There are times when it might be very handy to be able to change the color of something in your image, whether it's the color of someone's sweater, a car, a flower, a building, whatever it is. Well, you could do that by making a selection of the item and then making a hue adjustment. Photoshop has a Color Replacement Brush that can help do this without needing to make a selection first. The Color Replacement Brush lives over here underneath the Brush Tool. It works directly on pixels so in order to work non-destructively, it's a good idea to work on a copy of your background layer. That way you can change your mind later or add a layer mask if you need to. So we'll click on the background layer and drag it down to the New Layer Icon in the Layers Panel. When I release, you can see that I have a background copy made. You'll need to choose the color that you want to use as a replacement color so I'll click on the foreground swatch in the Color Picker and I'm going to choose a shade of red. Maybe a little bit brighter and I'll click OK. Notice that my foreground color swatch is now changed to reflect my choice. Normally I will use either the Sample Once or Sampling Background Swatch options in order to establish where the Color Replacement Brush should work. If I choose Sampling Once and when I click on the area to be replaced and start dragging, the cursor will automatically act as the Color Replacement Brush and choose to replace the colors that I first clicked on. It's a little bit more specific and exact to say Sample Background Swatch. To do that I'll click on the Background Swatch and I'll take my cursor and put it over the sweater and click. Notice that the new color for the background has changed to reflect the color of the sweater and I'll click OK. Now that's set as the background swatch color. The first option over here is to Sample Continuously and that really isn't very helpful because then the Color Replacement Brush changes everything that it comes in contact with. We only want it to change the sweater. We also have to establish a tolerance. The tolerance means how similar to the initial color that's set pixels have to be to be changed. If you set the tolerance too low, then the entire sweater or object may not be chosen and if you set it too high, then too much of the image will be selected and the change in color may bleed over into the background or other places in your image. When I set the limits, I usually choose to find edges but there are times when you might want discontiguous or contiguous. Discontiguous could be particularly helpful if you are choosing something that has another object in front of it in places. But for now I'm going to leave it on Find Edges. Lastly, we set the mode for the brush to either Hue, Saturation, Color or you could leave it on luminosity. The difference between using the Hue Mode and the Color Mode is that the Color Mode will use the hue and saturation of the foreground color whereas the Hue Mode will only change the hue while maintaining the saturation of the color that's being replaced. So let's begin modifying the color of this sweater. I set the Brush Mode to Hue and my foreground color that I'm going to change it to to red. When I click and start to drag, you might be surprised that the color that's going down is not as vibrant as the color that appears to be in the Color Picker. That's because the saturation of the sweater is less. You can see that I'm very easily choosing just the sweater to change. As a matter of fact, I can use a lot larger brush here and I can very quickly change the sweater. Now, when I get closer to the edges, I do prefer to use a little smaller brush to help it do a more accurate job because my background color is so close. The background color were significantly different and not close to blue, then I wouldn't have had to change the size of my brush at all. Just to show you the difference, had I chosen to use Color, then you can see that a very bright red would have gone over that maintained the saturation and the hue of the color that's in the color swatch. And if I had maintained saturation, at this point it's going to increase the saturation to the saturation that was here. If I had left part of the sweater undone; matter of fact I'm going to go back a few steps over here in my History Panel so I can show you what saturation would have done initially on the blue. It would have changed the saturation of the original color to match the saturation of the color that I had selected here. The Color Replacement Brush provides a very easy way to change the color of any object in your image. Keep in mind that you can adjust the size and hardness of the Color Replacement Brush the same way you would adjust any other brush, using the Bracket Keys and the Brush Options Drop-Down Menu. Unfortunately, though, you can't set the opacity of the brush. It's always 100 percent. But if you work on a layer as I recommended earlier, you can reduce the opacity of the layer and that will in essence reduce the opacity of the Color Replacement Brush. You can see that I'm decreasing the effect by changing the opacity of the layer.
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