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See What Hue Can Do For You

Category: Color, Photoshop, Video
Jan 17

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How does hue work?

Hues are much like saturation in that they can completely change the look and feel of a photo. It’s easy to leave the colors the way they were shot, but here we show you how to use them in a way that will help your work. Hue has the power to change the emotional feel of an image as well as make something stand out from its background.

Today’s Episode Timeline

  • 0:30 -Explanation of hue and color wheel
  • 2:45 – Examples of artists that have used these tools successfully, and why they work
  • 3:00 – Putting together the background
  • 7:45 – Trying this method out for ourselves using adjustment layers
  • 12:50 – Show me your images!
  • 13:20- That’s better.

Learn from the greats

Almost every great artist I can think of uses color in an interesting way to enhance their work and help with the overall success of their images. Once you understand the different ways to work with color  you can use this to your advantage with your own photos.

Don’t forget to use a color wheel

Color wheels are a great tool and can be purchased for CHEAP on amazon or you can simply use this website


  • Anonymous

    Where’s the color wheel website?

  • Anonymous

    Scratch that

  • Hi

    So helpful! Thanks aaron :)

  • Seth DuBois
  • Carl Revell

    Don’t forget in PhotoShop CS5 you can go to Preferences->General and make sure HUD Color Picker: is set to Hue Wheel (not Hue Strip) and then with the Eyedropper tool selected (I) hold down Shift and Alt (Shift and Option on the Mac) hold down the right mouse button and you will get a color wheel displayed. This will help you to easily visualise the relationship of colours around the wheel and help to pick the complementary colour (on the opposite side of the wheel) for your current foreground colour.

  • Emma Leivers

    aww took me back to my college days, how awesome. I love a bit of the wheel of colour! Experimented on a DJ friend using complimentary coloured lights, then some tweaks in photoshop,was pretty cool think I’ll relive and create some more!

  • Anonymous

    Buy a color wheel????  If you have Photoshop CS5 you already have one…. “for free”!

    Window>Extentions>Kuler  After the Kuler panel is open click on Create.  You can choose color theory rules, define swatches, and save theme to your color palette – check it out.

    Thanks for another outstanding tutorial Aaron!

  • Anonymous

    Buy a color wheel????  If you have Photoshop CS5 you already have one…. “for free”!

    Window>Extentions>Kuler  After the Kuler panel is open click on Create.  You can choose color theory rules, define swatches, and save your themes to the color palette – check it out.

    Thanks for another outstanding tutorial Aaron!

  • Ian Arneson

    Hey Aaron, I noticed in the “Rebirth” tutorial you never once put it in black and white. Would you say that editing technique on a case by case basis depending on the image?

  • Jenna Petrone

    None of my classes I am required to take for my major have taught/will teach me about color. I would have to take extra classes I don’t have room for like painting or color theory.  So thank you again Aaron for teaching me something that is going to help me improve my images.

  • Paul Liebrand

    If I remember correctly from future episodes he talks about it being a new technique he started using and that is why you didn’t see it in “Rebirth”.  Could be wrong but that is what I recall.

  • Paul Liebrand

    This is a great website I have referenced in the past.

  • Aaron Nace

    nice, thanks for letting me know

  • Dale Richards

    If you have an iPhone get the app Peppermint Color Express – they have a paid version as well.

    Ignore the 3 Star reviews, if you read them that was for an old version and the updated version is getting 5 stars.

  • Alfonso Barona

    Really helpfull aaron!!Thanks a lot!!!I had this image i have been working with long time…two and blue…but something is missing!!Any sugestion from anyone??Its driving me crazy jaja!!

  • Carl Revell

    The only thing I would say is there’s no central point of focus in this image. My eyes are all over it but don’t know where to rest.The girl in the window? That starry sky? The bloke with the flowers? The dog on the stairs? The rickety stairs themselves?

  • Shahram Rad

    Here a picture I made while ago in Spain
    (Aranjuez )

    I played with color’s made some more

    Green vs. Orange vs. Blue to create more depth.

  • Shahram Rad


  • Justin Bonaparte

    I thought Amanda’s blue shirt clashed with the mood and colors of the sunflower field, so I changed it to a burnt orange. I think it works better.

  • yamaha83

    here is one i did not to long ago. what you think?

  • Brandi Sheree Eszlinger

    love that!

  • Brandi Sheree Eszlinger

    Thanks so much! So very helpful. It’s amazing how much colors can completely change the mood and feel of an image. Never noticed it before! Now looking back I can see what images work and what ones don’t. I like this photo a lot because of the complimentary colors! :)

  • Michael Nightmare

    I agree with Carl you have this triangle view going on but my eye keps going to all three subjects the guy, girl and dog. Maybe if you want the focus to be on the girl to light her up or add a light source behind her that will draw your eye to her that is brighter than the guys lighting and maybe just take out the dog all together. As a dog is a mans best friend but this guy is trying to win a girl so I dont think the animal needs to be in the shot and will not compete for the viewers attention. Hope that is helpful.

  • Michael Nightmare

    I would think they would give you at least some basic color theory information. Understandably they can’t go completely in depth as that is why there are whole classes on color theory. There is a lot of good info on the net though that you could look up yourself. 

  • Anonymous

    Im a bit late but heres an example of some hue playing I did over the summer  :)

  • Anna Äärelä

    Wow! This video really changed my way of looking at photos! I’ve often found myself in a situation where it has been difficult to choose the color scheme for a photo, but hey, not anymore!

    I did a series of 3 photos – kept this video in mind the whole time. The walls were blue, yellow and red. I chose the color of the clothing using this amazing website: Go check it out! But unfortunately the blueness of the shirt or the purple of the cardigan didn’t show off as much as I’d wanted, but anyways. It was really nice to plan this kind of a shoot! So thank you Aaron for this! Will make my life a whole lot easier, and prettier ;)

    Here’s the photos I took;

  • Kārlis Briedis  found this interactive scheme.

  • Kārlis Briedis
  • Pacman

    Great tutorial! I usually use for color wheel. 

  • Pacman

    here is the right link.

  • Seth DuBois

    coloursphere 2 is a great colorwheel app for iphone/ipad for $0.99

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