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Split-toning a color image


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Split-toning a color image

Split Toning is definitely not only just for black and white photographs. You can apply a split tone effect to your color images, and come up with some outstanding color results. Well, let's play with this image a little bit. What we're going to do is we're going to navigate down to our Split Toning panel, and open that one up. Now with this image, one of things I'm noticing is that there are some really strong colors here. We have this bright background, this hair that has a lot a yellow in it, these green blue eyes and this blue shirt.

So I want to kind of pick up on that, and add some Split Toning to this image. So it pushes this image into a different place, but it kind of honors the color that's there. In a sense it kind of cross-processes that color a little bit. So here is what I'm going to do. I'll go ahead and bring up some saturation. Then I'm going to look for a hue that I think might look interesting. Now a blue or a cool hue can look interesting, or even a warm color. I think I'm going to go with the warm color here, and quite a bit of saturation. Now just adding warmth doesn't really do this image any justice.

It just looks kind of muted, which is not very interesting, right? Well, let's then add some shadow color. What I'm going to do with my shadow color is I'm going to look to add some nice cool tones here. What I can do is try to find the sweet spot for this, where I'm adding these nice cool tones, and then balance this. If I balance it one way, it becomes yellow; balance it the other way, it becomes nice and cool. Well, what if I find a sweet spot somewhere in between the two where I'm blending these two colors together to create this almost soft, cross-processed, intriguing, interesting type of the color look? Now whenever you apply split toning, you almost always want to go back to some of your other panels like the Basic panel. Let's do that.

If we go back to the Basic panel, what we can do here is swing our color temperature either warmer, which could be kind of interesting. That's an interesting kind of engaging look, or cooler, too. That could be interesting as well. In my opinion, I want a little bit more warmth. I'll add some Fill Light to the photograph, as well as some contrast, and a little bit of brightness here, and some vibrance; and again just changing the overall look by swinging some of these controls one way or another, and trying to find an interesting, intriguing color effect that typically I would have had to create in Photoshop.

But here in Lightroom, I can create something really similar that's engaging. I can do it in such a quick way that it makes me want to do this type of experimentation more and more. All right, well, let's take a look at our before and after. Here is before without any split toning, and then our after - subtle yet significant and also, kind of fun effect as we work with split toning on our color photographs. Well, in closing in here if you've never experimented with the split toning controls on color photographs, I definitely recommend that you do so, because I think that you'll find that you can have quite a bit of fun by using those controls.

Then they can help you quickly come up with some really creative results.

Split-toning a color image
Video duration: 3m 7s 13h 24m Appropriate for all

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Split-toning a color image provides you with in-depth training on Photography. Taught by Chris Orwig as part of the Lightroom 3 Essential Training

Subject:
Photography
Software:
Lightroom
Author:
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