Photography Tip : Creating a Dragan Effect

In Bangkok, in the slick and shady streets of Khaosan Road, I came across the man below. He had a sly grin, the look of a man who has seen the world, and the decor of a man who still wants to see more. I did click him, because he was irresistible, but I knew something was missing.

Bangkok, Thailand

Practising the Dragan effect in Bangkok

Hence, the Dragan effect.

I have been trying to play around with the Dragan effect for a while now. But nobody I clicked looked primed for this style of edit. For those who are not aware of the Dragan-style, Andrzej Dragan is a Polish photographer who is famous for his method of photo-editing which adds a surreal, dynamic, almost-apocalyptic effect to all his portraits. And for years, simpletons around the world, me included, have been trying to achieve a similar look in their portraits.

When I started working on this the man from Khaosan, I had to get rid of the surrealism, because that just did not fit in with my style. But the dynamism could be added to a portrait using some simple techniques on photoshop.

While there are many tutorials about this online, I find this link from Designstacks the best for achieving the Dragan effect. And the simplest.

Or if you would prefer to have a video tutorial, check this out


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Unless mentioned otherwise, all pictures are taken by the blog admin. If you would like to use them for any commercial or non-commercial purposes, please contact for approval.



About Abhi Surendran

Abhi quit his corporate job, and decided to immerse himself in travels, photography, occasional periods of bankruptcy, and copious amounts of insanity. He is currently working on a book of his experiences, and a dream road trip through South Asia. Both in a haphazard fashion. He blogs at Iamnothome and you can also catch him at times on Facebook and twitter.

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