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In the next few movies we will begin our conversation about how we can use the Lightroom detail controls in order to improve our photographs. We'll look at how we can sharpen our images and also reduce noise. And in these first few movies my goal is to help you to really understand how these different controls work. And how they work in the larger context of our overall workflow. Once we, we've gone through how the different controls actually affect a photograph we'll then take what we've learned and apply it to different scenarios.
Alright, well let's first begin with this photograph here. With this photograph we'll take it to the Develop module. Then we're going to open up the Basic panel, because in the Basic panel what we'll do is process our image. And the way that we process a photograph, well that will affect the amount and the intensity of the sharpening or noise reduction which we'll apply. So before you go down to the Detail panel, you need to go through your normal ordinary workflow. Just to illustrate how this works, what I'm going to do is to zoom in on the image.
If you position your cursor over the photograph and click, you can zoom in on this portrait. This shows us all the detail that we have in this image as it was captured straight out of the camera. Well, often, we'll begin in the Basic panel, and maybe we'll start off by increasing the exposure. As I increase the exposure, though, and let me exaggerate just for a moment, what we'll see is that we're also bringing out noise, which was hidden in the shadows. You know, whenever you brighten darker areas like in this area here, or over here on this side as well, you can see that we're now seeing more noise in the photograph. And so that isn't a bad thing.
We just have to keep in mind that the exposure amount, or the amount of any of these sliders for that matter, well that will affect what we'll do later when we work with our Detail panel. What about some of the other sliders, for example contrast? Well that one's pretty easy, right? Drag this to the right, that will increase color saturation. It also will make the image appear sharper. As we drag this to the left, well that will decrease color saturation. The image appears softer. We also notice that we can now see some of the noise there in the background which we hadn't seen previously.
So just be aware that each adjustment you make, even little adjustments, will then affect the overall quality of the image, and it will also affect the work that you'll need to do later. Alright, well let's jump to a few other controls here. Maybe we'll bring in some light into the shadows, and then perhaps darken the deeper blacks as well. The clarity slider is interesting. It's like contrast, in that when you drag it to the right, the image appears sharper, but we also lose a little bit of color.
When we drag it to the let, it becomes softer. Here it almost looks a little bit strange or unnatural. In this case, I'm just going to add a touch of clarity in order to add a little bit of a mid-tone contrast snap to the photograph. But what about vibrance and saturation? As we vibrance and also as we increase saturation we're also increasing the color noise that we have in the photograph. So just be aware that each of these adjustments affects the overall quality of what the image is.
If we're really shifting the exposure in dramatic ways, or if we're brightening up those shadows or changing the contrast or clarity it affects the way that we're viewing this image in regards to its sharpness and also In regards to the overall details. Alright, well I think I've said enough about that. Let's go ahead and jump to the Detail panel. Let's say that we've finished up our workflow and we're ready to begin with the details. Here we'll click to expand the Detail panel and initially all that I want to highlight is this important indicator right here.
Do you see the exclamation point which is showing up at the top of the Detail panel? Well, that's indicating that if we start to work with these sliders, in a sense we're kind of working blind because we can't really see how they're affecting the photograph. Yet if we click on this it will zoom in our photograph to 100% so that we can then accurately analyze and review the image and make some important improvements to it. You also may notice that I currently have this view closed but you can open that.
And this is a little preview dialog. You can collapse or expand that by clicking on that icon. Sometimes it's helpful to work with this. Here we can click on this tool and position it over different areas of the photograph. If you want to anchor it in one of those areas just click and that will then remain in that spot. This can give you the ability to apply some sharpening when you aren't zoomed in to 100%. For example, let's say I'm zoomed out here and I just want to add some sharpening. Well I can do so and really pay attention to this part of the photograph.
Now the only down side with this is that you can only see one small area in the picture. So what I like to do in my own work flow is to actually close this. I don't think that that window is very useful. And then I like to zoom in on the image. Here I am zooming into 100%. That's a one to one view. And then I'm going to make my adjustments. So I can view the skin tone, and the face and the eyes and the background, and the shadows, and all of these different areas, so that I'll then be able to apply sharpening and noise reduction, which is a little bit more intelligent, because I'm able to review how it affects a larger area of the photograph.
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