The Histogram Panel

Used properly, the histogram that’s displayed behind the curve in the Curves dialog can help you to make sure that your adjustments don’t get out of control and end up harming your images instead of improving them. Photoshop’s Histogram panel also can help you to ensure that you don’t push your edits and adjustments too far. Now that you have an idea of how to think about Curves, let’s figure out how to use these two tools to help with edits. To display the Histogram panel, choose Window > Histogram.

As you learned earlier, a histogram is a simple bar graph that shows the range of brightness levels that make up an image and the prevalence of each of these shades. When you look at the histogram, imagine that a gradient is ...

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