Zara Effect Experiment

As suggested by GeorgeTing, this thread is opened to study the Zara Effect. What is Zara Effect? Please go here
Experiment Subject

This is the Original one

This is what I did.

Top Layer: Add the Vignette layer, Add Noise, Overlay it
Photo: Apply Omni lighting, Change color balance, Change Hue/Saturation, Curve, Smart Sharpen, Smooth Skin.

Yup, i did that a lot on COREL PHOTOPAINT, its good to put certain contrast on certain object. But i didn’t put noise.

top layer: Add virginette layer >> Gaussian >> Overlay >> Sharpen
mid layer: Omni lighting >> Sharpen >> Overlay (reduce opacity 30%) >> sharpen
base layer: original images

this is somehow a part of lomo family too…mmmm…time to work my hands on CS2…heheh

Ok here’s my attempt, it’s actually tougher to do the same look on Terrick’s image as it is mostly bright background vs the zara shot’s dark background, but anyway I try to re-capture the same colour scheme and mood:

  1. Duplicate base image twice, blend mode multiply, and use a white layer mask, draw a big soft black ball in the middle.
  2. Add a levels adjustment, dragging the left marker on the output levels more towards center (shifting blackpoint to get that faded look, maybe around 60)
  3. Create a new layer, opacity 25%, fill with Green colour, blend mode Darken
  4. Add a levels adjustment, and boost the midtones and highlights (fiddle with middle and right marker on histogram), then layer mask it to only affect the girl and grass. Blend mode Normal. Goal here is to brighten up the front without blowing out the sea.
  5. Add a levels adjustment, and boost the contrast overall (match shadow n highlight markers with start and endpoints of histogram), re-use the same layer mask as before so only affects girl and grass. Blend mode luminosity. Intention here is to get the girl’s arm and skin brighter to the same level as zara’s shot.
  6. Add a final hue saturation adjustment, reduce saturation -10. Blend mode colour

In Zara’s shot the girl looks very high contrast, possibly she used some high pass or just plain contrast boost. But it is dependent on the lighting at the time of the shoot also.

Attached my PSD for your reference.


Mr. GeorgeTing, Wow. you are really good in photoshop.
I really dun know about the midtone, highlight adjustment in the levels control.
Hmm… have to study more about that. :mrgreen:

This is my psd file. But I did not use the adjustment layers like GeorgeTing, bcoz not familiar with that.
But I think that should be a good practice, bcoz you still can edit it anytime you want.
Normally what I do is do the adjustment and merge it. :frowning:


Maybe you can try to ask Kingston? :mrgreen:

He got hack version?

what does this ‘Zara effect’ emphasize on? film-like colour tone? the vignetting?

[quote=“Terrick”]Mr. GeorgeTing, Wow. you are really good in photoshop.
I really dun know about the midtone, highlight adjustment in the levels control.
Hmm… have to study more about that. :mrgreen:[/quote]

Thanks Terrick, once I got home and compared my result above vs the zara pic, I noticed I didn’t put enough yellow and contrast for that 1st attempt (thanks to the inaccurate office monitor hehe). Later I try again a new version…

For your question, the shadow, midtone, highlight points & output levels are here:

In normal usage, to get best contrast we drag the shadow and highlight points to touch the starting & ends of the histogram.

Also it’s the best practice to use layers and adjustment layers if possible, so you can edit them easily later on if you change your mind.

i think the pic mostly like lomo…

so deep…i cannot understand a single thing…

I think should be the color tone. Will try to study other photo effect in the future too.

recently quite busy here, not much time to study for that… :frowning:

cool, i love this kind of feel. wanna learn bout it too. thanks for sharing :smiley:

wana try oso la :oops:

Cool kronikloops…

Haha… last time got passion to study the Zara Effect, now cool down already…
bcoz now playing with the reverse lens micro shots… keke…

Anybody wanna point out which Zara’s photo we should study next?

a bloody good question!

MiriCommunity dot Net, & the photogs best literal advise… is to look for a blog… found, full of yawn pictures
varying from … the 'ish, thru the mundane, via 1970’s psychedelic,
& then best summarised, by describing it as… ‘Zara’

photogs+literacy skills+social interaction=blind spot?

kinda left wondering, if someone, anyone, could care, or dare, to describe… d zara effect,
possibly may even cross correlate it to any known launguage currently covering pic editing… CS 10/elements 50/photoshop 6000?
ahhh!! mayb that’s the give-away… a secret language,… covering up to 9 signature strokes per ‘vowel’ & best discussed at other forums?

i do beleive plain English, can often be as colurfull as Adobe,
sadly, looking for good pic advice from this excellent Forum, may come, just that weee bit harder

Actually there is no definition for the Zara effect. Zara is the gal name, who owned
She has a lots of wonderful photos with different color effects. What we are doing here is try to get one of the photo as the study object,
then try to figure it out, how she did that by doing it ourself in the photo editing software. :oops: