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Fixing Color Casts and Skin Tones in Photoshop: A Blueprint


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Are you wanting to learn to fix color casts and correct skin tones?  If so, you will love this before and after blueprint that was submitted by Sarah Collins of Maddie Dean Photography.

Sarah wrote me and said, “I love your actions – I made myself learn how to do each of these steps manually before I purchased photoshop actions, but having it all done for me has been so much nicer on my workflow, not to mention increased my consistency! This was taken at the very end of an engagement session with natural light only – no reflector. I had somehow managed to change my white balance off of Custom and was pretty surprised when I opened my files in ACR! I was glad that I had shot in RAW. I was able to fix the white balance and actually, make the image look okay. But, it needed polishing to have that ‘Wow Factor’ That’s where you come in!”

Here are the steps Sarah took:

  • I started by fixing my white balance in ACR. This took them from smurfs to proper WB. That was a huge difference. (If she had not shot RAW, she could have accomplished this in Photoshop using Magic See-Saw and Color Safe Bleach, both in the Bag of Tricks photoshop action set.  But it is best to aim for correct adjustments in camera, and as a second choice in RAW.)
  • Second, I used the Bag of Tricks Magic Fill light to bring in some more light around their faces. I had the opacity at 30%.
  • Next, I used the Eye Doctor actions on the eyes to add light and sharpness to the eyes.
  • Then I duplicated my layer and used the 100% healing brush under the eyes and brought the layer opacity down to 50%. This allowed for some depth under the eyes, but took away their exhausted look!
  • The color looked good here, but just a bit dull. So I used Magic Color Finder from the Bag of Tricks action set at 20% on the background was just right.
  • Then I ran Magic Skin – a skin smoothing Photoshop action and brought the opacity down to 40%.
  • Once I was happy with all edits, I used Magic Clarity at 30% from Bag of Tricks and cropped the image.

blueprint-engagement-couple Fixing Color Casts and Skin Tones in Photoshop: A Blueprint Blueprints Photoshop Actions Photoshop Tips & Tutorials


No Comments

  1. Leia on April 9, 2010 at 10:23 am

    Love it!! Thanks for this!!!

  2. Terry Lee Cafferty on April 9, 2010 at 11:31 am

    You are making me want “Bag of Tricks”!!Wow…amazing edits.

  3. Alicia Johnson on December 2, 2012 at 10:09 pm

    Great tutorial! Skin tones can be tricky and it’s so helpful to see how to fix them in post processing!

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