How To Create a Double Color Exposure Effect in Photoshop

How To Create a Double Color Exposure Effect in Photoshop

In this double color exposure effect tutorial, we are going to blend two photographs into one image creating a creative photo effect. This double color exposure tutorial is easy enough for beginners to follow but basic knowledge of Photoshop is recommended. In case you are interested, I have also done a tutorial on how to create a double exposure effect.

You can use this effect to combine any photos as long as they have a clear white background. In this tutorial, we are going to use two pictures of the same model but you can get creative and for example, combine a model with an animal.

The photos that we use in this tutorial are free photos from Pixabay and you can download the photos from the link below. We are using the medium (853px x 1280px) size photos in this tutorial.


Girl 1
Girl 2

You’ll need Photoshop CS or CC to follow along with this tutorial.  If you don’t have Photoshop, download Photoshop CC.

Step 1

Open both photos in one document on top of each other and then double click on the top photo layer to open layer styles. On the very main layer style window, under Advanced Blending -> Channels turn off the G and B channels. You can try different styles and color combinations by checking and unchecking the RGB channels. Once ready hit ok.

Double Color Exposure Tutorial
Click the image to view it bigger

Step 2

Now the images are overlapping and we need more canvas size in order the fit both of the photos nicely on the document. Go to Image -> Canvas Size and adjust the Width. We are using the 853px x 1280px (medium) sized version of the photo so we resized the canvas width to 1173px. Arrange the two photos to your liking. Moving the images will cause some offset and there is some blank space so what we are going to do it to select the Rectangular Marquee Tool and select a piece of the background and stretch it all the way to the edge by pressing CTRL + T.

Double Color Exposure Effect

Step 3

We are going to enhance the colors by adding a Selective Color adjustment layer. First, select the Reds and adjust the setting to your liking and then tweak the Cyans. From the image below you can see the values that I used in the demo image.


Next, add Levels adjustment layer and make the image a bit lighter. Last I’m going to lighten the background a little bit by adding Brightness/Contrast adjustment layer. Set the brightness to +64 then select the adjustment layer’s mask and invert it (CTRL + I). Pick a big, soft white brush and lower the opacity to around 50% and brush over the background to lighten it up. When doing this make sure that the layer mask is selected so that you don’t paint on the actual image. That’s it, our double color exposure image is ready.


View the photo before and after adjustment layers


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