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Artsy Photo Colorization Technique

Artsy Photo Colorization Technique

Hey, all. I have a fun little photo trick for you. A step by step Photoshop tutorial to add pop to a photo.  Then you can use the cool photo in a scrapbook, art journal, album, planner or other projects. Let’s get started.

Artsy Photo Colorization Technique | Step by Step Photoshop Tutorial | graceincolor.com

This technique works better when you have a darker image on a light background. The photo I am using is really not a good one to start with. Confession time… I snapped this using my phone from inside an upstairs window as my son was playing the guitar and singing in our driveway. He’s a teenager and totally would not have approved of this behavior, but I’m banking on forgiveness once he finally notices the finished page. *fingers crossed*

So, here it is. A not-so-great (OK, terrible) photo that meets the requirements of a dark subject in front of a light background.

Joseph, guitar, bad photo, photography, colorization technique, photoshop, tutorial

I did edit it in Photoshop to sharpen it a teeny bit, adding contrast and overexpose it. So here’s a look at the photo as I start my process.

Artsy Photo Colorization Technique | Step by Step Photoshop Tutorial | graceincolor.com

Step 1: Duplicate the Layer

Artsy Photo Colorization Technique | Step by Step Photoshop Tutorial | graceincolor.com

Step 2: Choose Image > Adjustments > Threshold. Adjust the input slider so that most of the background disappears, leaving the shadows of the model in black. Here’s what I ended up with.

Artsy Photo Colorization Technique | Step by Step Photoshop Tutorial | graceincolor.com

Step 3: Right-click on the top layer and choose Blending Options. While holding the Alt (PC)/ Option (Mac) key, drag the white input slider in the Underlying Layer setting towards the left. Click OK when done.

Artsy Photo Colorization Technique | Step by Step Photoshop Tutorial | graceincolor.com

And here’s what it looks like now…

Artsy Photo Colorization Technique | Step by Step Photoshop Tutorial | graceincolor.com

Step 4: Create a new layer.

Artsy Photo Colorization Technique | Step by Step Photoshop Tutorial | graceincolor.com

Step 5: Click on the current layer and choose Blending Options, and again drag the white input slider from the Underlying Layer setting towards the left (holding the Alt/Option key). You won’t see anything by doing this, but it will help us see what we are doing when adding color in the next step.

Step 6: Add Color. Here’s the fun part. Paint the current (new) layer with any color you chose. Use a large brush with a hardness of 0. I used bright colors. As you paint, you will see your results!

After painting, you can go back and adjust the blending options again if needed.

Screen Shot 2015-11-07 at 6.54.29 PM2

This is what my painting produced.

Artsy Photo Colorization Technique | Step by Step Photoshop Tutorial | graceincolor.com

After this, I took the brush again, and painted some white over the background. You can also paint on your Layer 1 (middle layer) for more variation. Just play with it! It’s super fun.

The end result…

Artsy Photo Colorization Technique | Step by Step Photoshop Tutorial | graceincolor.com

Even my teenage son #2 (not pictured, LOL) said it was “artsy”. High praise, I tell you.

I took mine a bit further and added a few elements from Traci’s Pocket Life ’15: August Collection to turn it into a scrapbook page.

Sing_jenevang_web

Very cool. Now it’s your turn. Give it a try!

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