I got this question on Tumblr:
Oops, I forgot to ask this but do you sharpen your photos? If so, can you possibly come up with a tutorial? I wanna learn how to sharpen images without them looking too overly done. Thank you!
It is really super easy and I know a lot of people do it this way. I used to use the unsharp mask (I still do, when sharpening my eyes) but my problem with that filter is that it sharpens the background of the photo, too. I’d rather keep the bokeh, well, bokeh!
I am using this silly photo I snapped with my kit lens last month (while mobile home shopping lulz). It’s not a particularly good photo but I’m too lazy to go through iPhoto. Besides, I think I kinda look kyot.
Step One: Duplicate the layer (cmd+J on Mac, ctrl+J on Windows).
Step Two: Desaturate the second layer (shift+cmd+U or shift+ctrl+U). You can skip this step!
Step Three: Run a high-pass filter on the desaturated layer.
Radius is up to you. I keep it to 0.6 to 1 pixel most of the time (only having the edges outlined).
Step Four: Set layer blend mode to “soft light”.
And that’s it! The difference is very subtle, as shown in this gif:
I hope that helps!