How to Selectively Remove Color

in Tutorials
By spiffypix/Melanie (7,117) This user is a Premium Member Send mail to this user on December 15, 2008 5:33:18 PM CST

Please let me start by saying that I'm no Photoshop expert. I'm self-taught, so their might a more effective way to accomplish this that I'm not aware of. I'm just sharing the way that I do it.

Here in Photo #1, we have a photo with a lot of bright purple in it.

If I wanted to tone down only the purple in the photo, this is how I would do it.

Open a new adjustment layer, as seen in Photo #2, above. (On the LAYERS Palette, click on the black & white circle at the bottom.) Choose "Hue/Saturation"

In Photo #3, above, you'll see three areas highlighted. First, choose Magentas from the drop-down menu. You'll see that your cursor will turn into an eyedropper. (You must choose the eyedropper button in CS5).
Click a purple area in the photo that you want to de-saturate.
The little color bar on the bottom of the dialog box will re-position itself to that area on the color line (see bottom highlighted area in Photo 3).
Now, dial down the Saturation slider all the way to the left. You will then see that the deep purples de-saturate, as seen in Photo #4, below.

You will also notice that some lighter shades of purple are still there. No problem! Look at the color bar in Photo 5, below, highlighted in blue.

If you click and drag the ends of the gray bar more towards the blue end and red areas of the color bar, it will include more ranges of purple in the desaturation process.
In other words, you want to make that gray bar larger. The gray box can not only be lengthened and shortened, but it can also be moved around completely.

Feel free to experiment! As you lengthen and shorten it, you will see either more or less of the purple disappear.
You can see in the final photo #5 above, all the purple has been removed.
Note the color bar at the bottom of the hue/sat dialog box. You can see how wide that gray box has become!
Now you know how to selectively remove and adjust certain colors in your photos!

If something here in this tutorial can be explained in a way that is easier to understand, please let me know.

You can visit my website at Thanks!

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From pkwmphotos/Paulette (92) Send mail to this user on February 5, 2011 10:12:31 AM CST

Awesome. I have been using CS3 for over a year and had no idea I could do this! Thanks. Paulette


From jroessler/John (16,131) This user is a Premium Member Send mail to this user on April 9, 2011 9:08:08 AM CDT

Thanks again for restoring your article. I found it helpful and will refer to it again in the future.


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