This tutorial will show you how to use Photoshop’s adjustment layers to turn a daytime photo into a dusk/night time image. This is purely a colouring effect.
Created on PS CS5, there should be no problems following this tutorial on all the CS editions, and even earlier versions of Photoshop.
Lighthouse Photo from sxc.hu
Open the Lighthouse photo
We do not need so much of the foreground, so select the Crop tool and crop the image to its full width and down to about 2000 pixels from the top
Duplicate the background layer
Name the new layer BaseImage
Now we will start to add adjustment layers – all of the settings recommended for each layer may need to be adapted to your particular image.
To add an adjustment layer, click on the icon at the bottom of the layers palette and select the required adjustment as shown below:
Add a Brightness/Contrast adjustment layer and apply the following settings:
Add a Photo Filter adjustment layer and apply the following settings:
Add a Curves adjustment layer and apply the following settings:
Add a Selective Color adjustment layer and apply the following settings:
Add a Color Balance adjustment layer and apply the following settings (note: adjustments are only made to the Midtones on this layer):
Add a Levels adjustment layer and apply the following settings:
Here is the final effect, the before and after and before and after on another image:
This effect should work on any image, but as previously mentioned, you may need to amend the settings on the adjustment layers for your chosen photo.
The steps taken in this tutorial can be recorded as a Photoshop Action, or the layers can be grouped to form a colouring PSD.
This Zip file contains both Action and PSD for the Dusk effect.