Aged photo

In today’s lesson I will tell you how you can “age” any photo in a couple of minutes. The picture will turn out to be a disgraceful habitual one, however, at the same time, very effective.

The lesson is designed for a novice user. Adobe Photoshop, wanting to learn some hot key combinations. A powerful assistant will be a tablet Wacom.

Since we started talking about the tablet, I’ll first make a reservation that in order to work effectively on the digitizer, you need to configure it for yourself and for the application in which we will work. For me, setting up a tablet is an assignment to all express keys, touch strips, and buttons on the pen that functions you use most often. Who will be interested in my findings, I advise you to read my other article about setting up Intuos3 A5 for working with Photoshop.

Launch Adobe Photoshop, drag the original photo onto it. It will probably be a big photo (several megapixels), but the output will want a picture-wallpaper of no more than 1600×1200. Therefore, immediately click CTRL + A (Select All / select all) and CTRL + T (Transform / Transform). Holding the key Shift (on the tablet on the left, this is an Express-key with a dot), take the corner transformation point and reduce the picture to the size we need (you can control them in the information window, F8). If you want to get not just an aged photo, but a photo with a frame on some background (like mine), then you need to further reduce the photo.

For example, I took an old photograph, where I am with friends in the woods, on the horizontal bars. Yes, yes, there were times – they ran in the forest, rocked the press, pulled up and squeezed out. And, the result of this lesson will be a kind of memory, a tribute to friendship.

When you decide on the size of the photo, click Enter – This will complete the transformation operation.

Now you need to decide what to do with the photo itself. The most obvious sign of an old photo is its black and white palette. But it seems to me that the black and white version is somehow boring, so I decided to make a photo in sepia.

The easiest way to achieve the desired color is to discolor the image and further to toned it. Quickly it is done like this: click CTRL +Shift +U (Desaturate / Desaturate – in this case it is more convenient to use the keyboard, because there is no key on the tablet U).

Next, darken a black and white photo by clicking CTRL + Shift + L (Auto Levels / Auto Levels). In general, working with the “Levels” tool is not the topic of a single article, so here we will limit ourselves only to this combination.

Next, click CTRL + U (Hue / Saturation – Tone / Saturation – Hue-Sat in the pen menu dropdown menu).

In the window that appears, select the following parameters:

Do not forget to put daws Colorize (Color) and Preview (Preview)! We press Ok.
Already something looming!

What other attributes does an old photo have? Scuffed-scratched, torn edges. Let’s start with the edges.

Make a photo frame. Select a photo layer, CTRL +J (or the top express key on the tablet on the right) – this will make us a copy of the layer. Now, select the bottom layer (from which you made a copy) – the easiest way to do this is by combining Alt + [. Holding the key CTRL, Click on the selected layer – it will select the photo. Choose in the menu Select > Modify > Expand (Allotment > Change > To expand) and in the window we specify 10 pixels. Enter.

Now we see that the selection has increased by 10 pixels. However, there are small roundings around the edges – we remove them at all four corners with the tool M (Marquee, Selection) with clamped Shift-ohm

Now we have a full rectangular selection. We press D (resets selected colors to standard black and white), then X (inverts these colors, because black was originally chosen, and we need white). On the pen tablet, you can do this by pressing the pen key and selecting from the drop-down menu Reset Colors / Toggle Colors. We press Alt +Del – this will fill our selected rectangular area with white.

See if we did everything right. Remove the visibility from the bottom layer of the background and make sure that the photo has a white frame. Blur the layer with white rectangle with a Gaussian blur at 0.5 (Filter> Blur> Gaussian blur – Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur).

Connect the two visible layers by clicking CTRL + E (Merge Layers / merge layers), activate the bottom layer.

Let’s already make a normal background, eh? Let it be some kind of wooden texture.
In principle, you can draw it yourself, but if you are still reading this lesson, then you definitely won’t achieve photo-realistic texture. Therefore, we need the texture of the tree, not less than 1600×1200

To do this, we use an excellent site. Right select in the list of categories Wood, Next, select the appropriate texture of the tree. I chose Wood \ Fine Woods. I open the biggest picture – Large 2488×3000. Drag it into Photoshop, over a white background, but below the photo layer. Further, by the method described above, we reduce the picture, somehow we position it there.

Copy the photo layer (CTRL + J), choose the tool L (Lasso / Lasso), click Shift +L – to get a rectangular lasso. And then do the following selection:

Switch to the dimming tool (O) – Burn Tool in mode Highlights, intensity – 30%. We process them with a picture on the fold, switch to the lightening mode. (Dodge Tool) and also process the fold. Next we invert the selection (CTRL + Shift +I (Inverse)) and perform a similar operation.

As a result, we will have such a fold:

If you wish, you can make the edges of the photo and frame in the fold areas not straight, but this will unnecessarily inflate the lesson. If that – you need a tool Transform – Warp.

The next stage of “sticking” photos will be scratches. I used a ready-made image of scratches available on the Internet.

But if you want, you can do it yourself – because you have a tablet! Choose a tool brush, In the settings of the brush, specify that it is pressure sensitive. On a black background, you randomly draw scratches with the chaotic movements of the pen and pen, which are familiar from childhood – in which case, such an image can be inverted and it will become suitable for use in light drawings. But vice versa is unlikely to succeed.

Open this image in Photoshop, drag over our layers. The easiest way is to “overlay it” – use the overlay mode. Screen. It practically does not change the photo, but the scratches are clearly visible.

Since the picture with scratches is smaller than the photo, and if you scratch, then all at once … then it is better not to scale the picture, but to duplicate it. Use the combination CTRL + J (or Express-key on the right side of the tablet), do not forget about such techniques as specular reflections vertically and horizontally (this will help avoid the same scratches on closer inspection).

A lot of them should not be – everything is good in moderation. Therefore, remove the part using a soft-edge eraser. Let me remind you that the eraser on the Wacom pen is on the back side – reach for the E button (Erase) is not necessary;).

After a couple of minutes I got the following picture:

Next, glue the layers with scratches. Group the resulting photo layer – CTRL +G (Group). Immediately after that we press CTRL + T – this will cause a transformation operation. Next, click the pen on any corner of the photo and move it away from the center of the photo a little – so that the Rotate tool can be activated – slightly rotate the photo and press Enter.

Now select the layer with the photo, double click on it to open the layer styles. We need a drop shadow (Drop Shadow) – put a daw in it. Since the photo lies on a wooden surface with us, there will be no big shadow – we expose it to a small value and a little transparency. I think such values ​​as I have will do:

It remains a little to pull the edges of the photo frame. For a layer with a photo, create a mask – click on the icon, which is marked in red in the layers panel in the figure. Next, select this mask (white document), activate the tool brush (B, Brush) with hard edges and black color draw where you want to make bumps. Why not use an eraser? The fact is that it will make irreversible changes, in contrast to the mask, which can always be removed.

As a homework, you can try to “tear up” a photo and “glue” it with scotch tape. On a tablet, this is easier than ever — for the first, you will need a lasso selection and a slight Gaussian blur, for the second, small transparent rectangles with torn edges. In an amicable way, it was necessary to use a layer mask in order to put any other photo under the pile of changes.

That’s what happened with me in the end:

You can not stick the photo with scotch tape and imitate that it just lies on the table. Placing on the image of other furnishings (coffee mug, lighter, pen, clip – any bytovuhu) – the picture will come to life instantly.

I think we were well able to convey the atmosphere in the frame – old memories; a piece of photo stuck with scotch tape symbolizes respect for the expensive photograph, the desire to preserve what may already be gone. This is much better than a color photo, which carries much less.


Lesson author: Alexey Shevelev aka Boomburum

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