Colorful Dreamy Photo Effect

Photo Effects | August 4th, 2008

This tutorial will show you how to add brightness and color to your image to get that “dreamy” effect.

Today We’ll be making this:

STEP 1: Open a new file in Photoshop (ctrl+n)

Make sure the setting for Backgound Contents is Transparent, and the size can be whatever you want. I chose 600 x 400 px.

STEP 2: Go to Edit > Fill (ctrl+F5)

Fill the layer with a dark blue color. I used #273a65.

STEP 3: Select your brush tool

Use a large sized brush – larger than the canvans – with a 0% Hardness. You want a blurry shade of color added so a soft defualt brush will do the trick.
Create a new layer (shift+ctrl+N) and select another color that is slightly brighter than your background. I used #68131e.
Now brush on the sides of the canvas.

Click to view process

STEP 4: Open the image you would like to change in Photoshop

Drag or paste it onto your canvas on top of the two color layers. I used this stock image.
Then change the layer mode to Lighten.

Click to view process

STEP 5: Add Selective Color Adjustment Layer

Select the half black half white circle in your Layers window and choose Selective Color.
In the Selective Color Options window, select Colors: Neutrals, and lower the black precentage vlaue by -30%. NOTE: If the image is too bright you can decrease or increase the percentage value until it looks good.

Click to view process

STEP 6: Create a new layer

Place this layer right under the Selective Color layer.
Select a soft large brush but this time use White. Carefully brush with the edges of the brush on the sides of of the canvas. You don’t want to fill the layer with white, only add the glow from the tip of the brush.

Click to view process

You are done!

Here is another result I got using this method:

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6 Comments to “Colorful Dreamy Photo Effect”

  • PANKAJ BABBAR | October 30th, 2008 at 12:25 am


  • PANKAJ BABBAR | October 30th, 2008 at 12:26 am

    Its very Nice.

  • gabi | January 14th, 2010 at 9:35 am

    Thank you so much :)

  • John@Retail Fixtures & Store Displays | August 5th, 2010 at 10:10 am

    i like the colour after that,great tutorial

  • | December 16th, 2011 at 3:09 pm

    Many ways to do photo manipulation, now many online services that provide services for photo manipulation, but I prefer to use Photoshop to perform manipulation. Photoshop tutorials are very interesting to learn. With Photoshop, we can create to generate a variety of photo looks more attractive.

  • asd | August 22nd, 2013 at 4:49 pm

    Very good website you have here but I was wondering if you knew of any forums that cover the same topics talked about here?
    I’d really love to be a part of group where I can get responses from other knowledgeable people that share the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me know. Kudos!