Give Me Your Favorite Method Of Doging & Burn in PS

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smoke665

smoke665

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Isn’t the point of a grey layer so you can use a black or white brush to paint in the D&B using a blend mode?

I've used both and never been able to determine much difference in effect, other than the tools might be a tad faster in building up the effect and less prone to hue/saturation shift if you make sure to check the "protect tones box.

For example here's a comparison of dodging and burning methods. I raised the opacity of the first two well above what I normally use for illustration. In the curves layer the opacity of the brush was at 100% which is also well above what you would normally use. First is a White & Black brush on a 50% gray layer set to soft light. Second is using the D&B tools on a 50% gray layer set to soft light. Finally using curves layers set to luminosity. I suspect that some of the variations in density are likely due to pen pressure and an unsteady hand.
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JBPhotog

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FWIW, using Curves or Levels are more powerful since they let you go back and adjust it to either lessen or strengthen the effect without redoing the mask. They also let you adjust each colour channel independently which may assist if either RGB channel starts to over react. My preferred method with the brush is to keep Opacity at 100% and adjust the Flow, it has finer control as you can build up the effect and not have to lift the brush, using a Wacom tablet.

Horses for courses.
 
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smoke665

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@JBPhotog I've never used Levels as a D&B, always found Curves more responsive for my needs, no reason why it shouldn't work.

The only real difference that I'm aware of between Opacity and Flow is how the strokes build up. As long as you don't lift up the pen, Opacity will be even at your maximum opacity no matter how many times you go over a spot. As you say, Flow will build up based on the number of times you go over something without lifting the pen. I normally set Opacity to pen pressure, and flow usually 50-60, which seems to work better for me, as I'm constantly lifting and moving.
 

JBPhotog

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Flow acts more like a real marker, the more you go over the same spot the more density you build up. Not to say that Opacity has no purpose, it does, one can set Opacity to 50% and then Flow to 5% for incremental build up. I found that Flow avoids the banding one can get with only using Opacity to change the density.

My pen pressure is set to Size not Opacity, this allows me to paint really small areas without having to reset the size of my brush as I move through different areas of the subject even though my lower pen button is set to resize & hardness.
 

ronlane

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@smoke665. I see what you are saying IF you do the D&B on the stamped layer. After thinking about it I have been noticing what I am doing lately. I am using the 50% grey layers or curves layers for my D&B. Something that I have noticed this week is that if you do a stamped visible layer and then continue to add adjustment layers above that, you can delete the stamped layer after and you still have a non-destructive workflow.

For example, I have been doing cleanup and Frequency separation to a photo then after that, I want to darken the background and not the subject. I stamp the layer, select subject and make a curves layer. Then I can delete the stamped layer, invert the mask and darken the background. I also do this to add an Orton effect to my image as well after making all the other adjustments that I wanted to make..
 
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smoke665

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see what you are saying IF you do the D&B on the stamped layer.

Yes but using a stamped layer goes beyond just this. Using your example you use a stamped copy to make a selection to create a mask for a curves adjustment layer and then delete the stamped layer. Yes deleting the stamped layer negates any further effect, but suppose later you add another stamped copy at the top of the stack and apply a filter to it. You're now stopped from making changes to the underlying curves layer, and you can't delete the filter layer without redoing it.
 

mezcalpaloma

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My goto technique for dodging and burning is:
Add a blank (transparent) layer above the layer to be adjusted.
Set the blend mode of the new layer to Overlay.
To burn in, paint on this layer with a (normal mode) black brush at 100% opacity, 1% flow, 0% hardness.
To dodge, use a white brush with the same settings.
If you want, you can create separate such layers for dodge and burn.

It's non-destructive and usually yields a good result pretty quickly. There's a small learning curve. I think I learned it from Dan Margulis' "Professional Photoshop"; but it's been a while.

This technique can sometimes produce undesirable saturation side effects. Then I'll find another way; but this is the first technique I reach for.
 

johngpt

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My goto technique for dodging and burning is:
Add a blank (transparent) layer above the layer to be adjusted.
Set the blend mode of the new layer to Overlay.
To burn in, paint on this layer with a (normal mode) black brush at 100% opacity, 1% flow, 0% hardness.
To dodge, use a white brush with the same settings.
If you want, you can create separate such layers for dodge and burn.

It's non-destructive and usually yields a good result pretty quickly. There's a small learning curve. I think I learned it from Dan Margulis' "Professional Photoshop"; but it's been a while.

This technique can sometimes produce undesirable saturation side effects. Then I'll find another way; but this is the first technique I reach for.
What you've described has pretty much become my preferred method for dodging and burning. Just set a new layer to either Overlay blend mode or Soft Light blend mode and gradually paint with black or white.
I will also "paint through" a selection taken from a luminosity based channel.
Often I'll have already created a series of Light and Dark luminosity based channels. Ctrl + click to select the channel I want.
Then painting on the layer that was set to Overlay blend mode will be feathered to the area I want. This is something I learned from Tony Kuyper in his luminosity channel tutorials. I don't bother with the panels he sells. My old computer won't handle them.
I can reduce opacity of that Overlay layer if needed.
Or I can link a Curves layer to it and increase the effect by dragging the curve if the layer wasn't first filled with 50% grey. I've found filling with grey isn't really necessary.

If I have more than a small area to dodge or burn, I'll Ctrl - click on a luminosity layer and then click on a Curves layer to open it. It opens already using the luminosity channel as a mask.
 
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smoke665

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This technique can sometimes produce undesirable saturation side effects. Then I'll find another way; but this is the first technique I reach for.

That's a common problem to some extent regardless of method. Unless it's just minor dodging & burning I'll use multiple layers and clip a Hue/Saturation to each to offset the tonal shift.
 

mezcalpaloma

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What you've described has pretty much become my preferred method for dodging and burning. Just set a new layer to either Overlay blend mode or Soft Light blend mode and gradually paint with black or white.
I will also "paint through" a selection taken from a luminosity based channel.
Often I'll have already created a series of Light and Dark luminosity based channels. Ctrl + click to select the channel I want.
Then painting on the layer that was set to Overlay blend mode will be feathered to the area I want. This is something I learned from Tony Kuyper in his luminosity channel tutorials. I don't bother with the panels he sells. My old computer won't handle them.
I can reduce opacity of that Overlay layer if needed.
Or I can link a Curves layer to it and increase the effect by dragging the curve if the layer wasn't first filled with 50% grey. I've found filling with grey isn't really necessary.

If I have more than a small area to dodge or burn, I'll Ctrl - click on a luminosity layer and then click on a Curves layer to open it. It opens already using the luminosity channel as a mask.
I'm gonna try this out tomorrow. Thanks for the tip!
 
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smoke665

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I'm gonna try this out tomorrow. Thanks for the tip

No problem. You can also clip a Curves or Levels layer, which can do the same, i just always found the H/S layer easier for me.
 

adamhiram

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This isn't quite what you asked, but I tend to use the radial filter tool in LR to do most of my dodging and burning. Most of the time, I am happy with the rounded regions with very feathered edges this creates, and can use a combination of exposure, highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks to affect the area of the photo as desired.
 
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smoke665

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This isn't quite what you asked, but I tend to use the radial filter tool in LR to do most of my dodging and burning. Most of the time, I am happy with the rounded regions with very feathered edges this creates, and can use a combination of exposure, highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks to affect the area of the photo as desired.
Both the radial and gradiant filter offer adjustment capability. Plus combine them with either + or - brushes, and you'd have selective adjustments as well.
 

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