Quick Photoshop Sepia Tone Effect Tutorial

Sepia, seek pronounced, “see-pee-uh”, is originally a brown pigment obtained from the ink like secretion of various cuttlefish and was originally used as ink for writing. Later, a more concentrated form was produced for use in watercolor paintings. Photographs of the 1800’s where primarily printed on paper that was not acid free and as they aged, the photograph turned brown or “aged”.

In modern photography, dyes where used to dip the printed black and white photo and recreate that “aged” look. The age looked is still popular and much simpler and less messy to accomplish in digital photography using photo editing software such as Adobe Photoshop.

While there are several techniques and third party plug-ins you can use and purchase to accomplish the sepia toned look in a digital photograph, the technique I explain below is quick and simple and doesn’t require fussing with duotones or quadtones. I picked this technique up from a digital photo lab I use and this is basically how they convert their images to sepia tone.

My directions will be for Photoshop CS2, however, this will work in any Photoshop version on a PC or Mac. Additionally, other image editing software that has a color balance option will work as well.

Step 1

Open your color image in Photoshop. FILE>OPEN (see Image 1)

Step 2

You will need to convert your image to Black and White. I use image editing plug-ins to accomplish this, however, for simplicity, you can use Photoshops “Desaturate” option: IMAGE>ADJUST>DESATURATE . This will provide you with a grey scale version of your color image. See image 2:

Step 3

You’re now ready to create your sepia toned photo. From your Photoshop menu, select: IMAGE>ADJUST>COLOR BALANCE:
You now should see your dialog box at teh top of your dialog box, there are 3 small input boxes where you will input the following information (see image 3):
# First box, place the number 30
# Second box, leave it at “0?
# Third box, place a -20 (that’s minus) in the box

You will notice that the sliders below the input boxes will move toward the Red channel and the Yellow channel. You should now see that your image has transformed from a black and white photo to a sepia toned photo. You can experiment with the tone by adjusting the numbers or sliders, but the combination I have provided makes for a mild sepia toned image.

I have found that the best images to convert to sepia tone are those with good highlights in them and images that are not heavy in vegetation or have lots of dark areas. While any image can be converted, not every image will look good as a sepia toned image.

About The Author

Alyn Stafford is a communication artist specializing in marketing communications and is a Southern California wedding photographer based out of Riverside, California. His wedding photography can be viewed by visiting his photography website at www.alynstaffordphotography.com

Image 1 Color Image

Image 2 Black and White Photo

Image 3, Sepia Toned Photo

Vector Design – Using Adobe Photoshop CS

When you think of Vector design, cialis one does not need to rely on Adobe Illustrator to trace the image. Using the trusted Adobe Photoshop, view you can achieve the similar effect of a Vector Graphic by manipulating the Polygonal/Magnetic Lasso Tool and apply colour via using the Paint Bucket tool.

Firstly, look select an image ( a person, flower or an animal) and crop the unnecessary elements out of the selected picture. With the image in mind, magnify the image to 200% to 300%, ignoring the pixelated edges. This ensures that you can use the lasso tool to line the edges of the image as accurately as possible, as well as to draw the different sections that would require different colours. With that, once the image is back to 100%, the vector image would seem impeccable without any stray lines or colour out of focus.

Secondly, add layers upon the image to build on the colours from the darkest to the lightest shade. Using the Polygonal/Magnetic Lasso Tool, trace the outline of the image and fill in the first base colour on this new layer. This ensures that once we hide the real image, only the vectored image would be seen, without any gaps or empty spaces. Continue to define smaller areas, adding a base colour for the hair of the human, the face of the man, the clothing and the arm on a different layer each, ensuring that any mistake can be easily rectified by deleting a layer, without destroying the entire graphic.

Thirdly, focus on each section at a time, giving attention to even smaller areas like eyes and nose another new layer. Always hide unnecessary layers so that one can decipher the most accurate opaque colour closest to the real image of eg. the pupil in the eye. Using the Paint bucket tool to fill in the colour of each contour of e.g the lips, starting from the dark red on the entire lips, the light shade on the rounded portion of the lips, an even lighter shade to shown light and the 3D shape of the lips and finally a lightest shade to add the extra gleam on the brightest point on the lips. With a step by step procedure, attend to each body part with delicate care in any order of preference, e.g the strands of hair till the drapery of the clothing.

Lastly, clean, add or substract any colour or line from the finalised vector, saving the image under a transparent background so that the entire compressed image can be manipulated to have a different background or shifted in different positions as a solo graphic on its own. The tutorial is tedious – it requires patience to finish a well done graphic. Beginners may need approximately 4-5 hours but fret not, the feeling of accomplishment is well its worth.

About The Author

Alice Wu is a freelance graphic designer, painter, fine artist, music junkie and a fashion fanatic. Her works are hosted on http://pulchritude.a-cro.net , and she divulges much of her time in her pursuit for the excellence in the arts.

Fig 1. Adding Layers to vector each specific body part

Fig 2. Using the Eye tool to hide/reveal visible layers

Fig 3. Choosing a transparent background when creating a new file

Black and White Photo Conversion

Most images were produced in black and white for nearly a hundred years after the invention of photography, tadalafil but now colour images have become commonplace. Creating strong three dimensional images on a piece of paper is one of the best attributes of black and white photography, generic as the effect can be more striking than with a colour photograph. Without the colour to distract us we become more aware of the subtle tones which can be found within a black and white image. In this article I will share the technique I use that will help you create beautiful, cure striking and moody black and white images from your colour photographs.

Digital cameras have a black and white mode but more information and detail will be recorded in colour, which will also create a higher quality printed image. This is why I always shoot in colour then convert images later. There are several ways of converting an image to black and white using Photoshop and many other image editing programs. You could simply desaturate the colours, but creating a black and white image with real tone and definition goes beyond this. Levels, curves and the Unsharp Mask can be used creatively with black and white conversion to provide further control over tones and contrast to create a stunning image.

Channel Mixer – I have found that using the Photoshop Channel Mixer is the easiest way to convert an image to black and white and produces the best results. The Channel Mixer allows you to control how much red, green and blue contribute to the final monochrome image.

The Channel Mixer can be selected from the adjustment layer popup menu in the layers palette or you can also access it from under the image menu.

Clicking on the left tick box entitled Monochrome will convert your photograph into a greyscale image, and gives you the ability to blend the red, green and blue channels. Adjust each of the sliders to produce an image to your liking. As a rule make sure that the total values for each channel adds up to 100%. This creates monochrome images that are the equivalent of ones shot on black and white film through red, green or blue filters. For example if you wanted to maximize cloud contrast in a blue sky, then a red filter would achieve this. I usually set the red channel to 0 and the green channel to 100 to cut down on the amount of noise, or sometimes a combination of red and green depending on the image.

Curves and Levels – Brightness and contrast can be adjusted in Photoshop by using the curves and levels tools, which can be found under Image > Adjustments Curves/Levels. Both curves and levels allow you to adjust the tonal range of an image. When using the levels command you can make adjustments to just three variables, highlights, shadows and midtones. I prefer to use curves as it gives you more precision. With curves you can adjust any point along a scale while keeping up to 15 other values constant. By adjusting the black point and white point in curves you can give your image more contrast. At opposite ends of the diagonal line you will find a small dot. When you grab hold one of the dots with your mouse and drag it around you will see the image change. To create more contrast drag the black point lower and the white point higher, so that either end of the diagonal line is curved. Practice using curves and levels and explore the different effects you can achieve with your images.

Unsharp Mask – The Unsharp Mask is my preferred tool for sharpening images, which can be found under Filter > Sharpen > Unsharp Mask. It is a traditional film compositing technique used to sharpen edges in an image and corrects blurring. The Unsharp Mask locates pixels that differ from surrounding pixels by the threshold you specify and increases the pixels’ contrast by the amount you specify. In order to get the look which I desire in my images I use the Unsharp Mask twice. I begin by using a high radius and lower amount, such as a radius of 50 pixels and an amount of 30%. This gives the image a much more intense look and details will stand out. The second time I use a lower radius of 1 pixel with a higher amount of 30%, which will correct any blurring and sharpen the image.

About The Author

Peter Horner has years of experience in photography and digital printing technologies and also co-created the large format printing company DesignerPrint. Using large format printing technology DesignerPrint create canvas prints, block mounts, and poster prints. Canvas Printing from DesignerPrint.co.uk


Black and White Background with Colored Foreground

This is a simple technique to help make the subject of your picture stand out more. It involves converting the background of an image to black and white, while making your making the foreground in color.

I have used this technique many times to give pictures a unique touch and emphasize the items of a picture I want emphasized. For this example, we are going to use a picture of a red car on a mountain road. I would like for the subject of the picture to be the red car.

This is written as a Photoshop tutorial.

1. We will begin by opening our original picture, which is a color photo.

2. In our layer window, we will right click the layer labeled “Background” and scroll down to duplicate.

3. You should now have two identical layers in your layer window, one labeled “Background” and one labeled “Background Copy.”

4. Now, open up a new document and make it the same dimensions as the original photo.

5. Click and drag the “Background Copy” from our original document to this new document.

6. Going back to the original document, we are going to make it black and white by clicking “Image” in the menu bar, scrolling down to “Mode” and selecting “Grayscale.” Do not flatten the image when it asks you to flatten image as this will re-combine your layers. This photo should now look like this:

7. We are, once again, going to click and drag the “Background Copy” to the document we dragged to the first time. It is now important to make sure that you align the layers properly. If needed, reduce the opacity of the layer you just added and move it around until it is overlayed correctly.

8. Now, with the black and white layer selected, select the eraser tool from the “Tool” window and start erasing the parts that you would like to remain in color. For large areas of a photo, you can also select the Marquee tool, envelop the area you want in color, and simply hit the “Delete” key on your keyboard. In our case, we want the car to be in color, so we are going to use the eraser on the car and no where else in the picture. As you erase, you will notice that the colored background begins showing through and you end up with something like this:

I have used this technique many times to enhance foreground images and help my subject “pop out” at viewers. I have found this technique works wonderfully to bring people out of a chaotic background or even to highlight the petals of a rose and give the image an artistic flare.

About The Author

Uday is a freelance graphic and web designer. With eight years of experience in web design, Uday makes a variety of web pages from corporate to personal and built pages which are easy to edit for the end user. All coding is written cleanly to ensure that pages are run smoothly, load quickly, and perform to it’s full potential.