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Photoshop Retro effect

How to get a RETRO POP ART EFFECT on images

This tutorial will show you how an image can be transformed to a pop art using Photoshop.

Glimpse of the Pop Art Effect:

Photoshop Retro effect

Step 1:

Choose an image which you would like to edit. I have chosen the below image from Flickr. The image is credited to David Dennis.

Photoshop Retro effect

Step 2:

If needed, resize the image and separate the shades from the image. I have removed a very few shades from the image as I generally like a few strokes here and there on my pop art.

Step 3:

The next step is to duplicate the layer which. To do this either go to Layer –> Duplicate Layer option or use Ctrl+J.

Photoshop Retro effect

Now set the blending option of the new layer to Luminosity.

Photoshop Retro effect

Step 4:

Select the top layer (the layer we have created) and invert it. This can be done using Image –> Adjustments –> Invert or hit Ctrl + I

Photoshop Retro effect

Step 5:

Once the invert option is applied, set the opacity to 50%.

The image would look something like below.

Photoshop Retro effect

Step 6:

Now create a new layer – use the shortcut Ctrl + Shift + Alt + E. Delete ‘layer 1 copy’ which we had been working on.

Step 7:

Go to the Adjustments tab and select Posterize effect.

Photoshop Retro effect

Step 8:

Now select the background layer (Layer 1) and duplicate it. Move this new layer to the top.

Photoshop Retro effect


Select Multiply blending mode.

Step 10:

Select the new layer (‘Layer 1 copy’) and apply Threshold. To do this, go to Image –> Adjustments –> Threshold. Modify the threshold value as required.

Photoshop Retro effect

The image could now look like below:

Photoshop Retro effect

Step 11:

Now select the middle layer and select the Hue/Saturation option. Go to Image –> Adjustments –> Hue/Saturation or hit Ctrl+U. Increase the saturation as required.

Photoshop Retro effect

And you have your image with the pop art effect!

Photoshop Retro effect

You can try out this effect on any image of your choice. You can pick those images which you think will look good with this effect.

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