Color Options - Converting a Photo to Black and White and Then Adding Color

Making a Black and White Photo

Adobe Photoshop makes it easy to turn a color photo into a black and white photo. Simply open the color photo you want to use. The photo I used was Marilyn Monroe shown below:

Marylne Monroe

Select the photo and click on Image > Adjustments > Black and White:

Convert to Black and White

This opens the Convert to Black and White dialog box shown below. Make sure the Preview checkbox is checked so you can see the changes to the photo. I accepted the default settings. Click OK to apply the black and white conversion to the photo.

Black and White

Now you will add color to emphasize a portion of the picture. You will use the Polygonal Lasso tool to select her lips and then color them red. Select the Polygon Lasso tool:

Polygon Lasso Tool

Zoom in on the lips by clicking on the zoom tool Aoom Tool.

Now left click around the outside of her lips and once you get back to where you started, double click to set the selection. Your selection should now look like the picture below:

Outside Selection

Now you want to select the inside of the lips. Click the subtract from selection option on the polygonal lasso tool palette:

Subtract Selection

Now click on the inside of the lips the same way as you selected the outside of the lips but double click at the end of the selection. Your selected area should now look like the picture below:

Mouth Selected

The next step is to move the selection to another layer. By clicking the Ctrl + J shortcut keys you will jump the selection to a newly created layer. Next you need to select the lips again. This time we will use the magic wand tool Magic Wand with the tolerance set to 100:

Magic Wand

Select the lips on the new layer by clicking on it. You will now fill the selection with red. Select Edit then choose Fill to open the fill dialog box. When you select color from the Use dropdown list the choose a color dialog box will open for you to choose a red color.


Now the lips should appear red in the selection. Your picture should look like the photo below:

Red Lips

At this point the lips don't look real. On the layers palette select color from the blending mode drop down options.

Color Blend Mode

The last thing you need to do is turn down the opacity until you get the desired affect:

Layer Opacity

This is my finished product:

Colored Lips

Photoshop CS5 Tutorials