How I Got The Shot

How I Got The Shot

Disclaimer: This contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). I only recommend tools and resources I use and love!

Ever wish you could get a peek behind the lens of another photographer and watch them work?

That’s how I feel when I see a photo I admire.

In my “How I Got The Shot” series I provide a look into my thought process behind a particular image and share helpful tips for shooting and editing.

Shot with Canon 5D III and 35 mm 1.4 lens. Camera Settings: ISO 1250, f/3.5, SS 1/640

It was late afternoon when my husband came home and my daughter ran up to get a hug.

*heart melts*

The overhead lights were off and I noticed how my husband and daughter were standing in a pocket of light shining in from the window.

I knew if I exposed for the light shining in the rest of the scene would be thrown into shadow.

I ran for my camera!

Here’s the SOOC (straight out of camera) photo: 

Editing Tips

I converted the photo to black and white in Lightroom, lowered the overall shadows and raised the Luminance slider in the Detail panel to reduce the noise in the image.

I used a graduated filter on the lefthand side of the image to lower the shadows a bit more.

I used a radial filter on the subjects to raise the exposure slightly.

I created another graduated filter on the righthand side of the image and brought the shadows and exposure down.  This helped to hide some of the distracting items on the counter, but it also removed the pretty light from the window.

So I used the erase tool to erase the adjustments off the window: 

Finally, I used an adjustment brush to raise the exposure a bit on the light coming in from the window:

and the finished product:

If you’re a visual learner, you can watch me edit some of my favorite images HERE.

How I Got The Shot

How I Got The Shot

Disclaimer: This contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). I only recommend tools and resources I use and love!Ever wish you could get a peek behind the lens of another...

How I Got The Shot

How I Got The Shot

Disclaimer: This contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). I only recommend tools and resources I use and love!Ever wish you could get a peek behind the lens of another...

How I Got The Shot

How I Got The Shot

Disclaimer: This contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). I only recommend tools and resources I use and love!Ever wish you could get a peek behind the lens of another...

How I Got The Shot

How I Got The Shot

Disclaimer: This contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). I only recommend tools and resources I use and love!Ever wish you could get a peek behind the lens of another...

How I Got The Shot

How I Got The Shot

Disclaimer: This contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). I only recommend tools and resources I use and love!

Ever wish you could get a peek behind the lens of another photographer and watch them work?

That’s how I feel when I see a photo I admire.

In my “How I Got The Shot” series I provide a look into my thought process behind a particular image and share helpful tips for shooting and editing.

Shot with Canon 5D III and 35 mm 1.4 lens. Camera Settings: ISO 200, f/16, SS 1/320

I took this photo on the beach.  When I saw the log I knew I’d want to get some silhouette shots there at sunset.

I used a narrow aperture of f/16 in order to capture a starburst effect.

I got down low but made sure just a bit of the sun was peeking above the log.

I exposed for the sky so my subject would be thrown into shadow.

Here’s the SOOC (straight out of camera) photo: 

Here’s how I decided to crop the photo:

Editing Tips

The edit on this photo was simple, done 100% in Lightroom.

I lowered the shadows to enhance the silhouette, raised the highlights and exposure to enhance the sunlight and raised the temperature just a bit.

I used a graduated filter on the sky to add some clarity.  This made the clouds stand out better against the sky.

Finally, I increased the vibrance just a bit, and that was it!

Small adjustment can make a BIG difference!

Check out my Easy to Understand Photography Cheat Sheet for Beginners:

How I Got The Shot

How I Got The Shot

Disclaimer: This contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). I only recommend tools and resources I use and love!

Ever wish you could get a peek behind the lens of another photographer and watch them work?

That’s how I feel when I see a photo I admire.

In my “How I Got The Shot” series I provide a look into my thought process behind a particular image and share helpful tips for shooting and editing.

Shot with Canon 5D III and 35 mm 1.4 lens. Camera Settings: ISO 1600, f/3.2, SS 1/500

9 times out of 10 it’s the light that motivates me to grab my DSLR to capture a moment.  Well, the light plus someone I love.

I saw the light from the window behind my daughter, but I also saw the shadows to the right of her and thought I’d be able to use the shadows and the reflection on the floor to frame her and lead the eye toward her. 

I set my exposure on my daughter but slightly underexposed the photo on purpose because I knew the highlights from the window were going to be very bright.  I also hoped underexposing would give me darker shadow areas. 

I got down low in order to capture the floor and the reflection as part of the shot.  This helps draw the eye toward her. 

Here’s the SOOC (straight out of camera) photo: 

I shot it a wee bit crooked so I straightened it with a crop.  I cropped out the chair on the left in order to remove distractions and bring the focus in on the subject.  I also placed the subject along the rule of thirds line.

Editing Tips

The overall temperature of the image was too warm, so I lowered the temperature slider.

One factor when I’m shooting in this room of my home is the color of the walls.  When I repaint I’m going to tone down the yellow!

Color casts from walls are a common challenge, but there are ways to counteract that problem in Lightroom.  My first step in dealing with that was to lower the overall temperature.

I also lowered the highlights slider because I felt the brightness of the light coming in from the window was distracting.

Because I shot the image at ISO 1600 I had some noise in the shadow areas and on my subject so I raised the Luminance slider under the Detail panel to 15.

As you can see in the SOOC image, the shadow areas weren’t anywhere near as dark as I wanted them to be (and there was a roll of fabric leaning against the door!), so I used th graduated filter in Lightroom to bring the shadows and the exposure down in those darker areas of the image.

I then took the image into Photoshop to make a few final adjustments:

I used a Color Balance adjustment layer to pull more yellow out of the image.  I brushed that layer onto the white areas of the walls to make the whites look more white.

I also used the Color Balance adjustment layer to cool my subject (she was a little yellow, too).

Back in Lightroom, I used a radial filter to raise the exposure and contrast on my subject just a bit.  And I was done!

The vision in my mind’s eye was brought to life through the power of Lightroom and a little Photoshop!

If you’re a visual learner, you can watch me edit some of my favorite images HERE.

How I Got The Shot

How I Got The Shot

Disclaimer: This contains affiliate links and any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). I only recommend tools and resources I use and love!

Ever wish you could get a peek behind the lens of another photographer and watch them work?

That’s how I feel when I see a photo I admire.

In my “How I Got The Shot” series I provide a look into my thought process behind a particular image and share helpful tips for shooting and editing.

Shot with Canon 5D III and 35 mm 1.4 lens. Camera Settings: ISO 125, f/3.2, SS 1/250

I took this photo at a local frozen yogurt shop.  We were there close to sunset and my daughter was standing in direct light from the sun while serving herself some froyo.

I love to shoot with my subject in a pocket of light because when I expose for the subject the rest of the scene falls off into shadow.  That was the effect created here with her standing in the strong sunset light.

I used a bright area of my daughter’s skin to set my exposure then toggled my focal point to compose the photo.

Here’s the SOOC (straight out of camera) photo: 

I shot the image with a Cloudy White Balance Setting.  This probably wasn’t the best choice because it rendered the image too warm.

I didn’t have enough time to change my white balance!  Thankfully I shoot my photos in RAW so it’s easy to adjust the white balance in Lightroom.

A cooler white balance setting may have been a better choice to cool the warmth of the light.

If time allows I prefer to set a custom white balance before shooting. 

Editing Tips

I altered the crop to place my subject along the rule of thirds line.  Also, I was bothered by the trash can in the foreground and wanted to eliminate as much of it as possible.

In Lightroom I adjusted the photo’s temperature by sliding the temperature slider toward blue.  This neutralized the warmth of the sunlight.

A few other adjustments I made:

I lowered the shadows globally to enhance them.

I lowered the overall highlights because they were too bright in the light areas of the photo.

I used graduated filters to lower the exposure on the shadowy areas on the left and the right lower corner to enhance the shadows and minimize the trashcan.

I used a radial filter on my daughter to raise exposure and bring her out of the shadows a bit. 

I like the overall result, but if I could take this photo again, I would have stepped a bit farther to the left so as to avoid the trashcan in the image. 

A step to the left would have also put the yogurt machine in the foreground and led the eye toward the subject.

I only had moments to set up the shot before my daughter moved on, but maybe we’ll go back for some froyo soon and give it another shot!

Check out my Easy to Understand Photography Cheat Sheet for Beginners:

How to Avoid Yellow Grass in Your Photos

How to Avoid Yellow Grass in Your Photos

Inside: Do the greens in your photos sometimes look more yellow than green? Lightroom has a simple fix! Watch this video tutorial to learn how to edit greens in Lightroom.

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.  Any purchases made through such links will result in a small commission for me (at no extra cost for you). I recommend tools and resources I use and love!

How To Edit Greens in Lightroom

Ah, spring, such a lovely time of year!  Everything’s in bloom and the world is awash in…yellow?  Often, through the camera lens, fresh green grass and new foliage can look more yellow than green.

If you prefer a warm look in your images this can be a big problem.  Yellow grass <<cringe>>.

True story, I dislike the yellow grass look so much I’ve been eyeing darker grass varieties for our yard.  But as a new photographer I didn’t notice yellow grass in my images.  It wasn’t on my radar.

Now it’s hard for me to miss, and an adjustment to the grass and foliage in my images is an important step in my editing workflow.

Before Grass Adjustment:

yellow oversaturated grass

After Grass Adjustment:

Photo of girl in field with grass color adjusted in Lightroom's HSL/Color panel

White Balance and Grass

I often set a custom white balance in camera.  White Balance, if you’re unfamiliar with the term, refers to an image’s temperature (how blue or yellow) and tint (how green or magenta).

A good white balance setting will balance temperature and tint so the whites in the image are white (not yellow or blue) and the color of the image reflects the real colors in the scene.

My favorite way to set a custom white balance is with my Expo Disc.  It does a beautiful job, but an accurate white balance setting is often warmer than the camera’s auto white balance setting would render it, and a warmer white balance often renders those greens more yellow than green.

Lightroom offers an easy way to deal with this problem.  This tutorial explains how to edit greens in Lightroom in the HSL/Color Panel.

To read more posts on photography basics, check out my photography resource page HERE.

How to Edit Greens In Lightroom – Step 1

Scroll down on the righthand side of your Lightroom Panel inside the Develop Module and open the HSL/Color panel:

Screen shot of Lightroom HSL/Color Panel

Be Sure to Pin this for Later

How to Mute Greens In Lightroom

How to Edit Greens In Lightroom – Step 2

Click on the yellow square and slide the yellow saturation slider to the left.  This will, as the name suggests, desaturate the yellows in your image. If there’s yellow in the grass you will see the color of your grass shift away from yellow.

Note this is a global adjustment – ALL yellow colors in your original image will be impacted.  In images with lots of yellow throughout the image you’ll need to be careful with this overall adjustment so as not to lose other elements where you may want to keep the yellow.

In this image yellow tones are confined to the grass (note: the yellow sun flare was added and wasn’t part of the original image, so the global adjustment didn’t affect it).

See my suggestions at the end of the post for selective reduction of yellows in your grass if a global adjustment causes problems for other parts of your image.

screen shot of Lightroom HSL/Color Panel with Yellow Saturation Adjustment

No Magic Number

In this image, I adjusted the yellow saturation slider to -37.  This isn’t a magic number. How you render grass in your images is a matter of preference, not right or wrong. 

But consistency matters

Some photographers prefer more yellow in their grass, some much less.  A popular editing style renders grass blue and desaturated. 

Don’t stress over it!  Exercise your artistic choice and preference. Play with the sliders until you like it and try to apply similar adjustments to all your images.

How to Edit Greens in Lightroom – Step 3

Scroll down to the green panel and slide your green saturation and luminance sliders to the left.  Again, no magic numbers, just work with it until the grass looks less yellow and more natural.

A Selective Edit

If an adjustment to your yellow or green saturation and luminance dulls other important colors in your image, like a yellow shirt or yellow flowers, try the adjustment brush.

Click on the adjustment brush and bring down your temperature, exposure and saturation sliders.  Then paint it on the grass with the adjustment brush. This will be more tedious but will help remove the yellow saturation from your grass and won’t affect other important colors in the image.

Video Tutorial

For visual learners, watch this video tutorial on how to edit greens in Lightroom with the HSL/Color panel.

Pretty simple!  Keep green adjustments on your radar and be sure to add this step to your future editing workflow.

Want to see the full edit from START to FINISH?

Click HERE to watch the full edit!

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