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Lightroom 4 Image Optimization Workshop
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Highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks


From:

Lightroom 4 Image Optimization Workshop

with Tim Grey

Video: Highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks

In many cases, you may find that a simple Brightness and Contrast adjustment with the Exposure and Contrast sliders provide all the control you'll need for adjusting Tonality in an image. However, in some cases, you may want to exercise a little bit more control, lightening and darkening areas of the image based on their Tonal value. For that, we can turn to the Highlights > Shadows > Whites and Blacks sliders. The Highlights and Whites sliders are very similar, they allow us to lighten or darken the brightest pixels in the image.
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  1. 1m 31s
    1. Welcome
      1m 31s
  2. 15m 9s
    1. Overview of the Develop module workflow
      3m 8s
    2. Evaluating images
      3m 26s
    3. Seeing a before-and-after view
      3m 40s
    4. Correcting mistakes with the History and Snapshot features
      4m 55s
  3. 20m 17s
    1. Starting with a Develop preset
      4m 9s
    2. White balance adjustment
      4m 8s
    3. Basic exposure controls
      3m 26s
    4. Highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks
      3m 15s
    5. Adding clarity to an image
      2m 15s
    6. Boosting colors with Vibrance and Saturation
      3m 4s
  4. 31m 39s
    1. Fine-tuning with the Tone Curve adjustment
      7m 22s
    2. Advanced color adjustments
      5m 5s
    3. Sharpening an image
      6m 33s
    4. The Graduated Filter tool
      5m 2s
    5. Painting adjustments into an image
      7m 37s
  5. 24m 11s
    1. Cleaning up blemishes
      5m 4s
    2. Cropping and straightening photos
      5m 55s
    3. Applying noise reduction
      3m 52s
    4. Lens correction adjustments
      6m 2s
    5. Removing red-eye
      3m 18s
  6. 18m 41s
    1. Creating virtual copies
      2m 52s
    2. Converting color into black and white
      3m 51s
    3. Adding a color tint
      2m 30s
    4. Split toning effects
      3m 20s
    5. Adding a vignette effect
      3m 56s
    6. Adding a film grain effect
      2m 12s
  7. 12m 31s
    1. Adjusting multiple images with Quick Develop
      2m 49s
    2. Duplicating the previous adjustment
      2m 38s
    3. Copying and pasting Develop settings
      3m 54s
    4. Synchronizing Develop settings
      3m 10s
  8. 17m 16s
    1. Basic Photoshop workflow
      5m 41s
    2. Stitching panoramas
      5m 1s
    3. Working with HDR images
      6m 34s

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Lightroom 4 Image Optimization Workshop
2h 21m Intermediate Apr 27, 2012

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

In this workshop digital imaging guru Tim Grey focuses on the Develop module of Adobe Lightroom 4. Starting with an overview of the image optimization workflow in Lightroom, Tim walks you through the process of evaluating your images and deciding what adjustments you need to make. He teaches you how to use the Develop module's presets to achieve quick results, as well as how to apply your own adjustments, from simple exposure and color adjustments to advanced options like the Tone Curve and the Graduated Filter tool. Learn techniques for cleaning up your images, applying creative adjustments, and duplicating adjustments across multiple images. Finally, get some tips for integrating Lightroom and Photoshop to create panoramas and high dynamic range images.

Topics include:
  • Evaluating images
  • Seeing a before and after view
  • Correcting mistakes with the History and Snapshot features
  • Develop module basics
  • Fine-tuning with the Tone Curve
  • Sharpening an image
  • Painting adjustments into an image
  • Image cleanup
  • Creative adjustments
  • Duplicating adjustments
Subjects:
Photography video2brain
Software:
Lightroom
Author:
Tim Grey

Highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks

In many cases, you may find that a simple Brightness and Contrast adjustment with the Exposure and Contrast sliders provide all the control you'll need for adjusting Tonality in an image. However, in some cases, you may want to exercise a little bit more control, lightening and darkening areas of the image based on their Tonal value. For that, we can turn to the Highlights > Shadows > Whites and Blacks sliders. The Highlights and Whites sliders are very similar, they allow us to lighten or darken the brightest pixels in the image.

Whites will affect a broader range and especially focuses on the white values, the brightest values in the image. While Highlights adjust a narrower range of Tonal values and won't adjust the white point in the image. I typically start with whites so that I can establish a white point. And in all cases, for all four of these sliders, we can hold the Alt or Option key, Alt key on Windows, Option key on Macintosh, in order to get a Clipping Preview to make sure were not losing too much detail. For example, I'll hold the Alt or Option key while increasing the value for Whites and we get a Clipping Preview showing us when were losing detail in the image.

Generally speaking, I don't want to sacrifice any Highlight detail if I can avoid it so I would typically go up to about the point where those pixels first start to appear and then perhaps back off slightly. You can see that that gives us a bit of a boost in the brightest areas of the image. But if I want to further fine tune the appearance of the brightest areas in the image, I can go to the Highlights slider and then increase it to brighten the Highlights or decrease it to darken down the Highlights. Obviously, which direction you slide will depend upon the image.

And in this case, you might actually go either way depending on your preference. You could increase Highlights in order to really emphasize the bright light reflecting off of the ice here. Or if you want to bring out a little more detail on those highlights, then you might tone down that adjustment just a little bit. Taking a look at the darker areas of the image, once again, we can use the Blacks slider with the Clipping Preview, holding the Alt key on Windows or Option key on Macintosh. And then, adjust to establish that black point. If I move over to the left, you can see that I can block up Shadow detail, making areas of the image very, very dark, nearly black in many cases.

But in most cases, I'll again use that Clipping Preview and move the slider over to the right until I see the fewest possible pixels. Notice that eventually, I get to the point where no more pixels are disappearing, even as I increase the value for blacks. And that's because those areas were underexposed in the original image and so I'm not able to bring back detail in those areas. Right about there looks to be a good result. Let's take a look at the image itself. That looks good in terms of overall Contrast, but I think some of those shadow areas could use to be brightened up so that we can see some more of the fur detail, for example.

And so, I'll switch now to the Shadows slider and increase the value there, and that opens up a little bit of Shadow detail. So, I'm maintaining good Contrast, thanks to the Highlights and Blacks Adjustment. But then, I'm able to fine tune the overall appearance of detail within the photo by adjusting the Shadows and the Whites.

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