The Power of Curves


The Power of CurvesI did something I’ve wanted to do for a long time: post a video tutorial on YouTube. It’s called The Power of Curves, and it’s about, well, curves in Photoshop. This is one of those things that’s just easier to show than explain, so it’s a perfect subject for video.

I think Curves are the single most powerful tool in the digital darkroom; if you learn to master Curves, you’re well on your way to mastering image-processing. Curves tend to intimidate some people, as they seem foreign if you haven’t used them before. But Curves are really quite simple, and I hope this video helps clarify how to use this amazing tool. I had to break this into two parts; here are the links:

The Power of Curves Part 1

The Power of Curves Part 2

Originally I had wanted to talk about the new Point Curve feature in Lightroom 3, but then realized that I needed to explain some basics about Curves first, and that Photoshop was a better tool for that. But I’ll post another video in about two weeks about using Curves in Lightroom and Adobe Camera Raw, and about dealing with their strange default settings.

YouTube HDSo I hope you enjoy these—let me know what you think! To see everything clearly you need to view in high resolution—click on where it says 240p or 360p in the lower-right corner and choose 480p. Also, if  you click on the little double-sided arrow you’ll see the video larger.


4 Responses to “The Power of Curves”

  1. [...] brought my first video tutorial, called The Power of Curves. Since then I’ve posted several more videos about the digital darkroom, and these have also [...]

  2. [...] so I added a lightening S-curve (I discuss curves, including lightening S-curves, in my tutorial The Power of Curves). And to emphasize that contrast between the lighter dogwoods and the darker surroundings I used [...]

  3. [...] Posts: The Power of Curves; Using Curves in Lightroom and Camera Raw; Photo Critique Series: An Intimate, Wide-Angle [...]

  4. [...] couple of photographers I really admire, Michael Frye and David Nightingale both have tutorials on curves on their sites. Both also show just how [...]

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