Today I am posting a step-by-step tutorial for Photoshop and PSE users. This effect can be used to create really pretty soft vintage images using an action and texture that can be found for free on my blog.
I am using a stunning image from Vanilla Tree Photography for this tutorial.
1. Open your image and run the CoffeeShop Velvet Mocha Matte action on it and adjust the settings to taste. Then open up the CoffeeShop Painting Texture 2 from the texture pack.
2. Adding Texture: Add the texture above the Define layer (in this case called Background copy) and put it in normal mode and lower the opacity to taste (I used 64%). Then add a layer mask and paint out skin/hair/clothing/etc. as needed with a black soft low opacity brush. (Layer Mask Tutorial)
If you want to add more texture, then just Ctrl-J (duplicate) that layer and paint on the layer mask as needed. I used the texture 2 times at 64% and removed much of it from her skin and dress.
3. Dodge/Burn: To add dramatic lighting effects, I am going to dodge (lighten) and burn (darken) the image selectively. There are so many ways to do this, but I am going to show you one of my favorite non-destructive way. Add a new layer above the texture and fill it with 50% gray and put it in Overlay blending mode. You won't see any changes.
4. I used a soft black brush at 100% opacity to paint around the girl, and then used a 100% white soft brush to dot a large circle around her face and then used a 50% opacity soft white brush to paint over her dress. As you can see the result is very dramatic and her face is completely blown out. The second image above shows a larger version of the dodge/burn layer so you can see my paint strokes.
5. I turned down the opacity of the dodge/burn layer to 50% and then added a layer mask and used a soft black 100% opacity brush to remove the lightness from her face and shoulders/arms and used a low opacity soft black brush to remove some of the lightness from her dress.
Once you are happy with the light in the image you can add back some subtle color.
6. Adding Subtle Color: Ctrl-J (duplicate) the background (bottom) layer and drag it on top of everything. Keep it in normal mode, click and hold alt(option) and add a layer mask. The mask should be black and hide all of the color layer. Use a soft white brush on the image to paint back color in the image.
In this edit I used a 100% white brush and added color to her headpiece, then lowered the layer's opacity to 20%. You could also use varying white brush opacities to add color selectively around your image. Play around!
Here is the final edit (you can mouse over to see the "before" image). I really love how this turned out, I think she looks so angelic. I hope you have enjoyed this editing tutorial!
Do you want to download my favorite CoffeeShop Actions or Design Elements in one convenient zipped file AND help support this blog? Just click here for my action pack or here for a download of some of my most popular design elements, storyboards, and textures.