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How to create a High-Key photo in Lightroom 2

A High-Key Portrait shot outdoors and processed in Lightroom.

Lately I’ve been browsing the WEB and have often come across some really nice high-key photos. In an effort to foster up some publicity for the Presetting Lightroom group on Flickr, I decided to produce this tutorial on how to achieve this “look” in Lightroom.

Now, I must admit, I was partially inspired by Matt Kloskowski’s new High Key Effect presets which he recently posted on his blog. If you’re just looking for some good presets, you can download a copy of Matt’s High Key presets by following the link here. If you’d like to see how you can create this effect for yourself then read on …

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Dramatic Sky: Advanced Lightroom 2 Preset and Video

A Dramatic Sky Photo

It’s time again to release a new Lightroom 2 preset. This preset differs from the ones I’ve presented in the past in that it requires some previous knowledge of Lightroom and presets to get the most out of it. For this reason, I’ve produced a small 9 minute video to act as a tutorial for those wishing to explore this advanced preset. Shown on the left is a typical look that can be achieved with this preset. Original Sky Photo You can compare it with the “out of camera” photo on the right. (click on the photo to see a larger view).

As a side note, I thought I’d comment on the new Lightroom “Release Candidate” 2.3 from Adobe. I think with this release, version 2 of Lightroom has finally matured into a stable platform which professionals and amateurs can rely upon. I too, was plagued with some of the problems in Lightroom 2.2 – and this release candidate was a welcome relief. Thanks Adobe, for quickly getting a solid program out to your users! The accompanying instructional video was even produced utilizing the new Lightroom 2.3 RC (ran like a charm).

Either scroll down or click on the “Read More” button to get to the goods.

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Release Candidate: Adobe Lightroom 2.3 and Camera Raw 5.3

Lightroom Logo

Unofficially, Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 2.3 and Camera Raw 5.3 Release Candidates will be made available for download later today 8 PM – GMT. Additionally, it is reported that Lightroom will now be available in eight new languages.

Adobe UK Press Release:

Adobe has released Photoshop Lightroom 2.3 and Photoshop Camera Raw 5.3 Release Candidates, both available immediately for download from Adobe Labs. The ‘release candidate’ label indicates that this update is well tested but would benefit from additional community testing before it is distributed automatically to all customers. The Lightroom and Camera Raw teams would like the community to help verify the quality of this update through normal usage as this will ensure that the application is tested on a wide variety of hardware and software configurations not available internally at Adobe.

Both release candidates provide additional raw file support for the Nikon D3X and Olympus E-30 cameras. In addition,the Lightroom 2.3 Release Candidate provides a solution to a memory leak that affected some customers of the Lightroom 2.2 release.

Adobe is also pleased to announce the availability of Lightroom in eight new languages, including Dutch, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, Korean, Chinese (simplified) and Chinese (traditional). The Lightroom 2.3 Release Candidate available on Adobe Labs includes these additional languages, and Adobe greatly appreciates any feedback the community can provide the Lightroom team. Feedback can be provided on the Adobe User to User forum.

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Snow Lightroom 2 Presets: Extracting the Details

Snow Details in Focus.

Like many of you, I’ve been rather busy this month wrapping things up in preparation for Christmas and the end of the year.

Something I haven’t done in a few years is to produce a photo calendar for family and friends. As usual, I forget how much work is involved in selecting just the right shots (36 this year) and the careful editing and cropping of the photos to get them just right. I was pressed to find a quality set of shots for the month of December, so I did what every other photographer would do – I went out and shot some new ones.

What came out of that shoot were two new Lightroom presets that will really bring out the fine details in your snow close ups. Last time, I presented some winterscape presets, so – this time it’s about the details. I’ve included a number of sample shots so you’ll have a good idea of what the presets will do for you.

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Winterscape Lightroom 2 Presets: Snow and Color

Lights leading the way home.

Now that the colder winter weather is here it’s time to look at some snow presets. Having just returned from a photo shoot in the great white north, I’ve come up with a couple of new Focus Beauty presets that will work well on your favorite winter scenes.

Santa Skiing.

As is often the case with winter scenes there is an abundance of snow and an overall lack of color. In order to bring some sparkle back into these winter landscapes, I came up with some Lightroom presets that bring definition and color into your shots. What follows are a number of shots that show these two new presets in action.

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