Digital Toolbox: Fast & Fun Color

Punch up the colors in your photos with just three simple steps.

Digital-Toolbox-Fast-Fun-Color
Digital-Toolbox-Fast-Fun-Color

Sometimes there's nothing better than a few fast moves in Adobe Photoshop to wake up a tired picture. Try these simple steps to radically dial up color, make your picture pop, or create a truly blue sky.

Click here for tutorial steps.

More of Debbie Grossman's Photoshop tutorials can be found in the Digital Toolbox archive.

Accentuate-the-Negative-Step-1-Duplicate-the-Back
Accentuate-the-Negative-Step-1-Duplicate-the-Back
*Step 1* Duplicate the Background layer by dragging it down to the New Layer button (circled).
Accentuate-the-Negative-Step-2-Hit-Ctrl-Command
Accentuate-the-Negative-Step-2-Hit-Ctrl-Command
*Step 2* Hit Ctrl (Command on a Mac) + I on your keyboard to flip the colors, and check out a negative version of your picture.Antonio Comia/fotolia.com (original)
Accentuate-the-Negative-After
Accentuate-the-Negative-After
*After*Antonio Comia/fotolia.com (original)
Add-Some-Pop-Step-1-Go-to-Image-Adjustments-S
Add-Some-Pop-Step-1-Go-to-Image-Adjustments-S
*Step 1* Go to Image > Adjustments > Shadow/Highlight. Once there, check the Show More Options box.
Add-Some-Pop-Step-2-Slide-the-Shadows-Amount-down
Add-Some-Pop-Step-2-Slide-the-Shadows-Amount-down
*Step 2* Slide the Shadows Amount down to 0% and the Color Correction down to 0, so the tool doesn't affect your picture.Eduardo J. Cabaleiro/fotolia.com (original)
Add-Some-Pop-Step-3-Move-the-Midtone-Contrast-sli
Add-Some-Pop-Step-3-Move-the-Midtone-Contrast-sli
*Step 3* Move the Midtone Contrast slider to the right until your photo really rocks.Eduardo J. Cabaleiro/fotolia.com (original)
Add-Some-Pop-After
Add-Some-Pop-After
*After*Eduardo J. Cabaleiro/fotolia.com (original)
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-Sometimes-a-blue-sky-just
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-Sometimes-a-blue-sky-just
Sometimes a blue sky just isn't blue enough. Here's how to fix it while leaving the other tones alone.*Before*
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-Step-1-Duplicate-the-Backg
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-Step-1-Duplicate-the-Backg
*Step 1* Duplicate the Background layer by dragging it down to the New Layer button (circled).Jamsi/fotolia.com (original)
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-Step-2-Go-to-Select-Colo
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-Step-2-Go-to-Select-Colo
*Step 2* Go to Select > Color Range, and use the dropper to click on your not-blue-enough sky. Slide the Fuzziness right until the preview shows you've got enough blue selected. Click OK.Jamsi/fotolia.com (original)
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-Step-3-Click-the-Add-Vecto
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-Step-3-Click-the-Add-Vecto
*Step 3* Click the Add Vector Mask button (circled). The new mask will restrict the blue-ifying to the areas we chose in step 2. Then click the layer's thumbnail to select it instead of the mask.Jamsi/fotolia.com (original)
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-Step-4-To-add-blue-go-to
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-Step-4-To-add-blue-go-to
*Step 4* To add blue, go to Image > Adjustments > Photo Filter. Pick Cooling Filter (82) and add as much Density as you need to make your sky postcard-perfect.Jamsi/fotolia.com (original)
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-After
Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-After
*After*Jamsi/fotolia.com (original)