Removing shiny spots on skin is common to the retouching workflow of portrait photographers. Watch this tutorial and learn how Exposure simplifies the process of reducing or eliminating bright shiny spots.
Photo: Dave Cooley
Masking shiny spots
Controlling where editing adjustments apply to the photo is essential for correcting shiny spots. Exposure’s color constraints are perfect for this.
The Luminance controls target values of the image’s brightness. Raising the lower handles will omit darker values from the selection. Use the Show Mask option to highlight where the mask edges are. Adjustments on this layer only apply to the highlighted areas. Learn more about using layers and masks in our Working with Layers video.
Control values in bright spots with the Highlights and Whites sliders. Highlights control the light values, Whites defines the true white in the image. When dialing-in changes, toggle the layer off and on to visualize the effect it has on the photo.
Correcting the colors
After making adjustments to exposure, it’s a good idea to inspect the image’s colors. Changes to exposure can also make changes to saturation. In this example, the adjustments we made still leave visible bright spots on the skin. Adding a tint will help them blend.
The color filter controls add a gentle tone across images. Select the color swatch and define the tone using the eyedropper. Use Density to control the amount of toning added. As a final step, use the layer Opacity to blend the effect more subtly.
When the controls are set properly, the brush can be saved as a preset and used again in the future. In the Brushing panel, press the menu button next to the preset dropdown. Select Save as New Preset. Give it a name, category, a useful description, and it can be used again in the future.
The preset we created in this video can be downloaded on our website, here.
To install the preset, simply unzip the compressed file and then double-click to open the f1s preset. The settings router tool will automatically save the preset to the proper location on your computer. The next time you open Exposure X5, you will see the new preset listed in the Brush panel under My Presets. This preset will not work with other versions of Exposure.