How to Change the Color of Smoke in Photoshop

Written by andrea griffith
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Many graphic artists and professional photographers use Adobe Photoshop. Although expensive (as of 2011, the full download of Adobe Photoshop CS5 is £454.3), Photoshop gives you hundreds of different creative, artistic and enhancing photo options to restore and to intensify your photos. One unique option that Photoshop provides is to change the colour of an object. With Photoshop, you can change the greyish-black tone of smoke to any colour.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Open Photoshop on your computer. Click "File" from the toolbar. Select "Open," then click on the smoke picture from the Open menu.

  2. 2

    Click the "Brush" drop-down arrow from the tool bar. Select a "Soft Mechanical" brush from the drop-down menu. Adjust the width of the brush by adjusting the Master Diameter slider. The thinner the brush, the more accurate your selection of the smoke will be, but it will be a little harder to perfectly trace the smoke shape.

  3. 3

    Press "Q" on your keyboard -- or click the "Mask Mode" from your toolbar -- to set your options into Mask Mode.

  4. 4

    Point your cursor on the very outside of the smoke. Left-click your mouse, and while holding down the left-click, trace the entire outline of the smoke with your cursor. Try to be as accurate as possible by tracing just the outer edge of the smoke.

  5. 5

    Press "Q" again -- or click "Quick Mask Mode" from the toolbar. The traced area of the smoke will now appear in a dotted line.

  6. 6

    Click "Selection" from the toolbar, then click "Invest."

  7. 7

    Click 'Layer" from the toolbar. Select "New Fill Layer," then click "Solid Color." Select "Soft Light" mode, then click "OK."

  8. 8

    Click "Color Picker" from the pop-up toolbar next to your photo. Click on "Color Libraries" to browse the thousands of colours available. Click on the desired colour, then click "OK."

  9. 9

    Click "File," then click "Save."

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