Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Reviving an old photograph with some new overlays

Ever run across an old photo that might have been a good selling stock subject at one time, but because of its older treatment it just didn't keep up with the times?  Happened to me recently when I ran across this old stock shot I did of a morning cup of coffee next to a newspaper and cell phone. First of all, the cell phone was ancient and ruined any chance of selling this shot as stock today. Next, the treatment just wasn't bright enough and didn't say "morning coffee".

To breath some new life into the old photo below I began by simply cropping out the old cell phone. To complete the transition all I did was add three modifying layers from my new (soon to be released by MCP Actions) set of  "Sunshine Overlays".  The sun burst on the upper left below was enlarged and positioned near the woman's hand to make it look like a burst of sunlight was coming from that direction. I also reduced its opacity a bit to tone it down.

Next I added the sunset color diffusion layer on the bottom left to give the image an overall warm morning color. Finally, I added the white vignette layer on the bottom right to brighten the corners. I put a mask over it and painted out the areas where I didn't want it to show. 

All three overlay layers had their layer mode changed to "Hard Light" in Photoshop. This meant than any area that was neutral gray would disappear. What used to take me a long time to retouch now took only a few minutes of drag-and-dropping a few correction layers. 

My complete set of "Sunshine Overlays" is going to be released soon with the new revamp of the MCP web site. I will be announcing the release here as soon as it happens. Stay tuned. 

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