32 Dodging, Burning, and Retouching

More Precise Dodging and Burning than the Analog Darkroom Ever Allowed

The essential aspect of analog black and white image retouching was to control the tonality range by skillfully dodging and burning in the darkroom. There was hardly a black and white photo that did not need this for optimizing the mood of the picture. While analog fans may find it hard to believe, this procedure can be accomplished easier, faster, and more precisely with Photoshop. I’ll illustrate this with a backlit photo of an old Irish castle.

It is extraordinarily difficult for a digital camera to register the light range in a backlit photograph that includes both the sun and the shadows of an old wall. Therefore, I remind you once ...

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