Apply ORTON effect with Photoshop.

April 2018

Apply ORTON effect with Photoshop.

From the name of the photographer who developed it, this effect gives to a photograph a vaporous and saturated color, a surprising result.
In picture film, the photographer Michael Orton superimposes two images of the same scene: the first with a sharp focus, the second with a soft focus. The result is an airy feeling and saturated colors of the prettiest effect.

Digitally, it is possible to achieve the same thing from a single photo! This is what we will try to do in Photoshop with this tutorial.

Preparation of photo

  • Once your photo is found, open photoshop then minimize it if necessary.
  • Go to Image > Image size (and depending on the initial size set a percentage reduction by 65% of original size).

Creating the Orton effect

  • Duplicate the original layer of photo (Go to Layer > Duplicate Layer)
  • Repeat the operation to have 3 layers, one below will only serve as a backup.
  • Spread the top layer in Overlay mode :
    • Select the top layer and "mode" (on the Layers window), choose the blending mode superposition
  • Make a click on the last layer, then the menu Layer > Merge below (CTRL + E)
  • This will merge the layer with the one located just below. You now have two layers.
  • On the top layer, right click and choose "Duplicate Layer".
  • We will now make the top layer blur.
  • Make sure it is selected in the Layers window, then the main menu, choose Filter> Blur> Gaussian Blur.
  • The intensity of the blur will depend on the size of your image.
  • Adjust the blur radius to make it strong enough so that the outlines of objects are still visible, but not the details.
  • Several tests will surely necessary. Also, some pictures lend themselves more to style than others.
  • Change the blending mode of this layer (the one above) "Product".
  • Once that is done, you can adjust the opacity of that layer, and come with overexposure levels if you want the shortcut Ctrl + L (or Image > Adjustments > Levels).
  • Then save the image, then compare the two and enjoy the results.
    • Original photo
    • Photo with the ORTON effect
Published by aakai1056. Latest update on November 16, 2010 at 01:15 AM by aakai1056.
This document, titled "Apply ORTON effect with Photoshop.," is available under the Creative Commons license. Any copy, reuse, or modification of the content should be sufficiently credited to CCM (
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