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Photoshop Tutorial: How to Remove a Color Cast

Have you ever taken a photo inside your living room when the light is on, and no windows are open, only to find that everything appears to have a yellowish tint to it? Or, maybe, on your latest vacation to the mountains, you take a photo with a blue sky, snow-covered mountain tops, and a body of water in the background. Suddenly everything looks like it has a gray or blue tint to it. These are examples of “color casts.”
Examples of color casts:
To remove these color casts, and make the colors appear closer to how they would in real life, we will use Photoshop. It is worth mentioning that there are much more time consuming and complicated ways to do this, but we can keep it very simple and still get a good result!
1. With your photo open in Photoshop, duplicate the image once. This can be done by going to the Layer menu at the top and choosing “Duplicate”, or by right-clicking the layer itself in the “layers” panel and choosing “Duplicate Layer”.
2. Now you have two layers with exactly the same image. Click on the top layer to make sure it is the active layer, meaning it is the layer you will be working with.
3. Go to the Filter menu at the top of the screen, go down to Blur, and choose Average from the list of blur options. This changes the image to one color, which is the average of all of the colors in the image.
4. Now hit command I on your keyboard to change the color of the layer to its exact opposite. You are inversing the color.
5. Finaly, change the blending mode of the layer to Overlay. This can be done in the drop down menu at the top of the layers panel. By default, it is set to Normal, so if you don’t see the menu I’m talking about right away, look for the word Normal in the layers panel, above your layer. Change it to Overlay.
6. This should give you a pretty good reslut, but you can also adjust the opacity% of the top layer if it is too much. You can also duplicate the top layer if it isn’t enough.

 
The image above, left is the original, and the image to the right is the “after,” with the top layer set to
60 % opacity. Below, on the left, is the original, and to the right is the photo with the yellow color cast removed.
  

 

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