Adobe Photoshop Elements 9

  ams4127 20:27 13 May 2011

I have this programme on my computer and am learning how to use it. I also have a book showing various ways of enhancing images.

Trouble is that I want to change an image but don't know the best way to achieve the result I want.

The problem

I have an image taken at a wedding showing the bride and groom standing together. The bride has her bouquet and the groom, his buttonhole.

What I want to do is change the whole image to black and white (I can do that bit) and then "paint" the colours of the flowers back in.

There seem to be various ways to do this using layers etc (according to the book) but it's at this point I get lost!

So, any expert help will be gratefully received.

  cycoze 20:55 13 May 2011

If you import your image into the program, next copy it and paste it onto a new layer (or drag it to the create new layer icon), you can now turn this new layer into B/W.

Now you need to mask the flowers, this can be done in various ways and really you should look up some tutorials online to learn various ways of masking, by using a mask you can re-paint things back in if you accidentally paint them out.

Trying to simplify one method, by selecting the mask tool for your B/W layer you will see a new box added on your layers pallette, you can select that and then using a paint brush with either Black or White paint you can paint out parts of your image and re-paint them back in with the opposite colour, ie: paint out with black, and paint back in using white.

Once you have masked out the Flowers you should be able to see the colours showing through from the bottom layer.

A quick and dirty way to get the result is to use the eraser on your B/W layer, simply erase the flowers on that layer to expose the colours from the layer below, use a soft edge eraser for doing this.

  QuizMan 21:37 13 May 2011

It is called colour popping. Here is an old video using Photoshop, but you will get the general principles from it.

colour popping

  ams4127 21:49 13 May 2011

Thank you both for your answers.

cycoze That makes things easier to understand than the book does

QuizMan Excellent video. I must Google for Photoshop videos, something which never occurred to me.

I will use your suggestions over the weekend.

Thanks again.

  QuizMan 22:01 13 May 2011

ams4127 I recommend Photo Answers for Photoshop and Elements videos - see my previous link.

And, if PCA will forgive a plug for another magazine, I subscribe to Digital Photo. Their monthly magazines include quite lengthy video tutorial techniques.

  BT 08:01 14 May 2011


I'll agree with that.

DP video discs are excellent. The items are also duplicated to some extent on their website.

  ams4127 19:37 14 May 2011

Thank you QuizMan, I'll continue to browse that site when I need answers.

I'll also have a look at Digital Photo magazines.

Meanwhile, I am pleased to say that the image has been converted and the happy couple are delighted.

Thanks again.

  ventanas 21:56 14 May 2011

I've used this technique many times, and by far the easiest program I have found to do it in is Lightroom, by a mile. And a heck of a lot cheaper than Photoshop.

  BT 08:48 15 May 2011


Lightroom ain't exactly cheap Lightroom

You don't need Photoshop or Lightroom. You can do it in any program that supports Layers.

You can do it in Paint.NET and that's free. Paint.NET

  Quickbeam 09:07 15 May 2011

That's what I thought when I looked at the prices on Amazon!

My Paintshop pro 10 still does enough for me, with the basics being done in FastStone free editor because it's even simpler and quicker for the basic adjustments.

  ventanas 22:01 15 May 2011


Didn't say it was cheap, just cheaper than Photoshop.

But you stick with the layers if you want to. All you need in Lightroom is the adjustment brush and automask turned on, and about ten seconds.

If you want to do a job properly................

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