Posts in Category: Lessons in Lightroom

Black & White vs Color: Battle of the Lightroom

We may not have Light Sabres, but we have Lightroom. So here is my next b&w battle.

Cityscape on a Rainy Day

Seriously, PS stamp tool is way more useful than anything in LR!


Journey of an Image: From Camera to Exhibition #1

I’ve been journaling for a while on this blog, trying to teach and learn from friends, photographers, Youtube, etc… so I would like to share the journey of this image from my camera to exhibition.

We visited Keelung where my wife went off to explore on her own. I stopped to take a whole batch of long exposures of the bay. Since then, I’ve been editing one image from the series. We were in kind of a hurry, so with the long exposures, I wasn’t able to wait until the sun actually went down further.

Round 1: Lightroom Healing Tool – Hello!

Anyways, the 2nd image is after using the White Balance Tools that Kenny Paul taught me. I included a lot of work on the colors, cropping, and already over 20 spot removals. So this image is where I was able to learn and deploy this skillset.

After an informative and pleasant lunch with Patrice Delmotte last Monday, we went over some of the images for the exhibition. There he taught me how to use Photoshop to do some editing. He just made it look so easy with brushes, painting, dodging, etc. So…

I’ve continued working on the image up until I made a virtual copy in LR, and started Round 2 yesterday. However, I found that spotting/healing was just much easier in LR than in PS. I think I was able to do pretty much the same. The only trick I learned while doing it was to work on small areas first, if the spot/mark was larger. Then layer on as much as possible the healing marks to blend the background more.

Round 2: Lightroom Healing Tool – Tidying Up!

Right now, I’ve still to work on the bridge. Patrice removed the bridge entirely. I have yet to do so, because I will need to do it in PS. It’s too complicated and unreliable for such a large edit. I will try again in LR, but if the effect is too awkward… it’s PS! Anyway, here’s where it’s at right now.

Round 2; Done

Round 3: LR Healing Maxed Out! Hello, Photoshop!

After messing about with dozens of those healing marks in LR, I decided my PC just can’t handle the work. At only 8GB with an 8GB ReadyBoost card, it is maxed out even when trying only a one catalog file! The other aspect that I noted: I lost a bunch of healing marks on the top left that I did in LR. For some reason they just disappeared, LR started showing the original image in its place. I saved the XMP file, but I still don’t know what happened.

So rather than use LR, I exported the file as a TIFF file at max settings. It resulted in a file of 57MB! I opened RawTherapee and realized I couldn’t understand the interface at all! Swiftly closed. I opened PS. I’m glad I switched over. Why? PS vs LR doesn’t pick up as many fuzzy spots (does anyone know why?). After yesterday’s session, I discovered the healing tool, the stamping tools… and I really should investigate the layers tools.

I managed to remove some of the ugly structures and/or blend them into the darker backgrounds. If you look you’ll see that the stamping is a little clumsy, so I have to tidy that area up a lot. Can you spot the other differences?

Round 4: Finally Stamped My Way Around Keelung

Round 4: Redesign Keelung’s Skyline

Round 5: Brushing It Up

I finally made use of the brush tools but learned how to temper the settings so I’m not spraying a full load of color over the areas. I hope this edit isn’t too unsubtle. I played with the brush type, the load, hardness, and flow to get it right. Discovered that flow is probably the most important of the effects I needed. Flow…! I also painted a little white in the same fashion, and then had to edit the exposure in LR, since I have NO IDEA how to do that in PS.

EditmyRAW #3: Beach Shoes by NajuSan

I thought I’d try another RAW edit from Reddit/EditmyRAW. This time it’s a shot of a pair of shoes on the beach. Actually, it’s not a bad image at all. I like the arrangement, so I edited lightly.

The Original Image

The Beach Shoes Image was taken by a Redditor called NajuSan. Shot on Canon EOS10 with a Tamron 18-200mm F3~5.6 Diii VC B018 Lens. Settings are: f22 @ 1/125 at 18mm on ISO200. Uncropped the raw file came in under 10MB! So there’s plenty of data to play with, and tighter cropping should still result in a fairly decent image.

I’ve edited the image gently, straightened the horizon. The biggest change is probably the addition of a warm filter, since I like later afternoon warm light. The image was actually shot in the morning.

The Edited Image

So here’s the edited image. You can check out the other images in the discussion. One weirdness occurred when I applied the preset: the tools on the right changed.

So I’ve had a little fun playing with those to see what happens: What is ‘recovery’? I have to go research that! Well, left image is recovered 100, right is unrecovered with slightly pushed blacks to restore the blacks of the original image.

Revisited #6: Tamsui Sunset from 2007

The next in the revisited series. This one is from much further back and was actually posted on my old blog way back in 2007. I posted this shot. The crop edges were a thing then, I do apologize!


“I thought I’d just include this picture of the Tamsui river. I love the rolling clouds counterpointed against the brighter sky. And I didn’t photoshop this picture at all.”

I enjoy revisiting old images to see what I can make of them with my new insights. This one turned out to be more interesting because I was able to play with the Paintbrush tool and add a little orange to the sky to reflect the late time of day.

The first and most obvious change from the image was the straightening. I can’t think why I didn’t see that before. Then, of course, I cropped the image to hide more of the shoreline. I’m still debating whether to crop more on the left.

I also adjusted the clipping, added a filter then made some minor adjustments before adding brushing all over and updating the toning hue and continuing to brush with a dab of orange. While it probably wasn’t as orange as the sky was, we often see orange sunsets later in the day that can be quite dramatic. It’s not unrealistic.

Gallery: Original, Lightroom, 2018 Edition

1/160 sec @ f2.8 on ISO100 shot on a Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX30 in 2007. 1st Export at 250Kb showed a softer focus, some bleeding and some pixelation. The image was sensibly exposed but saved in JPG format, so some data has been lost. I present the full edit here. Enjoy!