Shadow Recovery With Editors

Lightroom Brush AutoMask

Back to Lightroom. I split this edit off from the other LR cases because it is not a simple “filter” type adjustment. Using the Brush tool in the “Tool Strip” group you can create masks for modifying selected areas of the image. The AutoMask option makes defining the desired area a little easier and quicker. But that label is misleading, it is not fully automatic. You still need to drag the Brush cursor along the boundary of the area you want. In this case that area was the shadow region at the bottom of the picture. Once the mask was set, I could alter the exposure, contrast, and saturation to perk up that area. With this result –


The mask used can be seen below. The red color cast is simply a device for making the mask area visible, that red has nothing to do with the resulting image. It is possible to define multiple masks, which would allow for even more sophisticated tonal treatments. I kept this to the one mask for simplicity.
LR AutoMaskPost
It’s important to see that this masking effort makes this approach usable only for this one image. There is no way to automatically mask a series of different images. The other tonal treatments, for ACDSee and Topaz Adjust, in addition to Lightroom, can be saved as “presets”. When another image is loaded, you get to pick from these presets, a one-click photo edit!
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