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Noise Reduction and Sharpening in Lightroom and Photoshop
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Making blanket edits and identifying special-case photos


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Noise Reduction and Sharpening in Lightroom and Photoshop

with Bryan O'Neil Hughes

Video: Making blanket edits and identifying special-case photos

So once my images are in Lightroom I want to really take a close look at them. This image, obviously, has a ton of noise.

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Noise Reduction and Sharpening in Lightroom and Photoshop
1h 6m Intermediate Feb 07, 2014

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Digital photos shot at high ISO speeds often suffer from noise. And all digital photos have a slight softness due to the nature of imaging sensors. Like all imaging software, Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop have features for fixing these flaws. But using these features isn't always straightforward—and incorrect use of them can make a photo look artificial and overprocessed.

In this course, join Photoshop senior product manager Bryan O'Neil Hughes for an in-depth exploration of the noise-reduction and sharpening features in Lightroom and Photoshop. The course begins with tips for getting the cleanest possible images when you shoot. Next, Bryan details the process of making overall noise and sharpness improvements in Lightroom. The course concludes with a look at various advanced Photoshop techniques for localized adjustments and more.

Subjects:
Photography Raw Processing Night + Low Light Sharpening
Software:
Photoshop Lightroom Camera Raw
Author:
Bryan O'Neil Hughes

Making blanket edits and identifying special-case photos

So once my images are in Lightroom I want to really take a close look at them. And I figured what I would do is talk through my thought process for sort of scrubbing these files and what I'm thinking about. So ideally I've done a first pass on my camera I've done another pass on import. I've gone through and maybe I've flagged things but now I really want to take a close look at the images and for that what I'm going to do is completely turn out the lights. And I want to look at every image from afar and then zoom in. Believe it or not, this is exactly how this shot came off of the camera.

I really like it. I like the composition. I like the color. I'm thinking it probably wants a little bit of massaging, tiny bit of sharpening. But it doesn't need a whole lot of work. Whereas this image, also just as it came off the camera, it's sharp, which I'll see as I come in there, but it needs a lot of work. It just looks really flat. And there's probably some dust on the sensor and whatnot, too. If I start looking around, I'm probably going to see some artifacts and some things that need to be cleaned up. This image, obviously, has a ton of noise.

That's going to need quite a bit of work. This image is a low-res file, off of an iPhone. It's got a lot of noise, and there's not a whole lot I can do with it. So this one's kind of lost. We'll see what we can do later. An image like this, you'll notice that really shallowed up the field. Some things that are in focus, and there are other things that are almost in focus. So later we're going to look at recovering focus with that one. This is a really low res file off of the iPad 2, sometimes you just don't have a lot to work with. And those files can be pretty tricky. An image like this? Straight off the iPhone 4, shooting into the sun.

There's actually quite a bit we can do with an image like this. It's a high resolution enough photo that there is quite a bit of information. Talk about that one later. Obviously, there's some focus problem. There's a little bit of camera blur. It's the sort of thing traditional sharpening isn't going to help with. This'll be a fun one to sharpen, because I've got a lot of detail. When you zoom in here, give it just a second to register, but you'll see we're picking up individual hairs and dust. So I'm sort of thinking in the back of my mind what I'm going to do with those. These images we'll get into later, and I'll show you a neat trick.

But that's a good exercise to follow When you're loading your images in. You might mark them, you might color code them. But take a first pass and decide what you think you're going to do with them. Because you might end up discarding some files as you go.

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