Make a Photo Look Like a Movie with Photoshop

Using Photoshop movie to create a photo that looks like a still shot from a movie is fairly easy to do. By using layering and color alteration, you can turn an ordinary photo into a scene right out of a movie. Photoshop is graphic editing software that allows you to edit and manipulate a photo to create different image effects. The different effects that can be achieved using the software are endless because of the versatility of the tools available on the program. Photoshop is commonly used by professional graphic artists to create print ads, art and web content. Photoshop is also used by novice users wanting to achieve more professional looking photos.

Selecting a Photo

Start by selecting a photo at least 1600 x 1200 pixels. Ensuring that the photo is large enough will give you the best quality results. Also, the photo you choose should be clear, crisp and full of color. To create the perfect movie still, you will need to select a photo that has lots of depth. Photos of buildings or people as varied distances will provide depth and interest. If you don't have any personal photos that can be used for this project, you can find stock photos online to use. Once you have selected a photo, open the image using Photoshop.

Adjust Saturation

Press the Ctrl + U key to open the Hue/Saturation tool. You can also get to the tool by selecting it from the toolbar at the top of the screen. Once the tool is open, you will see three different slider bars; one for the hue, the saturation and lightness. Use your mouse to decrease the saturation to the desired level. The amount you choose will vary based on the look you are trying to achieve, but you want to take away some of the color and create a washed out look to your photo. Once you are satisfied with the effect, click okay to apply the changes.

Adjust Brightness and Contrast

Open the Exposure tool by going to Menu > Image > Adjustments > Exposure. Under the tool, you will adjust the Gamma settings as needed. This will make the photo appear brighter and sharpen the image by creating more contrast. Once you are done, click okay to apply settings.

Create Depth

Now you will duplicate the current layer to create depth. Drag the active layer to the 'create a new layer' button. The button will be located at the bottom of layer window. Once the new layer is created, you will blur the new top layer by selecting Menu > Filter > Blur > Lens Blur. Adjust this to the desired level and save. Next, you will create a mask over the layer you just blurred. Select the add layer mask button at the bottom of layer window. Click the layer mask button, click the brush tool and adjust the master diameter to 400px. Decide where your focus point will be on the photo and click on it. Doing this will bring your focal point back into focus. 

Apply Cinema-scope Effect

To make your movie photo complete, you will create the effect of a wide-screen by adding a black frame to the top and bottom of your picture. Use the Rectangle Marquee Tool on the upper and lower parts of photo. Once you have the frame in place, fill with black and you're done. 

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