advanced photoshop

Tutorial preview: Retro lomo effects

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Magazine previews, by Julie Bassett

Fake a lomo effect in Photoshop

Turn back time on your photos by adding a cross-processed look and vintage stylings

Tutorial preview: Retro lomo effects

Lomography is more than just a style, it’s an entire photographic movement in its own right. Lomography refers to images produced by a dedicated Lomo camera, which produces a very distinct style.
However, part of the culture of Lomography is to take as many obscure photographs as possible, breaking all photographic rules and conventions, such as shooting angle and focus. There are exhibitions and websites dedicated to the trend and it is only getting more popular since its initial uptake in the Eighties. The cameras used for Lomography tend to be low-fidelity and minimalistic, so the secret is not in perfectly exposed and toned images.

If you don’t have a Lomo camera, then the actual look is pretty easy to emulate in Photoshop. Search for a start image that is unusual – maybe the angles are off, or it’s a bit blurred: imperfect is best for this effect. The key elements of a Lomographic photo are high-contrast colours and a distinct vignette, as well as a cross-processed colour tint. Using adjustment layers and a combination of blending modes, we can easily build up this effect. We will also add lens flare and a paper texture to give it a more realistic Lomo look.

Read more in Advanced Photoshop issue 91, on sale now.