I like the effect on the images used on this Spotify page, and out of curiosity I'm trying to replicate it in Illustrator. It's not a simple multiply mask, and seems a more involved than the kind of duotone I can do in inDesign.

enter image description here

  • 2
    Photo editing seems more like a job for Photoshop...
    – Joonas
    Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 17:18
  • 2
    You tagged this Adobe Illustrator, mentioned Adobe InDesign. This is more than likely though done in Adobe Photoshop. Do you have access to Photoshop?
    – Ryan
    Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 17:18
  • @Ryan Yes I do, but I work faster in Ai, just a preference not an issue.
    – user10226
    Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 17:59
  • This tutorial maybe helps: youtube.com/watch?v=EtmzZQNgJkQ
    – p2or
    Commented Dec 4, 2014 at 18:10
  • 2
    Video: Design a Duotone Effect Photoshop Tutorial
    – Joonas
    Commented Dec 20, 2017 at 16:54

4 Answers 4


On paper, they'd be high-contrast duotones. Or, possibly monotones printed on colored paper with opaque inks (such as via screen printing).

Possible other ways to describe the effect would include:

  • photocopy (tends to be high contrast, one color)
  • halftone (not really a style shown here on screen at this size, but part of the aesthetic ala newspapers)
  • posterization (this isn't really that, though some might call it that. Posterization tends to be much higher contrast than what is shown here)

Make a greyscale image, save as either a JPG or TIFF (doesn't work with EPSs) and import into InDesign. Colour the box as usual, and use the direct selection arrow to colour the image.

  • Hey this is pretty cool technique. Definitely going to store it for future use.
    – Ryan
    Commented Dec 5, 2014 at 14:35

That's the sort of thing you can do with PS Gradient Map adjustment layers (#ff6438 and #2d3560 on the left, #513750 and #92dfd3 on the right).


This is called a duotone effect, the first one is a duotone effect that just has some texture added to it.

  1. In Photoshop, open your photo.
  2. Go to the Layers panel (Window > Layers) and click the Create New Fill or Adjustment Layer icon and choose Gradient Map. This will open the Properties panel.
  3. Click the gradient preview drop-down triangle to open the Gradient Editor.
  4. Pick a basic duotone, such as the preset named Violet-Orange, Red-Green.
  5. To change colors, click the gradient preview, and then double-click on a Color Stop to open the color picker and select your desired hue. Click OK. Adjust each Color Stop according to what looks good to you.
  6. Adjust the balance between colors by dragging a Color Stop or Color Midpoint to a new position on the spectrum.
  7. Add additional Color Stops to the map by clicking directly underneath the gradient. Edit the new stops as needed.
  8. Click OK when you’re happy with the image’s appearance.

That's it!

You can expand on this by trying out more colors, performing this on a texture and then overlaying on a photo or anything else.


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