Digital Imaging Tutorial

Tutorial : Out of this world

As Daily Post Weekly Photo Challenge theme this week is Out Of This World, I thought I might have some fun with it.  Here is a cactus growing slumped over a pillar which is rather other-worldly in itself.  Actually the cactus reminds me of Oscar, the grouchy monster who lives in trashcan on Sesame Street. I think it’s the eyes, laughing.

Now I think the quickest way to make something look like it’s from another planet is a major color shift because we expect things to be of a certain color.  I like using adjustment layers because you’re not changing your base image, just layering changes on top.  (If you want to see the gifs slightly bigger, just right click on them and click on view image)

  1. click on adjustment layers (it’s the black/white circle on the bottom of your layers palette
  2. click on hues
  3. use slider shift hues radically to change colors on top row
  4. use slider to saturate colors (or desaturate) on second row
  5. use slider to darken or lighten image on bottom but it can look like you’re losing contrast sometimes

Another way to darken or lighten that I prefer

  1. click on adjustment layers
  2. click on levels
  3. use slider to go left or right to darken or lighten image
  4. here you can also increase your amounts of
    They are dyads so if you increase one, you decrease the other.
    Under “Preset:”, you should see a little window that says “RGB”. Clicking in that window, you will get a dropbox allowing you to select “Red”, “Green”, or “Blue”.  Click in each of those and play with the slider until you get the effect you want.  It’s also a quick way to do color correction.  For example, something photographed in shadows will often have an overall blue cast.  Going in here and clicking on blue, sliding it to the left towards yellow will often correct things quickly.

And viola! We have an alien plant! So what do you think?  Now you do it — and have fun!  I’d love to see a pingback link if you make something you like.



Out of this World
Weekly Photo Challenge
Daily Post

Color Your World Challenge
March 4 : green
March 8 : cerise  (I had to add it to the challenge as that looks like cerise to me and I couldn’t resist)

Note: I use the photography plan which is currently $9.99 a month in the U.S. as of 3/6/18 and includes the use of Photoshop CC 2018, Lightroom and more, including some mobile apps. I highly recommend this plan if you’re into photography or digital imaging utilizing photographs. I don’t know how much Adobe charges in other countries though.Adobe has other plans besides the photography plan if you’re interested in more than Photoshop and Lightroom.I am an Adobe Affiliate so I get a small one-time payment if you join one of their annual monthly programs. Mostly I signed up for it so you all would have an easy clicking point if you’re interested.

You can use the Amazon search bar to do any search at Amazon as I did today with “photoshop” although I did limit it to the book category to get better results. You can change it back to “all” if you’d like or another category.

As an Amazon affiliate, I may earn a fee if you click on the above links and buy something. This has no effect on your price. You pay the same price you would normally. Amazon disclosure: “We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.”

images by M. LaFreniere, all rights reserved.



  1. Such a creative take on this week’s challenge. That cactus does look a bit like Oscar. What an unusual position to rest on. Maybe the cactus just wanted a better view 😀 Lovely tutorial and it’s amazing how you can change the mood of a photography just by changing the colours.

    • Thank you for the lovely comment! I thought the cactus was very unusual too — I’ve never seen one growing on a wall like that before. I’m glad you liked “Oscar” and his changing colors tutorial.

    • Cool! I’m glad someone else sees Oscar too. Does a happy dance. I’m glad you like the tutorial. Yes, I am using Adobe Photoshop CC 2018.

    • Was thinking about your which software question and thought I’d add this bit in case another reader doesn’t have Photoshop.

      If you’re using another photo editing program, most of them have a way to shift colors even free ones. Just go to your software’s help and search for “hues”. That should bring up the information telling you how to change colors/hues.

      A lot of times when you buy a new color printer, the manufacturer throws in a free photo editing program. I think where Photoshop and other not-so-free editing programs may be better is that you can control the shifting not just in hues but in levels and/or channels as well. Also Photoshop lets you use adjustment layers to layer changes on (which means you can partially erase though to lower the effect in parts of your picture–for example: if I had erased 50% over the bright blue rock bit, I could have had wherever I erased look about halfway between that bright blue and the original rock color). Some of the free ones, when you make a change in hue or contrast, you change the image directly. I don’t like changing my original permanently. On this post, I’ve just added an affiliate link to the Photoshop plan I’m on which is $9.99. It’s a pretty good plan in case people want to check it out.


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