Photoshop Overlay Tutorial

How to make a great photo “pop” with Photoshop (Tutorial)

Most of us can’t afford those high dollar cameras that make even the untrained into photographers. This simple tutorial (literally takes seconds to do) allows users with Photoshop access to turn drab photos into fab photos.

Step 1 : Seeing Double

Begin by opening your image in Photoshop and duplicate the layer your image is on. This layer is titled Background and has a little lock on it; your new layer will automatically be titled Layer 1.

You can duplicate your layer by clicking the dropdown menu on your layers panel (located right above the Opacity Slider) and selecting Duplicate Layer.

Duplicate Layer in Photoshop

Duplicate Layer in Photoshop

Keyboard Shortcuts! On PC hit CTRL+J and On Mac use APPLE (Command) +J

Step 2 : Overlay Magic

Now it’s time to sprinkle in a little Photoshop magic. With Layer 1 selected you’ll see there is a dropdown slot on your layers panel directly above that says “Normal.” Use this dropdown menu to select “Overlay.” BAM! Instantly your image has higher contrast, i.e. lighter lights and darker darks, as well as an increase in saturation.

Overlay Blend Mode

Overlay Blend Mode

A lot of the time this effect is very strong so what you will want to do is reduce the opacity of Layer 1. A comfortable choice is 60% opacity but it’s up to you how vibrant you want your image!

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