Photography Challenge {Selective Color}

I have been having fun learning how to do selective color. And I know you are thinking….”WHAT? SELECTIVE COLOR? ICK!!!”

Are you thinking of a polite way to tell me that went of out style years ago?

Are you are having flashes of images that look like this? Am I right?

What would you say if I told you that you can do a selective color image and it would look nothing like that one, but more like this one…….

or maybe even this one this one……
Yes, those are all three examples of selective color. There is a black and white component to them all and the then a color component. Pretty cool, huh?
So, how do you do that? It’s super easy. I promise.
  • First, open your color image in Photoshop.
  • Then duplicate the image and using whatever method you normally do, convert it to a black and white image.   Now you have two images open.
  • You can now drag one image over the other one.You can experiment with which one you like to move as the top image. For me it all depends on the look I am try to get. For this one, I pulled theB&W image on top of the color. 

  • So, now you have your background image and your Layer 1.

  • Now you will need to add a layer mask to expose the parts of the image you want to make black and white. To create the layer mask, make sure Layer 1 is highlighted and then click the little icon in the layer palette that is a rectangle with a circle inside of it.  (I circled it down here and put an arrow to it).

  • You now end up with the white box next to the image on the Layer 1 .

  • Make sure the little white box next to the words Layer 1 is highlighted. That is your layer mask! Now here is what you should remember about layer masks…using a soft black brush will reveal whatever is under that image. (So in this case, it will reveal the color under it.). If you make a mistake you do not have to start over again, simply use a white brush and paint back over it. (The soft white brush covers it back up!)

  • Use the brushes to reveal what you want from the image and conceal what you don’t! In this image I revealed (or used the black brush on her hair, skin and face.)

  • The next step would be to add textures to replace the color and add depth. Here are what the textures I added look like. I also added texture number nine from my Metal Texture Set that you can download by clicking that link!

  • Open up your texture and drag it on top of the image. Change the blending mode to whatever you want it to be (overlay, multiply, etc.) and change the opacity. I always remove textures off of skin using layer masks. (Just like removing the black and white off of the color above!)

  • You can tweak the textures as you like and end up with a gorgeous image that is a selective color, but not the selective color that photographers freak out about!!!! 

So, now you have selective color with a twist. It’s not just a flower or something that has been made black and white and then a little pop of color is left. It’s stripping an image of the color and then adding textures to create new ones! It’s fun. It’s creative. And it’s definitely not the traditional selective color. 
If you decide you want to try this. Feel free to post a link to your page using the little link button below! I would love to see what you do!



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