Photoshop Recoloring and Effects Tutorial

Introduction: Photoshop Recoloring and Effects Tutorial

In this tutorial I am going to show you how to recolor a photo in adobe photoshop and some of the effects that you can use to enhance/ switch up the image. I chose a black and white beach photo and that's what I recolored here.

Step 1: The First Step

The first thing that you need to do is find the picture, I chose a black and white beach photo, save it and add it into your document.

Step 2: Second Step

Once the image is placed and formatted the way you want it select the upper part of the sky using the quick select tool. If you want to unselect a part of the sky hold the alt key and click on the unwanted area.

Step 3: Step 3

Once the area you want to color is selected fill it in using a solid color by clicking on the create new fill or adjustment layer button. Select the color that you want, preferably a darker blue. Once you did that change the color from normal to overlay.

Step 4: Step 4

The next part that you are going to want to select with the quick select tool is the rest of the sky. Make sure that only the sky is selected and none of the tree or other parts are selected by holding the alt key and clicking on the unwanted areas. Add a solid color to the area, a slightly lighter blue than before gets the best look. After you have the blue for the sky change the type from normal to overlay. By doing this we can add the blue into the background and make it more realistic than it does sitting on top of the picture. If the two colors of the sky don't match well use the spot healing tool or the mixer brush.

Step 5: Step 5

Now we are going to color the sand. For this step you are going to want to select all of the sand and make sure that none of the water, plants, or walkway are selected. After that select a solid color for the sand and choose a light yellow color to make the sand look more realistic. Instead of changing the color from normal to overlay I changed it to darken. This is because the light yellow doesn't mix well with the bright white sand in my picture. Do this again for the parts of the sand that you missed. Make sure that you select all of it instead of just certain parts like the part touching the water.

Step 6: Step 6

For this step we are going to color the leaves of the palm trees. This step is hard because you need to select each leaf carefully and make sure that you leave gaps where the sky shows through so it looks like a real picture/ palm tree. The first step we are going to select one large branch making sure we only select the leaves. For this use the lasso tool to make sure you select the parts with more precision than some of the other tools. Once the branch has been selected add a solid color to it. I chose a lighter green for this because the branch is getting sunlight that many of the other ones aren't getting. After adding the solid color I changed the color from normal to soft light because this blended best with the tree's natural shades. Repeat this process until all of the branches/ leaves have been colored on the trees. Try to make sure the colors that are used correspond with the shade that the tree has because the color shouldn't be the same throughout the tree, just similar. One other thing to look out for in this step are the tree trunks. Make sure that they don't get colored green, they are going to get worked on in a later step.

Step 7: Step 7

For this step you will be coloring the wooden path leading to the beach. For this step you need to first select all of the planks using the quick selection tool or the lasso tool to be more precise. If you use the quick selection tool like I did try to be as exact as you can with the selected parts but if the computer selects parts that you don't want then just hold alt and drag the mouse over the unwanted area. Once the board have been selected create a solid color layer. Pick a lighter brown to fill in the layer. After it gets filled in switch the color over from normal to hard light so that the colors are brighter and make the beach look more appealing. If you fill in the boardwalk and realise that something is filled in that shouldn't be use the eraser and click on the unwanted parts. That will take the color from the selected layer off turning in back to black and white.

Step 8: Step 8

For this step we are going to color in the plants next to the walkway. For this we are going to use the quick selection tool to make sure we get all of the needed pieces. Select all of the plants to the right and left of the walkway but make sure that none of the sand, walkway, water or trees get selected. They are going to get colored in later. Once the plants are selected add a new solid color layer. Make the plants a dark green and change the color from normal to a soft light. By doing this we are able to keep all of the details that the plants have and make them a light green like they would be like in real life. If something is colored green that shouldn't be use the eraser and trace over the places that need to be worked on.

Step 9: Step 9

For this step we are going to be coloring in the ocean. The first thing you need to do is use the quick selection tool to select all of the water. Try to get the places in between the posts leading up to the beach. Once all of the water is selected and you are satisfied with the smaller areas being selected create a new solid color layer. Select a color that is slightly darker than the dark blue that is on the top of the sky. To blend the color with the background I changed the color from normal to hard light. By doing this it helps to create the contrast between the blues from the water and the sky and it makes the midpoint (ocean) stand out a lot more than it does if you blend it with a soft light.

Step 10: Step 10

We are almost done recoloring the image. This step we are going to color in the buoy in the distance in the middle of the ocean. This step is pretty simple. All you have to do is use the quick selection tool and select the buoy. To select it you should zoom in to make sure you are selecting the right parts. Then once the area is selected create a new solid color layer. Pick a red, I picked a darker shade and then change the color from normal to soft light. By doing this we are able to see that the object is a buoy easier than we are if we picked a hard light. This creates a focus point in the image because it is in the center and the only shade or red on the image.

Step 11: Step 11

The trees are almost done being colored the trunks are still black and white. For this step you need to select the trunks using the quick selection tool. Try to be precise with this step and select all of the parts that show through the leaves. After selecting the trunks of the two trees create a new solid color layer. Add a brown that is light but darker than the brown used on the planks on the walkway. To keep the detail that the trunks have change the color from normal to soft light. This will make the brown noticeable without making it too dark that it looks like the trunks are black and this keeps some of the details that come with the trunks.

Step 12: Step 12

For this step we are going to color the posts for next to the walkway. To do this use the quick selection tool and select the darker colored posts. Make sure that the colored parts and the ropes connecting the posts don't get selected. Add a solid color layer to the selected parts and choose a brown that is darker than the walkway but lighter than the trunks. To make the image look realistic change the color from normal to soft light. This will make sure you see the difference in color between the browns and it will also lead the eyes to the ocean that the posts lead to. The last part of this step is to select all of the ropes that connect the posts. Add a new solid color layer to the selected ropes. Change the color to a white with a bit of yellow to show that the ropes are faded. After that change the color from normal to overlay. This will keep the details that the ropes bring but it will let the other colors like the greens from the plants cover parts but still show the color of the ropes.

Step 13: Step 13

This is the last step. The only thing that we are going to do in this part is correct all of the imperfections in the picture. There are parts that didn't get colored and we're going to fix them in the final step. If things didn't blend well they are also going to get fixed here. In my image I missed lost of space between the leaves on the tree. To fix this I made a new layer by selecting the quick selection tool and selecting lots of the areas that were missed and tried to skip over the places that were fine how they already were. Once the missed parts are selected go to the layer (the top sky layer) and then copied and pasted the number matching the color onto my new layer. I switched the color to an overlay like the other layer was but there were still things being overlapped and making the colors off. to fix this you will have to zoom in pretty close and get the eraser tool out. Make the tool very small I used between 3 and 25 pixels for the correction. With the new layer selected go over the areas that shouldn't be colored and erase them. This should make the gaps in the colors and the color differences disappear. If other layers are like this then repeat this step on for them too. This step makes the coloring look more professional and realistic. To fix some of the gaps and make all of the colors stand out more/ brighter I made new layer by selecting all of the image using the lasso tool. I then made a new solid color layer and switched the color from normal to overlay. This made the colors brighter and helped to fill in some of the gaps that I had a difficult time fixing.

Step 14: Step 14

This step is optional. This step I just went through some of the effects that you can add to the entire image with a simple click. Use the lasso tool to select the whole image. After that create a solid color layer. Normally I used overlay but with this new layer the other types of effect/ color helped to make the image look more cartoonish/ brighter and multiple other effects. You can go through the effects but overlay helps to make all of the images slightly brighter and adds a blue tint which helps to create the bright beach scene better. The soft light made the image slightly darker than the overlay and helps to keep lots of the details in the image. Hard light made the image brighter and the contrast was heavier than it was with the overlay which made the colors more vibrant and stand out more. Using the multiply color makes a cool effect. It makes the colors darker which helps to make the image look like it was taken during the night time or late at night with the colors fading slightly but still having the brighter colors in the image staying slightly brighter than the others. Difference is very strange one. It takes away the pixels from the base and blend layers which makes the brightness increase. There are pictures above of each of these effects in order from left to right. The next one is a subtraction. This will create an effect that darkens all of the pixels because light colors were used here. This helps to create another night effect but this one is cool because you can only really see the things you would see during the night time. The last image uses the luminosity effect. This simply makes the image look more animated and look like a cartoon.

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