Retouch eyes in Photoshop is something that many of us have tried or try sooner or later because it’s a lot of fun. Retouching can be done in so many ways in Photoshop and there are advanced and simple techniques to do it but in this tutorial we will see an easier technique to Photoshop eyes using adjustment layers and simple layer masks. Then I will also show you how you can create amazing eyes on a portrait using cat eyes.
Download PSD file and Resources
Eyes Tutorial – Video step by step
Photoshop Eye Tutorial – How to and tips
As always we will use non-destructive techniques when we retouch anything in Photoshop. That’s the most practical way of working, especially when you work with things like eyes because maybe you want to change the look of them and you want to make sure that you have editing capabilities in the future. That’s why we are going to use adjustment layers, masks and clipping masks. We will use the Hue/Saturation adjustment layer to change the color of the eyes and the Levels adjustment layer to fix the contrast.
Depending on how the photo of your model is, maybe you will have to use different settings. Try different Blend Modes for the Hue/Saturation adjustment layer like Softlight, Overlay or Color Dodge and see how they affect the light inside the eye. Help yourself with the Lightness slider on the adjustment to correct the light. Also use the Colorize option and see the results. You’ll have to try combinations until you get the desired result.
Don’t forget about shadows. Eye lids cast shadows on the top part of the eyes so don’t forget to replicate that shadow if you replace the eyes with others. Also take care of the dark outer edge of the eyes. It gives dimension and more natural look. You can use the Dodge/Burn technique or the Brush Tool (B) to paint that outer edge and make the eyes pop a little more.
Photoshop Eyes: Use layer masks wisely for a more realistic effect with good transitions
In Photoshop CS6 and above, layer masks can be edited non-destructively. Double click the layer and the mask properties panel will open. Here you can change the feather of the mask’s edges and get better transitions if you need it.
If you’re looking for creating an amazing eyes effect in Adobe Photoshop, you can achieve that using stock images. Eyes of cats, snakes, owls or any reptile or animal that you can imagine could look good, or at least different if you put them on a portrait. In this eyes tutorial I will also show you how I replaced the eyes of a woman model in Photoshop with cat eyes and how I achieved an impressive result making basic color and contrast changes using Gradient Maps and Levels. It could well be called an Easy Cat Eye tutorial heheheh but in fact it’s a simple way of making more attractive eye effects in Photoshop.