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How Do You Make An Image Look Old-Timey?

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Adjustments -> Sepia for a good sepia tone.

Adjustments -> Posterize will decrease the amount of color information available and can be a good touch after sepia.



Effects -> Photo -> Sharpen to increase the contrast of things. You can make two copies of the image: one before applying sharpen, and one after. Keep the "after" image on a layer above the original, erasing sections as desired, then merge them down. This lets you decide where you want to sharpen the image. Or grab TR's Dodge and Burn or the Brush Filter plugin to sharpen selected areas in one step.


Effects -> Noise -> Add Noise to get some grain. Use low intensity, no saturation. You can do the same two-copy trick talked about above if you want to decide where the noise should be. Effects -> Blur and Effects -> Noise -> Median can change the grain in interesting ways.


Effects -> Render -> Clouds on a separate layer and choose an interesting blend mode like multiply, then merge the layers down. You can lower the layer transparency or do it using plugins before merging down in order to reduce the effect a bit. Use the eraser as desired.


Touch Up

I prefer TR's Dodge and Burn or Brush Filter to illuminate and darken areas of the image, which can be good for faded pictures whose edges are darker than the center. You can also use Effects -> Render -> Vignette with low transparency and some extra lumpiness with e.g. the eraser tool to get edge fading. Don't forget to lower the saturation of the photo if it's too vibrant (mostly when you don't use Sepia tones).

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