Tag: Dodging and burning

Dodging and burning is an old black and white technique for darkening or lightening different areas of a print while it’s being developed. For many photographers this was and is an essential part of the black and white process Capturing the image in the camera is the mechanical stage of the operation, and manipulation in the darkroom is the creative stage.

That’s the point – dodging and burning is a creative process that’s just as relevant now that we process images digitally as it was when it was done with chemicals. It’s all about enhancing the tones, the composition and the balance of a picture to create a visually satisfying image.

Dodging and burning isn’t restricted to black and white, and many colour images benefit from selective lightening and darkening too – though black and white seems to withstand heavy manipulation much better.

There are many different ways to apply dodging and burning. In Photoshop you might use selections and adjustment layers or the Dodge and Burn tools. In Lightroom you might use the Adjustment Brush, and other programs have other tools.

 

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