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3 Ways to Create a Vintage-looking Photo

We’ve all got super high-resolution cameras that take beautifully clear, crisp shots. And then what do we want to do with them? Give them a warmer, vintage look. Make it seem like the edges are crinkled and the images faded. Some tricks even give the illusion that the camera malfunctioned.

It’s might seem a little nuts to be going to so much work to make a perfect picture less perfect. But these old-school light effects are truly popular right now. Just look at the ads for American Apparel, Urban Outfitters, or Anthropologie.  And the good news is, many of them are pretty simple to accomplish in Photoshop.

Here are 3 great tutorials for three different kinds of vintage-looking effects:

Light Leaks

Light leaks originally occurred when cracks let in bits of light during photo processing. You can recreate the effect in just a few simple steps, giving your photos that blurry, burned-out look around the edges.

Faded Old Photo

This approach toys around with color layers to give your crisp, bright photos a softer, rosy appearance, just like the rows of 60’s era pictures at your grandma’s house.

Vintage Pin-Up

This is the full throttle vintage effect, transforming your images into retro-style posters with a colorized, painterly effect.

If you have fun with those, check out SmashingMagazine’s extensive writeup on achieving vintage and toy camera effects. Or look for more Photoshop tricks.

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One Comment

  1. Posted February 15, 2011 at 12:27 pm | Permalink

    Hello,
    this is a very good on of them i really like it .. this is beautiful .. i would like to see more
    Thanks

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