Have you ever wanted to know what you look like with different colored eyes? Thanks to photo editing software like Adobe Photoshop Elements, you can. You just need to know a few things about some of the selection tools available, and the world becomes your playground. Here’s how to get started.
Collin has such cute blue eyes. What do they look like in green?
This tutorial is for Photoshop Elements, but the techniques are roughly the same if you are using Photoshop CS or another paint program.
Step 1. Select the eyes
Open up the image you want to alter in Photoshop Elements. Then zoom in fill most of the screen with the eyes (you can do this quickly by pressing Ctrl + ). You can still select the eyes when you’re zoomed out, but by zooming in, you can get a lot more accuracy.
Next, you’ll want to pick the magnetic lasso tool to get started selecting the eyes. You can find the magnetic lasso tool on the toolbar to the left. It looks like the icon on the right.
The magnetic lasso has a few other options for how it selects things on the screen. You can have it add or subtract to the total part of the image that’s selected. To start, you’ll want to pick the additive selection. It’s the first one on in from the left featuring the two solid squares.
The next one to the right is the subtractive selection tool. We’re going to use it to de-select the pupils once we’ve selected Collin’s irises. For now, we’ll just select entire eye with the positive selection tool.
The nice thing about the magnetic lasso is that it latches onto the edges of the eyes as you select around it. Just keep clicking on the edges so the magnetic lasso doesn’t stray from your guidelines.
Step 2. De-select the pupils
Once you’ve finished selecting the entire eyes, it’s time to de-select the pupils. Remember to click on the subtractive selection tool icon (looks like the image to the right) first.
It’s basically the same process. Just remember to keep clicking to keep the magnetic lasso on track. When you’re done with that, your selection should look like this.
Alright. I apologize for how long that might have taken you, but it’s very important to get the selection right. Now we’re ready to adjust Collin’s eye color with the Hue and Saturation tool.
Change the eye color without changing the image
The cool thing about Photoshop Elements is that you can modify an image without really changing it. The magic is done with adjustment layers. This time, we’re going to create one for hue and saturation. That’s the adjustment that will change the color of Collin’s eyes.
To create an adjustment layer, go to Layer --> New Adjustment Layer --> Hue/Saturation.
Once you click on that, the following box will appear. We don’t need to modify anything here, so just click OK.
For the time being, it will look like nothing happened. That’s because we haven’t modified the hue and saturation yet. You do that in the control panel underneath the layers panel.
The Hue bar represents the color of young Collin’s eyes. You can see that if we slide it to the left, Collin’s eyes will turn green. If we slide it to the right, they’ll move towards a deeper blue and then eventually a reddish purple.
The Saturation bar controls the intensity of the color adjustment. If we drag it to the right, Collin’s eyes will become more intense. If we drag it to the left, they’ll become less intense.
For the purpose of this tutorial, I kept it nice and simple. I adjusted the hue without touching the saturation, and this is the result I got.
So there you have it, little Collin with green eyes. The hue/saturation adjustment layer is the easiest way to change the eye color in your images, and here’s the best part. You aren’t really changing the image. Whenever you want to make the effect go away, just delete the adjustment layer on top of your image. Cool.
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