Photography is a hobby that can easily become a lucrative career option if you invest enough time into it. But, there’s nothing wrong with keeping it as something you do in your spare time. Regardless of how thoroughly you plan on developing this skill, though, you’ll need to master proper editing if you want to continue improving. This is especially true when it comes to editing the eyes of a subject in portrait photography. Luckily, the Adobe Lightroom mobile app has all you need to do Lightroom mobile presets.
Not sure where to start? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about using Lightroom Mobile presets for this type of edit.
Why Are Eyes So Important in Photography?
Making eye contact with someone creates an intimate connection that’s difficult to establish otherwise. In fact, there’s even a psychological effect that takes place when eye contact is made under different circumstances.
In regard to portrait photography, a person’s eyes are often a major focal point of the photograph. Although we aren’t physically present at the location with the picture was taken, the subject’s eyes are used as a way for us to connect with them.
As you might expect, a portrait taken of someone that doesn’t have the person’s eyes properly in focus won’t have the same level of impact.
In general, a photograph that has the subject’s eyes properly visible is likely to be more engaging and appealing. This is especially true when concerning content like advertisements, promotional photos, etc.
Unfortunately, it’s not always possible to turn a mediocre photo into a great photo simply by editing the eyes in Lightroom. You’ll need to ensure that you properly photograph your subject in order to give you the most room to work with when it comes to making finishing touches.
For example, the subject’s iris (the colored segments in the center of the eye around the pupil) should always be fully visible. But, the viewer should be able to see any white above or below the iris.
Interestingly, it’s not required for the subject to look directly at the lens of the camera during the photograph. It’s possible to still achieve captivating results without them doing so.
Keep in mind, though, that the person viewing the photograph will naturally follow the direction of the subject’s gaze. So, it’s a good practice to leave extra space in the photograph that aligns with the direction the subject is looking.
Otherwise, you may find the resulting image to feel busy or cluttered.
You need to make sure that you take measures to minimize the redeye effect that often plagues photographers. These can include:
- Using a diffuser to disperse the total amount of light from the flash
- Using your camera’s red-eye reduction mode
- Using flash triggers to remove the flash from the camera itself
Doing so will allow you to eliminate this often-frustrating visual distraction.
Different Editing Methods in Lightroom
Modern photography has become drastically efficient due to the innovation of using smartphones as high-quality cameras. Not only does this offer a cheaper, more convenient way to conduct photoshoots but you can also make extensive use of Adobe Lightroom app for photo editing.
This application has established itself as an industry-standard method for retouching and enhancing photos, but not everybody understands the utility that it can provide.
Let’s explore a few of the most notable ways that you can edit photos in Lightroom.
Even for those who aren’t well-versed in this program, manual editing provides photographers with plenty of capability when it comes to making tweaks and fine-tuning their photographs.
The exposure tool, for example, allows you to seamlessly brighten or darken the photo. This is ideal for pictures that have an abundant amount of sunlight or aren’t quite illuminated enough to be easily visible.
Similarly, the contrast tool and shadows tool allow you to further manipulate different segments of your photograph in order to present the ideal image that you’re after.
Although the fact that these tools require manual input can be offputting for many photographers, they are far more straightforward than they first may seem.
You’re able to use intuitive sliders to control different values while editing your photo and you can also view the changes in real-time. So, a few minutes of making different tweaks can result in a drastically improved photograph.
For photos that need a bit of retouching, you can also use the healing tool and the clarity tool in order to tighten up the image.
All of these tools will allow you to aesthetically enhance the subject’s eyes, both directly and indirectly.
Other Tools to Keep in Mind
Although Lightroom comes with a large handful of tools that photographers can take advantage of, some stand out more than others.
What is the most useful is the noise reduction tool, which provides an easy way to eliminate any unwanted noise in the photograph. This will immediately result in a crisper photo that’s easier on the eyes.
To further enhance this effect, you can make use of the sharpening tool to increase the level of detail in the photographs that you took. Using these tools together can often result in a level of quality that’s difficult to achieve otherwise.
Of course, you should always keep in mind that you have access to the white balance tool when using this program for editing photos. Since too much light can easily flood the photo and make it look saturated, it’s important to keep this value in check.
Similarly, photographs with a light level that appears to cold can give the skin a bluish or grayish hue that doesn’t look natural. A quick adjustment of the tools slider will allow you to rectify this problem.
By ensuring that the entire photo is properly balanced, you can then focus on just the eyes in order to make them stand out even further.
There’s no shame in using preconfigured values for your photography if you don’t feel like making manual adjustments on your own. In fact, Adobe Lightroom Mobile presets have been so fine-tuned that they work in nearly every context depending on what type of luck you’re after.
For example, there’s a preset for enhancing the natural colors and lighting that you find at the beach during the summer. Similarly, there are presets that hold the subject stand out during a nighttime photoshoot.
As previously mentioned, it’s important to consider the photograph as a whole even when you’re only focused on optimizing the aesthetic appeal of the eyes.
So, take the time to cycle through different presets and make note of how they change your photo in order to find the one that’s right for your context.
If necessary, you can make manual tweaks after implementing a preset in order to fine-tune your results.
It’s also important to note that Lightroom presets exist in the form of brushes, as well, which can give you extensively more creative control when it comes to implementing any necessary changes.
What Type of Presets Are Best?
This will depend entirely on the context of your photo. The amount of light, the time of day, the color of the subject’s skin/hair/eyes, etc. are all important factors to consider.
One preset may work for one subject in a particular setting but not be ideal for another subject in the same setting. The same can be said for photographing the same subject in two different settings.
To help you find a preset that’s best for your situation, consider the overall tone and mood that you’re going for with your portrait photography. Capturing a bright, bubbly atmosphere will require a different type of editing then something more gloomy and muted.
In the event that you don’t find a stock preset that suits your needs, it’s possible to download others from online resources. These presets are typically far more intuitive and specified for differing scenarios.
For instance, custom presets exist for photographs that were shot during cloudy, rainy days. Others are geared toward photoshoots that occur in city streets that often have multiple different light sources.
Keep this in mind if you find yourself unable to find a preset that’s perfect for the context of your photo.
In-Depth Eye Editing
Under most circumstances, you’ll need to put in a bit of editing work after your shoes to get the ideal look for your subject’s eyes.
In most scenarios, presents that are geared toward enhancing a subject’s eyes can take you most of the way there. You may even find out the price of itself is sufficient enough for your intended result.
If you do need to manually edit the eyes, it’s essential to know how to do so properly.
The following steps can help you get it done quickly and efficiently.
Focus on the Iris
Expectedly, editing the iris of the subjects directly will go along way toward helping them stand out in the photograph.
By using the local adjustment brush, carefully paint over the irises completely in order to cover them with an overlay. While doing so, be sure to avoid making contact with the pupils.
Creating this overlay will allow you to edit only the content that’s located underneath it. So, adjusting the contrast and saturation sliders in this context will allow you to have full control over how much the eyes of the subject pop in terms of appearance.
Of course, it’s important to remember that this should only be done in moderation as a minor enhancement. Otherwise, you can easily find yourself with an unnatural appearance.
Whiten the Eyes
In order to help accentuate the appearance of the iris further, you’ll need to whiten the rest of the eye around it.
This process is more or less the same and involves using the local adjustment brush tool to create an overlay that covers the areas you want to edit. Afterward, you can use the tool’s sliders in order to achieve the effects you’re looking for.
As with iris editing, don’t go too far when whitening the eyes of your subject— nobody’s eyes are perfectly white.
Conservative use of the sharpening effect can go along way toward increasing the clarity of the eyes in your photo. But, you don’t need to sharpen the entire eye in order to accomplish this.
In fact, it’s recommended that you avoid doing so since the results will likely be highly unnatural-looking.
Instead, you can focus on the eyelashes and the rim of the iris. All those subtle, this could help the subject’s eyes become more pronounced.
Dark Circle Removal
Not only are dark circles around the eyes distracting from the iris, but they also make the subject look overly fatigued or tired. Luckily, it’s a simple process to remove them.
By once again using the local adjustment brush tool, you’ll be able to lighten and soften areas were dark circles tend to pose an issue. Even just a minor touch up in this area can prove to be a significant way to enhance the aesthetic of your portrait.
Using Adobe Lightroom Mobile Presets Can Seem Difficult
But it doesn’t have to be.
With the above information about how to use Lightroom Mobile presets in mind, you’ll be well on your way toward achieving the best results possible.
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