Quick Way to Dodge and Burn

There are many methods and reasons behind dodging and burning method for photography. Some use it for retouching and some for adding a more punchy and contrasty look. While those are the only reasons to use dodging and burning, those seem to be the more popular uses out of the many. Interested in seeing a quick and easy way of dodging and burning to add some stronger contrast to your work?

This method shouldn’t be used for every area or even every photo, but it works when you need to add more contrast to a section of the image. Antti Karppinen shows his method of quickly adding contrast with dodging and burning in his photos to clothing and accessories. It does take a few steps, but overall the process is simple and quick to do. Want to make it even quicker? Create your own action of this process and with a click of a button, the layer can be set up and ready to paint in what areas you wish to add this effect too. Not sure how to create an action in Photoshop, jump over to this article to see how it's done.

Like I said before, this shouldn't be used for every photo or the entire photo. However, any method that I can use which saves me time in my workflow is greatly appreciated. There are many different methods of adding a dodge and burn layer to your image for added effects, which is your favorite method?

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I saw this trick first demonstrated a few years ago by Calvin Hollywood from Germany. It is quite effective to bring more emphasis on details. I use it quite often. Just be careful not to overdo it! Nice reminder.

Dan Lubbers's picture

Way too many steps. Add a curves layer, adjust it to the desired contrast and mask in. I wouldn't even consider this "trick" a Dodge and Burn adjustment.