you I have learned more about how to edit photos than all the playing I've done to date. Thank you so much for your generosity. People like you are one in a million.

momaziggy October 9, 2009 at 10:59 AM  

Linda....thank you SO much for your kind words. You made my day and that is one of the nicest things anyone has ever said to me. THANK YOU! It brings my heart so much joy to help others. And that's why I do the blog. So thank you for letting me know I helped. It's what keeps me going. I hope you have a wonderful weekend! :O)

Stacey December 11, 2009 at 11:55 PM  

Thank You!!

Kerry December 13, 2009 at 3:18 AM  

Thank you, thank you, thank you! :)

studio four13 December 19, 2009 at 3:48 PM  

Hi i just ran across your blog (linked over from clickinmoms. LOVE IT. Learning tons!!!!1
I'm such a newbie but do spend hours on photoshop and am always fighting the jpeg vs. raw deal. You convinced me after I saw some pics I shot today and being stingy with my memory card shot in Jpeg. Majorly overexposed shots that could have been salvaged in ACR but nooooo I decided to jpeg it. Oh well lesson learned. Anyhoot I'm also new to ACR and have never figured how to batch process in ACR. HOW do you do it? Help.

momaziggy December 21, 2009 at 9:27 AM  

Hi! Yes, RAW is amazing and really much easier! I open all the images in the same light, edit the first one, then hit select all and sync and then usually just select Basic from the drop down menu and it will apply all the basic edits you made on the 1st image to the rest! I hope that helps and enjoy the world of RAW! :O)

Shelly at Aperture of My Eye June 21, 2010 at 10:45 AM  

Thank you so much for your hard work, time and effort! I can't wait to try this out!

Jessie Gray July 18, 2010 at 8:55 AM  

I found a link to one of your tutorials on Clickinmoms.com, I've since been slacking on my diaper and kid duty today while looking at all your great tips :) Thanks so much I love stumbling across blogs with great information and these actions are the icing on the cake, Thanks so much you're amazing :)

momaziggy July 19, 2010 at 11:04 AM  

Thank you so much girls! I'm glad to help. I have several tip posts coming up and lots of action reviews! Just trying to get through the sale of the actions and creating them for PSE then I'll start posting the others I have lined up! Hope everyone is having a FAB summer!

Canon Novice August 5, 2010 at 6:38 PM  

wow !~ .. thank you ! .. I found u thru Click n moms x

momaziggy August 5, 2010 at 7:19 PM  

Hi and welcome to the blog. I'm glad you found me from CM! Hope you like it! Feel free to browse all the older pages and download any of the free actions and I have 1 set for sale...a full version and a PSE version! :O)

tinetinesmom March 5, 2011 at 1:16 PM  

Thank you so much! I've been using PSE and just upgraded my computer and purchased CS5. I got a great deal on CS5 from Amazon during that Feb promotion. Now to see if I can get these installed and use them! Thanks again!

momaziggy March 5, 2011 at 9:06 PM  

CONGRATS on CS5. You might be a bit overwhelemed at first but stick it out because it's AMAZING! I have other freebies throughout the blog so look around. I also have a set for sale if you want to check them. Enjoy CS5!

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About my PS Blog

Hi, my name is Crystal and I am addicted to Photoshop. I have PSCS4 and it's my other half. I love photography, but sometimes I think it's a means to edit!

So I thought it would be fun to have a place to post the free action sets I record, tips and tricks that I learn in PS and tuts for various different types of photo editing.

I hope you enjoy and find my PS blog helpful and if you have any questions, leave me a comment with your questions and your email address and I will get back to you!

Happy editing!

About Me

My photo
I am a stay at home to 2 great girls. My older daughter Haylee just started middle school and my younger daughter Avyree is in 1st grade! I have been married 11 years to my hubs Eric. I got my first DSLR June 31, 2008 and have been hooked ever since! My style is primarily Lifestyle! I like to take a natural and real life approach to my images! I want them to remind me of WHO my girls were when they were little, not just what they looked like. I love to edit and my editing style is always evolving and changing! I like variety and photography is a means to edit! I shoot Canon (full frame) and almost only primes. I pull out my wide angle zoom from time to time! Thanks for stopping by and I hope you like our story...
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