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There're certain scenarios where you will discover that you may want to darken or brighten your photographs. We can do that with the Adjustment Brush. Like with this image here. It was captured by Kevin Thomas. It's a beautiful photograph. Thanks, Kevin, for the use of this file. What I want to do is I want to improve it just a little bit. You'll notice there is a shadow underneath the lips. Let's take a look if we can actually remove that shadow. So here I'm going to zoom in to a 1:1 view. With my Adjustment Brush selected, I'll go ahead and increase my Exposure pretty significantly, maybe about one stop or so.
Next, nice small, little brush size there. Flow, I'm going to bring that down somewhere below 50, and I'm just going to start to paint across this area of the photograph. Now what I'm going to need to do is to zoom in closer. Now that I'm in closer, make my brush even smaller and work on the details of these shadows here a little bit more closely. So I'm going to change my zoom rate quite often. I'll zoom in, I'll zoom out, and I'll go back and forth trying to work on this area of the photograph. Make my brush a little bit bigger here. Again, just work out the shadow here, brightening up this portion of the photograph.
Make it smaller. Work on the shadow of the nose as well as long as I'm here. Go ahead and diminish that just a little bit. And a lot of times what happens is as we start to do this, we may ask ourselves, am I even making a difference, does this really matters? Is this really improving the photograph? Well, flip the switch. Here is our before and then our after. That's a ton better already when we barely started. Before and then after. So again, a little bit bigger brush here. I'm going to work on the other portion of the chin because I need this connect to the overall tonality of the photograph.
I'm trying to have really nice even tone. Make this even bigger, a lower Flow amount. Again, work on the edges in the other portions of the photograph so that it connects with the rest of the image. And then I'll lower the Exposure a little bit. I'm went a little bit too hard with that. Find the sweet spot there, and then here is our overall before and then our after. Nice work in regards to just some quick little brushstrokes. Now there are some other areas that might be nice to clean up or add a little bit of brightness there. But for the most part, the image is looking a little bit better.
Let's zoom out and look at the before and after. Here we have our before and then our after. All right, well, one of the things that I notice is I've whitened just too much of the chin, too much of the lips. We know how to get rid of that. Hold down the Option key on a Mac, Alt key on a PC. That takes you to your Erase Brush, and here lower the Flow a little bit. What I want to do is just start to erase some of these other areas where there wasn't a shadow, up here on the lips. I'm going to look to bring some of this back, and just to sweeten this up a little bit.
I want a little bit more of a natural look here because I went too far. That happens a lot in retouching. A lot of times you make an adjustment, and you just take it a little bit too far. Now let's take a look at our before and after. Here is before and then after, really focusing in on those shadows. All right, well you may be thinking, "what about darkening?" Well, let's take a look at how we can do that in the next movie.
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