How do I open up part of a photo that underexposed?

Engaged ,
Mar 22, 2022 Mar 22, 2022

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How can I open up areas of a photo that are underexposed? For example, the interior of the bottom shoe and the side of the diagonal shoe? I don't need or expect dramatic transformations, but I would like to tweak them a bit.

 

Screen Shot 2022-03-22 at 7.39.06 AM.png

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LEGEND ,
Mar 22, 2022 Mar 22, 2022

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What software are you going to use?

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Engaged ,
Mar 22, 2022 Mar 22, 2022

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Lightroom Classic CC on a Mac.

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LEGEND ,
Mar 22, 2022 Mar 22, 2022

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You can try the new masking tools in Lightroom Classic 11.2. But those seem like a hard thing to select other than by very detailed brushing.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 22, 2022 Mar 22, 2022

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A quick Luminance Mask will isolate the dark areas. You can then adjust Exposure or Shadows for the masked area, as shown in the demo below.

 

Lightroom Classic mask luminance shadows 2x.gif

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 22, 2022 Mar 22, 2022

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I'd literally just increase Shadows on this. Alternatively use Tone Curve Shadows, or create a point curve that pushes up about 1/4 in, and then flatten out the top again. Another option is to use the Luminance HSL targeted adjustment tool and click and drag a point up. @Conrad C 's method is for more precise ranges if you need it that precise. 

Sean McCormack. Author. Magazine Writer. Official Fuji X-Photographer.

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Guide ,
Mar 23, 2022 Mar 23, 2022

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Just add a local correction using a brush and increase the values using any of the sliders.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 23, 2022 Mar 23, 2022

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In retrospect I like Sean’s answer. Start with the Shadows slider, because that is a quick adjustment that should restrict itself to the darker parts. If that takes care of it, you are done.

 

If Shadows affects lighter areas and you don’t want it to, that’s when you might try a luminance mask like the one I showed. That is a more manual way to restrict the adjustment to darker tones as defined by you.

 

It should not be necessary to take the time to paint a mask with a brush; the reason to do that would be if the luminance mask is still not precise enough (if it lightens areas you don’t want to be lightened).

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