I'm publishing a BLACK AND WHITE book being published. The lady asked to have a color image (against my thoughts) at the beginning of the black and white (interior) book. I did it wondering how it would look. Of course, it is dark... very clear but dark. How can I lighten it? It can be much lighter. Would I use 'lighten' under the effects panel or what? I'm in a major panic trying to get this figured out ASAP. Thank you for any info or help that you can give.

  • 1
    Could you please share the photo you want to make it "Lighter" against the color one ... or at lease a part of it. because lighting an image is not so easy ... you could increase contract and ass some brightness or increase the Exposure ... maybe playing with shadows against highlights. each photos have its own case.
    – hsawires
    Commented Apr 17, 2016 at 11:58

2 Answers 2


You could do it in Photoshop otherwise a dirty trick you can do in Indesign.

Paste another copy of same image over the image and change blending mode to Screen in Effect panel. Play with opacity to get desire brightness.

For contrast Paste another copy over and change blending mode to Overlay... use opacity to control contrast.

I know it's not the right way to work with photos but it works...;)

  • This is just perfect! With this workaround I can create a layer-group in InDesign called "Color fix for print" and enable/disable it, depending on what I need to be (enabled for print and disabled for screen usages). This is actually even better then some brightness/contrast settings hidden somewhere the effect-settings!
    – cheneym
    Commented Apr 17 at 9:55

If the photo is grayscale, you can recolour it in InDesign.

  • Create a box and give it a white fill.

  • Place an image into a box.

  • Select the image with the white arrow (make sure you're selecting the image and not the box that contains it) and change the fill – this will change the colour of the black part of the image.

    • Using a grey will mean your image is lighter but still retains a solid white background.

This only works with grayscale images, but is a great way of recolouring or lightening images in InDesign. It also means you can link the colour of an image to a swatch, giving you the option of recolouring an entire document with a click.

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