How to Airbrush in Photoshop CS2

Updated February 21, 2017

In film photography, airbrushing is used to touch up images, most notably pictures of people. In airbrushing, a small air operated tool is used to apply coloring to the photographs. This might be used to cover blemishes or wrinkles. In digital photography, graphic editing software, such as Photoshop CS2, can be used to touch up images in much the same ways that airbrushing touches up prints.

Go to "File" and then "Open." In the window that pops up, locate the image file on your computer and click to choose.

Set the view to the default workspace. To do this go to "Window," "Workspace" and then "Default Workspace." (You do not have to do this step, but if the workspace has been rearranged and you are having difficulty locating the tools, this will put everything back to the original view.)

Go to the vertical tool bar on the left side of the screen. This is where you will find different brushes that perform airbrush-like editing. Click on the "Blur Tool," then hold down the mouse button and move your cursor over the image and to cause blurring. For a portrait, this can soften the image.

Adjust the size of your brush. Select the brush you want to use by clicking on it in the vertical tool bar, and then go to the upper left hand corner of the screen and click on the small downward pointing arrow next to "Brush:" A menu will open and you can adjust the size and harshness of the brush.

Look at the "Dodge" and "Burn" tools. Choose "Dodge," and run the cursor over an area of the photograph to make it lighter. Choose "Burn" tool to make an area darker.

Remove wrinkles with the "Spot Healing Brush." Simply choose this brush and run your cursor over a wrinkle. The area will take on the color of the surrounding area.

Choose the "Healing Brush Tool" to take a color from one area of the image to another. After you choose the tool, place the cursor on the color you want to use. Hit the ALT and click, and that will select the color. Go to the area you want to add the color and run the cursor over it.

Save the image with the "Save As" command when you are finished. (If you save the image using the "Save" command you will copy over your original image.) Using the "Save as" allows you to keep both the original and edited version.


When applying the tool to the image, move the cursor over the area and hold down the button of the mouse.


If you move the cursor over the image without holding the button of your mouse down, the tool's edit will not be applied.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

This article was created by a professional writer and edited by experienced copy editors, both qualified members of the Demand Media Studios community. All articles go through an editorial process that includes subject matter guidelines, plagiarism review, fact-checking, and other steps in an effort to provide reliable information.