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Break the JPEG code

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08 Now that we have the image, we will need to edit the colours and make changes to give it a more solid feel. Open the image in Photoshop. You will be greeted with a damage warning – simply click OK and the image will load. Sometimes if the code has been broken, you can simply preview the image and take a screenshot, then load this with Photoshop.

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09 To change the colour in your image, go to Image>Adjustments>Hue/Saturation. Here I have set the hue to -34 and the saturation to +17. By doing so, the image instantly has more depth of colour and the tone has changed to how we want it.

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10 Next we want to focus on specific colours and change the depth of these. Go to Image>Adjustments>Selective Colour. In the panel, select Blacks from the Colors drop-down menu and add a high percentage of Cyan and Magenta. This will give the top section of your image a more solid feel.

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11 To add more punch to the detailed areas, use the same Selective Colour panel, this time selecting Reds. Set the Cyan to a high negative percentage (I have used -96% ). This will remove most of the additional Cyan within these smaller areas and make them really stand out with a more punchy colour. Continue doing this for the other colours in the image until you are happy with the result.

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12 Now we have the image looking deep and rich, we want to add some more distortion within Photoshop to the areas that need it. Begin by creating a new transparent layer from which we can work over the original image.

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13 Next, select an area of the original image that you feel works well and would look great when added to a new area. Copy your selection onto the new layer and position it into the area that you feel needs some additional distortion.

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14 Keep repeating the previous step until you are happy with your final image. On some occasions you might be happy with how the original code worked out – but on others you will want to work into it further. It’s all part of the beauty of this experimental approach.

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15 Once you have finished the editing and are satisfied with your results, save the image in your desired format – and that’s your final image complete. The beauty of this process lies in its experimental and playful nature, so don’t worry if it takes a few goes to get the result you want: that’s the best part.