Photoshop Dodge and Burn Technique

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This topic contains 19 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  josephcoleman 4 years, 1 month ago.

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  • #184978

    John Thompson
    Moderator

    Hello Stalkers I thought I would pass along some methods that I use in PS in hopes that it might help others. What I will show here is how to do a dodge or burn using layers and blend modes. First lets try a burn:

    Highlight the background layer and press Ctrl-j. This will duplicate your background layer. Highlight the duplicate layer and double click on the “Layer 1” name for the layer and change the name to Darken or Burn. Change the mode to multiply. Next you can add a layer mask by going to Layer->Layer Mask->Hide All. Your image should look like it did when we started. We have made the top layer to 0 opacity so that it is not showing. Now select a brush. Set the flow to approx 50%. The amount of opacity that we give the brush will determine the amount of the “Multiply” layer we will see. When you start try a small area and do not lift your brush until you are done. If it is too dark lower the opacity. If it is too light increase the opacity. You can Ctrl-z to erase the small test spot you just did. Now just paint the areas you wish to darkened. You can change the amount of darkness by changing the opacity as you move along.

    Now for Dodge: Do the same as above only use blend mode Screen and carry on.

    This probably should have been in the General Photo Chit Chat but I wanted to put it here. This technique really work nice on landscapes. There are many other ways to do this very thing and I will pass them along periodically.

    If you have any questions please post to this thread and I will address them.

  • #184985

    Superb.

  • #185086

    Thanks @nikon-nut. Never really had much success, but I’ll be giving this a go this weekend.

  • #185109

    John Thompson
    Moderator

    Hi David @dchester1001 if you have any problems PM me I will gladly help. Good luck!

  • #185169

    Lail Robinson
    Participant

    @nikon-nut Thanks! As one that is new to lightroom and photography I greatly appreciate you and all the other more experienced Photographers sharing your expertise. Again, thanks!

  • #185174

    Tersha
    Keymaster

    That’s great, @nikon-nut, I’ve never tried this, I’ll give it a go!
    Just a thought …. have you thought of a before and after image? 🙂

  • #185178

    John Thompson
    Moderator

    Hi @robinsonls57 you are very welcome my friend. I will post more methods that I have learned or come up with over the next few weeks.

    Hi Diane @tersha that is probably a good idea. You are actually going to get me to work here! LOL. Let me see what I can come up with.

  • #185323

    Claudia
    Participant

    @nikon-nut, thanks for these tips, will try it out – do you prefer this technique compared to creating a ND layer and darkening/lighting with black/white brush (either adding stokes at <100% or reducing opacity) where needed? I have not yet tried to see the difference, but will sure get onto it. I am self taught (well, online course/book taught) and sometimes don’t know where advantages to one method over another are.

  • #185340

    John Thompson
    Moderator

    Actually Claudia @claudia.betia as you may know there are more than several ways to do any think in PS. To answer your question no I do to prefer it over another procedure. It really depends on the photo. and that is subjective but I use many similar procedures to get to my goal of a good print, sharp and with good color. I plan over the next few weeks to show similar procedures that can do this and other things well. Feel free to send a message to me if you have a question on PS.

  • #187274

    Sylvain
    Participant

    Thanks @nikon-nut. I use a similar technique but still I didn’t know about using the blend mode – multiply and screen. I used the normal mode and only used one layer for both light and shadow instead of two. I’ll try these modes next time and see if there is a difference. Thanks again.

  • #195396

    quasiphoto
    Participant

    To start with, highlighting the background layer already supersedes my ability to comprehend. I fear I will need a bit more than a general guideline. I am now sure I am going to have to purchase the photoshop for idiots handbook.

  • #195400

    John Thompson
    Moderator

    Well @quasiphoto if you look at the layers listing on the right side of the PS screen the first layer is the background layer. Just place your mouse over that layer and click. It will not be highlighted. As I have offered the others here if you would like to PM me I will help further. You should probably try to find a small starter book or look for videos to help explain the very simple items in PS.

  • #195404

    @quasiphoto – Adobe have some good gettings tarted resources on their web site, including a 6 minute video that deals specifically with layers. You can check it out here:https://helpx.adobe.com/au/photoshop.html

    • #195416

      quasiphoto
      Participant

      Thank you very much, as I gain in knowledge, the world prospers by my lack of inadequacies.

  • #195406

    John Thompson
    Moderator

    Thanks David. I was going to look that up and provide it but I got sidetracked! LOL. Thank you my friend.

  • #195424

    Tobie
    Moderator

    We need an ‘Instruction’ forum where these type of mails can be found for later use. In any other forum it’s going to disapppear after some time as it moves down the ‘latest post’ list. No-one is going to look for it under ‘Landscapes’, that’s for sure.

    I usually use luminosity masks for the same purpose but some guys are going to find this very useful, well done @nikon-nut.

    @admin @tersha @dchester1001

    • #195679

      quasiphoto
      Participant

      I agree with you on that instruction thing having a place of it’s own. I do know that there are instructional references posted from time to time that are rather hard to find, and this suggestion would make it a bit easier to dig up. Plus if they are all in the same place, they can perhaps lead to each other. This was an informative post, and really deserves more than a burial into oblivion.

      Frank

  • #195651

    John Thompson
    Moderator

    Just for further thoughts: You can accomplish the same type of dodge and burn buy using a curves adjustment layer pulling it up or down as you want to lighten or darken and adding the layer mask and inverting it as before and paint as described above. I use this same concept to blend different copies of the same images as well only changing color or texture or sharpness. It is a way to do an adjustment on a specific area. That is easy to do.

    • #195680

      quasiphoto
      Participant

      That is good to know also, as I have seen and tried that particular function out a bit. Heck you guys keep posting stuff like this, not only will I have a good read, but I might actually learn something. Well done!

      Cheers,
      Frank

  • #202498

    josephcoleman
    Participant

    Thanks for sharing.

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