Photoshop CS2 Tutorial: Making Silver Shiny Skin


Whether you are creating graphical artwork depicting friendly aliens or want to turn your family portrait into something from another universe, you can use Adobe Photoshop to change human skin to a shiny, silvery color with a few of the graphics software package’s tools. Adobe Photoshop allows photographers and artists to tweak and enhance their images in a variety of ways, adding elements to regular photos to make them out of this world.

Things You'll Need

  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Digital image
  • Open a photo in Photoshop by navigating to “File” and “Open.” Then browse to where the photo is located on your computer. Click it once to highlight it, then click the “Open” button.

  • Zoom in on the area of the photo with a large amount of skin showing by pressing the “Ctrl” and “+” keys together on your keyboard.

  • Click the “Lasso” tool on the “Tools” palette on the left side of the screen. Use your mouse to draw a line around one area of skin, such as an arm or leg. A closed area of dotted “marching ants” appears.

  • Navigate to “Image.” Then select “Adjust” and choose “Hue/Saturation.” Slide the bottom “Lightness” slider bar toward the right. This makes skin appear shiny, and the further to the right you go, the brighter the skin appears.

  • Slide the “Saturation” slider bar all the way to the left side, giving the skin a silver glow.

  • Slide the “Lightness” bar back to the left until you find the exact silver shade required for your project.

  • Write down the three numbers in the “Hue,” “Saturation” and “Lightness” boxes, then click the “OK” button.

  • Use the “Lasso” tool to select another area of the skin and click “Image,” “Adjust” and “Hue/Saturation.” Instead of using the slider bars, type in the three numbers you wrote down. This gives the skin a uniform color, and you avoid the unnecessary step of having to adjust the bars each time.

  • Repeat for all areas on the body and all persons in the photo.

Tips & Warnings

  • Different skin colors will require different measurements on the Hue/Saturation box. For example, for darker, Middle Eastern skin, the “Lightness” bar will require an increase and must be moved further to the right.
  • Don't panic if you don’t get the skin color exactly right or lasso something you don’t want to use. Photoshop lets you go backwards in time—click the “Edit” menu, then select “Undo” or “Step Backwards.” This erases the very last action you took. You can repeat these steps to go backwards through multiple actions.

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  • Photo Credit alien image by Jesse-lee Lang from
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