How To Give Any Photo The Analogue Camera Treatment

How To Give Any Photo The Analogue Camera Treatment

Whether you like it or not, hipsters are taking over your smartphone’s camera and bringing analogue effects to your digital photography. But what about your regular photos? Here’s how to take a regular photo and give it that analogue look.

MacLife outlines a pretty simple process for taking a regular photo and turning it analogue using Photoshop, but pretty much any basic image editor can do the job. Here are the basic steps:

  1. Add a vignette – Photoshop has a Lens Correction filter (in Filters -> Distort -> Lens Correction) but you can really just make a new layer, paint a little black around the edges of the photo, set the blending mode to Multiply, and adjust the opacity to get a DIY vignette. Alternatively, make a new layer with a radial gradient with black on the outside and white in the middle, then set the blending mode to Overlay. You’ll want to adjust the opacity here, as well, and it can help you skip contrast adjustments later.
  2. Adjust the colours – MacLife suggests going into each colour channel individually and adjusting them individually. This gives you an excellent amount of control, but if this feels a little daunting you can always make colour adjustments with Photoshop’s colour Balance tool. It’s an easy way to play around and get some nice effects quickly. If you’re not using Photoshop, almost every other image editor you could use (even the Aviary web app) has this option, too.
  3. Bump up the contrast – This one’s pretty self-explanatory, but an important step. Analogue shots are often a little more contrasty than your average photo, so give the contrast a little boost for a more authentic look.

If you want more colour tips and tricks for your photos, check out our guide on getting the best colour out of your photos.

How To Transform Digital Photos into analogue Masterpieces | MacLife


  • This has to be one of the lamest posts i’ve seen on lifehacker. Not only do you use one of the most overused, vague & insecure words on the internet, your guide on how to re-create an analogue look is so far from filmic it’s not even funny. Creating a filmic look is about retaining dynamic range – not whacking a vignette on, adding color tone and boosting contrast. In fact, following these steps will most likely result in clipping precious highlights & shadows. Stick to what you know lifehacker, and try stay away from the high-school insults.

    • I agree, if you’re going to fake old school, at least fake it well.

      Also, when I read “bringing analogue effects to your digital photography. But what about your regular photos?” my brain dropped the smart phone context and thought, but if it’s not digital, then it’s already analogue, you don’t need to do anything. Then I looked back and realised that “regular photos” meant “other (non-smart-phone) digital photos”

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