Hi i am new here and i have been trying to reproduce this effect for some time using Layer's but no joy.
This is what i have got so far.
I have been searching google for answers but with no joy any help would be great, thanks Dave
This result requires a layer with the desired color on top of a (preferably) monochrome image. The underlying image should have bright areas that will show the color and dark areas which will remain black or close to it. After you make your image, add the color (solid or gradient) on top of it and change the blend mode to "Color". Sorry, I am in a hurry for travel, I did not get a chance to prepare examples (blush!) If I get some time during the day, I will try to prepare a sample.
Your image is too dark, use the curves adjustment layer on the photo, below the color layer, brighten the highlights. Pull down the slider on the right hand side of the curves X axis. This is a graphic image and it does not need to be realistic if you are worried about that. You will see the man in the photograph emerging from the deep blue.
One trick when trying to reproduce an effect is to first do it with the same exact colors as your reference and take some notes and/or use layer styles you can copy. Then you change the colors to the new ones. Using actions is nice but not when you're doing tests and don't know what you're doing.
To me the blue image is very close to the red one. The only thing "wrong" is the gradient you use on top of the man's head. Maybe put that layer above your background or remove that gradient on the man.
It's also normal the 2 images may feel different... the red one is using some illustration and the blue one seems to be a Photoshop with a "threshold" picture adjustment. If you want the illustration feel as on the red one, bring that old man into Illustrator and use image trace to make him look more digital, or work on the image manually.