Image Makeover Using LUTs

December 19

5 min. to read

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An “Image Makeover” using LUTs was applied to a Skylum FB fan's images.

The Challenge

Followers of our Skylum Photography Facebook group page were asked to post an image that they would like to have as an “Image Makeover” using LUTs with Luminar 2018. There were some great responses, but this image really stood out, especially since it is the Holiday Season.

The Image

David Garbutt is the photographer who took this image of a delightful winter scene with snow falling, highlighted by the streetlamp and holiday lights on a quaint cottage with a lit tree in the background.

Image Makeover Using LUTs Image1Original image by © David Garbutt

The Image Makeover Process

Removing distracting elements

Let’s begin by opening the image in Luminar 2018. (If any cropping, noise reduction, erasing or cloning needs to be done, it’s best to take care of it during the beginning of your workflow.)

In this case, the composition is really nice with the road leading the viewer’s eye to the house and then to the tree and falling snow. We won’t need to crop, however, let’s remove the car with the taillights, since it doesn’t add anything to this photo and it is a bit distracting.

By using Luminar’s erase tool, we can paint the area that we want to erase, and press Done when finished.

Image Makeover Using LUTs Image2Using the erase tool to remove taillights

Image Makeover Using LUTs Image3After using the erase tool

Bringing out the detail

By adding an Adjustment Layer (click on the plus sign under the Histogram), you can add filters or presets without affecting the changes you made previously. In this case, we can bring up the details slightly in the shadow areas by choosing the Develop module and move up the Shadows slider to the right. Making a few other adjustments such as adding add a bit more Contrast and Clarity will help to sharpen the image.

Image Makeover Using LUTs Image4Adding an Adjustment Layer with the Develop module

Adding different color grading

Now that we’ve made a few adjustments to David’s image, it’s time to add another adjustment layer and choose LUT Mapping. LUTs (or Lookup Tables) enable us to have endless possibilities to transform the color and tone in our images. You can find LUTs available on the internet (free or paid) and Skylum provides some LUTs that are built into Luminar as well as on the Luminar Get More page.

This first one is a LUT that comes with Luminar 2018 in the selection from the dropdown menu called Genius. With the more muted colors and flat contrast, it gives this image an old world, vintage feel.

Image Makeover Using LUTs Image5LUT - Genius

The next two LUTs were downloaded from the Skylum webpage. You can find LUTs and presets available to download here .

Image Makeover Using LUTs Image6Skylum website page with Presets and LUTs for Luminar 2018

The blue tones in the LUT give the overall image a much more cool, wintery look and feel.

Image Makeover Using LUTs

Converting this color image to black & white adds a dramatic, moody affect.

Image Makeover Using LUTs

The Conclusion

Being able to experiment quickly and easily with LUTs to get a look and feel to your images that suits the moment is one of most powerful features of Luminar. It literally takes a few seconds to apply LUTs and to see the results. Try using LUTs on your own images and share them with us on the Skylum Photography Facebook page. We’d love to see your results!

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Written by

Laurie Rubin

award-winning photographer specializing in wildlife and nature photography

Her career includes working for some of the most recognized photo software companies in the world as an Education Manager and Mentor. Her work has been displayed in the Smithsonian and published in books and magazines. Besides her love for wildlife and zoo photography, she is also a licensed drone pilot who enjoys photographing the world from above.

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