The Essential Adjustments #2: Exposure

The next thing I fix (after adjusting the white balance) is the photo’s exposure. Now, some might argue that this is the most essential adjustment of them all, but if your photo looks way too blue, nobody will notice if the photo’s under-exposed by a third of a stop, so I fix the white balance first, then I worry about exposure. In general, I think of exposure as three things: highlights, shadows, and midtones. So in this tutorial, I’ll address those three, which in Camera Raw are the exposure (highlights), blacks (shadows), and brightness (midtones).

Step One:

The Exposure slider (circled here in red) affects the overall exposure (highlights) of the photo (dragging to the right makes your overall exposure ...

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