Friday Quick Tip – Lightroom – Dodge and Burn

dodge and burn

When it comes to processing images, one part of my work flow is to dodge and burn an image to depth and highlight light sources and shadow sources. To me dodging and burning gives a new dimension to a photograph. It was only yesterday I was speaking to a friend who runs a blog called Heritage Basket Studio about dodging and burning. And I showed them this video about the benefits of dodging and burning.

For me, dodging and burning, gives a depth to a photograph. By emphasising area where the light it hitting and darkening the areas away from the light source, you can make a photograph pop and stop it from being flat.

A great example of this was shown in the video, on how he changed, in Photoshop, a flat grey circle into looking like a sphere, by simply doing dodging and burning on the relevant parts of the grey circle.

Naturally you have to be careful how you dodge and burn, you don’t want your image to look overdone… in fact I find doing dodging and burning in small steps, using a reduced opacity brush in Lightroom, far better and easier to control.

I also use the radial filter to dodge and burn in LIghtroom, but I primarily stick to the local adjustment brush.  Now on saying that… remember to keep your opacity low and switch off auto-mask in the options.  If you don’t you will find your dodging and burning could be speckled.  Because with auto-mask on it will look for edges and colours to auto-mask and only do those tones and edges.

Another great tutorial I found was by Adam Welch, which is well worth a read.

Until next time… have a great weekend everyone.

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