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Video:Adobe Photoshop Brightening

with Isaac Brody

Are some of your most precious memories stored on pictures that look too dark? This video demonstrates how to brighten digital pictures and photos using Adobe Photoshop.See Transcript

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Transcript:Adobe Photoshop Brightening

Hi, I'm Isaac Brody for About.com computing.

Today I'll teach you how to brighten your photos in Photoshop.

Choose Picture for Photoshop Brightening

First, open up Photoshop. Click on "File," select "Open," and select your picture to open. There are many ways to brighten photos. I'll show you a quick and simple way, and the method I use to brighten the exposure of photos.

New Layer for Photoshop Brightening

For the first method we'll create a brightness/contrast adjustment layer. Click the "Create a New Fill or Adjustment Layer" button and select "Brightness/Contrast."

Photoshop Brightening with Brightness and Contrast

Let's set brightness to -5, and contrast to about +27. Click "OK." That looks decent. For quick brightening this works. Unclick the layer eye icon on the brightness/contrast layer in the layer palate.

Photoshop Brightening with Curves

The second method involves a little extra work but involves a lot more control. Click the "Create a New Fill or Adjustment Layer" button and select curves.

Curves allow you greater control to adjust the tonal range of an image. To the bottom left of the graph is a gray-scale going from black to white. You see the diagonal line on the graph? The line represents the tonal values of an image. An easy way to understand tonal values is to look at a picture in three levels of light and dark. You have your shadows which are the darkest parts of the picture, your midtones are typically the skin of your subject, and your highlights are the whites or brightest parts of your picture.

Click in the middle of the diagonal to create an anchor point. Dragging the middle point up a little raises the midtone range. Let's move the midpoint down a little. Create an anchor point halfway between the middle anchor point and bottom of the graph. Create another anchor point halfway between the middle anchor point and the top of the graph. Let's drag the bottom anchor point down a little. See how it darkens the shadow tones a little? Now let s lift the top anchor point a little. See how the highlight tonal range was brightened? Click "OK."

Using curves is a little intimidating, but experimenting yields much more control and flexibility than simply using brightness contrast controls.

Thanks for watching. For more information, please visit us online at Computing.About.com


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