May 7, 2020

Curves

The Curves tool in Afterlight gives you very precise control over the tonal range of colors in your photos! Here’s a quick little guide on how it works!

Adjusting the Midtones

Let's start with the midtones. Adding a point and adjusting in the center affects the overall mid tones of the image, which is a great alternative to the brightness tool with more control. Just tap to add a point and lift it, moving diagonally and keeping it in the center of the line. If you want to remove the point, just grab it and swipe it out of the curve area.

Adjusting the Shadows

Add and move a point in the lower left area to adjust the shadows of the image, creating a nice faded look or deep contrast.

Adjusting the Highlights

Adding a point to the upper right section represents the highlights, the bright whites. Reducing them by dropping the line creates a nice muted tone to your highlights, while of course raising it gives you nice and bright whites.

Finally, mix some color adjustments in there

Now you'll notice to the left of the grid are color options. RGB is essentially moving all these points at once to keep the coloring consistent, resulting in overall changes to the lighting. Now you can apply what you've learned to the colors to affect those in interesting ways. With how powerful the tool can be, we'll often only use Curves to edit our photos!
Here's an edit using only curves, and getting every channel involved. It's best to simply play around with it based on your photo once you get a feel for how the grid works. Give mixing colors a try! Raise the blue and green shadows for a nice teal, or decrease the blues while increasing the reds in the mids for some nice warm tones.

Or.... this

Just whatever you do.... don't do this... unless you really want to.