It is said that the eyes are windows into the soul. In that case some of us must have really boring souls, but help is at hand if you want to your eyes to really stand out in photographs and creative photo manipulations. This tutorial details a simple yet powerful technique for altering eye color using basic Photoshop tools and a decent image of an eye.
Step 1: Open up a stock image in Photoshop of any size and/or format. The best results for this tutorial usually involve larger images with a clearly visible iris. If you have a darkly-colored iris, this tutorial may not give you the results that you need without further work. Please note that the image to my right was grabbed from the excellent SXC.HU archive - where there are eye pictures aplenty.
Step 2: Using the The marquee tools make a selection around the eye. Don't try and capture the iris perfectly now, as that is not the point at this stage. Just draw a circle around the general area, as I have done in the picture next the step 1. Without losing your selection, click on thequick mask button to enter quick mask mode (its on the bottom of the tools palette). You will be presented with a scene in which your selection is gone, but in its place is a little transparent area surrounded by a red-tinged area. That's our mask.
Step 3: Click on the Standard Mode button to return back to your original image. You will now see that you have a nice precise selection around your iris. If you haven't, go back into Quick Mask Mode and edit some more!
Step 4: Without losing your current selection, create a new layer on top of the underlying background image (Layer > New Layer) and select it in the layers palette. Choose a color for the eye, and Edit > Fill the area in the new layer with your selected color. Once you have done this, change the layer's blending mode to Hue... or, if you are using a greyscale stock, try Color or Multiply. You can then lose your selection.
The Immortal: Made famous by films such as Underworld, this eye effect is remarkably simple to create. Instead of losing your selection in step 4, create a new layer on top of all the others and Edit > Fill it with white. Run Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur, and select a small blur around 5px in size. Press OK, and change the layer blending mode to Overlay. You may need to reduce the opacity heavily to achieve a nice effect, as well as use the eraser tool to remove any excessive coloration.
The Possessed: If goody-two-shoes is not your style, you may wish to give yourself an evil eye instead. In this case, bypass the entire tutorial above and leave your stock image as the sole selected layer. Use with brush tool with a solid black tip to paint the area inside the iris a deadly black, bearing in mind that some reflections have to be left intact or else you will end up with a decidedly flat effect. You can easily remove color in reflections by selecting them and then running Image > Adjustments > Desaturate. Removing the grey fringing is a matter for theThe Brush tool