How To Create an Instagram Style Vintage Photo Filter in Photoshop

How To Create an Instagram Style Vintage Photo Filter in Photoshop

This tutorial will guide you through the process of creating Instagram-esque vintage photo filters in Photoshop, by learning these simple steps you will be able to craft your own unique effects with unlimited possibilities.

Step 1

create instragram style effects in photoshop

To start of with, launch Photoshop and create a new blank document. The width and height should be of equal values. The actual size is up to you and depends on the desired final output as well as the resolution of the photograph you want to work with. In general the higher the better as you can always decrease the size later.

Step 2

create instragram style effects in photoshop

Create a new blank layer and name it ‘Photo’. In the layers palette right click the new layer and select Convert to Smart Object

Step 3

create instragram style effects in photoshop

Double click the thumbnail of the Photo layer to enter the Smart Object. Now paste your photograph into the Smart Object and arrange it as desired.

create instragram style effects in photoshop

Save and close the Smart Object to return to the main document. Your layers palette should look similar to how it is show in the image above.

Step 4

create instragram style effects in photoshop

To create a border around your image select the Image > Canvas Size feature from the Photoshop menu bar and add approximately 5% to the width and height values.

Step 5

create instragram style effects in photoshop
Double click the Background layer to unlock it and then apply an Inner Glow to the layer to darken around the edges of the border.

Step 6

create instragram style effects in photoshop

To create a feathered effect around the edges of the photo that meet the white border, a simple white Inner Shadow applied to the ‘Photo’ layer will do the trick.

create instragram style effects in photoshop
And a radial Gradient Overlay will also create a subtle vignette effect.

Step 7

create instragram style effects in photoshop

A great way to create an aged effect is by adding a grunge texture overlay. I found this texture (free download) in the Antique Paper Textures on Medialoot.

Step 8

create instragram style effects in photoshop

Use the Hue/Saturation feature or shortcut CMD+SHIFT+U (Mac) / CTRL+SHIFT+U (Win) to completely desaturate the grunge texture.

Step 9

create instragram style effects in photoshop

Set the Blending Mode of the grunge texture layer to Overlay and adjust the intensity of the effect with the Opacity.

Step 10

create instragram style effects in photoshop

A common characteristic of Instagram filters is the light leak effect which retro cameras would sometimes create. This is quite a simple effect to recreate in Photoshop. Begin by creating a new layer named ‘Light Leak’ and mode of ‘Linear Dodge (Add).

Step 11

create instragram style effects in photoshop

Select the Brush tool and this (free sample) from the 60 Light Leaks set on Medialoot.

With the foreground colour set to red, draw a light leak onto the canvas (note: I have hidden the other layers to focus on the placement of the brush in the image above. Your effect will appear much more subtle)

create instragram style effects in photoshop

Step 12

create instragram style effects in photoshop

Using a ‘Curves’ Adjustment Layer boost the low and high ends of the spectrum by creating a curve shape similar to in the image above.

Step 13

create instragram style effects in photoshop

Using a ‘Hue/Saturation’ Adjustment Layer tick the ‘Colorize’ option and move the Hue slider to create a Sepia colour.

create instragram style effects in photoshop

You can then adjust the intensity of the Sepia effect with the Adjustment Layer’s Opacity.

Result/Comparison

create instragram style effects in photoshop

Here is the final result (on the left) compared to the original photograph (right). As you can see, just by applying a few simple effects we can create a beautiful vintage filter that really brings out the details of the original image. And of course this is a ‘filter’, so we can apply this filter to any other image by simply going back to the original Photo Smart Object and replacing the image.

create instragram style effects in photoshop

create instragram style effects in photoshop

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Comments

  • Reply »
    Chari Ross

    Chari Ross

    Great write up, there is also a method to do this using Photoshop Action (.atn) files. For any Photoshop users looking to mimic Instagram effects in Photoshop, check out: Performing Instagram effects in Photoshop
    Cheers and happy Photoshopping!

    Dec 1, 2014 at 6:03 pm
  • Reply »
    Dimas Aditya Nugraha

    Dimas Aditya Nugraha

    Nice article.. thank you for sharing :)

    Jan 1, 2015 at 2:33 am
  • Reply »
    FDBest

    FDBest

    I was building online application website to apply the filters using PHP, your help is no doubt appreciative.

    Emery.

    Aug 29, 2015 at 10:01 am

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