When you are editing portraits in Lightroom, you often have to deal with a lot of factors. Although not every image requires major transformation, sometimes you do have to eliminate unwanted portions, fix distortions, adjust color imbalance, and other tweaks.
Today we will discuss some important editing tips to help you boost up the quality of your photo.
Tip 1: Adjust the Color Balance
Sometimes a color looks tacky. We need to fix the imperfections across the entire image or for specific colors to achieve the perfect balance. Color balancing ensures your precious memories are stored in the highest quality. You can use the Eyedropper tool if your photo has a neutral surface in the background. You can add or remove color tones to achieve a balance.
To adjust color balance, you’ll need to go to the Develop Module, followed by the Basic Panel. Use the Eyedropper to change the color balance.
Tip 2: Fix White Light Produced by Camera Flash
When taking outdoor snaps, the white light produced by a camera flash often supersedes other colors in your photo. When taking night snaps, the bright advertisement billboards or neon bulbs could create such distortions.
In photography, white light is also called image temperature. Technically, the white light is produced when your camera lens is unable to identify the color.
In Lightroom, you can fix white light using the Eyedropper tool or by balancing preset options. It’ll help you get back the lost colors and sharpen their tones.
Click the Eyedropper icon in the Basic Panel. Using your mouse cursor, move it over to a portion of your image where the Red, Green and Blue (RGB) values are closer in nature. Technically, when the RGB values are closer to each other, that portion is called a neutral part. Most of the time image portions covering the eyes, teeth, and white skin are neutral in nature.
Tip 3: Organize your Lightroom Portrait Photos
As you begin to work with more and more photos, it becomes difficult to keep track of your files and locate the right photo when you need it the most.
The easiest way to organize your Lightroom portrait photos is to identify and fix the duplicates. The process is simple and straightforward.
- Download and install PictureEcho.
- Launch the software and select the Adobe Lightroom option from the drop-down menu.
- PictureEcho will automatically recognize your Lightroom Catalog.
- Click on Start Search.
- Once the scan is over, use the Select Duplicates button to auto-select photos by your desired pattern.
- Click on Select Action and choose whether to permanently delete or move the duplicate photos to a folder of your choice.
Tip 4: Personalize your Photos
Photos are often an expression of the mood and emotions of the artist. Add texture to your photos, manipulate color tones to convey a certain mood or expression.
Tip 5: Lighten the Shadows
A person can have very light skin but dark hair. If the photo background is dark as well, it creates an imbalance. You can fix such imbalances by lightning the shadows.
To lighten the shadow, press the J key. Lightroom will start highlighting the clipping indicator and activate the shadow on the right-hand side panel. Press and hold the Alt key of your keyboard. Slightly move the Blacks slider to the right. Lightroom will make the photo disappear with only clipping areas. You can now adjust the shadow.
Tip 6: Adjust Saturation Levels
In photography, saturation refers to the intensity of a color. You’ll discover colors with higher saturation are more vivid, while colors with lower saturation are greyish in nature. Sometimes, you may have to give a calming effect to the colors by decreasing the saturation level. It’s also worth mentioning that too much saturation can distort your image and make a color spill-over.
Tip 7: Adjust Vibrance
Adjusting vibrance can help you transform a dull-looking image. You can find the Vibrance slider in the Presence tab. Move the slider upward to a level which appeals to you.
Tip 8: Crop your Image
The Cropping tool helps you eliminate unwanted portions or edges of an image. You can use it to change the aspect ratio and improve the overall composition. While cropping your images, Lightroom offers you an option to restrict them to a specific aspect ratio such as 1*1, 4*5, 5*7, and so on.
Cropping will help you hide any visual information from your image and change the photo orientation from portrait to landscape and vice versa. Sometimes, your camera lens fails to achieve the desired magnification. In such cases, cropping will help you reduce the angle of the view further.
To crop an image in Lightroom, click on the Crop tool icon on the toolbar. Click on the drop-down menu options (up/ down arrows) next to the Custom option and then choose Original to manually set proportions. Or choose one of the existing aspect ratios from 1*1, 4*5, 5*7, 8*10, etc. You can also specify a custom aspect ratio by selecting the Enter Custom option and entering your desired aspect ratio. Using your mouse cursor, drag the corners of your image inwards and select the crop portion.
Tip 9: Brighten the Eyes
To brighten the eyes, you’ll need to first zoom in and click on the Adjustment Brush. It will help you improve the quality by making part of the picture a bit darker. If the eyeshadows are blue in color, increase the blue color tone of the eyes. You can do so by intensifying the saturation level.
Be careful not to go overboard with saturation. Please note that adding too much clarity can distort that portion of the image. In such cases, you can lower it down, undo your acts, or balance it with the Exposure Slider.
Tip 10: Color the Mouth
Sometimes you may have to brighten the color of the teeth and lips. Just like the eyes, increase the clarity level. Adjust the Hue by moving the slider a bit upward.
Raza Ali Kazmi works as an editor and technology content writer at Sorcim Technologies (Pvt) Ltd. He loves to pen down articles on a wide array of technology related topics and has also been diligently testing software solutions on Windows & Mac platforms.