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How to Make Creative Image Adjustments Within Lightroom

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Read Time: 6 mins

Lightroom can not only be used to develop and correct, but to add creative impact. In this roundup, we take an overview of the moves you can make within the program that to take complete control over your images.

This tutorial video included below also cover the creative uses of mapping your image, using the dodge and burn tools, masking your image, using the gradient function, optimizing the clarity, using the selective controls and fully controlling the HSL menu.

Your Photos Your Way

Adobe Lightroom's Develop module controls the way that an image looks. It's packed with sliders that can correct your images, like adjusting exposure, contrast, and white balance. 

Correction tools are just the beginning. There are plenty more panels that help you edit your images and create your own style. Using different combinations of color, split toning, the tone curve, grain and more can help you set your photography apart.

The hard part is knowing where to start. With all of these combinations and settings, you might not know which ones to pull to build the look you want.

One image with four different edits, all created inside of Adobe Lightroom. The many panels and sliders inside of Lightroom's Develop module create countless combinations of styles.

This learning guide is full of tutorials that help you get creative with the adjustment process. These tutorials help you go beyond the standard adjustments to an image and help you build your own creative style.

Filmic Effects

Everything old is new again! Film styles are now recreated in the digital darkroom. Lightroom has a litany of tools to bring those styles to your digital images.

The tutorials in this section will teach you the key features that build those looks, such as grain, the tone curve, and custom color effects:

Creative Color Techniques

There are limitless options for how to edit your image's colors in Adobe Lightroom. The Hue / Saturation / Luminance (HSL) panel in Lightroom controls each individual color of the color wheel on three different factors. That means there are 24 different sliders to control the way that colors are shown in your image.

With all of these options, it's helpful to follow a few tutorials to get ideas for how to control color. Check out these guides to learn ideas for how to use color creatively.

Bold Black and White Effects

Black and white seems like a straightforward image treatment. In reality, you'll be surprised by the sheer number of ways to convert your images from color to monochrome.

Check out these tutorials to learn about the options that exist when you convert an image to black and white inside of Lightroom.

Lightroom Presets

The tutorials above teach you how to build creative looks from scratch. If you're looking for something more automated, Tuts+ has a few choice roundups of free and premium Adobe Lightroom presets.

Presets are one-click image treatments. You can use them to learn more about editing by seeing the sliders that are tweaked and changed when applied. These roundups link to downloads of Lightroom presets that you can install and use on your own images.

Keep Learning Lightroom

The tutorials in this learning guide focus on the Develop module, the section of Adobe Lightroom for correcting and adjusting the look of an image. Lightroom is several tools in one package, including image management and organization.

Check out these tutorials and courses to learn other Lightroom features and modules:

And here's the video! Dig in to get a tour of the Lightroom environment:

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