Photoshop tutorial: Daguerreotype

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In this tutorial I’ll show you how to make a easy but effective daguerreotype in Photoshop.In this tutorial I’ll show you how to make a easy but effective daguerreotype in Photoshop. I’m using Photoshop CC 2019.

We’ll start by choosing a photo. You can use whatever photo you like. The photo in the image on your left came from Pixabay. It’s important to know that you’ll have to work with non-destructive adjustment layers. This way you can imsert new images in your document to create other daguerreotypes.

Step 1: The stack of Adjustment layers.

  1. Set the Channel mixer adjustmet layer on monochrome and change the values of Red & Green to 0% and Blue to 100%.
  2. Add a Levels adjustment layer. Now it’s specific to the photo you choose. For this photo the values are: (black) 32/ (white) 255. The photo is now lighter.
  3. Add a Gradient map on top of the stack. Set the colors to: 12100D (dark brown) and f0e7ca (soft cream). Set the opacity for this adjustment layer to around 66%

Step 2: Adding texture.

Now it’s time to add some texture to your photo. You should search for a metal textureNow it’s time to add some texture to your photo. Set the bleding mode to one of these: soft light, screen or overlay. For this image I choose overlay and an opacity of 100%.

Step 3: Adding a second texture.

Your photo looks now quite like a daguerreotype. But let’s add some more texture. The second texture is a black and white dust texture. It comes under the metal texture. Set the blend mode to screen and the opacity to around 68%. Set a levels adjustment layer clipping mask to this texture. Set the values to 13/1,00/255 and 4/255.

Now you have your daguerreotype in Photoshop. You can change the origiam photo to whatever you want. You only have to play with the levels adjustment layers to fit it to the new photo.


Levels 1: 44/1,00/230 and 37/255. Levels 2: 0/1,00/246 and 25/255.
Levels 1: 16/1,00/252 and 9/255. Levels 2: 6/1,00/140 and 35/255. I also used a different metal texture.

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