Although we work within the digital realm, there is lots of inspiration to be found by looking at traditional photographic effects. Whether it’s a processing style or a camera type, paying homage to retro effects can be a great way to get more from your images.
Here we look at a quick and easy way to replicate the lomo (or lomography) style. Traditionally created with a lomography camera, the style has come to be recognised for its strong, contrasting colours and vignette corners. You can still buy lomo cameras relatively cheaply but it’s cheaper still to create the effect in Photoshop! Here’s how it is done…
Open your photo and create a new layer. Select the Elliptical Marquee tool and draw around your focal point. Go to Select>Inverse, Edit>Fill and choose Black from the Use: drop-down menu. Click OK and then deselect (Ctrl/Cmd+D).
Blur the boundaries
The effect is too harsh at the moment, so head on up to Filter>Gaussian Blur, make sure the Preview box is checked and then use the Radius slider to alter the edges of the vignette. You want a soft effect. When happy, click OK and reduce the layer Opacity slider to 70-75%.
Click on your photo layer – it’s time to make the colours sing! The most straightforward way is to use Curves and create an ‘S’ shape. If this is no good, call up the Brightness/Contrast tool and adjust the Contrast setting. Alternatively, go for some good old-fashioned Hue/Saturation to boost the tones.