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42 Messages

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882 Points

Sat, Jul 27, 2019 9:37 PM

Lightroom/Camera Raw: Shadow/Highlight White Balance Correction sliders

It would be extremely helpful if Adobe Camera Raw had a "Shadow White Balance Correction" slider that worked in concert with the Shadow slider. This would be helpful to correct the white balance where the Shadow tool has brightened the image without affecting the overall white balance of the image.

Example:
Here is an image with a heavily shadowed area. The "Shadow" slider effectively brightens the shadowed area, but since it's a sunny day, the shadows are very blue, which is accentuated by the shadow tool's effect:



Correcting the white balance for the shadows makes the areas of the image lit by sunlight too warm:


If there was a "Shadow White Balance Correction" slider, I could accomplish a similar effect to using a local adjustment brush to change the white balance in the shadowed area, but more precisely (and faster!)


Similarly, a "Highlight White Balance Correction" slider would be helpful to correct the white balance of bright areas of an image. Example: the interior of a house lit by incandescent light where the windows are bright and the light is much bluer outside. Correcting the white balance for the incandescent light will make the view through the windows extremely blue. Moving the "Highlight" slider to the left recovers the tones through the windows, but the white balance is very blue. A "Highlight White Balance Correction" could then correct for the blue shift in the areas where the "Highlight" slider is making the biggest changes.

Note: The "Split Toning" tool doesn't work for this acceptably to color correct shadows as the split toning affects all dark *tones* in the image equally, whereas the "Shadow" slider has the greatest effect in dark *AREAS* of the image, and thus brightens certain areas of the image more than others. (In the above example using Split Toning, the dark bumper of the car turns yellower, but the "912" text remains blue because it's a light tone.)
"Highlight White Balance Correction" and "Shadow White Balance Correction" sliders would be a very powerful tool for real-world, natural-light photojournalists.

9

Responses

Employee

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110 Messages

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2K Points

a year ago

Thanks for reaching out to us with the idea. I'll pass this feature request on to the team.

42 Messages

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882 Points

Upon further reflection, what we need is the areas affected by the shadow slider need to essentially create a "layer mask" for a separate white balance adjustment.

232 Messages

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4.1K Points

a year ago

Maybe helpful (or not!)
My workaround is to-
Create a 'reverse' gradient (that affects whole image)
Apply White Balance sliders,
Set the "Range Mask" to Luminance and limit the range (shadows, midtones, or highlights)

Champion

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5K Messages

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91.7K Points

I have a develop preset that does exactly this, so I can quickly adjust temp and tint for shadows.

42 Messages

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882 Points

Tried this, but it doesn't really address what I need. All this does is turn all the dark tones warmer, similar to what split toning does.

232 Messages

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4.1K Points

The Range Mask can selectively adjust tones.
My example starts with a B&W image, extreme +WB adjustment, and then limiting the mask- "Dark Tones" need not be adjusted if mask is selective.
John Ellis- Curious about your Presets!

42 Messages

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882 Points

I understand. But this does not address the "radius around dark tones" in which the Shadow slider works.

Champion

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3K Messages

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55.5K Points

a year ago

I think that the OP explained very well why that won't work, or at least won't give the same effect. A gradient with range mask will affect all darker tones, which is not exactly the same as what the Shadows slider does.

Johan W. Elzenga,

http://www.johanfoto.com

42 Messages

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882 Points

Exactly correct.

Champion

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2.1K Messages

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36.3K Points

Keep in mind the Shadow control affects ALL image areas that fall within the 'Shadow' tonal range. This is regardless of whether those areas are actual in the shadow region of the picture.

232 Messages

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4.1K Points

" range mask will affect all darker tones"
Not sure I agree with this!
The Luminance Range Mask has adjustable 'limit' sliders to allow the Gradient only on the limited tones.
See my example post also.

42 Messages

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882 Points

Apparently I should clarify: The "Shadow" slider to which I'm referring is on the "Basic" tab, NOT the "Tone Curve" tab. Johan is correct in that the "Shadow" slider on the "Basic" tab does NOT do a wholesale increase of dark tones. (If that was the case, then the same could be accomplished with a simple tone curve adjustment.) The shadow slider seems to increase tones while maintaining tonal contrast. Therefore, there is a "radius" in which the Shadow slider works that also affects brighter tones NEAR dark tones. It is in this entire area where the white balance needs to be adjusted, and is why using split toning or another method doesn't work properly.

42 Messages

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882 Points

"Keep in mind the Shadow control affects ALL image areas that fall within the 'Shadow' tonal range. This is regardless of whether those areas are actual in the shadow region of the picture." Perhaps, but *not to the same degree.* If what you say was true, then a simple curve adjustment would work the same as the Shadow slider on the Basic tab. But it doesn't.

Champion

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5K Messages

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91.7K Points

a year ago

"Upon further reflection, what we need is the areas affected by the shadow slider need to essentially create a "layer mask" for a separate white balance adjustment."

Good, this makes it much clearer what you're looking for ((to me, anyway -- I'm not as smart as others).

I experimented with the samples you posted, and it seems that more is going on with adjustment-brush version than just the white balance of the selected areas.   It appears there's higher contrast overall.

I'd be curious to experiment more -- can you upload the original along with the .xmp sidecars for the three versions?  In particular, I'm wondering if simulating what you're after in Photoshop would get close to your adjustment-brush example (i.e. making a gradient layer mask progressively selecting the shadows, then adjusting both tone and color balance using the layer mask).

42 Messages

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882 Points

That file is on an external hard drive. I'll post it later.

42 Messages

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882 Points

Here are links to the files:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/ky284qldq97ws2k/wdmp_190103_05864.NEF?dl=0
https://www.dropbox.com/s/8va976reo0tshnp/wdmp_190103_05864.xmp?dl=0
The .xmp file contains the different adjustments in the "snapshots" tab.

Champion

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1.6K Messages

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27.9K Points

Sorry, but this wouldn't work as you want. In your example, there are shadow tones in the image which aren't in the shade and which would also be included in a shadow white balance correction.

But i absolutely agree with you that Lr needs much more sophisticated masking and color correction tools. Unfortunately, i think we're going in the opposite direction these days...

Champion

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5K Messages

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91.7K Points

a year ago

Here's a screen recording that shows a simulation of the desired functionality using Photoshop. In LR, I applied Shadows = +50 to a photo, and then exported the original and modified photos as TIFFs. I opened before.tif and after.tif in Photoshop, computed the difference of the two photos, converted the difference to black and white, and then normalized the difference such that white represents the largest difference caused by Shadows and black represents no difference.

I then added a Color Balance adjustment layer to after.tif, using the difference as a layer mask. The balance adjustments have the greatest effect on pixels that were most modified by Shadows and no effect on pixels that weren't modified at all.  

https://www.dropbox.com/s/7loweem0vqbho0l/shadow-mask-white-balance-2019-07-30.mov?dl=0

42 Messages

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882 Points

YES. You're on the right track, John. I want a "slider" that accompanies the Shadow and the Highlight sliders (perhaps in a different tab as to not clutter up the "Basic" tab, perhaps) so that the white balance can be adjusted in areas affected by the Highlight and the Shadow sliders (rather than the color balance in photoshop, which is less effective).

Champion

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5K Messages

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91.7K Points

a year ago

I applied my simulation to your photo. Here's your final adjustment-brush version, but with the brush disabled and Shadows = +100 (i.e. with all your other adjustments and using the Shadows slider):



The shadows are blue, as expected.

Here's the simulated Photoshop version, where I adjusted the color balance of the tarmac near the yellow strip to be neutral:



And here's your adjustment-brush version for comparison:



The major differences I see:

- The number 912 is significantly darker in the Photoshop version, and the adjustment-brush version is more contrasty in the shadows, e.g. around the men.  This is because the brushed area has Exposure = 0.75, rather than increasing Shadows.

- The tire on the right is a little warmer in the Photoshop version, but not nearly as warm as in the version where you auto-white-balanced the shadows.  To my taste, it looks natural, since it's reflecting the warm light coming off the sunny tarmac in front. 

Finally, here's a version using the gradient filter with a range mask, based on the same version as input to Photoshop:



It's very similar to the Photoshop version. Though I had to experiment a fair bit with the range-mask parameters (Range 0/62, Smoothness 9, Temperature 47).

Based on the huge sample size I've played with (these two photos), I'd guess the range mask can get the same results as the shadow mask, though the shadow mask is a lot easier to use.

42 Messages

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882 Points

a year ago

"I'd guess the range mask can get the same results as the shadow mask, though the shadow mask is a lot easier to use."

Agreed. SPEED, EFFICIENCY, and EASE are paramount when editing several hundred images each day!

Champion

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2.1K Messages

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36.3K Points

a year ago

My test results with the CCPP using an in-camera -1.0 Exposure bracketed file match the 0 EV camera file very closely (see above post with table). This indicates the Shadows control uses additional image data (Ai) to determine the actual scene referred shadow areas. The Luminance Range Mask uses simple high and low limit sliders without any further intelligence.

The only downside I see to using the Shadow control mask for WB adjustment is that it's "setting dependent." In other words images with 0 Shadows setting will apply 0 Shadow WB correction. This can be corrected by using a separate Shadow control Mask with it's own slider that works with the Shadow WB Temp & Tint controls. You dial in the amount need to neutralize the shadow area with the corrected Temp & Tint settings.  I like it!

42 Messages

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882 Points

If I were Adobe, I'd make the "Shadow WB/Tint" controls "grayed out" until a Shadow adjustment is applied. Heck, get rid of the wonky "texture" slider that almost never does anything desirable and that might make some space for this feature :)

Champion

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1.6K Messages

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27.9K Points

Wes, what? Texture is incredibly useful for retouchers. Slide it into the negative and you have an amazing skin softener. Just because you don't use it, that doesn't mean nobody else does...

Champion

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3K Messages

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55.5K Points

I agree. Let's not change the subject, but Texture is incredibly useful to me. I think what Adobe should do is add a 'Shadows/Highlight' option to Range Mask.

Johan W. Elzenga,

http://www.johanfoto.com

42 Messages

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882 Points

Fair enough. I was being mildly facetious.

Champion

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2.1K Messages

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36.3K Points

I think what Adobe should do is add a 'Shadows/Highlight' option to Range Mask.
Shadow WB can be considered a local adjustment so that would make sense. However, the Range Mask tools are already complicated for most beginners and even some serious users. From my findings it appears simply using the a separate Shadow mask slider with Temp & Tint controls may be all that is needed. The Local controls can then be used to correct any remaining WB issues. If Adobe accepts this suggestion it will require more testing to determine the best implementation. Either way it would be a very useful addition.

53 Messages

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880 Points

7 months ago

I would use that too.