Photographer Chris Clor takes you behind the scenes in his digital darkroom as he transforms an image from humdrum color to stunning black-and-white.
Step 4: Sharpen
A mask adds sharpness only where it’s needed.
One of Clor’s favorite sharpening techniques, which he applies to areas of detail but not to skies, is the High Pass filter. To make one, duplicate the Background Layer and drag it up above the Levels Adjustment Layer. Then go to Filter > Other > High Pass. Clor sets the Radius fairly low. After clicking OK, change the layer’s blend mode to Overlay. Then, to add your sharpening selectively, add a mask, fill it with black, and then paint with white to brush in sharpness where you need it.
Add a High Pass Filter When in the High Pass filter’s dialogue box, set a low radius. Here, Clor chose 2.8 pixels.