Gloomy Photo Effect

We have already learned how to create a dreamy photo effect so in this tutorial, we’ll learn how to create a gloomy photo effect in Photoshop. The effect is very easy to create and beginners can try their hands on it too. Here’s the effect we will be creating:

Gloomy Photo Effect

To create a gloomy photo effect, you’ll need:

  • Adobe Photoshop

Step 1

Open your image in Photoshop.

Gloomy Photo Effect Original

First, we will turn our image into a black and white photo for the effect to work best. To do so, click on the Create New Fill or Adjustment Layer option at the bottom of the layers palette, select Black & White from the list that appears and use the settings shown below.

Gloomy Photo Effect Black & White

Step 2

Now, we will create a Color Balance adjustment layer. To do so, click on the Create New Fill or Adjustment Layer option at the bottom of the layers palette and select Color Balance from the list that appears.

Gloomy Photo Effect Color Balance

Then, use the settings shown below for the Shadows, Highlights and Midtones. Make sure the Preserve Luminosity option is checked.

Gloomy Photo Effect Shadows

Gloomy Photo Effect Highlights

Gloomy Photo Midtones

Step 3

The effect is almost complete. All we need to do now is sharpen the image by applying a High Pass Filter. Before you can apply the filter, press Cmd/Ctrl + A to select everything, go to Edit > Copy Merged and paste it on top of all the other layers.

Now, go to Filter > Other > High Pass and use the settings shown below. Just make sure the Radius you use makes the details appear subtly from the background.

Gloomy Photo High Pass

Change this layer’s blending mode to Linear Light and lower its opacity to 30%. This will make sure your image looks more natural.

Gloomy Photo High Pass Result

And that’s it! We are done creating a gloomy photo effect in Photoshop! You can use these steps to create the same effect on other photos, though the effect will look best with pictures of abandoned places.

Gloomy Photo Effect