A Color Story Filters: How to Make Colors Pop!

Rosie Clayton's favorite A Color Story filters!Happy Saturday, everyone! Rosie here! I hope you've had a fun time exploring all the fun filters and tools in the A Color Story app.

I'm so excited to share my favorite A Color Story filters for fashion and colorful backdrops, two things I love to photograph most! Although I definitely have a few go-to filters that I check before others, there's no rule as to how each filter will affect your photo—it all depends on the colors and scene that you're working with in your picture. I think this element makes the ACS filters so unique and able to produce the most varied range of images! I'm going to show you a few examples of three types of looks I showcase in my Instagram feed (@rclayton): looks that pop against a colorful background, looks that compliment a colorful background, and looks that match a colorful background. I'll go over each of the filters I used for the photos so you can see how they affect each image.
 
I love working with bright, bold colors that pop and the best way for a look to stand out is for the colors to contrast against your backdrop. I really love color blocking. I think it produces strong images that are balanced and make a statement.  
 
PRIMARY SCHOOL
 
Primary schoolThis photo is edited with Heart Eyes from the Chroma pack. As a general guideline, the Chroma pack is great for bold compositions, colorful subjects, and everyday settings. Heart Eyes adds brightness, pops the colors, whitens whites (or in this case, the sidewalk), and adds a soft, warm effect—here, it helps highlight the yellow in my coat and red in my sweater while making sure the blue of the wall doesn't get too cool.
 
BLUE//STEEL
Blue steelThis photo is edited with Lipstick from the Essentials pack. The filter helps bump up the sweet tones in the pink wall without adding too much warmth to the photo. I also think it brightens and evens my skin tone and makes the blue a bit deeper to stand out against the pink wall.
 
ARRAY OF COLOR
 
Array of colorThis photo is edited with Everyday from the Essentials pack. This is definitely a go-to filter and looks great on practically every photo; I actually try not to use it too much, just so I can force myself to branch out and play with other filters from various packs. Everyday whitens, brightens, and adds a touch of sunny personality to the photo without deviating too much from the original. It's just a nice, overall color booster. Consider it the "date night" version of your photo, still the same but with a little oomph. 
 
Outfits that compliment a colorful wall are so fun to put together because it allows me to stand out from the wall but produces a cohesive image. I try to take a particular color from the wall and use that as the main element of my look. This way, both myself, the outfit, and the wall get the same amount of attention from the viewer and there are several points of interest in the photo!
 
CLOUD NINE
 
Cloud nineThis photo was edited with Punch in the Blush pack. It brightens colors and cools a tiny bit, so it was great for a photo with so many warm colors in it already. I also think it helps give my skin a soft, naturally warm glow.
 
DEGREES OF COLOR
 
Degrees of colorThis photo was edited with Bright from the Organic pack. I find Bright to be the slightly more subtle version of Everyday when you compare the two at the highest opacities. It does exactly what its name says, brightens without de-saturating any colors in the photo.
 
GRIDLOCK
 
GridlockThis photo was edited with Tulip from the Fresh pack. It produces happy colors, highlights bright moments, and whitens whites. It adds a tiny bit of cool, sunshine yellow to the photo so the deep reds become more of a tomato red and the blues are lighter and brighter.
 
Looks that match to a wall are my absolute favorite because the stars really have to align in terms of what I have in my wardrobe and what walls my husband and I find during our mural expeditions. There are varying degrees of how much you can match a wall and different ways to match via color or pattern. I like both and it really depends on the wall we're shooting.
 
MOUTH TO MOUTH
 
Mouth to MouthThis photo is edited with Chroma from the Chroma pack, which again, is great for bold compositions and colorful subject matter. This filter is the bolder version of Everyday and adds a bit more contrast and some very slight blue/grey tones. Here, it deepens the red of the lips and brings out the details in the garage.
 
MAKE AN ENTRANCE
 
Make an entranceThis photo is edited with Star Gazer from the Chroma pack. This filter deepens color, adds clarity, and gives a very slight blue/green tone to your photo. I used it here because I think it made the turquoise pop a bit more. I would say it's the "cooler" counterpart to Heart Eyes in the same pack.
 
PUNCH OF COLOR
 
Punch of colorOK, so I did a little combo action on this photo—Everyday from Essentials AND Summer Day from Blush. Everyday gave me a color boost while Summer Day brightens and warms just a touch!
 
 AROUND THE BLOCK
 
Before + after
This photo is edited with Pop from the Essentials pack. This filter gives photos a brighter, whiter look and overall clean feel without losing details. The colors in this photo are more earthy and muted, so I needed them to come alive. I wanted the colors to pop! You can see how much of a difference there is from the original, but the essence of the photo hasn't changed.  
 
 
Rosie Clayton's favorite A Color Story Filters!Lastly, I wanted you all to see the above filters applied to the same photo, side by side. I set each filter at 50% opacity and chose a photo with various colors mixed with white so it's easier to see the effect each filter has on the photo. 
 
In general, I tend to set my filter opacity at 20%-50% no matter which filter I use, and then I make a few slight adjustments using the Tools. Don't forget to use the Tools. They make a big difference and clean up your edit. No one filter will magically do it all! 
 
I hope this was helpful and showed you that there's no rule for filters, you really have to try a handful to see which looks best for the particular photo. Have fun, play around with your edit, and don't forget to try layering filters too! I hope you'll visit me @rclayton on Instagram and enjoy all the colorful spots and walls I love so much! Rosie
 
Credits// Author and Photography: Rosie Clayton. All photos edited with A Color Story app
  • This looks like it’s a good app, but using that photo, all of those filters look almost exactly the same. If you wanted us to see the difference, keep the opacity at 100%. And actually, using a photo with that many colors makes it confusing to the eye, and difficult to see the difference in each photo.

  • I 100% agree. I respect the work put into the app, but I have a lot of trouble seeing the difference between the filters, especially since there’s so many and yet they seem so similar. It’d help to show filters on the same photo, a simple photo.

  • I agree with you all. The last example doesn’t do a good job of really showing us the differences. They are so subtle that really you couldn’t go wrong. If you look at the yellow block behind the lettering you can see a slight difference in them all, but like I said they all look good. I personally love the app, the filters are a much better quality than ig so I’ll take it! I think it’s a winner!

  • This is so helpful! I like that the different filters are useful for different colorways and settings. I think the comparison photo at the end is useful because I can see the changes between the colors and in her jacket. Great app and I can’t wait to play around with these filters some more!

  • I actually just downloaded the app tonight…along with the full pack of filters and I just LOVE it!! Tomorrow I am headed out to the bookstore to pick up your book!

    Just love your ideas and your style!! Happy Sunday!

  • So inspiring! Love the tips. As a photographer I really appreciate the subtle variations. I must download the app.

  • I’m loving this app. I’m using it for editing my Project Life photos and they are looking amazing. Everyday, Pop, Summer Day and Light are my faves <3
    Great job!