Photoshop CS3: Channels and Masking

Photoshop CS3: Channels and Masking


Total Run Time: 6.5 hrs

Knowing how to properly select an image is an essential Photoshop skill whether you're a graphic/web designer or digital photographer. Since Photoshop is equipped with so many choices of tools to isolate and select images, it's hard to know what works best for each situation.


  1. Learn the fundamentals of RGB, LAB and CMYK Channels, and working with Alpha Channels.
  2. Create, refine, test and clean up your masks, plus learn how to composite and blend flawlessly.
  3. Mask like the pros using Quick Mask, Advanced blending, Exposure, Adjustment Layer, and Smart Mask techniques.
  4. Work with the key blend mode features, the Channel Mixer and Color techniques to get the most from your images.
  5. Discover tips and tricks used in the industry everyday that will give you a polished look, save you time, and wow your clients.

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In this Photoshop CS3 tutorial, Justin Seeley teaches you some sure-fire techniques for working with the Channel and Masking tools to achieve the optimal results regardless of how complex the image may be.

Sample clip

Course outline


  1. Overview of the Channels Panel
  2. Viewing Channels in Color
  3. Viewing RGB Color Channels
  4. Working in Lab Color Mode
  5. Viewing CMYK Color Channels
  6. Creating an Alpha Channel
  7. Using an Alpha Channel as a Mask
  8. Modifying a Mask
Chapter 2: MAKING SELECTIONS (40 min)

  1. Overview of the Selection Tools
  2. The Double Life of Selections
  3. Using the Lasso Tools
  4. Using the Magic Wand Tool
  5. Using the Pen Tool
  6. Quick Selection Goodness
  7. Using the Refine Edge Command
  8. Compositing the Selections
Chapter 3: QUICK MASK MODE & MORE (38 min)

  1. Selecting with the Color Range Command
  2. Painting with Quick Mask
  3. Modifying a Quick Mask
  4. Adjusting Levels in Quick Mask Mode
  5. Contract or Expand a Selection
  6. Smooth a Selection & Set Reference Points
  7. Cleaning Up the Selection
  8. Testing the Selection
Chapter 4: CHANNEL MASKING (47 min)

  1. Beginning a Channel Mask
  2. Curves vs. Levels
  3. The Overlay Trick
  4. Refining the Outline
  5. Testing the Mask
  6. Final Clean Up
  7. Compositing Images
  8. Blending a Composite with the Burn Tool
  9. Basic Multiplication
Chapter 5: LAYER MASKING (38 min)

  1. Meet the Masks
  2. Keyboard Shortcuts for Masking
  3. Basic Blending
  4. Creating Adjustment Layer Masks
  5. Creating Smart Filter Masks
  6. Creating Exposure Masks
  7. Clip It Good
  8. The Smart Object Trick
Chapter 6: USING BLEND MODES (41 min)

  1. Introducing Blend Modes
  2. Opacity vs. Fill
  3. Using Blend Mode Shortcuts
  4. Using the Darkening Blend Modes
  5. Using the Lightening Blend Modes
  6. Contrast & Complimentary Blend Modes
  7. Using the Composite Blend Modes
  8. Applying a Blend Mode to a Layer Group
Chapter 7: MIXING WITH CHANNELS (56 min)

  1. Creating Grayscale Images
  2. Mixing Monochromes
  3. Adding Color & Contrast
  4. Creating an Infrared Effect
  5. Using the Calculations Command
  6. Using a Black & White Adjustment Layer
  7. Toning & Saving
  8. Creating Selective Color Compositions

  1. Luminance Masking
  2. Corrective Masking
  3. High Pass Sharpening
  4. Density Masking
  5. Creating Knockout Layers
  6. Creating an Edge Mask
  7. Testing an Edge Mask
  8. Masking a Glass Image
  9. Real World Blue Screening
  10. Implementing a Blue Screen Mask
Chapter 9: TIPS & TRICKS (31 min)

  1. Removing Redeye
  2. Creating a Neutral Density Filter Effect
  3. Removing Color with the Blend If Option
  4. Creating Borders with Quick Mask Mode
  5. Giving an Image a Hand-Sketched Effect
  6. Final Comments & Credits

Presenter Info

Justin SeeleyJustin Seeley is an Adobe Certified Photoshop Expert and graphic designer with nearly a decade of experience in the creative media industry. A recognized Photoshop trainer known for his straight-forward teaching style and creative prowess, his techniques have been featured on podcasts such as the Adobe Creative Suite podcast and Photoshop TV, and his tutorials have appeared in publications such as Digit magazine.

Justin has been an avid Photoshop user since version 4.0 and hosts a variety of internet shows dedicated to teaching people around the world. He is the creator and host of the Photoshop Quicktips podcast which is consistently in the Top 10 Software How-To Pod-casts on the iTunes store. Justin is also the host and producer of the Photoshop Quick-tips: Special Effects and Quick Fixes training DVD.

In 2007 Justin co-founded the Photoshop Designers User Group, a non-profit organiza-tion which helps further the education of students and other members of the community. Justin serves as President and Lead Instructor for the group and also presents several free mini-seminars on a variety of digital imaging topics.

A member of the National Association of Photoshop Professionals, Justin currently works for Murray State University as a Graphic Designer and Marketing Consultant. To learn more about Justin and his endeavors visit his websites at and