The first day I downloaded and opened Lightroom I swore I would NEVER open it again. I was SO confused and really had NO idea where in the world to even begin. I watched a TON of videos for Lightroom tutorials and read as much as I could to figure this program out. And when I got stuck, I googled it and kept on learning. I by NO MEANS consider myself even a teeny bit of an expert when it comes to Lightroom. Everything I've learned is through a process of trial and error and I'm still learning. I've tinkered and tweaked the sliders enough to "kinda" know what they can do for my photos. I say "kinda" because it is literally a trial and error a lot of the times. There are certain tools I use on almost every photo! My go-to Lightroom tools are:
- Lens correction - I apply this on every single photo to remove vignetting and distortion.
- Radial filters - Radial filters are amazing because you can apply them to just one aspect of your image. I love to use radial filters to lift shadows, correct exposure on a certain area and/or decrease highlights.
- HSL panel - I spend most of my editing time in the HSL panel. I've found this panel to be most helpful when it comes to correcting skin tones and the coloring of images.
- Sharpening/noise reduction - I use these tools to make the image pop a little more (sharpening), while also smoothing the skin (noise reduction).
- Brushes - Like radial filters, local brushes are great at apply one editing tool to a certain aspect of your photo. My go-to brushes are: iris enhancing + teeth whitening.
I'm very much a visual learner and I always do better by "seeing" than reading, so I thought I would do a quick editing video to show you how I use my favorite Lightroom tools, as well as to share with you some of my Lightroom tips and tricks. Here's a before + after of the photo I will be editing in Lightroom. Enjoy!
Lightroom is an amazing editing program and I know I barely even skimmed the surface of the wonderful editing tools available. It amy seem overwhelming and daunting when you first open an image and start editing, but I promise it gets easier the more you play around and practice. As I mentioned, most of my "processes" have been developed just from trial + error and I'm sure I will continue to modify, change and grow as I continue learning more about this program!
What about you? Do you use Lightroom to edit? What are you favorite tricks?
looking for more inspiration?