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Fantastic Ways to Give Your Photographs That Fine Touch

Once I have transferred all the RAW files from my memory card to the computer, I just want to go play and open them in Adobe Lightroom.

photography | Fantastic Ways to Give Your Photographs That Fine Touch

For this project I decided to do a colour pop, with main subject in colour while the background is in black and white. These type of colour pop images can be done in Adobe Photoshop but I chose Lightroom for this project. The process is very simple and can be time consuming as with all editing projects, so lets explore how I completed this simple colour pop project. This technique is also called ‘Selective Colouring‘, some people use the name ‘Colour Pop‘ for short.

(EDITED: If you do not use RAW files, then you may need to use Photoshop for creating similar colour pop/selective colouring images. With RAW files, you maintain all of the colours detail and information from your DSLR; whereas with jpeg’s, they compress the colours and you loose a lot of editing capabilities.)

The two images below are one of the original photographs, the second one is of the edited version of the RAW files.



When choosing photographs for this type of editing, I usually find that the photographs which have a strong colour theme. These can photographs with reds, greens or yellows are the best; as you can reduce the saturation of the other colours in the photograph during the editing process. However, before you start, it is always a good idea to create a copy as you would in Photoshop (just incase you make a mistake, you always go back and start again). Right click the selected image and create a ‘Virtual Copy‘, this after you have altered light and contrast adjustments as shown in the ‘Initial Changes‘ screen shot.


All of these above images start off with the sliders, with the first image being the ‘Initial Changes‘ to the photograph.

The initial changes to the RAW file are displayed in the table below.

  Slider Name  Slider No#  Color Slider Name  Slider No#
  • Exposure
  • Contrast
  • Highlights
  • Shadows
  • Whites
  • Blacks
  • Vibrance
  • Saturation
  • +1.55
  • +26
  • -37
  • -17
  • -5
  • +40
  • +57
  • -25
  • Red
  • Orange
  • Yellow
  • Green
  • Aqua
  • Blue
  • Purple
  • Magenta
  • +36
  • +30
  • 0
  • -100
  • -100
  • -100
  • 0
  • 0

Although on the first image the sliders for Green, Aqua and Blue are set to zero; I did lower these all the way down as these help when brushing out all the other background colours.

As you can see with the images below, I have show how the editing has taken shape (The brush settings are listed  in the table below).

 Brush Settings Slider No#
  • Temp
  • Tint
  • Saturation
  • +6
  • +20
  • -100

So you can see where you are applying the brush, you will need to tick the Auto Mask, which is located below the ‘Brush Size Slider‘, ‘Feather Slider‘ and the ‘Flow Slider‘.

Each New Brush will show up as a grey dot. When you need to apply new layer for area’s of colour still showing on the base image. Go back to the top beneath the ‘Brush Panel‘ and Click ‘New‘. This will utilise the current brush and allow you apply new a brush without changing all the brush layers you have already created.


Final Touches: On the final touches screenshot, I have made the last of the adjustments to remove the last pieces of colour still showing through. The current Brush layer will show as a white border to a black dot. When you mouse over the dot, you can move the layer very slightly; however it best not to move the layer. This could cause your layer to show area’s of untouched colour, by over-lapping on to the area’s you are wanted to be touched.

The overall time frame for this project is about 20-40 minutes, give or take a few minutes. The Final Image as completed.

Final Edited Image | Fantastic Ways to Give Your Photographs That Fine Touch

All Photo’s were taken with a Nikon Camera

Camera: Nikon D5300

Lens: Sigma 70-300mm DG

Settings: ISO200 | 300mm | ƒ/5.6 | 1/250’s