I’ve gotten quite a few questions on how I’ve been editing my pictures lately, so I figured I ought to do a tutorial on it here on the ole’ blog. It’s actually much simpler than you might suspect, thanks to a little thing called FREE PHOTOSHOP ACTIONS! And what’s even better is that, with these particular actions, you don’t have to have the real deal Photoshop (which is a bazillion dollars). All you need is Photoshop Elements—what I’ve been using for months now. It has many of the same capabilities as Photoshop CS5, but for a fraction of the cost (about $80!). There’s definitely a bit of a learning curve when you first get it, but you’re smart. I know you can do it. :)
Ok, here we go…
1. Buy Photoshop or Photoshop Elements. Familiarize yourself with the basics of layers and how other things work. There are tutorials galore for this online, so just do a bit of Googling.
2. Go to thecoffeshopblog.com and download the Storybook Vintage action and the Simply Vintage action. Rita has great instructions for installation here, and if I ran into any problems (which I think I did…) I just Googled it. Google knows all.
3. Open up a picture. Apply the Storybook Vintage action FIRST, and then delete the layer for the vignette (if you want to, that is. I think it usually looks better without the vignette, which is the darkening around the edges of the picture).
4. Now apply the Simply Vintage action, and adjust contrast and brightness as needed under the “enhance” drop down menu at the top. Here is the progression of a picture during the process:
Sometimes I stop at step two, since that looks great also, and the colors are less muted. Just depends on my mood and the pictures themselves. Every picture is different, and some don’t look good with these actions, so just use your judgment.
I hope that helps! There are lots of little things you’ll need to learn during the process, but practice makes perfect and it’s fun to play around with all of it!
Also, if you’re looking for a fabulous, creamy black and white action, Coffeshop’s Buttercream B&W is my favorite.
Happy editing! :)