Ok let s pretend we re about to upload a photo to instagram and we click the tool button that is on top to the very right. Then we click the "color" option and we have a choice to change the color of the shadows or highlights to any of the colors listed (yellow, orange, red, etc.).

Now my question is, how would I do that in photoshop???? I only want the shadows in the photo to change to a specific color but I don t want anything else in the photo to be affected by that color. So how do I do that?

Another way to think of this effect that I sort of want to achieve is the album cover of: Havana Brown We Run the Night. Basically just changing only the shadows in a picture to a color.

Help would be appreciated! Thanks!


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Ok so this is basically what I tried to do through illustrator, but I want to know how to achieve the instagram effect through Photoshop. The instagram pictures is what I want to achieve. (Black shoe is original photo, red shoe is the shadows changing color)

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    There's a bunch of ways to do this, what have you tried? – Ryan Apr 19 '16 at 18:52
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    The only thing I've done is bring the photo into illustrator and use the transparency panel and clicking opacity mask when both picture and the blue rectangle is selected and doing it that way. But how do I do it in photoshop to make it easier? I'm just concerned about that shadows changing color. I don't know how to do it. – Bekah Apr 19 '16 at 18:56
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    could you edit to include screenshots of your attempt as well as the album cover because what I see in the album cover is different from what you're asking. Not sure which is more important to you - knowing how to make the album cover or knowing how to change the shadows and highlights – Ryan Apr 19 '16 at 18:57
  • Yeah just one moment. I'll need to turn on my computer...(and thanks so much for your help by the way)...but I'm more concerned about changing the color of the shadows (like what instagram so easily does)... – Bekah Apr 19 '16 at 19:03
  • Sorry it took a while to get some photos. But I want to edit only the shadows in the coke picture. I want them to be a blue color, but I don't want anything else in the photo to be blue but the shadows. Does that make sense? Do you know an easy way to do it in Photoshop? – Bekah Apr 19 '16 at 19:42

The two easiest ways to do this is either Color Balance or Curves. Color Balance as many functions in Photoshop is doing the curves for you. On your layer panel click the Black and White circle at the bottom and choose Color Balance adjustment layer, then switch Tone to Shadows and push up the Blue to your desired amount. You can then fine tune it using Opacity or Masks after if you want:

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What its basically doing is a Curves Adjustment switching to Blue and then raising the shadow into the blue hue:

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For further control you can read about Luminosity Masks but they might not be necessary for what you're currently working on.

  • YES!! That is exactly what I've been wondering how to do!! Thank you so very much! That's exactly what instagram did and I could not figure out how to do it in photoshop! Thank you so much for your help!! – Bekah Apr 19 '16 at 19:53
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    @Bekah if either my answer or emmet's solved it for you please mark one of them correct when you have a chance otherwise the SE Bot will bump this periodically for all eternity. – Ryan Apr 20 '16 at 13:16

Edit: If you make the picture B&W before hand, and use curves to get a better contrast, then change the hue of the entire pic, you can then use the below part.

So what you need to do is use the Colour Range tool from the Select dropdown. Select whatever your shadows are, and then you can use the Hue/Saturation tool to change your selection.

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    Ohh yeah I could definitely try that approach! Thanks!That turned out pretty cool! I can show you also what I am trying to achieve. I just need to upload the pics.. – Bekah Apr 19 '16 at 19:12
  • This is just a 60s mock like, so you can work away with layering things and using several colours. Also be sure to play with curves and levels because this is pretty messy honestly. Have fun. – emmet Apr 19 '16 at 19:15
  • I added some pictures, but I'm more interested in changing the shadows in the coke picture to a blue color, but I don't want anything else in the photo to be blue but the shadows. – Bekah Apr 19 '16 at 19:43
  • ok so just do what I said except don't change the hue of the pic at the start, just change the selection. Sorry I was going off the Album art you said – emmet Apr 19 '16 at 19:46
  • Ok! I'll try that and see what happens. – Bekah Apr 19 '16 at 19:49

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