Calvin Hollywood's "Freaky Detail"

A German photographer by the very cool name of Calvin Hollywood some time ago devised a Photoshop post-processing technique called "Freaky Detail".

Hollywood's technique intensifies local contrast and brings out details.  It is very handy when applied to subject matter such as rock shelves, timber jetties, or any other weathered, texture-laden surface whose details you wish to enhance.

Here is how to apply it:

  1. Stamp visible all layers (Opt-Cmnd-Shift-E) and rename the new layer to "Merged".
  2. Duplicate the "Merged" layer (Cmnd-J) and rename the layer to "Freaky Detail Processing".
  3. Change the blend mode of the "Freaky Detail Processing" layer to vivid light.
  4. Invert the "Freaky Detail Processing" layer (Cmnd-I).
  5. Apply surface blur (Filter -> Blur -> Surface Blur -> 40/40) to the "Freaky Detail Processing" layer.
  6. Stamp visible all layers (Opt-Cmnd-Shift-E) and rename the new layer to "Merged with Freaky Detail".
  7. Change the blend mode of the "Merged with Freaky Detail" layer to soft light.
  8. Turn off visibility of initial "Freaky Detail Processing" layer.
  9. Add a layer mask to the "Merged with Freaky Detail" layer, invert the mask (Cmnd-I) and brush in the effect.

The above keystrokes are Mac-centric.  If you use a Windows machine, substitute Opt with Alt, and Cmnd with Ctrl.

Published on Thursday, 23rd February, 2012.