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Creating “Hollywood Eyes”
The Most Famous Photoshop Retouching Technique

eye image

Most everyone has heard of the term “Hollywood Eyes,” but most don't know the term actually comes from a technique commonly used in Photoshop.

It is clear why many Photoshop techniques involve enhancements to the eyes. When we first look at photo of someone, the eyes are often where we first gaze. Creating "Hollywood Eyes" is simply enlarging them slightly for added emphasis and it's really easy to do!
“The eyes are the windows to the soul”— William Shakespeare

Step One: Creating “Hollywood Eyes” in Photoshop

make a selection Photoshop Marquee Tool

From your Photoshop Tools, select the Regular Marquee Tool.

Making sure your "feather" has a value of zero (0), draw a selection around the eyes and eyebrows.

We're going to mask out the excess, so it can be a very rough selection, as long as both eyes and eyebrows are fully selected.

Copy the Layer (While the Eyes Are Selected)

Now make a copy of your selection by either selecting from the top menu:
Layer > New > Layer Via Copy

or by the keyboard shortcut: control + J on a PC, command + J on a Mac.

If done correctly, there should be a new layer of only the selection you made of the eyes with the Rectangular Marquee

Enlarging the Eyes

enlarge  the height of the eye selection 108%new layer is a copy of the eyes selection

To enlarge her eyes, make sure you have the new layer (the copy of the eyes) selected in the layers Palette.

In the top menu select:
Edit > Transform > Scale

or use the keyboard shortcut:
control + T on a PC, or command + T on a Mac.

Enlarge the height to about 106%
(make sure the width stays at 100% by clicking the little chain and setting maintain aspect ratio to “OFF”)

Use your own judgment in choosing the degree of widening, but don't get too carried away or it will look “Photo-shopped”

Touch Up the Edges

Most likely, the new layer (with the wider eyes) will not blend properly with the original layer, so our task now is to create a flawless blending of the two layers before our “Hollywood Eyes” creation is complete.

making a mask

With the top layer of the eyes still
selected, click on the "Add Layer Mask"
icon in the layers pallet.

This mask will be used to remove the excess around the edges of the enlarged layer of the eyes.

brush tool

With the mask still selected, click on the brush in the tools pallet
or simply press the "b" on the keyboard
(make sure that black, the default color, is your foreground = painting color).

brush settings

Check the brush settings:
a soft brush and at the appropriate size.

blending  the layer mask with the brush tool

Now, with the top layer selected, simply “paint out” the edges of the rectangle to remove the excess, especially at the edges of the rectangle, to blend the two layers together perfectly.

Avoid getting close to the newly enlarged eyes area.
Note in the layer mask you created, that you can see the black in the mask as you paint out the unwanted edges.

If you make a mistake, simply paint the error white again by switching your paint color to white, and back to black when you are done to continue masking.

Remember, when masking in Photoshop:
WHITE reveals and BLACK conceals the underlying image.

You may also want to option-click the mask, which will show you the mask details as a black-and-white, allowing you to see exactly where you painted black to mask the top layer.

This may help reveal any gaps that may have been missed. When you are satisfied with the results, option-click again to reveal the image once again.

You're done creating “Hollywood Eyes!”

Hollywood Eyes Completed

NOTE: Yes, the results aboves are subtle, but they are supposed to be. The Hollywood Eyes technique is generally only recommended to not exceed a 5-6% enlargement. If we go too far the subject may begin looking like an alien.

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