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Photo Editing Mini Series: Peak District Millstones – Affinity Photo RAW Conversion

September 10, 2019

hello I’m Robin Whalley welcome to Lenscraft in the previous video with this mini-series
I made an assessment of this image my intention is to convert it to black and
white but first I need to process it from the raw file into an image I can
edit now I’ve opened the raw file already in affinity photo and it
switched into the developer sonar automatically which is what happens you
can see the unadjusted raw file on the screen now and the first thing you’ll
notice is that it’s greatly overexposed this is because I was exposing to the
right when I shot the image this means I overexposed slightly in order to open up
the shadows and that will give me a better quality image in those shadows
the only problem is that you tend to blow out the highlights but in this case
I don’t mind this because I like it to draw the eye up into this top right hand
corner where the brightest areas are but back to the correction and let’s start
by adjusting the exposure now I’m just drawing the exposure down so that I make
a recovery not just in these bright areas but it darkens the image down
slightly as well the other area where we had a problem with this image was the
low contrast so I’m just going to increase the contrast slightly and
that’s created a more saturated contrast the image now I’ve possibly overdone the
exposure reduction so I’m just going to increase that slightly and the other
thing I’ll do is use the shadows and highlights to try to recover some of
these areas so if I use this highlight slider you can see the effect it’s
having on the highlights now I don’t really want to recover them too much
because I still want it to be very light in that corner but I do want to make
sure I’ve opened up the shadows sufficiently the other thing I’m going
to do whilst I’m in the develop persona is just select the profile that I want
to use so rather than the sRGB profile I’m going to be editing this image in
the Adobe edge be profile if I switch now to the lens
tab you’ll see that I have the lens Corrections on and they also have
chromatic aberration reduction switched on as well
now those come on as default in the develop persona the other area that I
want to look at is the detail and I want to make sure that I sharpen the
foreground image sufficiently so let’s switch into detail and I’m going to zoom
in my image now to 100% I’ll find the area that I want to focus
on for sharpening and now I’ll apply a detail refinement to adjust the
sharpness of the image so I’m going to use a fairly low radius
and I’m just gonna push the amount up until I see a good effect here which is
what we’re getting at the moment now I’ll just go to the top right hand side
of the image and make sure that we’re not causing noise to occur in these
trees and we know that looks quite clean now looking at the image it’s still
quite a green and blue image now I’m just going to go back to the basic panel
now one of the things you should do when you’re converting to black and white is
make sure you’ve got the right color balance and the right definition in the
image so that when it gets converted you’ll get separation so I’m just going
to go back to the white balance now and I’m going to actually increase the color
temperature very slightly there and I’m gonna reduce the level of pink tint in
this and that looks about right what it should give me is some separation
between the stones and the foliage once I convert a black and white I’m now
going to go over to tones and one of the things that you’ll probably see is this
black and white conversion I’m not going to use the black and white conversion
here instead I’m going to use silver effects later the reason I do that is
that I find I’ve got much greater control with Nick silver effects Pro
than I do with the black and white converter also
if I apply the black and white conversion as part of the rock inversion
it gets baked into the image and don’t have the opportunity to redo it later
what I can do though is use it to check the response so here we can see the
response on the stones by moving the blue slider left and right and also on
the cyan slider if I move the greens you’ll see that I can darken or lighten
areas and the yellow should do the same there we are so it gives me some idea of
how the image will respond when I do convert it so it’s worth while still
taking a look at that the other thing that we can use is the
curve and I always like to use the curves even though you’ve got similar
adjustments under the basic panel here I find that using the curves just answer
that little bit of snap and color back into the image so I just adjust that and
that’s given me a nice feeling of shade in this area once the highlights here
are still quite light now the other thing I could have done is used an
overlay here so if we just go to overlays you’ll see that I’m working on
the master at the moment now all overlays do are make selections that you
can then adjust separately so if you’re used to working in something like Adobe
Lightroom you’ll be familiar with the graduated adjustment and you can do a
similar thing actually in affinity photo if I go over here and select the
graduate tool I can now draw a selection so here I’m selecting the highlight area
now I can go back to the basic panel and I can actually use some of these
adjustments so if we use the highlights here I can increase the highlights I’ll
reduce them just in that area and again I can open up my shadows or reduce the
model there isn’t much shadow in that area and I can also adjust my brightness
in that area or reduce it and I quite like the look I’m getting there I’ll go
back to the overlay panel again and make another selection here on the master a
now use again the same adjustment to select the foreground
this time I’ll go back to the basic panel and I can apply my contrast so I
can increase the contrast I’ll reduce it in these areas and also I can just the
shadows to open them just slightly now you’ll notice that not all the
adjustments are available such as clarity if we want to adjust the clarity
in this image we’d need to go back select the master and then we can adjust
the clarity so there we can add in some clarity to really make these rocks pop
and again are now going to lighten that area just slightly and also open up the
shadows just a little bit further the final overlay that I’m going to use
is actually a radial or a knee elliptical adjustment so here I’m now
going to draw the ellipse but I want to select and what I’m doing is I’m trying to make
a selection of the millstones what that’s going to allow me to do is
actually lighten those mill stones very slightly and just all I’m doing here is
just doubting the black point just to add a little bit more snap into that
area and I could increase the brightness as well and I can reduce or increase the
contrast and that’s just to make them stand out a little bit further I’m know
reasonably satisfied with the adjustment that I’ve got I just go back to the
overlays select the master and let’s have a look at the original image there
you can see the original on the right and there we’ve got the much more
contrast the image on the left you can also look at them side-by-side so I’m
happy now with the new adjusted image that although it looks quite crunchy and
contrasts there it should make for a very good black and white conversion one
of the things I find is that the black and white conversion seems to suck the
contrast out of a lot of images so sometimes it’s better to have more
contrast at the start and a greater degree of saturation in order to create
the right response in the image when you convert it in the next video I’ll look
at how we can convert the image using Nick silver effects Pro I’m Robin
Whalley you’ve been watching Lenscraft I’ll see you in the next video


  • Reply Tony Greenwood September 6, 2019 at 3:12 pm

    Thanks for this Robin – very interesting – I do like Affinity Photo! BTW – bit off topic but I've just bought a Samyang 12mm for my X-T2 – you're so right, it's really great!! Many thanks for the heads up about the lens on your Lightweightphotographer

  • Reply Bob Sanders September 6, 2019 at 3:16 pm

    Brilliant Robin – just what I needed! Thanks for your excellent tutorial.

  • Reply david thomas September 6, 2019 at 11:01 pm

    Excellent tutorial Robin , thank you.

  • Reply Adrian Alford Photography September 7, 2019 at 3:24 am

    Great work Robin, thanks for sharing the video. Top work mate.

  • Reply Wei H Chong September 7, 2019 at 6:30 am

    Great presentation, Robin. Thank you for switching to a different RAW converter (Affinity Photo), as I was a bit confused in the first Mini-Series with Capture One (which I'm not familiar with). In this video I more easily understood your overall strategies of RAW conversion and onward to B&W. I benefit from seeing different RAW converters, so if you want to change again in the third series, that might be beneficial to those who don't use Capture One or Affinity Photo RAW. You might want to point out strategies that could be used in previous RAW converters to make it cogent to those of us who don't use the other RAW converters. Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply John Collins September 7, 2019 at 12:29 pm

    One question is why do you not use the mouse wheel over the percentage box to give more of an accurate adjustment,rather than moving the slider with the mouse pointer?Otherwise great editing tutorials,keep them coming!!!!

  • Reply donniebel September 9, 2019 at 1:27 am

    While I use other RAW converters (that’s fine they are all pretty much the same re basic adjustment controls), I would have liked to see a histogram during your presentation. That would be helpful to follow along. Good job describing why you did what you did.

  • Reply Jeg Meg September 9, 2019 at 7:11 pm

    Another great tutorial.

    I see you also have made a lot of tutorials for Lightroom.
    How do Affinity in Develop Persona compare to Lightroom or DxO?

    All of my RAW editing is done in Lightroom or DxO PL

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