Welcome to this comprehensive guide on how to achieve that coveted bright and airy look for your photos using Adobe Lightroom.
Whether you’re a seasoned photographer looking to refine your editing skills…
…or a beginner eager to infuse your images with an ethereal and dreamy quality, this step-by-step tutorial will take you through the entire process.
Watch the full video tutorial here:
Table of Contents
How to Edit a Light and Air Photo in Lightroom
1. Setting of Your Photo
Before diving into Lightroom, it’s essential to capture the right setting in-camera.
The mood and style of your image should align with the look you want to achieve.
For bright and airy photos, choose well-lit scenes with subjects displaying a cheerful demeanor.
Natural light, smiles, and neutral expressions set the stage for the editing process.
2. Tone Curve
Begin your editing journey by adjusting the tone curve.
Create a basic “S” curve by lifting the highlights and slightly darkening the shadows.
This softens the image and contributes to the dreamy quality.
3. Basic Adjustments
Fine-tune the exposure, contrast, highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks in the Basic panel.
Increase exposure slightly to brighten the image, but maintain a soft contrast for that light and airy feel.
4. Clarity and Texture
Utilize the Clarity and Texture sliders in the Presence section.
To preserve the softness, reduce clarity and texture slightly, giving your photo a smoother, more ethereal appearance.
5. Vibrance and Saturation
Vibrance enhances muted colors without oversaturation, while saturation increases overall color intensity.
Adjust vibrance and saturation carefully, keeping the look natural and soft.
Bright and airy photos often benefit from a subtle boost in color.
6. Color Grading
Use the Color Grading panel to adjust the color balance.
Depending on your color scheme, create a harmonious palette that complements your image.
For bright and airy aesthetics, consider cooler tones like pastel blues and greens.
7. Filters, Effects, and Masking
Apply filters and effects to enhance specific areas of your photo.
Graduated filters can balance exposure, while radial filters draw attention to key elements.
Utilize the Dehaze slider for increased clarity in landscapes.
Masking allows you to selectively apply adjustments for a cohesive final result.
In conclusion, creating bright and airy photos in Lightroom is about harmonizing your editing choices with the initial setting and mood of your image.
Remember that subtlety and balance are key to achieving the desired ethereal and dreamy look.
With these ten steps, you’re well-equipped to breathe life into your photos and create stunning visuals that captivate your audience.
So, grab your camera and let your creativity soar as you embark on this exciting editing journey.
Nate Torres is a seasoned photographer and marketing consultant, providing educational photography content while also teaching photographers how to grow their business and brand through SEO. Nate shares his insights on his YouTube channel, “Nate Torres,” and on his personal photography blog, Nate Torres Photography. Beyond the lens, he’s an authoritative voice in the photography industry, serving as a speaker and photography author for renowned photography publications such as Photofocus, SLR Lounge, and Fstoppers. An entrepreneur and lifelong learner at heart, Nate is also the co-founder of Imaginated, an educational platform. Nate shares his insights on his YouTube channel, “Nate Torres,” and on his personal photography blog, Nate Torres Photography. But his expertise doesn’t stop at photography. Whether it’s elucidating the nuances of marketing within the realm of photography or sharing broader marketing insights, Nate Torres brings to the table a wealth of expertise, ensuring readers and audiences benefit from both his photographic acumen and marketing knowledge.