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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.
"Accentuate-the-Negative-After"

Accentuate-the-Negative-After

*After*
"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.
"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.
"Add-Some-Pop-After"

Add-Some-Pop-After

*After*
"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).
"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.
"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.
"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.
"Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-After"

Nothing-But-Blue-Skies-After

*After*

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