I see a lot of photographers post-process their digital photos to make them look “vintage”, so I thought I’d experiment a bit to see how it’s done. But first, I needed some photos to play with, so I dragged Kathy out this afternoon to be my model.
Once I had the photos, I looked around online for tutorials. Somewhat frustratingly, a lot of search hits took me to sites that were trying to sell Photoshop Actions, but I found this site that offered free Actions — but more importantly, breakdowns of what the actions were doing. I played around with some of the Actions on the site and settled on a modified version of Johnna’s Tea Party. I basically followed steps 1-5, then jumped straight to step 10, except I used Overlay instead of Soft Light for step 10. I set all of the adjustment layers to 35% opacity except for the Saturation layer in step 1.
Here’s the result:
To get a better idea of what’s going on, here’s a before/after comparison — before is on the left and after is on the right.
I also tried the Action on a couple of photos from the last post, just to see how they’d turn out. I think it works pretty well, but the effect is more subtle.