Fixing Animal Eyes in Lightroom

I’m Helen Bradley, welcome to this
video tutorial on fixing animal eyes in Lightroom. The adjustment brush in Lightroom gives us the
ability to do spot fixes on our images, and sometimes it’s just easier to do it
in Lightroom than it is to take an image to Photoshop. I like this particular composition a
lot but I think that the bird’s eyes are lost in the composition, and I’d like to see them a bit lighter. I’m going to use the adjustment brush to
do this. This is the adjustment brush up here, so
I’m going to click it to select it. But it would be easier to work on if I
was a bit closer to the birds so I’m just going to zoom in using the Z
key. And then I can hold the spacebar just to
position the image in position so that I can work with it better. When I have the adjustment brush selected
the first thing I’m going to do is to click to fix its point. This will make a marker on the image that
I can use to select the adjustment brush later on. This is the marker that you get. The idea now is to paint over
the image to indicate the area that you want to fix. Of course, we’re not seeing much happening
here and that is because I can’t see what I’m painting. If you press the O key, that’s the
letter O, not the zero then you can see this overlay and that will help you see what you’re
painting. Having seen that I got pretty much
the entire eye selected, I’m going to press O again to hide this. And let’s go and have a look at the
adjustment brush settings. In Lightroom 2 there are two ways that you can see
the adjustment brush. One is to see these buttons and the
amount slider. The second one is to actually use
sliders. And we’re going to use both but we’re
going to start with the sliders. And what I want to do is to kick up this
area of the bird, so I’m going to add some exposure. I think I want to see a bit more contrast.
I certainly want to see some more saturation. I’ll throw some clarity at it but probably not brightness. To see the effect on the entire image
I’m going to zoom out because it’s a bit hard for me to see this in context. So this is the fix I’ve got so far, and I
would call that probably just a little bit too much of a fix. So let’s click this indicator here so
that we can go to our amount slider because the amount slider allows me to
adjust that entire effect. Now whenever you’re using an amount
slider like this it’s best not to walk it from say 100 downloads. It’s best
to take it from 1 up. The reason is that it’s easier to see the
effect on the image when you start applying it rather than removing it. So let’s just walk this up until we
have an eye that we’re pleased with. I’m thinking that’s a pretty good
setting. Let’s check before and after. This is before, this is after. The effect is visible but it’s not over
the top. So having fixed one eye, let’s go and have a
look at this eye, and we’re going to do exactly the same thing. I’m going to zoom into the image, use the spacebar to move the second eye into a
position where I can see it clearly. I’m going to make sure that I have New
selected and click here to create a new point of fixing, and again I’m going to paint over this
area. I’ll press the O key so that I can
see what I’m looking at and then press the O key again to
turn that off. Now the brush that I’m using is this brush A and it has a size and a feather. And you can adjust the brush settings by
adjusting the size and feather here. You can also set auto-mask on and
what will happen is that Lightroom will try and pick edges in the image. In
this case I didn’t use it because I really want it to feather this effect out around the eye.
But in some instances auto-mask will do a lot of the work for you of picking out the edges. Now that we have this eye selected,
again O, let’s just see what we have selected, turn it off, let’s go back into our sliders and
let’s fix it. I want some contrast and saturation and I want a bit of clarity. And having fixed it lets zoom back out
again so that we can see the fix in context. And as we can see it’s too much
of a fix. Let’s click here to go back to our
effect buttons. It’s not really the buttons we want. It’s this amount slider. If you’re using Lightroom 3 & 4 the amount
slider is now in with the other siders, so it’s a little bit easier to find and use. In Lightroom 2 this is where you find it. Let’s wind it back down to 1 so we’re
effectively removing the effect entirely, and now let’s start walking it back
up until we get the amount of effect that we want. I’m thinking that that’s probably
sufficient. Now that I’m done with the adjustment
brush I’m just going to click Close. And let’s have a look at the image before and after. And what we’ve done is applied a simple
fix to this image using the adjustment brush in Lightroom and it’s saved us a trip to
Photoshop. I’m Helen Bradley, thank you for joining
me for this video tutorial. If you’re looking for more of my work
you can find my website at I blog on post-production at I produce Photoshop and Lightroom video
training for designers at And some of my tutorials are featured on
Adobe’s own support site for Photoshop Lightroom.


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