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Smart Objects & Oil Paint Filter

Lesson 15 from: Painting With Adobe Photoshop

Jack Davis

Smart Objects & Oil Paint Filter

Lesson 15 from: Painting With Adobe Photoshop

Jack Davis

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Lesson Info

15. Smart Objects & Oil Paint Filter


Class Trailer

Day 1




Why Do Expressive Painting


Adobe Bridge Setup & Image Optimizing


Jack's Painting Presets


Enhancing Source Images


Photo Hand Tinting & Workflow Options


Working with Brushes & Palettes - Part 1


Lesson Info

Smart Objects & Oil Paint Filter

I'm gonna start off where we left off yesterday which was the tes talking about this oil paint filter in a photo shop came in with a push up six and still there in the current photo shop it's awesome it's great actually was you could download it as a special plug in with a different name and previous versions of photo shop like I said yesterday that it's kind of a no brainer no matter what you do update to the current for shop it's the cheapest thing that you'll d'oh photography and now art and painting is your passion there's no reason for you not to as I mentioned just right now the fact that you have a camera built into photo shop is worth the price of admission fact that camera has a healing brush built into it worth the price of admission the upright filter in the condo b camera raw worth the price of admission all these things are just absolutely amazing so this filter um has found on your filters but actually before we do that let's go back to this thing that I mentioned yesterd...

ay and was brought up already today the fact that when you bring images from adobe camera raw or from light room there's really no downside for you to bring in your image as a smart object smart objects by definition what a smart object is is a layer in photoshopped that remembers everything about its existence prior to it becoming a smart object which is a very nebulous answer but it's probably the most accurate because what that means is if I had five layers and footer shop I could actually select those five and say um come over here right click on it and I could say convert to smart object so one set of layers could be turned into a smart object I could then run a filter on that set it would still remember the fact that it was five layers it's going to look like one but I double click on the icon and it would open up let's actually just do that as an example so if I wanted to I could come up here you'll notice here that I now have my icons at the bottom of my layers palate that was we didn't have that yesterday so I'll come up here and we'll do something like uh we'll do a little brightness and contrast and we'll just do a little you know, brightness and contrast down and you know, do something like that so now I've got something going on here maybe I do retouching I'm gonna add some little hair strokes or strands or something like that what you do is you can take any set of layers and photoshopped shift click to select them all right click on them and say convert to smart object it's now going to collapse them down they're not going to look like they're one layer like you flattened it, which you do all the time, right? You got ten layers now you want to sharpen all ten layers you could do this like them, turn it into a smart object, continue to filter it when whatever you want to do on it, but if you double click on that layer, it says it could be a little clear, says after editing file contents says, I don't even know what I'm doing why you're telling me after I'm done? I don't know what I'm doing, it should be saying what is going to do is open up the file the way it was prior to becoming a smart object in this case, it was a layered, photoshopped document. If I'd brought in something from illustrator adobe illustrator as a smart object, a double click on it, it would send me back into adobe illustrator I could reset the type close it it would come back in reapply all the filters I done to it, you're going to bring in, uh, video as a smart objects a matter of fact that's how you're gonna work with video and photo shop, which, by the way, photo shop c c has a complete video editor built into it that's awesome, great awesome, fantastic pre no cost, no obligation there's complete video editing in there current light room five allows you to edit not only trim video enhanced video but bring the video together into smooth transitions movies you can now put clips together using the slideshow feature in light room if you didn't know that by my class on light room from creative life dot com anyway so it's going to say doing that here it re opens it up I could tweak the image do whatever I want to it when I close it it's going to send it back to where it was that's what that little dialog box wass so smart objects and uh just go ahead and do that actually what we're going to do because this is actually this also shows you that you can put a smart object within a smart object this you can bury them in there if you wanted to but in that case a smart object remembers wherever whatever it was before it came if it's a stacked layer document it will re open it up in the layers you could manipulate it close it save it when it says it it'll come back into a single layer if it's coming from another program like illustrator it will come in and allows you to go back to illustrator edit it, bring it back in the photo shop these and most of the vast majority of all your images are going to come either from a dopey camera or from light room if you clicks we talked about yesterday that little open image down in the bottom of a dopey camera should say open object if you just simply hold down the shift key it switches from open image to open object that's the shortcut um and because of that or if you're in light room you're going to go down to your film strip right click open in photo shop as a smart object at the bottom don't just open in photo shop or edit and photoshopped could end the bottom and you're going to see open a smart object when you're in light room because these came from either adobe camera or from light room when you double click here it's going to take it back into that overcame a raw even if it came from photo shop it's still going to go and open an open camera don't became a raw because it doesn't want to confuse you with your in light room you're in photo shop doing retouching you want to tweak a slider if it send you backto light when we're going to say no wait a minute I was I was not but who and get confusing so what it does is it takes you to a side trip over to adobe camera since they're completely compatible with each other that's why you'll always know that light room in adobe camera going to be compatible those engines because if you're a light room user when you want to edit those sliders you'll edit it in and it all became a wrong. So here I am and this is where we were just a second ago where I could tweak it I could even come up here, turn it into you know, a grayscale document. Um I could come up here and do that you'll notice I added makeup as part of that it's a black and white image but I added makeup which reminds us of that painting we did yesterday of my mom, right? So I actually added makeup as part of this image. Okay, so you can in terms of your re touching, I needed to solidify, you know, the uh they're purple lipstick had gotten worn off and it was kind of blotchy, so we had to come up here and fix her lipstick as part of our retouching. Anyway, um as a smart object, the great thing about bringing your images in a smart objects one you have access to all your sliders continue to fine tune it retouch it not destructively great, awesome fantastic to the benefit of opening up your images as a smart object or converting a bunch of layers into smart objects or bringing something in from illustrator or even bringing a video clip in is a smart object is now whenever you apply a filter to that image or scale it or create a collage word we're needing combine multiple images and you need to scale it up and down. Maybe you need to do an image warp or twist to it anything you do to that smart object is non destructive, including scaling it down or rotating it or doing anything that you do too. It is not destructive because it's always going to remember where it came from in the case of filters, which is what we're going to do right now with the oil paint filter it means that we can do a painting to this and it's still going to remember everything about its raw nature where it came from. It also means when you apply a filter to a smart object that after the fact you can change the parameters of the filter, which normally you can't do filters air normally destructive you playa filter to it you'd have to do it in layers you know I wanted apply six layer six different filters to this file I would duplicate it if I wanted to maintain the flexibility of all those six steps and maintain their o passed your blend mode, I'd have to do multiple layers, filter each one and then combine those somehow through opacity and blend moz when you apply filters to smart objects, it actually allows you to not only run one filter but two three, four unlimited number of filters and change their opacity and change their blend mode and do this all to one single image without ever doing any damage to it. It also means is you're going to see in a second that you can do this. What now? What I call a smart filter recipe of a bunch of different filters, and if you want to share this effect with another portrait over here, you literally khun drag and drop all the filters, all the parameters, all the blend modes all the opacity to another image that's also a smart object, and I'll automatically apply it. We're going to be touching on actions today, we're going to create some actions because those of you who aren't using actions, which is probably the vast majority of you out there, I know who you are, you should be using actions because that leads me to one of my main mantra is that if you ever do something in photoshopped adobe camera light room that you like that makes you go ooh or wow, figure out how to automate that process because if you're like most photographers, most artists you spent your day doing the same bloody thing over and over and over again and that's not why god made photo shows the reason why is so that you can automate your workflow do creative work and then actually go home at night which is an interesting concept that most of us don't know anything about okay so we have a smart object we brought it in from um from the bridge we found our images we brought it into adobe camera we did our fantastic jiggery pokery to it this is now ready for a painting ok and now what we're gonna do is I'm going to do it manually actually well I'm just gonna run the action since you guys have in action this is going to be our first action and if you have not installed the presets that I've given you on my facebook fan page you won't find them here if you just take that actions and do a commando or dragged on the program you'll actually going tto find while painting action sampler beta it will be there if not you may have to come up here to this pop out in the upper right adobe has done a great job of all there if you ever want to extend any palate or any dialogue box or anything if you know there are more options associated with it it's always going to be in the upper right it always being old pop out so up here here is my painting action sampler beta two thousand thirteen that's what you are downloading I was part of that process and here are the actions that are part of this free set so sketch we talked about we did a little sketch yesterday we'll do that again today we've got the paint enhancing edge and m bossing and pasta and bossing will do all those things today we have the ability to do that jess oh breaststroke overlay I've built an action that will automate that process for you all presupposes that you've got my jess oh pattern already installed because it's going to call upon that but this is when we're looking at here smart object painting one and what that's going to dio is and it's in uh beta these air all these ones or beta you guys that it want freebies we're watching for free not purchasing the title you get the free bait us people by the title get the actual shipping ones which are even cooler in crew view but um I don't want you to think that you're a second class citizen but you are no you're not we're just we love you just as much and this is what that did let's look at our hair and everything else like that here is before and after before after this is what that smart filter um action did and it actually did probably be it probably if we come over here and look at the action and untwist it it did these different steps and all the parameters associated with it the first one is that it's going to run the median filter so since I know all of you are gonna have that you don't have to memorize this recipe but you're welcome to it ran the medium filter median filter on it the nice thing about looking at the actions when you actually do the twisty tie and dissected you'll see the actual settings for everything in terms of this particular recipe so the media that three pixels that for some reason you definitely don't want to download it but you want to repeat it the median filter and again will I'll show you in the actual dalla box the median filter gets rid of subtleties leaving edges razor sharp it's kind of like smart blur and their other filters that do this so the median simplifies a photograph no painter would ever paint every single blemish in a portrait a matter of fact they would do everything that they can to get rid of that you know the anomalies they simplify it we simplify everything whether it's a landscape or whatever you do nobody gets in there and does all that a little minutia so the median filter gets rid of subtleties and leaves behind the edges the oil paint filter coming on here is, um these are the parameters actually that's not giving you a whole lot of useful information so I'll open that up so you can see it but that's the oil paint filter that is giving us all our little brushstroke especially for things to hair but it's often skin it is the oil painting it's the brushstrokes wonderful for little furry friends. Some people were talking about painting pets um, you probably may be able to get away with just this fake filter for your pets and be done because the last thing you want to do is for and for this does amazing some people call her too for filter because it just does such a great job with hair. I will do what we're going to be doing today with porch it's would be the same thing I would do for a pet. I will use this filter for a lot of the fur and those things, and then I'm gonna, um, augment that with hand brush strokes, enough so that we suspend the disbelief of a person saying that it's a painting because there's so much organic work in there, but when it comes to the details, whether on a furry friend or eyes on a portrait, we're going to take advantage of a filter. Okay, well also paint from from scratch on some of these things when we get to an expressive portrait later on, then the embossed filter the embossed filter they're going to notice when we get to the um uh oil paint filter, you can automatically have it at a sheen to the brush strokes uh, not pretty so I don't use that feature most people do because they don't think that you can do the strokes and then add that kind of embossing after the fact by using an a boss filter. There isn't a boss filter so that's going to give me my am boss and pasta that raised edges to it next we're going to that supplying that blending mode to this little um boss thing so rather than m boss the color just adding it as an overlay and then what they're calling the filter gallery here is, um is going to be our extra filters it's a lot hard to navigate this when I'm in this zoomed up mode for you guys and the first one here and filter effect and it's not even tell both ears the can't see mum, I'm sorry I've got a zoom out because it's just too complicated the first one is rough pastels that's giving us the skipping along the edge where we're seeing it as if they brush the dry brush technique is giving us this extra little um uh brush texture that skipping over the surface and then I've also got what's known as the texturizing here, so okay not tenderizer, the texturizing er and rough pastels those all now let's go back to our layers palate is what is giving us from this to this just the oil paint filter if we were just I can actually come over here and turn off each one of these different options so you can see what each one is doing. So here is the median filter. You can see how it's simplifying it's getting rid of the pores in the shine it's just taking off the harsh edge. This is the oil paint by itself and you can again see how it's simplifying the image if we come over here and look at our hair, okay, that beautiful hair you can also see how the image is got it's just doing a little bit of breaking up how beautifully that does that it actually looks better hair this way you could actually even use that. Not even thinking about painting it's just beautiful here them boss is going to give us a little bit of a raise it's kind of hard to see, but it's actually giving us a little bit of raised nature to that brush strokes the first filter gallery, which is that rough pastel that's giving us this wonderful skipping of the media across the surface. Without that the oil paint filter, I don't think just doesn't look like a painting it's like kind of a smudging, and then the texturizing on top is going to add that texture to the flat areas of tone so that's how I created this recipe teo in one fell swoop go from this to this okay, if we open up something like the oil paint, you can actually double click so again, this is our recipe original raw file brought is a smart object you notice I do have a layer mask so I can even target this, which is nice for things like eyes where you made even more detail double click on the oil paint name let's look specifically at that dialogue box for it because you will probably want to customize this filter for each individual photograph my action and this beta action just does it what I think is a nice generic setting from most photographs, but you're going to be working with some low res files, some high rez files and specifically this option right here this dialogue option of stylization that you can think of almost as a detail slider. So how much detail you want versus stylization of it in other words, how much you wanted to go crazy in terms of these brush strokes. So if we look at as an example taking this down, you're going to notice that the eyes and I can see individual eyelashes if I take this all the way up past even what I would do, you're going to notice that I've lost the eyelashes and it's going to start you know, blending a piece of hair and with the eyebrows and stuff so it's up to you how much stylization you want I mentioned that shine that I don't like this is the default setting for the filter and how it works and this is why people don't use it for portrait because as a default if you don't understand what the sliders they're doing that ain't pretty it's painterly and from that standpoint you kind of say well that's really looks like nice is thick paint on that I if I was doing a speculum highlight there are some things that work really great with that that thickness that shine and it could be that you even like it in the hair could be you like it on your furry friends but on things like skin tone you would never want the brush strokes to be seen those brush strokes are still there it's the shine that brings them out so I only have I think a point one shine on here I do not use that default setting in terms of these other settings here I typically in terms of this have them all you'll notice this action usually the stylization is somewhere in there and upon the resolution of your file but I've purposely just for simplicity cleanliness, scale bristle detail yanked him all over to the side if you want you can experiment with them we'll just take that up here the cleanliness is kind of that simplification so it's doing its own version of the median filter so even though I'm using the medium filter, I usually we'll take that up because again, that's a painter would not paint in those subtleties. So that's, what cleanliness is doing scale is you almost going to see no effect whatsoever in terms of scale scale? You'll see if I take my shine up scale is the scale of these little repeat patterns and, uh, because we're not using the shine if I take that down, you can see that that scale really is doing very little to it. I like the most stylized scale, so you can see I've got it all the way up, not doing very much at all. Fortunately going on about that and brush detail, you can actually kind of simplify it a bit, mohr but you'll see that that also isn't doing a whole lot in this process brush detail, you're seeing a little bit more if you look in here, you really don't want to look in here. Yeah, so this, um scale is doing a significant effect when you have your shine enabled if you have your shine not enabled, then again the scale is doing virtually nothing, okay, so that's why again, I don't use I use appoint one, so everything basically you're maxing out all these settings if you're like me and then I'm using the sal ization to bring it as much detail as I want the thing that is good to remember um that's actually is really nice about using these smart objects is there's nothing stopping you from doing one version of it that's very very rough that's for say that works for the hair and the skin and everything else duplicating that just changing that one parameter and taking that stylization down for the eyes and then using a good old fashioned layer mask to bring in a tight detail in a loose detail artifact will do that right now on this one because it's a good thing to remember it gives you absolute flexibility in this process it's not like you're going well I like it really stylized cause I like those long strokes on the hair but the eyes I can't see the detail no reason why you can't use both okay so far so good makes sense okay so with this let's actually cancel it because we've already got this going on and the other ones will just show you that rough pastel case you want to customize it okay this rough pastel if we turn off the eyes this is what's known as the filter gallery so this is what it's doing and again I love it across rough pastels are this is a perfect use for rough pastels looking over here you can customize your stroke length a stroke detail of course all my settings are perfect all of yours will be wrong so that's what I've given you an action this right here this is the scaling the relief in the light direction this is something to keep in mind when doing it because again you're going to be using other textures on top of this so I've got my light coming from the top right and so my textures typically come from the top right if you're adding something like this thick in pasta uhm texture to it then you wouldn't want the light to come from one direction for the filter and then another source for text her overlay so again keep that in the back of your mind this texture that we're using here is the's are the ones that are built into it brick burlap in sandstone god bless adobe these have been in there for four hundred years they were made by wonderful engineers long gone from adobe late at night with not nearly enough financial support and they're not as good as they could be but looking over here that little teeny icon it's remember that's how you can get more options load texture and this is where you confined the texture that I've given you as part of the pre sets my canvas which is a real photographic texture of real canvas so you can load that in the problem is I can't have that texture loaded in as part of an action, so when I created the action I create an action that will work at any time in any situation you just click on it and it will create the effect so we're going to go with that for now rather than load that in what you'd have to do if you did want to use it here is you would put in that canvas in that location and you would also um put it in this other filter, which is the texturizing you've never used the texturizing the texture riser which is giving us our skin tone here is the texturizing before or after you noticed the rough pastel I'm only using it to do the edges it does not do the interior of the skin tone so I needed a way how to do that and so I used texturizing and that allows me to put the same texture into the subtle areas actually it's doing the entire document in here also from top right also canvass also yuk unload a texture. So if you did want to use my canvas texture, you would use those the two locations where you would refer print it so that again is before after before after I think it's cool the one thing that you will do with each one of the the images that you apply this to customize anything you want, you can also if asan example of if that texturizing is a little bit too much on the flat areas, I mentioned that you can come up here to any of the filters like I just did double click on it the name and it opens up the dialog box but oftentimes you won't need to actually do that. You can come over here to the right hand side cause this little option when it comes to smart filters, allows you to edit both the opacity and blend mode of any one of these specific filters. Justus if they were on their own layer cool or as we say in japan, so goy this name okay, so that's very, very cool because I could just come up here and say, you know, what I want to do is I want to bring that down sogo is equivalent of bitchin and japanese if you were wondering, so I can just change down the opacity of it. So this is completely customizable by you because they're being applied to our smart object, they're all non destructive, you confined to knit, they're cool, they're groovy, they're pitching also when you find two in this recipe, as I mentioned before, so I'm going to take that down let's even take down mate, possibly they uh I wantto just take down the option for that rough pastel you're going to see that's goingto you know how how much you want that little skipping across is khun b done there um but it's all customizable and as I mentioned let's just do it here let's just go ahead while we're at it on this filter before we customize it anymore I want to open up the world's cutest daughter who's gotten ridiculous glasses on just for me because she loves her father let's do our our tango here we'll do our part of our tango I'm just going to rush through it that's how we started off yesterday case you weren't with us so we're gonna draw a r I n using a nice post crop and yet keeping our highlights nice and clean in case you've never used the highlight slider it so you don't get your muddy along the edge well, come up here and way had a smooth that detail out luminous luminous noise reduction is the equivalent of like the median filter in photo shop, so for softening skin tone you could do some kind of mme or aggressive um luminous noise reduction will actually take up our sharpening again we're so I'm going to kind of doing my enhancing for paintings now so um I'm gonna go ahead and kind of exaggerate this knowing that we're gonna paint it even though I have that kind of built into my um work flow so here you can see how much I can simplify and get rid of, you know, poor structure and noise and everything else by coming up and doing a little bit more aggressive noise reduction specifically the luminosity noise yes with lower his files it would also help with low grass files absolutely in other words, you're going to get rid of some of the pixel ization that's another great reason for doing a painting from a photograph? It could be one it's a better story to its challenge because of color tone three it could be that dude you're kidding me that cellphone shot you want to make a you know a by foot canvas rap go for it and that's an excellent way and so this process as well as the first steps that are built into that action, that median filter will do just that as well. So this is just showing you that you can do it as a starting point right from within uh adobe camera or leg looking down here here is remember that open object I mentioned before you can either doing that by holding down the shift key that's a toggle that will shift it yesterday I mentioned that you could click on these what are known as the workflow options and I've actually changed it so my dobie camera defaults to smart objects as an opening method again in light room you're going to right click and open a smart object down in your film strip so it's going to default mine always says open object so I click on that here is my image in um photo shop here is what I just created I love now I've customised it it's perfect I'm going to take this word smart filter and just drag it to another open document and I'm done great now I'm done this is obviously a much lower resolution file so what am I going to do to customize that stylization in here? I'm gonna go to that oil paint and I'm gonna find tune that setting that stylization because I don't need that much stylization okay, because of this image has got just much lower resolution to begin with so I moving that down it's going to make it maur appropriate terms of that detail I'm also seeing here because of the low resolution nature of this I don't need nearly as much of that um, rough passed out in other words, that, um stroke length I don't need anywhere near as much of that stroke length, okay, I could bring that down and even the scaling so you can come up here and customize any of these settings in terms of making them appropriate for your image that's a really low res file so that's no, the other thing that's really cool. Actually, you know what let's do this let's? Leave it back. I'm goingto back up to it. This is how it was brought in to aggressive. This is your question right here that you just asked. Um, resolution the scale of this original is just too small. This is what's known as a procedural nondestructive filter effect. It's going to apply does not care what is inside this layer it's just doing its trick. It's a much lower risk file if I come over here to image image size and I come up here and do exactly what you said, let's go four hundred it's going to reapply the settings at that resolution. And now it's appropriate and it's four hundred percent bigger. And so now I can do a big print. Another chicken skin moment. Okay, that's, that's really, really, really, really professionally good looking to quote the lander. So and now the hair, even though there's still not the detail. I mean, I'm not you're not going to get, you know detail where there wasn't detail, but in terms of being able to get away with it. And now that that painting is now more appropriate to the scale of my photograph, great so there's another benefit to using smart objects. It also has another benefit, because the scaling algorithms in photo shop see see one of the main new benefits poster children of photo shop cc is they've improved the scaling algorithms for scaling up your ability to scale up and do things that have been done with third party filters in the past is now dramatically better. You can do ridiculous amounts of scaling, and, if you notice in the image size dialog box, when you grow up here, you can re sample. And when you do enlargements, you, khun reduce noise at the same time that you do it. Okay, this probably wasn't even set up to do the best one, but this reduced noise as part of preserved detail enlargement is brand new to photo shop, cc and it's. Awesome. So exactly, for those low resolution that's. Another reason why you may want to use photo shop cc

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

Painting Files

Ratings and Reviews


Okay, I'll be first. Jack has an easy, approachable way of teaching. It was more like being in the room with him, watching over his shoulder as he created something utterly new and exciting. Even when he worked on images he had done many times, I never sensed boredom or a lack of enthusiasm. He was patient with questions and answered them completely. I hope Jack enjoyed this way of teaching as much as the world enjoyed watching. Maybe he'll find more to share. I know I'll sign up for his next one. This workshop inspired me to start creating art again. I'm slowly losing my sight and sad to say, I was starting to let it get to me. As I watched Jack, I tried just a few things and realized that I can do this. Digital art is much easier for me than pencil and paper because of the technology. I miss the pencil and paper drawing, of course, but this is so much FUN! The techniques that Jack shared are wonderful and the results rockin' ... or as Jack says, bitchin'. Thanks to Jack and creativeLIVE I'm back in my head in a good way.


Okay, I'll be first. Jack has an easy, approachable way of teaching. It was more like being in the room with him, watching over his shoulder as he created something utterly new and exciting. Even when he worked on images he had done many times, I never sensed boredom or a lack of enthusiasm. He was patient with questions and answered them completely. I hope Jack enjoyed this way of teaching as much as the world enjoyed watching. Maybe he'll find more to share. I know I'll sign up for his next one. This workshop inspired me to start creating art again. I'm slowly losing my sight and sad to say, I was starting to let it get to me. As I watched Jack, I tried just a few things and realized that I can do this. Digital art is much easier for me than pencil and paper because of the technology. I miss the pencil and paper drawing, of course, but this is so much FUN! The techniques that Jack shared are wonderful and the results rockin' ... or as Jack says, bitchin'. Thanks to Jack and creativeLIVE I'm back in my head in a good way.

a Creativelive Student

Thank you Jack Davis. Having tried to paint, both in the real and digital worlds, this is the first time I have seen a comprehensive demonstration of the techniques and philosophy for the artist. This course is valuable for any aspiring artist, digital or otherwise. By the way thank you CreativeLIVE for the long form training space you offer both the teachers and students. Jack is inspirational, talented and sometimes funny. Watching him paint in real time is by far the most impressive sight but the information about why is more valuable. Overall this course will give you ideas, knowledge and skills (if you practice). I highly recommend this course for anyone that has tried to paint in the past and was underwhelmed by the results.

Student Work