How to Sharpen Images in Photoshop

Image sharpening is one of the most important steps in a postproduction workflow. However, with a myriad of options and methods to do it, it can be a daunting understanding exactly what you're doing and why. This great tutorial will show both what sharpening an image does and how to do it.

If you look at the images from most of your favorite portrait photographers, they likely all have one thing in common: they're sharp. In this video from Photoshop Training Channel, Jesus Ramirez walks us through the various methods of increasing the sharpness of an image in Photoshop. Like pretty much all things related to postproduction, the key to success is moderation, as overdoing it can look gaudy and fake. Be sure to pay attention to how Ramirez hones in on specific areas of the image that he'd like to sharpen to draw attention there and to avoid creating artifacts in other areas. And as always (but particularly with sharpening, I find), if you're staring at your screen for a while, trying to get it just right, step away for five minutes and come back later; you'll have a much better idea of how much more or less you need. 

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3 Comments

Thank you for sharing this nice video.

What I'm missing is a tool for Multi Scale Sharpening.
There is nothing built in within Photoshop (Though one could make something like that by a long workflow).

Yet there are tools for that out there (Just search "Multi Scale Sharpening Photoshop" with Bing / Google).

Multi Scale Sharpening is way better than High Pass Filtering / USM (Which are single scale).

I understand the appeal for generic photos but I wouldn't want to use something like that for anything important.

LOL. As I was watching it, I was wishing PS had LR's sharpening mask. I've thought about doing his preferred method but have always been concerned about the overhead. Using a D810 and lots of layers, I sometimes exceed the size limit for PSD as is.