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Bird Dog | by jimheid
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Bird Dog

This photo is a lie.


Explanation: I'm reviewing Fluid Mask for Macworld; it's a Photoshop plug-in designed to streamline the process of masking out part of an image—to replace the background, for example.


When I shot this from-below view of Sophie, the sky was kind of bland. Yesterday, though, the clouds were dramatic, and I grabbed a shot of them. Then I used Fluid Mask to extract Sophie from the first shot and added her to the cloud shot.


The bird? He was in the original shot, too, but I moved him so that he'd be in Sophie's line of vision.


View big, and you can see some flaws in edges of the mask—areas where her fur is cut a little too neatly. Fluid Mask has lots of advanced features that let you fine-tune tricky edges like this, but I created this mask in about a minute using Fluid Mask's automatic features.


Full details—good and bad—in an upcoming issue.

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Taken on October 25, 2005