Thursday, December 9, 2021

Reviewing New 2021 Updates in Lightroom


Tractor Edited with Vintage Preset

In October of 2021 Adobe Creative Cloud introduced a series of updates to their photo editing programs.  My favorite program in the Creative Cloud is Lightroom Classic and I am very excited about all of the updates that were included in the latest version.

Presets

One of the updates in Lightroom Classic is a number of new presets that are available to the user.  Presets are a series of editing features that are put together to give a certain look or feel to a photograph.  With these presets the photographer can give a slight change to the photograph in just one click.  Some of the presets included in the new update were ones for portraits, landscapes, vintage looks, retro looks, black and white and many more.  In the photo at the top of this page I took a photo of an old tractor and used one of the vintage presets on it. In deciding which preset to use I merely ran my mouse over each choice and a preview of the photo with that preset was displayed.  I then chose the one that I felt best fit the mood I was looking to create.

Masking

The biggest and I believe the best new feature is the Masking feature.  In this feature all of the local adjustment tabs were merged into a single masking icon.   The existing adjustment tools were all moved to this icon and in addition two new options were added.  These are the options I am really excited about and feel I will use often.  They are Select Sky and Select Subject.  These options use artificial intelligence to select the sky, people, animals and other object in the photo.  You then have the ability to easily adjust just the selected objects.  Let me show you with a few examples.

Select Subject

Often, I have a great photo of a subject, but the background is too cluttered.  In this photo my husband is seated in front of a busy looking bookshelf.  I was able to use the Select Subject and with just a couple of clicks I selected his photo and then was able to pull the exposure all the way down on the background to turn in black.

I will give you another example.  In this photo you see a bird but it is really not standing out in the photo.  Here is the original.

Here is the same photo with the bird really standing out.

Here are the editing steps I took to create this look.  First of all I cropped the photo to pull the bird in close.  Next I used the mask feature and did a Select Subject to isolate the bird.  After that I inverted the mask to have the background selected and I played with the various sliders to get the background I wanted.  In this case I used the exposure, temp, tint, clarity and dehaze sliders.  All of this took just a couple of minutes and I believe I went from a mediocre photo to one I really like.

Select Sky

I have often gotten a great photo of a subject but was very disappointed with the sky.  I knew I could fix the sky, but this was often very time consuming.  With the new Select Sky feature I can now change the sky in seconds.  Here is an example of one photo I took on a day when it was very cloudy but the direction the photo was taken from made the sky appear very plain.  First the original photo.

I took this photo and went into the Masking feature and did a Select Sky.  I then used the dehaze and texture sliders to give more depth to the sky.  Here is the resulting photo, which I like much better.

Here is the software I use for editing.  I love how easy it is to use and of course the results.
 




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6 comments:

  1. This sounds like a program that all photographers should have to help them persue their goals of creating that one most beautiful, perfect picture. I was surprised by how inexpensive it is. Thank you for pointing me in this direction, maybe, just maybe there will come a great shot or two out of me yet!

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  2. I really like the idea of being able to adjust the background. I have no really good place to take pictures of my crochet work without a lot of background clutter. Perhaps Lightroom Photo Editing is the solution. Thanks for your detailed review of this 'photographer's aid', Mary Beth.

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  3. You have such a fabulous eye for photography, Mary Beth! Not only do you capture beautiful photos, but you do a wonderful job of working in Photoshop to tweak an image to get the exact results you desire. That masking feature truly seems awesome. While I am sure it takes some trial & error experimenting to become proficient with the software, your examples of final results certainly are enough to make anyone want to subscribe to Photoshop immediately. (just in time to make an awesome Christmas gift too!)

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  4. Although I used Photoshop (basic functions) years ago, I have never used Lightroom. I love the degree of control you are able to achieve while playing with the extensive controls. The presets look really great, and it seems the AI-enhanced functions have come a long way in terms of accuracy. These tools are clearly a perfect complement to your exceptional photography skills!

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  5. I've been looking at lightroom for awhile... your review convinces me it is past time! Love the sky and masking features.

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  6. This sounds a really wonderful program for photographers and anyone interested in enhancing their own photos too. I love all these features especially being able to change the background.I think this would make an amazing gift for anyone interested in photography.I also just have to say your photos are simply gorgeous!

    ReplyDelete

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