Color Burn

Self-blends and changing the opacity

Original image.

Color Burn is the third member of the Darken group of blending modes. It works by inspecting each channel and then darkens the base color to reflect the blend color by increasing the base color's contrast. So, applying the Color Burn blending mode to a layer makes the picture darker and increases contrast. Again, blending with white produces no change.

KEYBOARD SHORTCUT

Windows: Alt+Shift+B Mac: Option+Shift+B

A simple Color Burn self-blend results in the darkening of all colors and greater contrast The increased saturation and contrast become obvious even with a very soft image If it's too strong, you can reduce the effect by dragging the blend layer's opacity slider For a simple self-blend, this may be useful, but you could produce similar results with a Curves adjustment layer, and, furthermore, you could control each channel and tonal value individually, and the final file size would be smaller To make the most of Color Burn, use it with composite images

Layers ^^^^^

Color Burn i

Opacity: 110Q5C ^

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Color Burn

Color Burn

Background

Original image.

Color Burn has saturated the colors and increased the contrast.

Original image.

Color Sum 4 blur background tS

Color Burn with blur

Color Sum 4 blur background tS

With Color Burn, it's worth noting that changing the layer's master opacity and its fill opacity produces slightly different results The master opacity simply reduces the layer's transparency and its effect proportionately Reducing the fill opacity maintains more contrast

Interesting effects happen with Color Burn when Gaussian blur is applied to the background image To a certain extent, with its contrast-decreasing effect, blur works against Color Burn However, the contrast-decreasing effect of blur is offset by Color Burn's characteristic image-darkening Of course, much depends on the image, but typically blur makes the dark areas encroach into the lighter areas, creating a gloomy, brooding effect For something even stranger, try inverting the blend layer—the dark areas will be surrounded by halos

; Layers ""^mgd^J^ih j Ccilar Burn - j < Opacity:jiaik |V

Here, a lot of blur on the inverted layer causes Color Burn to create a halo around dark areas.

The Color Burn layer's master opacity softens the picture.

Fill: 1

Reducing the Color Burn layer's fill opacity maintains a high-contrast result.

Livfii ' Lharneis H^'aihs Color Bum ~T] Opacity: ►

Layers s_h.; in ■ ■ Color Burn ■ ^ I Opacity:[Toom" *

The Color Burn layer's master opacity softens the picture.

Original image.

Livfii ' Lharneis H^'aihs Color Bum ~T] Opacity: ►

Layers s_h.; in ■ ■ Color Burn ■ ^ I Opacity:[Toom" *

Fill: 1

background (T3

Reducing the Color Burn layer's fill opacity maintains a high-contrast result.

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