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Overview of the Adjustment Brush improvements

From: Lightroom 4 New Features

Video: Overview of the Adjustment Brush improvements

In the next couple of movies, I want to highlight a few new features that you're going to be find in two new tools which are located in the Tool Strip, in particular, the Graduated Filter and the Adjustment Brush. Well, let's start off with the Adjustment Brush. We click on this icon here in the Tool Strip; it opens up a set of different controls. Now the way that we typically use this tool is we paint in an adjustment to a particular area in an image. So let's say that I want to zoom in here and I want to increase the Exposure or the brightness in this area of the photograph.

Overview of the Adjustment Brush improvements

In the next couple of movies, I want to highlight a few new features that you're going to be find in two new tools which are located in the Tool Strip, in particular, the Graduated Filter and the Adjustment Brush. Well, let's start off with the Adjustment Brush. We click on this icon here in the Tool Strip; it opens up a set of different controls. Now the way that we typically use this tool is we paint in an adjustment to a particular area in an image. So let's say that I want to zoom in here and I want to increase the Exposure or the brightness in this area of the photograph.

I simply paint. I am just going to try to brighten up some of these shadows here around the eyes, and then I could also dial in let's say some sharpness here, and then to see the before and after, we'll flip the switch. Here we have it before and then now after. So it allows us to paint in specific adjustments to really specific areas. Well, let's deconstruct what are some of the new features that we'll find in this tool and also the Graduated Filter. In order to do that, I am going to jump to a slide here. Here you can see we have the Adjustment Brush and all of the different settings for that brush in Lightroom 3.

Well, how does this compare to Lightroom 4? Well, for starters, you'll notice that we have a number of added sliders or controls. Well, what are the differences? Well, the differences are exposure. We can choose different Exposure settings, and also, Temperature and Tint color controls. This is really helpful when you have mixed lighting scenarios or when you need to color correct a specific part of an image. We also have these controls we've seen before in the Develop module in the Basic panel. Highlights, that's kind of like recovery in the previous version of Lightroom.

We can either brighten or darken the bright areas of our photograph. Now Shadows, this is a little bit like Fill Light. We can brighten up some of those shadows or darken them down. And then we have some new controls, which allow us to work with noise and Moire pattern. Now we've seen sharpness before, but it works a little bit better here, and what Noise does for us is allows us to either remove or add a little bit a noise based on what we need to do. Well, what's Moire pattern all about? Well, if you ever taken a photograph, say with studio lights, and sometimes you'll see in someone's garment there will be this strange pattern--it happens in digital capture.

Well, here we can then paint away that pattern and fix that problem really easily. Well, let's take a look at this by going back to Lightroom, and let's deconstruct this to a little bit further by first working on a demo file. Here I have a demo file. I'll go ahead and zoom in on that a little bit, and you can see it's just a grayscale circle and a grayscale down below that I've created in Photoshop. Well, if we go to the Develop module and if we select the Adjustment Brush, what we can do is dial in, let's say, increase the Exposure, and then just make a strong brush stroke here.

So I am just going to paint across this area of the photograph. Currently, you can see I am simply increasing the Exposure. We've had exposure before so let's reset that by double-clicking it. Well, what about these Temperature and Tint controls? Well, here you can see I can change the color in that area; in this case it's more warm or more cool. We can also do the same thing here, more magenta or more green, fascinating. We can do contrast we've seen before, whites whiter, blacks blacker, or less contrast, more even tonality.

Now what about Highlights; this is one of the new controls. Well, you can see the highlights up here; if I go ahead and click and drag to the right, those highlights become brighter; click and drag to the left, I can actually darken up those highlights. So again, this can be really helpful for when you have overexposure. You just need to paint down one of the highlights; you can use that control. Shadows, well that's going to work on those shadows, you can see either brightening or darkening, and then we have controls like Clarity. Remember, clarity stronger, it introduces less artifacts, less haloing, so that's going to work a little bit better.

Saturation, that's obvious more or less color, and then we go down to Sharpness. Again this is straightforward more sharpening or less sharpening, but Noise is kind of interesting. So for Noise, I want to zoom in even further here. Let's go ahead and zoom in perhaps to something along these lines. Let's move over to where we can see where we painted there. Well, the Sharpness, we're going to see everything becomes really sharp or not, and it's drastic, it's dramatic. We can go pretty far with that.

Noise, we can either remove the noise, you can see I was trying to remove that noise pattern there, or we can bring some of that noise back, and then Moire pattern works the same. In other words, removing more of it or having more of it present. Well, now that we have kind of introduced this tool so to speak and deconstructed some of the settings and pointed out some of the new controls, let's take a look at how these controls work on an image or two, and let's do that in the next movie.

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Lightroom 4 New Features

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Chris Orwig
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