Selective Coloring Photo Tutorial

For this year I have developed a series of photography challenges that are designed to be undertaken as “a photo a day”. The point of these challenges are to improve my photography skills and learn new techniques while paying attention to the little blessings in my life. If you want to view the entire post, you can do so by clicking here.

The January Challenge can be referenced with this picture if you just want a brief overview of this month’s challenges.

January Photography Challenge

January 16th’s challenge is to take a photo and edit it using selective coloring.

Today I want to take some time to provide a brief tutorial for that technique using a free photo editing software that you can use online. There is no downloading involved and this is a super quick technique to learn.

The website I use can be found here. They provide a brief tutorial on this topic as well but I wanted to show you with a photo that I have actually edited so that I can provide more steps.

When you first get to the site, this box should appear.

Screen Shot 2012-12-31 at 12.24.04 AM

Click “Open image from computer” and find the image you want to edit. Open the image. It should appear and look something like the screen below.

Screen Shot 2012-12-31 at 12.25.43 AM

The editor provides its own menu bar. Click the layer tab and select duplicate layer from the menu.

Screen Shot 2012-12-31 at 12.25.58 AM

Then, click on the adjustment tab and select desaturate. Screen Shot 2012-12-31 at 12.26.16 AM

This should make the duplicate layer of your photo black and white. Click on the zoom button on the left hand side of the screen and zoom in on the part of the image that you want in color.

Screen Shot 2012-12-31 at 12.26.28 AM

I zoomed in so that the entire part that I want in color is in the view. If you have a large image that you want in color, just do one piece of the image at a time and scroll to each part of the photo. The larger the piece, the longer it will take.Screen Shot 2012-12-31 at 12.26.34 AM

Click on the pink eraser icon that is on the left toolbar. At the top of the screen you can adjust the brush size and opacity. I use 100 opacity to make the color bright. Start clicking your eraser over the part of the image you want in color. Start by doing the middle with the large brush.

Screen Shot 2012-12-31 at 12.26.57 AM

Then zoom into the image further and do the edges. Take your time on this part or it can look sloppy. Sometimes it is best to use the eraser menu at the top to change the brush size to a smaller size. Screen Shot 2012-12-31 at 12.27.19 AM

When you are pleased with your image click the file tab at the top of the screen.

Screen Shot 2012-12-31 at 12.27.43 AM

Click save and save the image to your computer. Usually the settings that is uses to save the image will provide you with a perfect quality so unless you want to blow the photo up really big you don’t have to adjust those.Screen Shot 2012-12-31 at 12.27.45 AMI hope this tutorial helps! Let me know if you have any questions or requests for other tutorials! Please feel free to comment with a link your creations or photos. I would love to see your blogs or artwork if you want to share! You can also email me at creativelyloving.wordpress (at)



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