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Skill Level Intermediate
- [Instructor] Hello, friends, my name is Chris Orwig, and welcome to my weekly series where I share with you some tips and techniques that can help you to capture and create better photographs. Well, in this week's episode we're talking about how we can create better photographs using Lightroom Classic. We'll be working with these four photographs here that I captured of my buddy, Matt. And we're going to talk about linear gradients, retouching and batch processing. Well, let's dive right in. First thing I want to do is first I have to go to full screen mode and just click through these images that you can see which photos we have to work with. You can see that for the most part, the exposure's pretty much the same. It's a little bit different. You can also see perhaps, that there is some dust in the sky that, or you can see there's dust on my lens which is showing up here in the sky, so we need to fix that. All right, well, let's press the D key, I'll press the D key to go to the develop module. And in the develop module, you can tap the Q key or you can click on this tool right here, which allows us to remove spots or retouch things away inside of Lightroom. And what I want to do with that is I want to tap the A key to visualize spots or if your toolbars aren't visible, press the T key to show the toolbar, click on visualize spots and drag the slider until you see if there's any issue in any area of your image. Now here I see one right there, another one over here. What you tend to want to do is have a brush size, which is just a little bit bigger than the spot. So right now it's too big. How do you make it smaller? Press and hold down or tap the left bracket key. So, I'm just going to hold it down until it's just a little bit bigger than that issue. Click on that, click on that. That is now corrected and gone. All right, next we'll tap the A key to bring everything back up, make sure the edges of all of that retouching looks good, and it does. Here, I'll click done. And then I'll zoom out a little bit so we can see the entire photograph. What I want to do in this photograph is I want to improve the color and tone, and I want to add blue to the sky. So we're going to start with some of the basics in the basic panel. And here I'll just boost my shadows, add a little contrast, brighten up my exposure. And with a photograph like this, let me zoom in and touch. If we add clarity, watch how it's just going to kind of create a fun look. Cause I already have this off camera flash, it's really intense. So I'm just going to exaggerate that or play with that. Bring out a little more color there to just bring up the vibrance as well. So, that's helping me to craft a look. And what I want to do next is I want to add blue to the sky. And how can we do that? Well, before we do that, the last thing or the next thing I should say, I should point out, is it's always a good idea just to turn on profile corrections and see if you like the look. Because you can see in a photograph like this, there's a lot of fall off near the edges. So there's a lot of darkening of these corners. I kind of like that. So what I'm going to do, if I were to turn this on, I might bring back some of that vignetting even though I would leave some of that distortion correction there on. All right, next, let's talk about the sky. So with the sky, we're going to use the linear gradient shortcut keys, the M key. If you ever forget these shortcuts, just hover over the tool icon in the tool strip there, and it will tell you what it is. Then for your effect, from the pull down menu, we're going to choose an option like temperature, so zeros out everything else and gives us a value here. Now, you're never going to know how much to go with this, so you can just guess and try. Let's say a little bit like that and I'm just going to click and drag. As I click and drag, can you see I can drag in different ways, and it's going to cover up different parts of the image. Now how far you extend this out is how soft the transition is, and how close it is, it's a really harsh line, D marking where you know the area you're affecting the area you want. Speaking of the area you're affecting, if you really want to see it, you can hover over this node here, this little pen in the middle, and the red showing me, hey, that's the area that is receiving this effect, which in this case is decrease in our temperature value. Now for the sky, that's kind of cool, but we don't necessarily want to turn our subject here blue, right? So, what we can do, is we can go to our brush tool, and let me zoom in on this. And if you go down the bottom of the settings for your brush, you can go to erase. We want a nice pretty small brush that's pretty good, maybe a touch bigger there. Auto mass turned on, flow pretty high here and what we're going to do, is just erase any of this blue effect. See his face turned a little bit more yellow, that a subtle blue effect was taking down the color temperature there. So we want to just bring that back to that nice warmth that we had there. So I'm basically masking away the adjustment for that part of the image. If we go back to this view and let me react to that, and click on the flip switch, you can see the before and after. Great, so it's just affecting the sky, it's not affecting the subject. That's kind of cool. Now, if you want to do more work than this, let's say you wanted to do an adjustment, say on the foreground here. Well, go over here, click new. Choose an option. Like I'll just choose, let's use temperature again, this time a little teeny bit of warmth, maybe a boost of shadows, a little more clarity there. And I'm going to click and drag that out. And what you're going to see that adjustment's going to do for us is it just kind of brightening up that foreground, kind of dryness into that part of the image. And in this way, I can have this adjustment really for that foreground area. This one up here is blue for the sky. Now what else might we want to do with the sky? Well, another thing that we could do is, if we zoom in the sky, we noticed that there's some noise in there, we can increase or decrease our noise reduction. So let me go to the area, see if we can see the noise. So let me exaggerate my sharpening here, see if that will help draw it out. Do you see how little noise that we have there? So with this slider, as I increase this to the right, that increases noise reduction, actually removes noise. So drag to the right to remove noise. Now you don't need to do it this high value, I was just trying to help you to be able to see that. I don't even know if you can see that, but maybe you have to try this on your own. But we don't need any sharpening in the sky. If anything, we could make the sky a little softer and we could remove some of the noise that often shows up in the sky. So that'll just make it nice and smooth and that can help out our photograph. Okay, well pretty cool. We've done some nice work on the image. The last thing I want to do here, is crop and rotate. So I'll tap the R key to select the crop tool. So many different ways to do this. One perhaps, easy way, just drag this little slider here and you can try to get that level. Sometimes that's a little finicky, so if you double click that, you can reset it to zero. Another way that we can do this, I'll just hit reset, is if you have the crop tool active, hold down your command (mumbles) windows, that will temporarily activate the angle tool and draw a line over something that you think should be straightening the image and level, and then let go, and it will crop and rotate so that you have that horizon line, now nice and straight. Now if it didn't quite get it right or you want to customize it, just to kind of have a look, you can always change it like I'm doing here. Okay, well, we have image number one complete, woo! We are making great progress, hopefully you're learning some cool stuff. I'm going to move to image number two. Take a look at that one, and maybe this other one over here. And then one of the things that I'm seeing with all these images is that, as I look at them, they all have a similar issue. So I'll go to my tool that we went to before, which allows us to see where we have these little problems. And I have these little problems here. And so what I want to do with that is, let me just undo this here real quick, is I'll tap my left bracket key to make that brush a little smaller and I am just going to paint over the sky there, tap A key to hide that. And then, if we have the little pieces of dust removed from one image, and we want to remove in another, you can just hit previous. Whatever you did in the previous image, it will apply in this image. Or if you click and shift click to hold that down, you can go into the sync dialogue. So turn off auto sync, click on sync... and it will say, "hey, what do you want to synchronize?" Well, in this case really, the only thing I want to synchronize is spot removal, so I can synchronize it that way. And it just can help you to speed up your overall workflow. Now for the rest of the image processing, what we need to do is really, do this one by one because you'll notice the exposure's a little different, the angle is a little different. So let's just go through this really quickly so you can get a sense of our workflow. Tap an R key, click and drag to rotate or use that other shortcut that we talked about. If that is, you want that level horizon. In my case I do, I kind of like having him right there in the center of the frame. Perfect. We went to the basic panel. Remember before, we said, let's boost shadows, let's increase clarity, add a little bit of vibrance, maybe a little bit of exposure and that's a cool look. I love that vibe for the image. Then if we want to use our shortcut, do you remember the shortcut key for this one? It's the M key. If you ever forget, just hover over it and this little menu tool tip will show up and it will tell you what it is. From here, we choose an effect option. In this case, I'll choose a lower temperature value and I'll click and drag this out and bring that to an area where I kind of like the look that we have. Maybe a little more saturation to grab our brush. We want to erase away higher flow value there. Zoom in on the area we're going to work on, auto mass turned on. And what I'm going to do, oops! Undo that. I did that wrong, cause I had the A brush. I did not click on the erase brush. I thought I'd clicked on that, but I guess not. So erase brush, the A brush will just add more of the effect, that's the opposite of what we want. So go to the erase. And then here I'm going to paint that away cause I don't want his hair or skin tone to be blue. I want it to have that nice warm tone that we have here and make sure the jacket isn't affected or anything else. And that one is now done. So there we have that image done. Let's take what we've learned and let's apply this to another photograph. So one of the things that we've learned is that we have all of these different adjustments, right? That we want to make. We have adjustments to the sky, we've adjustment to the foreground. And when we have images that are kind of similar, like these two here, we might as well take advantage of batch processing. So let me show you how that might work. With this image, I'm going to do just adjustments which aren't super specific to the photograph that I know that I can replicate to another image. So craft the way I want the light and the look to appear. So that's what I'm going for with this image. Next, I know that I want to have that effect in the sky. So we'll grab our linear adjustment, linear gradient tool, drag over the sky, and then choose how blue, also how bright we want that sky to appear. And if we zoom in, one of the things that you can see, is if I flip the switch, look at how it's turning his hair, his skin tone, his jacket blue. No boy, no, I don't like that. So I'm going to fix that in a moment, but right now I'm not going to worry about it. I'm also going to create one more adjustment here, like we did before, this time kind of warming, a little bit of clarity, a little more shadows. I'm going to do this on the lower portion of the image. I'm just kind of boosting this one up here. I know I may need to fine tune that adjustment, but right now, I'm just leaving it as it's and here's why. This is kind of the secret sauce. You make these general adjustments, global general adjustments. Go to another image and here I'll just click previous, so everything I did to the previous image, do to this image. Great. Then, when you need to get specific, which I do, we can go over here, we can say, let's select the blue adjustment we made. Let's go to our brush. Let's go to erase, make sure you don't make the mistake I made before. And I'll tap the right bracket key to make that pressure a little bit bigger. And can you see here, I'm bringing back all that great skin tone color, jacket's now gray rather than blue, fix the camera. Camera didn't really look that bad blue, but the subject did not look very good. So we're just fixing that. And with auto mask, we can do that really quickly. So we fix that one. We'll go to our other image where we have the subject, notice this. Erase tool is already selected for me. So yeah, there I have my adjustment, right? So now I can just paint that away. So, because I'm in that mode of fixing one image with those settings, I just jumped to that next image. I can fix that next image. That way I can make sure I'm making good adjustments. Now with this image, I made a little mistake. If you look at the hair, it's like I painted away too much of it. My tool went outside of my subject. So I need to go back to the A and here I'm going to decrease the flow, make my brush really nice and small there and I just need to bring back some of this effect over this area. Make sure that that's blending in nice and smooth. That looks pretty good. Maybe a little bit over here and just blend it all in nicely. And then I'll go to my eraser tool, and then I'm going to erase right up to the edge and the hair there. So I just wanted to highlight that. Well one, because I made a mistake, I mean, that wasn't intentional. But two, wanted to take time to talk about that because there are times when you will need to add in, other times when you need to remove. All right, we'll click done. We can zoom out and we can see how we have these moods that we've created with these photographs. And if I select all four and press the N key, just so that we can see those appear once. What we're seeing is that we have, I'll tap the L key to turn the lights out here for a moment, we have these beautiful photographs, wonderful color palette, it's all non-destructive. We could make any changes as needed and if you notice anything at this point, what you want to do is really tackle it. So I'm just going to press F to go to full screen mode. And we'll start at the beginning, and this image I think looks good, real subtle, kind of look with the blue in the sky. This one is well. This one's nice, I'm liking the light, but I feel like his face could be brighter. And then this one too, I feel like his face is a little bit lost. So, if you notice something like that, at the end of your workflow, go with it. I mean, just because you think it was finished, you know, I kind of thought I was done, doesn't mean it necessarily is. Sometimes you only discover things after you've kind of stepped away and then you come back. So what I think this image could benefit from, is a radial filter. So I click on that, fact pull down menu, I'm going to exposure and I'm just gona brighten exposure and just kind of experiment. So I have a high feather value, and just click and drag this out. And what I'm looking to do is just have this little light source, right? Like just bring a little light onto my subject. Now with that high feather, what that can do is, it can soften the edge of our transition. So let's here, here's no feather. We can see that really distinct source of light here's a lot of feather. And now you can't even really see where it starts and stops, but can you see how it's just giving his, our subject, a nice little boost of light there. And if ever you want to add that up, you can always just click new, and you can click and drag another one. If we say, well yeah, that was nice for those other areas, but for the face, I'm going to do a little bit less on my highlights. Keep that value up, nice and high, and you can see how now I'm bringing more focus into my subject there. Let's do the same thing on the other image. This one probably much less, but I'll just click and drag this out over this area. Increase my feather value, maybe a little less. Bring those highlights down so those aren't over done. But can you see I'm just adding that little snap of light to that area. Let me zoom in, so you can see that. Sorry, I zoomed out so far. Sometimes you forget, you know, when you create these movies, but by the time they're compressed and you're watching it, you can't really see it that well. So hopefully, that's helpful. And more importantly, hopefully, what's really helpful is this whole concept that we've been covering, which we talked about in the beginning, right? We're going to cover the sense of workflow and do some of the essential things. We looked at how we can batch process, how we can make the sky blue, and how we can use these tools in really advanced ways without a ton of effort to accomplish professional level results. Well, in closing, I hope that you enjoyed this tutorial. If you didn't pick up everything, watch this one again. I mean, there's a lot of good stuff in there. And last but not least, I hope you have a wonderful rest of your day and I'll look forward to seeing you next time. Bye for now.