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Communications and Public Affairs


Subtle image enhancements can refine the look and feel of an image or, in some cases, cast the subject in entirely new light.

Golden Warmth Style

  • Photos with golden warmth reflect both our disposition and our warm Southern location. Golden-warm photos often include a light leak and shadowy contrast.

    You can manually add this style of warmth to images to enhance their look and feel. Even with the exaggerated light, these photos should still feel natural. Don't force the warmth style onto an image; it won't always work.

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Watch for Yellow

This method is quick and effective, but it’s not perfect. Pay close attention to objects that should be white, but may now appear yellow, such as teeth or eyes. If needed, you can mask these areas out.

pro tip

Color Modes

Artificially warmed photos will always look better in the RGB color mode. When converted to CMYK, the images tend to feel flatter and less vibrant. Additional adjustments may be used to compensate, but be prepared for a disparity in quality between the color modes.



Adding Golden Warmth

  • Cool image? Warm it up with Photoshop.

    This photo has nice natural light and interesting contrast, but it has a cool tone. It can be warmed up in a few easy steps, using adjustment layers in Adobe Photoshop. This technique works for most photos to varying degrees of success. It will not work for extremely dark photos or photos with harsh, artificial light. The end result should always feel natural; if it doesn't, don't use the photo.


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  • Step 1: Add a brightness adjustment layer.

    Open the image with Photoshop, and add a brightness adjustment layer to enhance the natural light and slightly increase the contrast.


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  • Step 2: Add a photo filter layer.

    Select a warming filter (85 was used in this example) and adjust the density as needed. In this example, the density was set to 33 percent.

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  • Step 3: If needed, add a color fill layer.

    For this image, an additional color fill layer was used to boost the warmth. Bright orange tends to work best, as yellow can make people appear jaundiced. In this example, #FAA012 was used. A layer mask with a soft brush was used to remove some of the warmth in the shadowy areas.


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