Tutorial – Create beautiful selective colour effect

Recently I published a small post on the partner theme on this blog and used one selectively coloured picture from my collection. It featured a photo shot in the Krakow Old Town using a MOTO G3 mobile.

During The Free Walking Tour at Krakow Old Town (UNESCO World Heritage Site)

During The Free Walking Tour at Krakow Old Town (UNESCO World Heritage Site)

Some readers appreciated it and requested a quick tutorial. In this blog post let’s see how to create a selective colour effect with simple steps. I used zoner photo studio software for this purpose. You can also use Photoshop for this purpose as it has similar tools required for creating this selective colour effect. Let us get started !

Steps

Step 0: Tips about selecting a photo
Which photo will you choose to create selectively coloured image? Always choose a photo with a good contrast in grayscale. This effect does not look good if a photo does not have sufficient contrast in the colour intensity levels. Let us see two examples.

Ex 1: Example of a good intensity contrast:

Example of a photo with good colour contrast

Example of a photo with good colour contrast

In Gray-scale this photo looks like this:

Photo with a good contrast in grayscale

Photo with a good contrast in grayscale

This is precisely what we need! You can apply this method to such photos having high contrast in gray-scale.

Ex 2: Example of a bad intensity contrast:
This is a photograph of the beach. Although it looks colourful, majority of the colours in this photo have more or less similar intensities.

Example of a Photo with a BAD contrast

Example of a Photo with a BAD contrast

Therefore, when you turn it into gray-scale, it lacks contrast and does not look eye catching.

Photo with a BAD contrast in gray-scale

Photo with a BAD contrast in gray-scale

Now, let us pick up the image shown in Example 1 and start applying selective colouring.

Step 1: Use selection tools to select the desired image
We will use combination of Magic Wand, Selection Brush, Polygon Lasso, and Magnetic Lasso to select the desired area in the image. These tools are shown in the following figure:

Tools which will be used for creating selective color effect

Tools which will be used for creating selective color effect

Out of these tools, only selection brush tool is the additive by default. Means, whenever you click part of the image using selection brush tool, it will add the current selection to the previous selection. For all other tools:
Press and hold Shift key while making a selection to add to the previous selection.
Press and hold Ctrl key while making a selection to subtract it from the previous selection.

You can adjust the Blur and Tolerance parameters to change the amount of colour hues that can be selected in one go.

If your desired area has highly regular and straight portions, you can easily complete the selection process using Polygon Lasso tool.

Now select the desired area in the image by using these tools. Your selection should look like this:

Selecting the desired area

Selecting the desired area

Step 2: Invert the selection
Now click on Selection > Invert Selection to invert the selected area. This causes all the area other than those coloured rectangles is selected. Now, whatever effects or filter you apply on the image, they will get applied to the area other than our original selection.

Your selection should look like this:

Inverted selection

Inverted selection

Step 3: Apply gray-scale effect
Now, click on Effects > Grayscale to convert currently selected area into gray-scale. Click Apply to confirm the changes. Your image should look like this:

Final result - Selective colour

Final result – Selective colour

At this point, you may use any other effects such as Blur (Adjust > Blur), Quick Filters, etc. to further experiment and tune up the image.

Video

You can watch the following video to fully understand how the selective colour effect is applied to the image.

#tutorial #zoner #selective-colour #effects #grayscale

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