April 11, 2008
Here is a quick tutorial about one of the subtle new features in the Lightroom 2.0 Develop module.
A less obvious innovation in Lightroom 2.0 is the ability to apply a negative Clarity adjustment. But now that it is implemented, one can foresee quite a few creative possibilities. Negative Clarity does the opposite of a normal Clarity adjustment as it softens the midtones, and the way that it does this produces an effect that is not too dissimilar to a traditional darkroom diffusion printing technique. The net result is that you can create some quite beautiful diffuse soft focus image effects which are particularly suited to black and white photography. It’s a bit like being able to add a cloudy sky lighting effect. Here’s how it works…
Figure 1 This shows how the photograph I was about to work with looked before appling a negative Clarity adjustment. It’s a nice picture with lots of sharp detail, but also a good candidate for this ‘pseudo’ diffusion printing technique.
Figure 2 This screen shot shows the Basic panel settings, where I applied a -100% Clarity adjustment in the Presence section. You can see below how the negative Clarity adjustment creates the diffuse printing type effect that I described.
Figure 3 Here is the end result with the -100% Clarity adjustment.
You know, the processed image reminded me of something that I had seen previously and then it clicked, because Michael Light who edited the photographs printed in the fabulous “Full Moon” book, used a diffuse printing effect on quite a few of the photographs in this book.
Tip: Don’t forget you can also apply a Clarity as a localized adjustment with the new Retouch tool.
The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2.0 book
The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2.0 book, by Martin Evening and published by Adobe Press (Peachpit) will be available for purchase shortly after the official launch of Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2.0, from the usual book shops and on-line book stores.
The new book will be fully updated for all the new changes to the program since version 1.0 and contain 624 pages.
Price: $49.99 (US)