How to Whitewash Pictures

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Whitewashing is a very specific technique that really gives photographs a whole new look and feel. Whitewash your pictures with help from an art director in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Digital Pictures & Graphics
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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Michael Mondragon from Nerdy Connections. Today, we are going to learn how to whitewash photos. Now whitewashing photos can actually be better described as taking the color out of a picture but still keeping the equal balance on them. So we are going to learn how to do that today. Okay what we are going to do on this one we are going to whitewash this photo. And whitewashing is basically making a black and white version of this photo but keeping good contrast and making it look really seamless. And we don't want any hard edges on this. We still want it to maintain a lot of the photo realistic qualities. So what we are going to first do is we are going to make a new layer. And the reason why I do this is we are going to make this a black and white layer. I'm going to name it black and white. And that way I have a original on the bottom here. And we are going to go to adjustments. And we are going to go to black and white. And this is a really powerful use of making it black and white. And for this reason is I can actually go into the face here and I could commit this layer and it would be black and white. And it looks pretty good. But actually we have a lot more control here. If you see I have an eyedropper here and if I use the eyedropper right here. I'm actually going to click and hold and if I drag to the right it actually takes out a lot of that layer. And actually it's affecting over here different layers. There's cyan and red. It actually takes out magenta a little bit. And actually it can lighten but also if I want to actually make this hair, I can actually click on this and pull to the left and it's actually going to pull, make that darker. And that's the way we want as our end result. We want actually good hard black and white edges. So I'm going to pull that a little bit further. And that looks pretty good. So I'm going to commit that layer. And our next step is we are going to, going to go into our levels. And this gives us a lot of control right here. And as you see if I were to pull this from the left over it's going to do, make that black. But we don't want that much. We are actually going to want to split the average. So you see there's a on the right here I'm actually going to pull out some white. But when I pull out white I'm actually pulling out some of the really dark tones that I want. So I'm going to actually pull this back in as well. So you just want to pull these together so it actually has a lot of good contrast here. So now I'm going to take this mid tone and I'm going to pull that to the left as well. And that's going to give me a really good whitewash photo here. And if we click on and off you can see there's the color version and that's the black and white. And if we want to take it a step further we can actually, I can actually go on and I can actually duplicate this black and white layer. And what I'm going to do is I'm going to go to high pass and it's set at 15 right now. I'm actually going to take that down to about 10. And when I take that layer and I overlay it it actually makes a very good contrast. Now if I click this on and off you can actually see how sharp that really gets. And we can actually merge these two layers together by selecting them both. And command E pulling that together. So there is our black and white. And if I go into it and if I click off that layer there's our color. And there's our black and white. So that's how easy it is to whitewash a photo. I'm Michael Mondragon from Nerdy Connections. And you can look me up at We'll see you next time.


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