Photoshop Brightness and Contrast
A small tweak to brightness (also known as image density) and contrast can make a dull image spring to life - and it's so easy to do!
Photoshop has several ways to adjust brightness and contrast and each have their own merits. There's the 'brightness and contrast' tool which is the most basic, the 'Levels' tool which gives you control of highlights, mid-tones and shadow areas. And the 'Curves' tool which is the most flexible.
In this video I'll use one dark image and another bright one to introduce you to all three, demonstrate what they do and show you where to find them.
There's no right or wrong way to change brightness and contrast, it's up to you to find the method you prefer and which gives you the result you want.
Now, this isn't a magic wand 'fix-all'. True it will help you out of trouble when things go wrong, but still no substitute for getting your exposure correct in the first place. A correctly exposed image file is the best starting point and a tweak to brightness and contrast can make it sing.
Despite having been using Lightroom for some years 7 Steps to Perfect Pictures has helped a lot with regards to the use of brushes, which I had avoided... and was also helpful concerning the settings/parts of Lightroom that I don't use because I didn't see any difference using them - same as Mike!