When I think of changing the color in Photoshop, one would think there are no techniques left to learn. But it looks like you can always learn some new tricks. This one is particularly useful if you want to change a specific color, and you have an image with very complex selections. It’s relatively simple, and in this video, Jesús Ramirez guides you through it step by step.
In his photo, Jesús wants to change the blue tones into golden brown. It would be pretty complex to select the color given that there are plants in front of the blue wall, lots of textures, and so on. First, he adds a Hue/Saturation adjustment layer. Adjusting the Hue slider wouldn’t work because it changes all colors in the image. To only select the blues, you can choose them from the drop-down menu within the Hue/Saturation slider. To expand the range of the color affected, click on the “Add to Sample” eyedropper and click on the several spots where your blues are in the image. This will allow you to choose a wider range of blues, but it still won’t solve the problem completely. So, it’s time for the next step.
Copy your base layer and drag it on top of the Hue/Saturation layer. Now, change the blending mode to Difference. The pixels that are the same color will be black, those are the parts of the photo that you don’t want to change. Go to the Channels panel and select the channel that has the most contrast between black and white areas. Hold Ctrl/Cmd and click on this channel, and you’ll make a selection. Click on the RGB again to turn all the channels on and go back to the Layers panel. You can now delete the copy of the base layer, and you’ll be left with the selection that you made.
Now that you have your selection, delete the layer mask on the Hue/Saturation layer. Create a new layer mask, and it will apply the selection you previously made. You can now select the Colorize feature in the Hue/Saturation panel and adjust your color. Now, click on your mask and adjust Levels. As you brighten the mask, you’ll see how your selected color starts to replace the blue like some kind of magic. You may need to refine your mask, and you can do it by either dodging and burning, or by painting over it with the Brush tool.
As I mentioned, there are tons of techniques for changing colors in Photoshop. Just look at this article, or this one, or this one, or maybe this one. I’ve personally tried all of these – but this is the first time I’ve seen this approach that Jesús uses. I suggest that you watch the full video to really master the technique as you can follow along, and there you go – you’ve just learned yet another method for changing color in Photoshop.