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Video:Photoshop Tutorial: How to Use Shadow/Highlights Adjustment

with Chris Davis

Shadow and highlight adjustments in Photoshop can really enhance an image that may have originally been difficult to see. This video from About.com will teach you the basics for making shadow and highlight adjustments in Photoshop.See Transcript

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Transcript:Photoshop Tutorial: How to Use Shadow/Highlights Adjustment

Hi, I'm Chris Davis for About.com. Let's review how to use the shadow/highlights adjustment tool in Photoshop CS6.

When to Use the Shadow/Highlights Adjustment Tool

If you have a photograph that you would like to alter the dark and light areas slightly, then the shadows/highlights adjustments may be a good option to use. This process requires doing an image adjustment, which is a permanent change of pixels. So to protect your image, we will copy the background layer. Click and drag your background layer to the Create New Layer button. With the new layer active, go to your top menu. Select Image, Adjustments, Shadows/Highlights to open the adjustment options. 

Experiment With Shadows and Higlights in Photoshop

At first you will see a very simple interface allowing you to make adjustments to just shadows and highlights. Experiment a little. Adjusting the shadows to the right to will brighten them while adjusting the highlights to the right will dim them. However, if you click the Show More Options button, you will have a little more control.

You still will adjust the amount of shadows and highlights but we can also adjust the tonal range and radius. Increasing the tonal range will cause pixels that aren't dark to be considered dark and brighten them while decreasing the tonal range will do the opposite. Adjusting the radius changes the distance between the area being effected and not being effected. As you increase your radius, you will see an exaggerated highlight around your shadows.

Finish Enhancing Your Image

Continue adjusting the settings until you reach the look you are trying to achieve. After adjusting the shadows and highlights, you may need to tweak your color. The Color Correction and Midtones sliders will increase and decrease your saturation. Click OK when you are finished.

For additional tips, check out About.com Graphics Software site. To learn more, check us out on the web at About.com. Thanks for watching.

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