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Tutorial: Retro Lomo Effect in Photoshop

By January 5, 2014Photo Effects, Tutorials

Learn how to create a lomo (lomographic) effect in Photoshop

The lomo effect is an over saturated photo with high contrast, unique colors and strong vignette. This photo effect first started with the original Lomo LC-A and is still famous. In this tutorial i will show you how to create a similar photo effect with saturated and unique style.

Tutorial Details and Resources

Difficulty: Beginner

Apps Used: Adobe Photoshop

Estimated Completion Time: 10-15′ Minutes

Resources: 1950 Chrysler by Curtis

Step 1 > Open the Image

First open the image you want to use. For this tutorial i used the abandoned old car at 1024×690 pixels but you can use any image size you like.

 

lomo effect step 1

Step 2 > Duplicate the Layer

Duplicate the layer and name the new one “Lomo Effect”.

 

lomo effect step 2

Step 3 > Add Vignette

We need to add a strong vignette and an easy method is to go to Filter > Lens Correction, in the new window select the custom tab and change the vignette Amount to -100 and Midpoint to 35. Press OK to finish this step.

 

lomo effect step 3a

add vignette step 3c

Step 4 > Create a Curves Adjustment Layer

To create the lomo effect we need to adjust the color tones. Press “Create new fill or adjustment layer” button at the bottom of layers palette.

 

lomo effect step 4

Step 5 > Change Color Tones

For different images you can use different settings but for this example i used the follow settings:

 

5) Add more contrast using RGB channel and make it look similar to my example.

lomo step 4a photoshop tutorial

 

5) Change the Red channel to look similar to my example.

lomo effect step 4b

 

5) Change the Green channel to look similar to my example.

lomo effect step 4c

 

5) Change the Blue channel to look similar to my example.

lomo effect step 4d

Step 6 > Merge Layers

To create similar blurred edges like the original lomo images we need to use Iris Blur. Before we add iris blur we need to merge the layers. I will show you a better technique so you don’t have to merge all the steps. While pressing (Alt Ctrl Shift) in layers option menu press also Merge Visible, this will create a new layer but keep the curves adjustment layer. If this method is still to hard for you, just press (Ctrl + E) to merge the 2 last layers.

 

lomo effect step 5a

Step 7 > Add Iris Blur

To add iris blur go to Filter > Blur > Iris Blur and use the follow settings:

 

step-7a

 

Add 2px Iris Blur and press OK.

lomo effect photoshop tutorial

Step 8 > Sharpen the Image

Go to Layer > Duplicate Layer to duplicate the existing layer. Next, go to Filter > Other > High Pass. In the new tab set Radius to 2 and press Ok. Finally set the blending mode to “Soft Light”.

 

lomo effect step 7a

 

Set Radius to 2.0 and press OK.

lomo effect photoshop tutorial

Step 9 > Add Highlight

This step is optional and you can add a highlight by creating a new layer and drawing a soft large brush over the image. Set the brush size to 800 – 900pt and 0 hardness. Draw to the center of image and set the blending mode to Hard Light or Soft Light.

 

lomo effect step 8

 

Set the blending mode to Hard Light and opacity to 30%.

lomo effect step 9

Conclusion

The most important step is the Step number 5. You can play with color tones and achieve great results. The last step when we added the highlight is optional but gives a nice look and creates even more contrast.

 

abandoned car lomo effect

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