Thursday, February 4, 2010

Photo Thursdays- Basic Lighting

(Photo Thursdays is designed to help average people learn how to make their photos better. All the tutorials are done using Picasa which is a free program from Google. Go here to download it and join in the fun. If you want to read the rest of my tutorials and get caught up, go here.)

Today's post is more about basic fixes. The first is straightening. Do you have picture that you feel is crooked? Here is how to fix it. (this picture was taken this way on purpose)

Select the straighten tool in the basic fixes pallet. A grid will pop up over your picture. Use the slider at the bottom to move the picture into a straight position by toggling it left or right.
The color isn't right in your photo? Select the Auto color button in the basic fixes pallet. Be aware, it doesn't always work. The auto color button turned the photo below blue. If auto color doesn't work use the next few steps to fix the color on your own. Make sure you hit the undo button for the auto color.
On the basic fixes pallet there is also a fill light slider. If you slide the toggle to the right it will add more fill light, to the left takes some away. If you photo is too dark add more light, if it is too bright try taking some away.
If you want to play with more than just the fill light (which is the mid tones in a picture.) You can play with the shadows and highlights. Go to the tuning pallet. It will give you a bunch of sliders to play with. You can add alot more shadows as I did in the photo below. Or you can take some shadow away.
You can also do the same for highlights. They photo below shows the highlights blown out.
Another way to get the color just right is to pick the neutral color selector. I have circled it in the photo below. It will give you a little eye dropper. Use that eye dropper to click on a white or grey part of the picture (preferably white) and it will adjust the color to what the white should be.
Leave a comment with any questions or request for future photo Thursdays and I will make sure to answer them!
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