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This is the method I used to color the B/W photos of 1)My Mom and her twin sister and 2) My uncle, grandfather and great-grand father. http://public.fotki.com/eenorton/photoshop/coloring_bw_photos/
This method creates LOTS and LOTS of layers. I'm sure there are other, more efficient ways to do this, but this is what worked for me. I also want to note that the two pictures I used this method on were very clean, crisp and clear photos. So selecting areas to color was relatively simple. I'm working on a photo of my brother right now that is blurry and not well defined and this method is not working very well...
So. With that warning.... <g>
Every different color you see is a seperate layer.
I'd start by making a duplicate layer and naming it. If this was going to be the "shirt" layer, that's what I named it. Click on layer, duplicate and type in "shirt." On the right, in the layers palette, make sure your new layer "shirt" is highlighted and the active layer.
Using one of the lasso tools (I used either polygonal or magnetic) slowly and patiently <g> draw a line around the shirt. If you'll notice on the top tool bar, on the far left it shows what tool you're using. And right next to that are four boxes. Be sure you have the one selected that says "add to selection." That way, if you don't get the whole shirt in your first attempt, you can just continue by adding to your selection.
When you have the whole shirt selected, click on Select and then click on Inverse. Then click on Edit, and Cut. Now, all that should be left is the shirt. (Unclick the eyeball to turn off any other layer and you'll see)
Now, being sure that your "shirt" layer is the active layer you can color to your hearts content.
When you're happy with the shirt, start another layer:
Highlight (make active) your background layer again and make another duplicate layer and name it "hair" or whatever you're going to work on next. Then you select the hair with your lasso tool, Select, Inverse, Edit, Cut. And color your hair.
And continue this with each area you want to work on.
My photo with my Uncle, Grandfather and Great-Grandfather has 23 layers!!! The big advantage to all these layers is that I can go back and edit each individual layer and color after the fact. Like the hair colors. I went back over and over and over again trying to adjust those. Then Uncle Evans' jacket didn't look quite right, so I went back and tweaked it a bit...
I hope all this makes sense. Please feel free to ask any questions.
But mostly, HAVE FUN!!!
Put the .atn file in a folder where you'll remember. In PSCS, there are action files in Adobe/Photoshop CS/Presets/Photoshop Actions that come with the program. I put new ones in there, just to keep things organized.
(All you need is the .atn file. After you've filed it where you want it, you can delete the zip file it came in.)
Now to load the Action.
With Photoshop open click on the action palette tab on the right. If the action palette tab is not visible, click on Windows/Actions and that should put the palette on your desktop.
To load an Action, click on the triangle to right of the Action Tab. This should open a menu of all the Actions filed in the above mentioned folder. If not, click on "Load" and navigate to the appropriate folder. (hope I'm making sense here) Then click on the Action file you want to load. It should now be listed in your action Palette.
To play the action, click on the triangle to the left of the Action and it should now point down. Highlight the name directly under the action name (very often, identical names). When you click on this (highlight it) the circle and triangle underneath it should now be highlighted. Click on the triangle to start (Play) the action. (And follow any directions associated with the action)
Does that help?