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Improve your digital photo in 1 second

I take a lot of digital photos, but I'm not professional photographer, and my photos often need improving. The most common problem for me  is that a photo is too light. There are probably advanced techniques of configuring photo camera and adjusting the photo in Photoshop, but I dont really have time to study them. So  I found an easy trick to make such photos better very fast. Lets take a photo shown on the right. It need to  be a bit darker. You can adjust its levels (Ctrl-L) or simply apply Auto levels (Ctrl-Shift-L), but it doesnt always produces good results.

1

Here is  my trick:
* duplicate layer with photo
* set blend mode of the new layer to multiply
* adjust layer opacity (usually 50% is enough).

I have setup shortcuts for all 3 actions, so  it really takes less than a second to apply! And the result usually has richer colors than it would have after levels adjusting.

2

... just another example...

3

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تعليقات {38}

shay منذ وقت طويل
Great trick! It works so well and its so easy to do. Do you have a similar tip for brightening up dark photos? Keep up the good work!

hamid منذ وقت طويل
it is not good but if you work hard you will be ok in it

cory منذ وقت طويل
Actually, the reason most photos are too light is to compensate for what the camera companies feel is a lack of photographic skill on the part of the general public. So the exposures that are "automatic" are really about 1 or two stops too light. So you can set the exposure to compensate for THEIR compensation, setting it back to normal. That way you don't have to do all this photoshop crap, you can just take it right the first time.

sonal منذ وقت طويل
hi...i was trying the trick here..on wht application does this generally work....

carolifen منذ وقت طويل
thx God (really really thanks!!!) i've found this site (actually I found it accidentally when i was searching some images :) ) Thank u sooo much Vlad, you're so generous to share your artworks -and the tutorial,of course- to us.. keep the GREAT work!! GBU..

Pentagrama منذ وقت طويل
Yes! I love your work...It's my favourite site for desktop pictures ;-)

Vlad Gerasimov منذ وقت طويل
shay - well I guess you can simply set blend mode to "screen" instead of "multiply" (didnt try it though).

shay منذ وقت طويل
Thanks for the tips. They both work equally well :)

Emily منذ وقت طويل
Nice trick! I think I will be using that in the future. Great site also! I love your work!

vicky منذ وقت طويل
to get a dark phot lighter try creating a copy of the original. Paste the copy as a separate layer, turn to black and white, then copy it again and paste once more onto the original colour photograph. Using the layers toolbar, just play around with the different levels of opacity etc...

X3mSpeedy 4 يناير 2008
Well this is a pretty long and complex tute :( Everyone writes here how amazing is it...

Ammi 22 يناير 2008
Man u really ease my work, txk a lot! :D

Vern 2 يونيه 2008
Thanks for the tip. A modifiied method to achive the same result would be to not duplicate the background layer but create any adjustment layer above the background layer. Just create it but make no adjustments and select OK. The change the blend mode of the adjustment layer to 'Multiply' and its opacity to 50%. Using this method you will get exactly the same result but the overall file size will be much smaller as the adjustment layer is tiny while a duplicated background almost doubles file size. Vern

alannaa 25 مارس 2009
"soft light" works well also!

MR 21 مايو 2009
This works like a charm! Thanks!

Ivan 25 مايو 2009
Thank you. Now I know how simple to make a photo more color rich.

Kailash 21 يونيه 2010
Really amazing

Viktor 14 ديسمبر 2010
Прекрасно!!!!

Michael منذ وقت طويل
Love your work, a TRUE breath of fresh air!

madhav منذ وقت طويل
Really Nice I like your suggestion

eduard منذ وقت طويل
Hi! really nice your site, i found it some minutes ago and im very glad, and i have a question i tried with this tip, but i dont know what happend coz when i set the opacity to 50% appears vertical lines into the picture, i saved the picture and i open it, but the problem follows, some of u know what could be the problem? thanks very much

Red منذ وقت طويل
Not bad

Alx منذ وقت طويل
Wow! awesome and simple!

Domjan منذ وقت طويل
I am not really an expert but isn't that _exactly_ the same as applying a gamma curve? If you left the multiplication layer at 100% then it would be exactly the same as gamma=2. At 50% it's still a gamma function but smaller then 2 (1.5?). PS: Great wallpapers!

kenneth Murray منذ وقت طويل
very good keep up the good work (y)

Linda منذ وقت طويل
Great tip. I'll use it as well. (I love your website and I refer my friends often. Your art has depth to it, and I find myself getting lost in it at times. Thank you for your generosity in both displaying your work and sharing it with all of us so freely.)

Ben منذ وقت طويل
Shay, When you press ctrl + L to get the levels, move the middle arrow to the left or right. This may help you get a brighter or darker image ;-)

Nam منذ وقت طويل
great!! great!! very clever, thanks!!!!!!!!!

ioBuddha منذ وقت طويل
Great..!

g0 منذ وقت طويل
fundoo!!!!:-D

bd منذ وقت طويل
DURDAANTO!! [awesome..]

gherhn منذ وقت طويل
napintas nga idea dayta. Very good

marcel.pajda 21 يناير 2008
Simply amazing. Thanks!

Rita Krivova 8 فبراير 2008
Все гениальное просто!!! Конечно не всегда помогает, но в большинстве случаев - экономит массу времени)))

lenaswan 2 أكتوبر 2008
Well, I started with drops on the web and now got absorbed in your site with all tutorials and tricks! Super-thanx for this one also. Just tried it - it works! I wonder how many will come to you from my blog on Livejournal ;-)))

MKT 25 مارس 2009
The only problem with your method is that it tends to darken the shadows too a point where you loose detail. I would use a 2nd step to then bring up the shadow density. So maybe 10 seconds instead of just 1.

kofi 9 يونيه 2009
wow nice

Kasper 16 سبتمبر 2009
Ah brillaint, very nice tip indeed and SO fast! Keep up the incredible work with the site and images :D I Liek!

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