Photo Effect Photoshop

How to Create a Retro Analog Effect in Photoshop

In this tutorial, we’ll learn how to create a retro analog effect in Photoshop. Retro analog camera photos commonly feature color washes and light leaks, and that’s what we are going to recreate there. Here’s the effect we’ll be creating:

Analog Effect

To create a retro analog effect, you’ll need:

  • A recent version of Photoshop

Step 1

Let’s start by opening our image in Photoshop.

Analog Effect Original

Now, create a Curves adjustment layer by clicking on the Create New Fill or Adjustment Layer option at the bottom of the layers palette and selecting Curves from the list that appears. Use the settings shown below for the Green and Blue channel. You don’t have to make the curve exactly like it, but try to make it as similar as possible.

Analog Effect Curves Green

Analog Effect Curves Blue

Change the blending mode of the Curves adjustment layer to Soft Light.

Analog Effect Curves Soft Light

Analog Effect Curves Soft Light Result

Step 2

We will now add a Solid Color adjustment layer by clicking on the Create New Fill or Adjustment Layer option at the bottom of the layers palette and selecting Solid Color from the list that appears. Choose #927cff for the color, and change this layer’s opacity to 25% and blending mode to Screen.

Analog Effect Solid Color

Analog Effect Solid Color Result

Step 3

Next, add a Gradient adjustment layer by clicking on the Create New Fill or Adjustment Layer option at the bottom of the layers palette and selecting Gradient from the list that appears. Choose a white to transparent gradient and use the settings shown below. The Angle will depend on your image; I set mine at 45.

Analog Effect Gradient

Lower this layer’s opacity to 75% and change its blending mode to Soft Light.

Analog Effect Gradient Blending Mode

Step 4

Add another Solid Color adjustment layer by clicking on the Create New Fill or Adjustment Layer option at the bottom of the layers palette and selecting Solid Color from the list that appears. Choose #ffdc7f as the color this time, and set this layer’s opacity to 50% and blending mode to Soft Light.

Analog Effect Solid Color Fill

Analog Effect Solid Color Fill Result

Step 5

Finally, we will add some light leaks. To do so, add another Curves adjustment layer by clicking on the Create New Fill or Adjustment Layer option at the bottom of the layers palette and selecting Curves from the list that appears. Use the settings shown below for the Curves.

Analog Effect Curves

Analog Effect Curves Result

This has burned out the entire picture, so to fix that, first fill the whole layer with black. Then, lower the opacity of this layer to 60% and use a soft, large eraser to paint back some areas of the light leak.

Analog Effect Curves Opacity

And that’s it! The retro analog effect is complete!

Analog Effect

About the author

Tabish Shaikh

Website designer, website developer, blogger and a writer. These are the things I like, love and live for. Having years of experience in each field. Developing sites since childhood. Getting the most complicated things done is my specialty. Providing each and everything of top most quality to each and every client.

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