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How to Add Effects on Photos in Adobe Photoshop in less than 5 seconds

Updated on January 12, 2015

A simple introduction on how easy and basic it is to edit and add effects to your photos using Photoshop Actions. In this article, the effect of actions is illustrated by posting the before and after application of Photoshop Actions which will give you a hint on how Photoshop actions can give you an edge in image editing.

For a more detailed guide on using Photoshop Actions, please visit this hub:

This Photoshop Actions Tutorial will practically walk you through in applying Photoshop Actions on your photos.Plus, you will find here great sources where you can download cool actions.

Photoshop Actions

Adobe Photoshop, a popular photo editing software, may be deemed as highly complicated by some individuals. Tweaking photos, creating layouts and adding effects seem so impossible for those who haven't explored the software much. However, this should not discourage them because they can still achieve good photo-editing results with Photoshop Actions and come up with pro-like edited photos!

What is a Photoshop Action (or simply "Action")?

Well, before defining the term, let me first demonstrate it:

Before Application of Action:


After Application of Action:

It only took about 6 seconds for the action to turn the photo into this magnificent work of art.
It only took about 6 seconds for the action to turn the photo into this magnificent work of art.

Photoshop Actions are series of actions (such as contrast and hue adjustment, curve and level changes and etc.) that is applied in a photo. In other words, photo shop actions are photo editing shortcuts that are instantly applied to your photo.

The photo on the right composed of 6 sub-images. The largest one is the original, while the other five are resulting photos after application of actions. Notice how actions give you diverse effect. The only important this here is finding the actions most suitable to your raw photos.

The good thing about actions is that you don't need to be a photoshop guru to add stunning effects to your photos. By just applying the "action" on your photo, a series of adjustments and editing will be automatically done for you. You'll just sit back while watching the action do the magic for you. Amazing, huh?

For photographers, Photoshop Action would be their best partner. By being able to tweak properties of their precious photos, photographers will achieve their desired appeal on the photos. Plus, not all photographers are highly knowledgeable in Adobe Photoshop. Hence, this would be a great temporary substitute for them. Note, however, that it is still recommended for photographers to gain skills in navigating through the software..

If you are still confused about this "actions", I suggest that you read this detailed guide that will walk you through the entire process.

Another illustration of the effects generated by Photoshop Actions
Another illustration of the effects generated by Photoshop Actions | Source

Where can you find/download actions?

First, you may simply Google it and tons of good websites showcasing various Photoshop actions will appear, best of all, majority of them are free. However, my favorite source of actions will be always "DeviantArt". You may check it out if you want, and I'm sure you'll enjoy the diverse collection it has to offer. The one that I used in this hub is an action by David Nanchin called Dim and Jaded which I found in DeviantArt.

Share by clicking Tweet or Like on top of this article. Enjoy!

For any questions regarding how Photoshop Action works, you may drop some comment below and I'll be delighted to guide you.

Adobe Photoshop Related Hubs

A Detailed Guide on How to Edit Photos Using Photoshop Actions
Learn how to apply Photoshop Actions on your photos through a step-by-step tutorial here.

Adobe Photoshop Idea: Watercolor Effect
Here's a tutorial on how you could create artwork that would appear to have been painted using watercolor! Cool right?


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    • yougotme profile imageAUTHOR

      Renz Kristofer Cheng 

      7 years ago from Manila

      Thanks LauraD093! It's really fun to apply photoshop actions. And the ease of use makes it more enjoyable.

      Oh, I just want to share that I sometimes use actions for the photos in my hubs, such as those that improve quality of photos.

      Enjoy using photoshop actions Laura! :)

    • LauraD093 profile image

      Laura Tykarski 

      7 years ago from Pittsburgh PA

      yougotme--thank-you for this particular hub I have been using Photoshop for quite some time this hub really outlines some things I didn't even know I could apply. I will be taking a look at the detailed guide and start trying to use these "actions" on some I am currently experimenting with. Great information.

    • yougotme profile imageAUTHOR

      Renz Kristofer Cheng 

      7 years ago from Manila

      Thanks too maheshpatwal! At first, I also had the same reaction. I did not know that Adobe Photoshop has this Photoshop actions feature.

      The software is really something, right? There's always something that we have yet to explore and know about.

    • maheshpatwal profile image


      7 years ago from MUMBAI

      I have been using lightroom and photoshop for many users. Never knew that there is such thing called photoshop actions. Thanks for sharing and writing this lovely hub.

    • yougotme profile imageAUTHOR

      Renz Kristofer Cheng 

      7 years ago from Manila

      Thanks travel_man1971 for dropping by! Yup, Adobe Photoshop really do take some time if you're going to download it. Plus it consumes a lot of your computer's RAM.

      But anyway, it's completely worth it especially that it can do a lot with your photos using this software.

    • travel_man1971 profile image

      Ireno Alcala 

      7 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

      Here at Don Galo Coop Paranaque, where I am one of the officers (volunteers), I've been trying to download Adobe Photoshop in order to edit some pictures that will be used for Powerpoint presentation.

      Your guide helped me to pursue it this time, although the downloading part is not as fast as I'm expecting to be.

      Thanks, amigo!

    • yougotme profile imageAUTHOR

      Renz Kristofer Cheng 

      7 years ago from Manila

      Thank you very much for the comment cablemanagements! Yes, it truly is fun utilizing free Photoshop stuff (e.g. brushes, fonts, actions) in the internet!

    • cablemanagements profile image

      S K Sinha 

      7 years ago from India

      Hi ! Thanks for this article. now days a very limited activities on photoshop but I liked the idea of getting photoshop actions downloading.. amazing. I will try right now ! sounds good to me


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