Adding Richness and Glow

Here’s an easy technique to give your images a boost, adding richness and a glow to many photos. Lets start with this image taken at Beamish.

Make sure that you have the Layers Palette open (Window and tick Layers) – it will look something like this with the image shown as the “Background” layer

Next duplicate this Background Layer (Ctrl J is a useful shortcut).

With the copy layer selected in blue, go to Filters/Blur/Gaussian Blur.

Use the slider to blur the image quite a lot so that only the shape of the image is visible but little of the detail. Your screen will now show the blurred image

With this blurred layer still selected, go to the box near the top of the Layers palette which is labelled Normal and click the arrow to open up the drop down menu. Select the Soft Light option.

Immediately the image on screen will change from blur to a richer more saturated version of the original image. If the effect is too much, use the Opacity slider to reduce it.

The final image shows rich saturation with a hint of Glow. The technique works better on some images than others, but it’s very easy to try out and discard if you don’t like it. Because it works on a new layer, your original image remains untouched.

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