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Editing a dark photo

From: Creating Photo Books with iPhoto

Video: Editing a dark photo

These days, it's very easy to get a dark photo. Perhaps the auto sensors in your camera misfired, or there is mixed lighting that threw things off or maybe you just had the wrong setting selected. That's okay, iPhoto is very forgiving and can help you do quite a bit of repairs as you work. In this case, let's take a look at this first photo here. I'll edit the photo and I want to work with it. Now under Effects, I can of course take advantage of Lighten or Darken, but generally speaking, I want to jump over to the Adjust Tab.

Editing a dark photo

These days, it's very easy to get a dark photo. Perhaps the auto sensors in your camera misfired, or there is mixed lighting that threw things off or maybe you just had the wrong setting selected. That's okay, iPhoto is very forgiving and can help you do quite a bit of repairs as you work. In this case, let's take a look at this first photo here. I'll edit the photo and I want to work with it. Now under Effects, I can of course take advantage of Lighten or Darken, but generally speaking, I want to jump over to the Adjust Tab.

Now, this particular photo is RAW and that's good. That means that it has the most information to work with from the digital camera. I could take the Level Slider here and pull it in. Pulling it until it reaches the first bump in the Histogram there and you'll see that the whites are going to get brighter and then I could move this Middle slider to balance out the exposure of the image. Now, that's looking out pretty good. Holding down the Shift Key will show me the before and the after.

If some of the shadowy areas are too dark, I could lift those with the Shadows slider and you see that the dark windows become brighter. However, maybe some areas are blown out and that's where the Highlights slider comes into play, so you could pull down the brightest areas. Once you get that where you like, remember, it's always a good idea to round out a little bit of Saturation. If you adjust Exposure or the Levels using Saturation, will feel in some of the missing color.

Additionally, with some photos, you'll have an Exposure slider, particularly with RAW which makes it easier to make adjustments. Now, that's looking pretty good. Let's take a look at one more photo. This picture is a little bit dark. Notice it's not a RAW photo, so I don't have as many choices. While I still have Exposure, it doesn't work quite the same as it does for a RAW photo. I'll take advantage instead of the Shadow slider to lift up some of the shadowy areas like the tree and then the Highlight slider to recover some of the blown out areas in the sky.

Pull down a little bit of noise and let's zoom in there to really see that. The Noise slider comes in handy as you're working to get rid of some of the noise in the area. See without, there's a lot of color aberration in this photo, so pulling that down helps. But in this case, I think I lifted the shadows too far, so I'm going to back those off just a little bit. Definition helps round things out a bit and that's looking pretty good. Let's pull that back out and while it's not the best photo in the book, it's okay, it's also not the biggest photo in the book.

So at the smaller size, that's going to work out well. Let's just flip through here and find one more dark image. This one actually looks a bit dark and here's how it looked originally. A little dark, a little washed out. I can lift the shadows and see how that illuminates the backdrop quite a bit. There's lots of material there in the shadows. Let's bring out a bit of that cave and as we do that, I'll bring in some saturation.

It is important, though, as you drag that, notice how it's easy to get a sun burnt look. That's why I'll generally leave the box checked, Avoid saturating skin tones. This allows you to put saturation into the rest of the image, a little contrast to round that out, looks pretty good and some Definition to bring out the details in the rocks and recover the highlights. That looks great. I'm really happy with that image and I'll go back to the Book to see it laid out.

All right, that definitely worked and you see that it's easy to make adjustments to the overall image if it's a bit too dark.

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This video is part of

Image for Creating Photo Books with iPhoto
Creating Photo Books with iPhoto

59 video lessons · 3470 viewers

Richard Harrington
Author

 
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  1. 2m 50s
    1. Welcome
      59s
    2. What you should know before watching this course
      42s
    3. Using the exercise files
      1m 9s
  2. 11m 20s
    1. Resolution requirements for putting photos in a book
      2m 28s
    2. Organizing images with an album
      2m 8s
    3. Organizing images with a Smart Album
      1m 59s
    4. Gathering images from Facebook
      1m 55s
    5. Photo streaming
      1m 14s
    6. The importance of ordering your photos
      1m 36s
  3. 14m 26s
    1. Creating a new book
      1m 16s
    2. Choosing a binding style
      2m 59s
    3. Choosing a size for your book
      2m 36s
    4. Choosing a theme for your book
      3m 43s
    5. Creating the initial layout
      2m 39s
    6. Changing a theme
      1m 13s
  4. 30m 49s
    1. Clearing placed photos
      1m 19s
    2. Taking control with options
      1m 18s
    3. Changing the page layout with presets
      4m 30s
    4. Changing page layout with the Layout pane
      2m 28s
    5. Changing the color of a page
      2m 14s
    6. Adding a background photo
      2m 55s
    7. Seeing placed and unplaced photos
      1m 32s
    8. Using Autoflow
      3m 41s
    9. Adding pages to a book
      1m 37s
    10. Adding a two-page spread
      4m 4s
    11. Swapping photos in a layout
      3m 16s
    12. Changing the order of pages
      1m 55s
  5. 12m 3s
    1. Advice when choosing pages
      1m 9s
    2. Formatting the cover
      2m 8s
    3. Modifying titles
      1m 54s
    4. Checking spelling
      3m 14s
    5. Adding captions
      2m 36s
    6. Making global changes to fonts
      1m 2s
  6. 17m 21s
    1. Applying design options effects to images
      1m 5s
    2. Cropping a photo
      1m 23s
    3. Using the Enhance button
      2m 56s
    4. Straightening an image
      2m 1s
    5. Using one-click effects
      2m 46s
    6. Editing a dark photo
      4m 5s
    7. Editing a bright photo
      1m 28s
    8. Reverting a photo
      1m 37s
  7. 7m 38s
    1. Adding a map
      50s
    2. Customizing a map's location
      1m 51s
    3. Changing a map's style
      1m 52s
    4. Adding places
      3m 5s
  8. 11m 57s
    1. Adding a blank page
      1m 37s
    2. Double-checking your spelling
      1m 39s
    3. Resolving any default text issues
      1m 56s
    4. Printing a hard copy to proof
      2m 34s
    5. Watching a slideshow
      3m 19s
    6. Duplicating or renaming a book project
      52s
  9. 7m 21s
    1. Before you can order...
      50s
    2. Choosing the print products store
      1m 38s
    3. Building your order
      4m 12s
    4. Checking the status of your order
      41s
  10. 11m 6s
    1. Creating a PDF of your book to email
      3m 8s
    2. Why create a slideshow?
      3m 31s
    3. Syncing to an iPad
      4m 27s
  11. 32s
    1. Goodbye
      32s

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