Corel Draw: Understanding Photo Effects

Corel Draw is a graphics design suite from Corel, which can be used to edit photos, create animations or design website images. Within this suite are several photo effects, which can be used to manipulate and change photos. The four main types of photo effects in the Adjust menu are Grayscale, Vibrance, Tone Curve and Photo Filter.


The Grayscale effect can be used to remove the color from a photograph so that it looks black and white. Unlike the traditional Convert to Grayscale tool, which will change the photo to 8-bit, this Grayscale tool can only be used with 24-bit RGB images. When the Grayscale dialog box opens, users are presented with amount sliders for red, yellow, green, cyan (blue/green), blue, magenta (red), hue and saturation. To manipulate these settings, users just need to move the sliders back and forth. Also, within this menu, users can add a tint to the image by checking the Tint checkbox.


The Vibrance filter can be used to increase the saturation within a RGB photograph. What sets this filter apart is that it avoids the pitfalls of certain areas being too bright (clipping) or of certain sections being lost (blow out) due to the saturation being unevenly applied to the image.

Corel Draw’s Vibrance tool will evenly spread out the added saturation by focusing on the areas of the photograph that have less saturation. This can really be seen if the subject of the photograph is up against a busy background. Within this menu, the amount sliders can be manipulated for both Vibrance and Saturation. Users may have to experiment with this tool until they get it correct.

Tone Curve

The Tone Curve is also located within the Adjust menu, and it can be used to improve the color or tone of images. It does this by targeting individual or multiple color channels. The pixels within the photograph are plotted along an X and Y graph. Within the graph, tones are broken up into three sections: the top features the highlights, the middle features the mid-tones and the bottom features the shadows.

As users manipulate the curve line on the graph, they will see the original curve next to the new curve. To manipulate certain areas of the image, use the Eyedropper tool, and select the section that needs to be further adjusted from the image window. Individual nodes on the graph can also be manipulated.

Photo Filter

If a user was not able to take a picture with a filter, they can simulate this effect using the Photo Filter effect. Users can select from color, sport or diffusion filters. With the color filter, users can choose the color of the filter and then change the density of the effect, which can be manipulated using the amount slider. Users can also choose to Preserve luminosity by selecting the checkbox in this window. Other effects that can be added in this box include sun flares, lightening and spot lights.