Magical Knitting in Photoshop

Lindsay Lewchuk Announcements, Designers, How-Tos 2 Comments

At then end of the 2 month post-flood apocalypse, I discovered I was even more behind schedule than I realized. I determined I MUST.KNIT.FASTER, but how does one actually accomplish this when stitching pace is set at snail slow?

before and after edits

Through Photoshop, of course!

The pattern was almost set for test knitting, but I needed an image to go with the pattern for testing. Since I was so close, but not there yet, I turned to Photoshop to “knit” the final sleeve. In just 2 hours I had a week’s worth of knitting done! Remeber, I did confess I knit at the pace of a snail.

Step 1 upload photo

This is how I did it:
Step 1 – I wrangled dad into take a picture of me in front of a wall with indirect sunlight during the day. Background simplicity is KEY to knitting in Photoshop. Then I opened up the image in Photoshop CS5.5 and did a quick crop. (NOTE: the head crop was care of the photographer – erg, thanks dad.)

Step 2 color correction black

Step 2 – Since I knew this wasn’t a “final photo,” I decided on doing a quick color correction using “curves” instead of refined color correction. So “duplicate layer” & using curves select a spot of the truest black – forgive me, in this case, it was my crotch.

Step 3 color correction white

Step 3 – repeat step 2 on a new duplicated layer, selecting the “white” in “curves.” In this case it was the white tip of my fingernail on my right hand.

Step 4 new layer

Step 4 – duplicate color corrected layer & create new blank layer on top of it. Using individual layers allows you to go in and tweak things without massive undos and redos.

Step 5 knitted sleeve

Step 5 – where all the magically knitting happens! Select the left sleeve using quick select tool. Copy, paste into the “new” blank layer. Flip, move over to the left arm area. Then use the erase tool on a soft setting to blend where the arm attaches to the body. Use lighting effects to mimic the brighter light on the left arm compared to the right arm. Even though I was not standing in direct sunlight, I still managed to get a shadow, which lead to more work “faking” the knit sleeve. I also discovered that the picture was taken at a slight angle so my right arm (slightly further away from the lens) was wider than my left arm (angled more directly towards the lens). To fix this I used a brush to paint in a background to match the lighter color background on the left of my body. Clicking the “sleeve” layer, I selected an area close to the exposed arm with the paint brush and then selected the “new” blank layer where the sleeve was and painted the wall color beside the sleeve to cover the skin exposed on the “sleeve” layer below. In hind sight, I should have used the clone tool to get the speckling on the wall, but again, since this wasn’t a “final” image, I just left it as it. Finally a quick erase of the yarn strand hanging out from my right sleeve & clone over the networking jack.



Photoshop “knit” my missing sleeve faster than my hands could!

(Oh, a big “thank you” to Phlearn & their you tube videos for some new lighting tricks I picked up.)

So if you are a knitwear designer & discover you are in need of magical knitting, give me a shout! Photo editing is one of the services I offer on my “Designer Services” page.

And if you are a test knitter, there are still some test spots open on Ravelry for “Color Flow” sweater featuring The Unique Sheep’s Green Sheep Organic Cotton & Bamboo Worsted yarn!

Happy knitting!

Comments 2

  1. Wow, that looks fantastic.

    I’m about to shoot some mittens in different sizes – I’m planning on ‘hiring’ my family to model them, but as I only made one hand each, it will be a stack of hands in mittens, or all hands together as if they were square dancing.

    But I think I’ll just let that photo be as it is and try to double it.

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