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Chapter 4. In Living Color: Color Effects > Colorizing Black-and-White Images

Colorizing Black-and-White Images

This technique for colorizing grayscale images is great for getting that hand-tinted effect. This particular version uses Photoshop Elements 3's Hue/Saturation command to add color to selected areas.

STEP ONE: Open a grayscale image that you want to colorize. You have to be in a color mode to colorize a grayscale image, so go under the Image menu, under Mode, and choose RGB Color.


STEP TWO: Using one of the selection tools, select the first area that you'd like to colorize (try pressing A to switch to the Selection Brush tool and painting in your selection). If needed after you make your initial selection, press L to switch to the Lasso tool, press-and-hold the Shift key, and click-and-drag around areas that you want to add to your selection (or press-and-hold Alt as you drag to deselect areas).

STEP THREE: Now, you'll want to copy your selection to its own layer (in case you want to change colors later), so go under the Layer menu, under New, and choose Layer via Copy (or press Control-J).

STEP FOUR: Go under the Enhance menu, under Adjust Color, and choose Adjust Hue/Saturation (or press Control-U). When the dialog appears, turn on the Colorize checkbox. Now, you can move the Hue slider to choose the color you'd like. If the color seems too intense, drag the Saturation slider to the left.

STEP FIVE: Continue this process of selecting areas, pressing Control-J to copy your selection to its own layer, going to Hue/Saturation, checking the Colorize box, and moving the Hue slider to add color to your image. As I mentioned before, if you change your mind and want to alter the color of an object, just click on its layer in the Layers palette and open Hue/Saturation to select the new color.



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