Hand Tinting A Photo In Lightroom

Variety can be added to your 365 Project by post processing your photos. Hand tinting your photos to give them an aged, artistic look is one of the methods you can choose from. Creative Team Member, Kim DiNapoli, shared the technique she used for her daughter’s photo. She was inspired by Leonardo DaVinci’s Female Head drawing while taking last year’s Inspired class at CY365.


The photo before Kim’s edits.


365 February 8 Hand Tinted Before


1.  In the Develop module, desaturate the photo using the HSL layer
  • Click on HSL.
  • Click on Saturation.
  • Move all sliders to -100 (all the way to the left).


2. Add a small amount of color to the larger areas
  • Click on the donut next to the word saturation.
  • Place it over the area you want to work on.
  • Click down on a spot in that area, while holding down the mouse button slide the donut up to increase saturation in the area.
  • If you add too much,  move the donut down to reduce the saturation.
  • NOTE:  Adding color this way will increase ALL areas of the picture containing that color.


3.  Repeat step 2 for any area you want to add some color.


4.  Use the brush tool to increase saturation in only one specific area of the photo.
  • Select brush tool.
  • Make sure all sliders are centered.
  • Paint the area you want to add color to (for example, her eyes).
  • Once you have selected the area by painting on it, increase the saturation by sliding the saturation slider to the right until you are satisfied with the result.
  • Repeat for any additional areas.


5.  To add additional color to to change color, use the brush tool.  Kim  added some blush to Franchesca’s cheeks.
  • Select the brush tool
  • Slide the saturation slider to the right about half way (this can be adjusted at the end)
  • Select a color by clicking on the box next to the word color.  This will bring up a pop up box where you can select a color.  If you want to steal a color from your picture, click anywhere in that box while holding down the mouse button down, move the eye dropper to the spot you want to take color from THEN release the mouse button.  In this example Kim took the color from her lips to add to her cheeks.
  • Paint the area.
  • Adjust the saturation slider to lighten or darken the color you added.


You can also use this technique to change the color of anything!


To give her photo an old, painted feeling, Kim reduced the clarity, added some grain and a vignette.
Have fun with it!  Play around.  You can undo anything in LR by simply hitting CTRL + Z.


Her final result.


365 February 8 Hand Tinted After


Looking for help with Photoshop Elements? My friend Melissa has a class that covers tinting in PSE!


Do you edit your photos? What is your favorite technique to up the artistry?


  1. NordyMom

    Does anyone know how to do this in photoshop elements. I will try to see if I can figure it out on my own but didn’t know if anyone else could guide me.

  2. I cannot get the brush to put color into certain parts. All it does is make the spot lighter?

  3. Libby Wiers

    At this stage, about all I do is correct red eye and use auto correct in MS Picture Manager. Still trying to catch up with technology. 🙂

    It does give the photo a new feel. I like what she did.

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