I was wondering if any kind souls out there might help me with recreating something similar to the effects on the images below:

enter image description here

enter image description here

I've already noted the interlace-like overlay. But I wonder how one might achieve that high-contrast, grainy, almost cool grey-blue look? I'm using Photoshop CS6.

2 Answers 2


I would use pattern to make the stripes, other than that the process is similar to Storm Brewer's addition to the Ashlee Palka method.

Sample image, credit goes to @tylerbarnes from Unplash.

Sample Image

  1. Create a new document with 1x8 pixel with transparent background.

new document

  1. Zoom in and fill the first 4 pixels in white.


  1. Go to Edit > Define Pattern... and name it "stripes" or whatever you want and that's it, we created or stripes pattern, you can close the document without saving it, once we define it as pattern it will be saved on your pattern list.

define pattern

  1. Now open the sample image and from your layers tab, click on icon create new fill or adjustment layer > Hue/Saturation...

hue and saturation

  1. On the properties window, check the option "Colorize" and ajust the values with the blue you want i used Hue: 200, Saturation: 20 and Lightness: 0, then you can close the properties window.

huesat values

  1. On the Layers tab, change the bleding mode of the "Hue/Saturation 1" to "Hard Light", now the "blue effect" looks better.


  1. Select your image layer "background", right-click > duplicate Layer... name it whatever you want...


  1. Now drag the duplicated layer above "Hue/Saturation" layer. Change the blending mode to "Color Dodge" and "Opacity" to 50%

enter image description here

  1. Click on icon "add layer mask" and press "Ctrl + I" to make it black


  1. Select your Brush tool and change its size and hardness, also make sure to set your brush color to white and that your "mask" is selected on the layer tab. Now you can start painting the areas you want to highlight, i highlighted the soldier and some parts of the bottom...

paint highlight

  1. Now we have to add the stripes pattern, create a new layer and change the "Opacity" to 5%


  1. Go to Edit > Fill... or press "Shift + F5", on the Fill window, in "Contents" select "Pattern", Select the pattern we created in "Custom Pattern" and click ok

fill pattern

  1. Finally, the result...


  • 1
    Many methods to achieve similar effects, that's the beauty of photoshop and digital graphics! Thanks Takebo, I like the effect achieved here better than my quick and dirty method appended to Ashlee's post Oct 7, 2016 at 14:49

To achieve a "high contrast, grainy, almost cool grey-blue look", try following these steps:

  1. Choose your image. I chose one of my favorite bouldering pics.

Bouldering picture, unedited.

  1. Use a couple of adjustment layers. For this look, I used levels and Hue/saturation.

Choose your adjustments

Here's how I used levels. Really play around with this adjustment (it's my favorite one). You can take an image from flat to almost polarized if you want. It's a really rad feature.

Using levels on the image

Here's how I used the hue/saturation adjustment. For this look, you probably just want to lower the saturation until it looks roughly like how you want.

Adjusting the saturation

  1. Now create a new layer and color some shade of blue. You probably want something trending towards the navy range so it's not too bright. Now take the opacity of that layer way down. I used 10%.

Adding a blue layer

  1. Now for that grainy look. For this, I just used the sharpen tool. I like to use a big brush size and do little sections at a time so I can see how it looks. You can go over the same section multiple times to get a grainier look. For this image I passed over the climber about 5 times and the landscape roughly 3.

Adding sharpness to the image

Hopefully this helps you get the look you're going for. :)

To add those "electronic frequency" lines, you could overlay a photo similar to this one

Television Lines

Desaturate the lines and apply an overlay to achieve this effect

enter image description here

  • 1
    Hi Ashlee Palka, very nice answer. I do want to suggest setting the blending mode for the "electronic frequency" layer to Darken on a lower opacity. That will show the banding more than setting the layer to overlay. Darken will hide the light pixels for that layer and only show the dark lines.
    – AndrewH
    Oct 7, 2016 at 15:30
  • 1
    @AndrewH that last part was actually added by someone else (check revisions) just a heads up :)
    – Cai
    Oct 7, 2016 at 17:03
  • True, I didn't add it. The OP said that they were aware of the overlay but just didn't know how to make the effect itself which is why I didn't include it in my answer. :) Oct 7, 2016 at 17:39

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