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8 Ways to Vignette in Photoshop Elements

by Erin Peloquin on February 20, 2009 · 12 comments

  • Subtle Vignette- Use the Rectangular  or Elliptical Marquee Tool to select the central portion of your photo and invert the selection (Shift+Control+I).  Apply a high amount of feathering (75 – 150 pixels maybe).  Copy this selection to a new layer and change the Blend Mode to Multiply.
  • Basic Vignette- Press D to set your colors to Default black and white and make sure that black is the foreground color.  Use the Rectangular or Elliptical Marquee Tool to select the central portion of your photo.  Invert the selection (Shift+Control+I).  Apply a high feather (try 75 – 150 pixels again).  Create a new layer and fill the selection with black (Alt+backspace).
  • Variation on Basic Vignette – Instead of black, sample a color from your image or use a complimentary color to fill the vignette with.  Midnight blue works nicely sometimes!  Or the green from my daughter’s Christmas pajamas:

Photoshop Elements Color Vignette

  • Gauzy Vignette – Use a Marquee tool or make an exact selection of the subject of your picture, invert (Shift+Control+I), feather just a bit, copy the selection to a new layer, and Gaussian blur the bejeezus out of this layer (Filter Menu/Blur/Gaussian/20-50 pixels).

    Photoshop Elements Gauzy Vignette

  • Adjustable Vignette- Create a new layer and fill it with 50% gray (Edit Menu/Fill Layer/Contents Drop-Down Menu).  Change the layer’s Blend Mode to overlay.  Use a soft round brush at medium to high opacity to darken corners, edges and other less important parts of your image.
  • Correct Camera Distortion - Go to the Filter Menu and select Correct Camera Distortion.  (In Photoshop CS4, this is Filter Menu/Distort/Lens Correction.)  In the Vignette section, move the amount slider to the left to create a vignette.  Or, if you want to remove a vignette created by your camera, move the slider to the right.  Thanks to Callie C for reminding me of this method!
  • Great & Easy Vignette Effect - Press D (and X if necessary) to set your foreground color to black.  Add a Gradient Adjustment layer (which isn’t the same as the Gradient Map).  Double click on the gradient box and choose the Foreground to Transparent gradient.  Make the Style Radial, Scale 150% and turn on the check marks in the Reverse and Align with Layer boxes.  Click OK and change the Blending Mode of this layer to either Soft Light, Multiply or Overlay.   This method is via Rita from CoffeeShop!

Gradient Fill - Photoshop Elements

Remember that you can adjust the layer’s opacity to make the vignette more natural with any of these methods (except for Correct Camera Distortion).

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