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4 ways to color a picture/gif [basics tutorial]

January 2nd, 2012 (01:39 am)

Since I got asked to post another tutorial for the coloration of images, I decided to make this one. I want to point out that I'm not a pro in coloring and that there are bunches of people who I really admire and from whom I still try to learn new ways of coloring a picture, but it's a pleasure to share my knowledge with everybody who needs some tips :) And also, I want to remind you, that there isn't just one way of coloring a picture, there are tons of ways. And everybody has their own style and likes different things. So I hope this tutorial will help you finding your own taste and creating your own style :) Take the tips as some kind of inspiration and be brave! Have fun and try new things and soon you'll see, it isn't that difficult at all :D

First off, I want to introduce you to some photoshop tools. I know how difficult it can be to find the right tools when you're new to all this, so here we go:

1 - Ractangular Marquee Tool (select a square erea to edit/move/delete) 2 - Lasso Tool (select a self-drawn erea to edit/move/delete) 3 - Crop Tool 4 - Spot Healing Brush (match colors of a certain area to another) 5 - Clone Stamp Tool (clone color of a certain erea to another) 6 - Eraser Tool 7 - Move Tool 8 - Magic Wand Tool (select erea with similar tone) 9 - Eyedropper Tool (select color of a certain erea) 10 - Brush Tool 11 - Paint Bucket Tool 12 - Dodge Tool (lighten a certain erea) 13 - Type Tool 14 - Line Tool 15 - Zoom Tool

16 - Create new fill or adjustment layer (by clicking on this symbol you will find a variation of options to adjust the lightening/coloation of your image) 17 - Create a new group (put your layers into a group to mask them all out, e.g.) 18 - Create a new layer 19 - Delete layer

Also, some tools contain more options than just one. By right-clicking on 12, e.g., you will find the burn tool and the sponge tool.

Another sidenote: I'm going to edit a picture but you can use similar techniques for gifs, too.

C o l o r i n g  1 [Basic]

Our goal is to get from this to                                                   this!

Download the original image here
Step 1:
Click on #16>Curves and drag the line from the center to the upper left corner.
Your Output needs to be 155 and your Input 105 (this can variate with different pictures!)
Step 2: Select #16>Vibrance (if you don't have this option, then select saturation).
Vibrance: +10 Saturation: +30
Douplicate your layer by rightclick>doublicate layer and set your opacity to 30%.
Step 3: Select #16>Brightness/Contrast.
Brightness: 10 Contrast: 15
Step 4: Select #16>Levels. Set your Levels to 25 | 1,10 | 246.
Step 5: Select #16>Selective Color:
Reds: -26 | +8 | -23 | 0
Neutrals: -2 | -1 | +12 | 0
Blacks: 0 | 0 | 0 | +6
Step 6: Select Levels again and set them to 0 | 1,04 | 244.

And you're done with your first edit :)

C o l o r i n g  2

Our goal is to get from this to                                                   this!

We'll going to use the coloration 1 as our basic. So you have to follow all steps of coloration 1 first. All the following steps include #16, so I won't mention it anymore ;)
Step 1: Levels. Click the small box that says RGB and choose Red.
Set your levels to 0 | 0,50 | 255
Step 2: Selective Color.
Reds: -50 | +25 | -15 | 0
Whites: +69 | +20 | 0 | 0
Neutrals: +10 | +10 | -4 | 0
Blacks: 0 | 0 | 0 | +10
Step 3: Selective Color:
Yellows: +35 | +20 | -10 |0
Neutrals: 0 | 0 | +18 | 0
Blacks: 0 | 0 | 0 | +36
Step 4: Vibrance: 0 Saturation: +9
Step 5: Levels:
Red: 0 | 0,80 | 255
Green: 0 | 0,80 | 255
Blue: 15 | 1,20 | 240
Output Levels: 0 | 216
Step 6: Brightness/Contrast.
Brightness: 10 Contrast: 0
Step 7: Selective Color.
Reds: -20 | -35 | -70 | 0
Step 7: Photo Filter.
Warming Filter 81, Density 25%.
(If not available, choose a sandy/warm color and set it on the Layer Filter [click the box that says "Normal"] "Darken" with the Opacity 25%).

Second edit finished :D

C o l o r i n g  3

Our goal is to get from this to                                                   this!

Again we need the basics coloring first! And remember to find everything you need by selecting #16 ;D
Step 1: Gradient Map. Black/White (You can choose the color by clicking at the stops left and right.

Doublicate the layer and set the Layer Filter to "Soft Light" with the Opacity 22%.
Step 2: Gradient Map. Select the color #281010 for the left stop and #fcddcd for the right one. Set Opacity to 70%.
Step 3: Doublicate your image layer and drag it to the top. Go to Edit>Adjustments>Channel Mixer.
Choose Output Channel Blue 0% | 0% | +75%.
Set your layer to "Screen" with the Opacity 26%.
Step 4: Doublicate the image from step 3 and select Filter>Blur>Gaussian Blur 3,0.
Set your layer to "Soft Light" with the Opacity 50%.

And done! One more left to do :D

C o l o r i n g  4

Our goal is to get from this to                                                   this!

Once again we need the basics coloring first! Also, I will use two textures for this coloring that I made myself. You can find them here.
Step 1: Open Texture 1 and paste it above your basics-colored image. Set the layer to "Soft Light" with the Opacity 63%.
Step 2: Gradient. Click on the Gradient Fill box and select #0b0b0b for the left and #fff6e2 for the right stop. The middle stop has the color #845124 and the location 42%.
Set this layer to "Screen".
Step 3: Paste Texture 2 above all layers. Set it to "Soft Light" with the Opacity of 56%.
Step 4: Doublicate your original image and set it to "Mulitply", Opacity 25%.
Doublicate it again and set it to "Screen", Opacity 25%. Then doublicate it once more and dasaturate your layer (Image>Adjustments>Desaturate). Set it to "Hard Light", Opacity 35%.

And that's it :) I hope these tutorials were helpful! Feel free to ask me any more questions!


(Deleted comment)
Posted by: Elvan (tiny_pixy)
Posted at: January 2nd, 2012 11:46 am (UTC)
Cory || beautiful smile

awesome! :D glad you liked it!

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