In these two chapters, we learn about the most essential editing tools in Lightroom. From previews to tonal curves to understanding the difference between hue, saturation, and luminance value. It also explains the differences between tools that are similar yet serve a different editing purpose. These two chapters have it all.
A typical preview of an image is as basic as it gets whereas smart previews allow you to work on an image even if the original file isn’t available.
The process versions use camera raw to analyze, process, and have better control over color and tone details all while having fewer artifacts.
The white balance of an image is affected by the lighting of an image as well as what your camera can capture. By adjusting the white balance you can change the tone of an image from warm to cold. Although you can adjust the white balance in the camera settings, you can also adjust it when in Photoshop or Lightroom.
When using clone mode, you are able to select an exact spot on an image and place it anywhere on the image. This is best to use when patterns or textures are in the image. Heal mode is used for places in an image that have color transitions like the sky or skin.
The brush spot tool overlays a soft-edged adjustment to an image. It has marker pins to help guide the adjustment and can be made more or less opaque. The circle spot tool has no marker pins and the target area (within the circle) will be the only section that is adjusted. This tool is good for portraits and specifically editing blemishes.
The next few images are some examples of the basic tools listed above that you can use to edit your photos.
Cropping and rotating:
Cropping and rotating an image can create a narrower focus for the person viewing the photo. Think of it as a way to tell them what to look at without actually telling them; their eyes are drawn to what is in the center of the photo whether the subject is in motion or not.
Now onto more basic tools.
The color imbalance is when the light in an image has a deficiency in color. This can be adjusted in Lightroom or Photoshop by adjusting the white balance as well as changing the white balance on your camera.
These next five images have had a color cast adjustment to bring out the color where it is needed.
A graduated filter is used to create a straight edge, a feathered mask, or to adjust specific areas that are overexposed. Each of these can be adjusted without affecting the rest of the image.
The tone curve is a more precise distribution of tonal range in an image. The image can be sharped while reducing the noise as well. The tone curve is best used after the image has been processed with basic tools in Lightroom or Photoshop. The tone curve is measured on an x-y axis. X is the input information. Y is the output of that information.
The hue, saturation, and luminance values are made up of each color pixel. The most common combination of these values is RGB (red, green, blue). The values can be calculated from RGB values and vice versa. Hue is more natural than RGB values and you can darken or lighten specific colors; it is the color wheel. Saturation is the boldness/intensity of those hues and can range from neutral to vivid. The luminance values are a measurement of brightness in a color and can range from white (minimum) to black (maximum).
To convert an image to black and white, open your RAW image in Lightroom. Select the image from the filmstrip on the screen and select “B & W” on the HSL/Color/BW header. After this, you can view the image in Loupe view to see the mixture of colors. You can manually adjust the image or adjust only the black and white hues of the image.
Being able to refer to the Lightroom book (specifically chapters five and six) makes learning the platform easier. And though it can be fun to wing it, it is also fun to remember how you made your edits to your image; having the chapters nearby/ as a resource helps with that.