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Vintage Black and White Effect

How to Add a Vintage Black and White Effect in Photoshop

Last updated on Dec 21, 2018 by Waseem Abbas

Do you want your images to look like beautiful vintage black and white photographs? Sometimes adding a vintage effect can make your photos look striking. In this article, we will show you how to add a vintage black and white effect in Photoshop.

If you don’t have it yet, you can get Photoshop from Adobe’s site here.

Add Vintage Black and White Effect to Photos

The first thing you need to do is open your image in Photoshop.

Next, we’ll add a gradient adjustment layer by clicking on the adjustment layer icon on the bottom right corner of your screen (the one that looks like a half-filled circle). Then select “Gradient Map…”.

Add Gradient Map

Then, click on the black and white gradient to select it.

Add Gradient Map

Now we’ll add another adjustment layer by clicking on the adjustment layer icon again. This time, we are going to select “Curves…”.

Add Curves

Grab the handles on the curve to lift and drop the thread until it forms a gentle S-shape, as shown in the image below:

Adjust Curves

Next, go ahead and add another Curve adjustment layer.

This time, we’ll lift the thread from the middle to brighten up the image. Your second Curve layer should look like this:

Adjust Curves

After you’ve done that, it’s time to add another adjustment layer for the Levels. Click on the adjustment layer icon and select “Levels…”.

Add Levels

When the Levels panel opens up, you will need to set the middle tone to 0.90, and Output Levels to 245.

Adjust Levels

To finish creating that beautiful vintage effect, add an adjustment layer for the Brightness/Contrast. (Click on the adjustment layer icon, and select “Brightness/Contrast…”.)

Add Brightness Contrast

Set the Brightness to 15 and the Contrast to -35. Now, your image looks like an old black and white photograph!

Adjust Brightness Contrast

That’s it. You can see the before and after image below.

Vintage Black and White Effect Before After

Keep in mind, some of these settings may vary a little, depending on the image you are starting from.

We hope this article has helped you to learn how to add a vintage black and white effect in Photoshop. You may also want to check out our guide on 117 best free presets that you will fall in love with.

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