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Photography Question 
Kalina J. Rumbalski

Selective Color in Photoshop

I have a color image that I want to be black and white, but I want part of the image to remain its true color. How do I do this? I know how to change the image into a greyscale. I tried to drag the color layer into the greyscale image and that did not work.

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4/4/2007 6:19:32 PM

Stephanie M. Stevens   Add a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer and turn the saturation all the way down. Set the foreground color to black. Then with the brush tool, paint over the areas that you want to be in color. If you make a mistake, change the foreground color to white, and paint the color back out. You can go back and forth as many times as needed until it's perfect.

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4/4/2007 8:10:12 PM

Debby A. Tabb
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/4/2004
If you crop this image first, you cannot complete this action. So, with an uncropped image ...
*Go to image adjustments.
* Hue / saturation, and turn black and white.
* Then go to the History Brush (that would be the brush with the curled arrow on it)
*And color over the places you want to restore color. Using the magnifier to get a close look at your working area comes in handy.
*Then crop your image and save as copy.
I hope this helps,

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4/4/2007 9:04:40 PM

Susie Peek-Swint
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/23/2002
  Hi Kalina ~ if you have already cropped your image, and therefore not able to use the history brush, I've found the easiest way is to make a duplicate layer ~ change it to b&w then use the eraser tool to erase back the areas you wish to remain true colour...

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4/9/2007 1:47:12 PM

Dennis Flanagan
BetterPhoto Member Since: 12/31/2005
  I disagree a bit with the advice so far. Their methods work, but by simply desaturating the image or changing the image to gray scale, you will flatten your image quite a bit. I recommend you creat a layer, use a good black and white conversion technique, then use the erasure tool to remove the black and white from the areas you want in color. At least that is the method I use.

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4/9/2007 2:07:36 PM

Banny C. Catolico   What I did in this type of photo manipulating is different from the above techniques. What I did in Photoshop I use POLYGONAL LASSO to select my subject to be remain in color then I either use SELECT inverse to make the background into black & white or I used LAYER VIA COPY then I change the back ground to black & white using DESATURATE method. Iíll feel it easy for me to use this technique than erasing.

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4/9/2007 5:11:24 PM

Craig Bybee   >Make a duplicate layer
>Convert the top layer to B&W using whatever method you like best
>Click on the Layer Mask button on the Layers Pallete
>Paint in Black to erase and White to recover the underlying colored layer

Very easy to do, great accurate results AND if you make a mistake all you have to do is paint the mistake away!

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4/10/2007 6:42:16 AM

Laura Ingold   If you decide to desaturate at 100% and
use the history brush to bring the color back in, you can control the density of the returning color by using the opacity % slider tool at the top of the page so the color is very pastel or comes back stronger depending on the percent you choose. (This choice is available after choosing the history brush tool)
Quick and easy!

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4/10/2007 7:18:21 AM

Bobby R. Strange
BetterPhoto Member Since: 5/14/2006
  I use the method Susie mentioned. Basically I create a duplicate layer in b&w and erase the parts that I want to be in color. I have a few in my gallery that I did this way. It can be tedious, but it's how I'm most comfortable doing it, so it works for me.

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4/10/2007 8:31:03 AM

R.M. Fusco   Hi,
As a working professional in the field, I convert to black and white in channel mixer. Go to Image>Adjustments>Channel Mixer; then click on MonoChrome in the lower left corner. Using this method will produce richer blacks and not blown out highlights. Try the Magic wand for selecting an area that you wish to keep in color, if there are not many. You can convert a Magic wand selection to a clipping path and change as much as you'd like. Any questions, just ask here.

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4/10/2007 10:12:40 AM

Janet H. Flint   Kalina download Picasa2 from google, once your on the google home page click on more you'll find the download there. this program it will do it for you instantly. Select your photo then select effects. Its quite easy if thats what you want. Give it a try, can't hurt.It's a fun program. Janet Flint

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4/11/2007 8:18:52 AM

Janet H. Flint   Kalina...check my gallery you'll find a sample there

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4/11/2007 8:22:23 AM

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