26 August 2008

The glowy look

Several people have asked me how I get the "glowy look" on my photos. If I was a photoshop pro, I would create an action and then charge you $50 for it. Instead, I will just show you a technique I use. I borrowed this idea from Jessica Sprague and tweaked it to make a look that I like.

This picture is straight out of the camera is is nice, but boring. Let's add some pop to it. First crop it and make any color changes to your image. Make a duplicate layer and add a Glaussien Blur at 20 pixels and change the layer to "overlay." Still with me? You image will have a lot of hard light and bold colors like the picture below. 

Next make another duplicate layer (called copy 2) and change nothing but the layer palette. Change that to screen. Your image will be quite blurry and the colors will be really washed out like the image below.

Now is when you change your opacity levels on the top two layers. I usually put the top layer pretty low so the final image is not too blurry. The intence colors of the overlay layer can be too much, so also back off the opacity of that layer. My final image is 65% opacity on the top, copy 2 layer and 71% on the middle, copy layer.

I added an edge burn to the image to make the center pop. This is my final image. Much better I think.