How to Create a Digital Lomo Look in Photoshop

One trend that I do like but also think is pretty funny is how the “film” look of digital photography has become so popular lately. So many people use Photoshop or Lightroom to create images that look like they were shot with an old film camera like a Holga or Poloraid, there are so many really cool looks you used to get with some specialty cameras. We showcased some great lomo images to inspire you awhile back here, Great lomo photos.

Today I want to show you a way to take your current images and with Photoshop create a classic “lomo” look to an existing photo. There are lots of ways to do this and different types of lomo effects you can go for, as always experiment on your own and add your own flair to it. Here are the step by step instructions on how to create a lomo like photograph using Photoshop.

1) First create an adjustment Hue and Saturation layer (on the top menu Layer –> New Adjustment Layer –> Hue/Saturation). Bump the saturation up +20 and leave the other values set to 0.

2) Create an adjustment layer for Brightness/Contrast and set the contrast to +15

3) Create an adjustment layer for curves. Set the red channel to have a curve slightly down in the middle, the green channel to have a small S curve, and the red channel a backwards S curve. Adjust these as needed to fit your style. You can see the settings I used for this step in the screenshots below.

4) Create a new blank layer and position this right above the background layer

5) Next we are going to make a selection that will serve as our vignette. Select all on this new blank layer (Command A). Then modify this border to have a 1 pixel border (Select –> Modify –> Border). Then Expand this selection by 100 pixels (Select –> Modify –> Expand). Next Feather this selection by 100 pixels (Select –> Modify –> Feather)

6) Then fill this selection with black. To do this just reset your foreground/background colors to default black/white. Then choose Edit –> FIll and use the foreground color.

7) Change the layer to Overlay and then move the opacity down to 80%

8) Flatten the image that you are done! Now you have a lomo sytle shot perfect for that funky and fun retro shoot.

I would love to hear your thoughts on lomo photography or any future Photoshop or Lightroom tutorials you would like to see. Drop us a comment below and lets start a conversation.

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Author: Mark

Mark is a fine art wedding and portrait photographer from Northern California. He has been passionate about photography since childhood and started his studio 12 years ago to bring a fresh style of photography to the wedding and portrait world.

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