This is a brief excerpt from PhotoFocus
Many often have a difficult time when color correcting or enhancing images. They generally lose sight of the goal: making the image look better while still being believable. Many users go “too far” in their quest to fix images. If the image starts to look fake or too altered, it will be distracting. Although getting it “right” requires some practice, here’s some general advice to get you started:
Identify what’s wrong. Before you can fix a picture, be sure you have decided on what’s wrong. Is it too dark? Is the sky washed out? Has the picture faded over time? Make a list and prioritize the issues you find in each image. It’s easiest to fix one problem at a time, and if you identify those problems, you’ll know when to stop twiddling with the image.
Work with a copy of the image. Before you start to color correct an image, you should duplicate it or make a new version. This way you can return to an original version if you make a mistake or go too far in your image touch-up. After opening your file, choose File > Save As and name the duplicate …
By: Richard Harrington