May 11, 2010

Tutorial: Cotton Candy Color

Let me start off by saying that this will not look good on every photo.  When learning a new technique, it's hard not to use it on everything.  But DON'T!  Trust me.

This works best on "girly", dreamy-colored (pink, teal, light blue, etc.), and well-lit photos.  This technique doesn't do much for a dark shot.

How to achieve this look:

1.  Open your original photo and add a grey to white Gradient Map layer (Edit -> Image Adjustments -> Gradient Map).  Set it to Soft Light at 100%.

2.  Now add a black to white Gradient Map layer.  Set it to Normal and choose an Opacity.

3.  Next, add a yellow Solid Color layer (found at the bottom of the Layers palette).  Set it to Soft Light and choose an Opacity.

4.  Finally, you're going to add the "Cotton Candy" layer.  Create a New Layer (Layer -> New -> Layer).  Click on the Brush Tool and choose a soft brush set to Normal at 100%.  This part is done to your liking.  I chose light blue and pink for my colors.  Brush those colors in a few spots and use the Smudge Tool (found under the Blur Tool) to push the colors around.  Set the layer to Soft Light and choose an opacity.

Hope you enjoy this one!  It really is lovely!