First ever recolour of a B&W Photograph...


Well-Known Member
I've fancied doing a recolour for some time, I used no tutorials just what I knew already on PhotoShop. The image is really simple with not a lot going on, its off Google (I take no credit for the photography).

Tell me what I did wrong or right? As I have no knowledge in recolouring this is all just guess work and I would like to improve greatly!

I'll appreciate your feedback ;D


Well done. I would say the skin tones lack a bit of luster and variation. They might benefit from some saturation or deeper color. Maybe some ruddiness here and there. Few people attain his age without some patchy color developing. For some reason, and I can't out my finger on it, the hair is not convincing. I'm sure someone with more experience can point you to a way to enhance that. The sweater looks great. The shirt is OK. I think I would have done just a bit of dodging on the face and the watchband. The way I do this is to make a 50% grey layer above, set it to overly or soft light, then use the dodge tool. This way it is nondestructive.
Here's my take on it. I add color layers, soft light. I did some levels adjustments to darken and used that filter mask to remove the dark from the shadows. I added that 50% grey layer set to soft light (overlay creates too much saturation glow), then I dodged here and there where I thought the face and neck shadows were too deep. Then I made a selection of his skin and warmed it with the default photo filter set at 28% density (25 is default). Finally I added a gry brown to his hair, set it to soft light. I used a soft eraser on each of the color layers to shape the areas I wanted colored better. When I brush the color on, I do it rather broadly since it's going to set itself into the pixels once the layer blend mode is adjusted.



Well-Known Member
Thanks for your feedback and your version is loads better than mine haha, I see what you mean about his skin tone - it looks very spray tan? It'll sure help for the next attempt!

Thanks again and nice job Clare :)
Thanks Jonathon. There is a lot to learn. I'm not the best, but when I came to PSG, you should have seen my first attempts, not to mention some of my earlier ones.

Just keep practicing. Maybe find some tuts.
Clare, you did a wonderful job, especially considering the starting image had such extreme contrast. I had intended to reduce the contrast then colorize it, but you beat me to the punch by colorizing it first.

So, I hope you don't mind, but I took your version and dropped the contrast some more, as well as made some other tonality, saturation and hue tweaks and came up with the following... I hope you like it.



Last edited: