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Colorful connections

Astroimager Adam Block demonstrates how to use Photoshop to create more colorful — but still accurate — celestial photos.
RELATED TOPICS: ASTROIMAGING
AdamBlock_2013
Beginning astroimagers want results, and that means colorful images. Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen quickly. So, this column is about the foundations of blending color.

The best way to create a colorful image is by working on a color layer that is independent of a “properly prepared” luminance layer, which I’ll discuss in a future column. The color layer is not scaled or stretched and opens looking dark in Photoshop (image #1). Paste the luminance layer above the color layer so that the conversion from a grayscale image to an RGB image happens automatically. Blend the luminance layer with the color layer using the “Luminosity” mode.

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