Following my demonstration at the Digital Group, I have been asked to produce notes for reference to the process shown.
I have been trying to develop a more artistic view to some of my images. Firstly as you have already seen it does not always work and selecting the right type of image to apply this technique is a case of experiment. The idea is to some degree based on 2 ideas.
One being a Lith printing & airbrushing look and the second from sandwiching colour and black & white slides together.
This is how I have been creating the effect in PS. Although as written it sounds simple, it can take hours of practice to adjust the subtleties to get it anywhere right but is so worth it when it works.
Convert RAW image to how you would wish a final colour image to appear (do not sharpen). Save Image.
Name Layer “Colour”
Duplicate “Colour Layer” to a new layer rename new layer “Monochrome”.
Switch off Base “Colour Layer”.
Covert “Monochrome Layer” from colour to monochrome with channel mixer (or B&W in CS3). (You can do this as a layer mask so you can adjust channels later.)
Apply any modifications to produce the monochrome layer (curves etc). If using layer masks you can decide to merge visible layers to reduce memory overhead on computer.
Apply “Smart Sharpen Filter” to “Monochrome Layer” (A little over sharpen can help but this is trial & error)
Select Blending Mode
(Multiply or Overlay or Soft light) Experiment to suit your taste.
I generally use Multiply for the effect shown at the meeting and the rest of the instructions apply to this blending mode
Switch off Monochrome Layer.
Switch on “Colour Layer” (Work on Colour base layer now)
Using Layer masks. De-saturate the colour layer -25 is a good starting point.(You can re-adjust later to suit being a layer mask)
Apply Gaussian blur to “Colour Layer” to apporx 20 pixels. (I have found less than about 20 does not work)
Again as a layer mask using curves brighten the “Colour Layer” till it looks about ½ the exposure. (You can use a combination of Brightness & Curves to achieve result)
Select “Monochrome Layer” switch on visibility of the layer. Ensure blending mode is “multiply”.
You should now see the colour bleeding through.
Now just a case of adjusting opacity, brightness and saturation until you achieve the final image.
This type of image prints well on Art papers such as Somerset Velvet, Harman Matt FB and Hahnemühle Photo Rag.
Peter Hartland B.Eng (Hons) LRPS