Add detail-enhancing effects to your images

  • Software: Photoshop CS3 or later
  • Project time: 5 minutes
  • Skills: Balance colours with curves and selective colours, apply local and spot colour corrections, use layer management to keep things tidy

In this tutorial I’ll go through three very common ways to make local colour and tone adjustments. Some of these adjustments are simply correcting things I’ve inadvertently made wrong. For example, this image of Louise Thompson, by photographer Ruth Rose, has been styled with a colour process that adds cold greens and blues to the shadows. This works with the backdrop and adds an interesting film-like colouring to the skin tones, but unfortunately the hair wasn’t so lucky, and has been turned a bit blue.

I’d also brought up the mid-tones, as it was quite a dark image, but this has had a bleaching effect on the jeans. So sometimes I’ll style things one way, then use local adjustments to fix all the problems I’ve created in doing so.

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