Using channels can be a fast and easy way to get rid of certain kinds of damage in a photo, but using a black-and- white adjustment layer allows you to do virtually the same thing nondestructively. This image has a blue stain throughout it. Your image could have a different color stain. But I am going to show you how you can hide that stain with a black-and-white adjustment. To add an Adjustment layer, go to the bottom of your Layers panel and click the half-black half-white circle to create a new fill or adjustment layer icon. Now choose Black & White, go up to your Presets, click on Default, and go down to the Blue Filter.
This mimics your blue channel, and you'll notice that the blue stain is very prevalent here. Go back up to your Defaults and click the Green Filter, which mimics your green channel. The stain is still there, but less. Click again on your Presets and go to the Red Filter, and just like in the red channel, pretty much gone. There are two other presets you can look at in the Black & White Adjustment panel, which is the High Contrast Blue Filter--and you can see the stain is really, really noticeable--and your High Contrast Red Filter, which actually looks really good.
The stain is all gone. You can go through your other presets and just see what they do. Let's look at Infrared, Yellow. And the Yellow looks pretty good actually. It closely mimics the Red Filter, but in this case we are going to stick with the High Contrast Red Filter. If you don't like to start black-and- white look, you can always go up here and click the Tint box, and you can change the tint colors and add a little tint to it and then click OK. Using a Black & White Adjustment layer allows you to see if any of the damage in your image is residing in any one of the channels, and if it is, to fix it in a way that allows you to go back and re-adjust your settings at any time.
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