How I Adjusted an Underexposed Photo in Lightroom

One of the many things I’ve learned while on this photography journey is that some of my favorite photos could have been restored if I had just given them a chance in post processing. I’m talking about the photos that were underexposed by a stop or two and in some cases overexposed. Getting these incorrectly exposed images happened to me from time to time while I was on vacation, photographing my daughter and mostly in the beginning stages of learning how to shoot in manual mode. I would view my image and just delete it if it wasn’t perfectly exposed.  However, I’ve learned that even the best of the best photographers make adjustments to their images in post processing. This realization motivated me to keep pressing through.

Now, I just want to add that very early on in my journey I listened to an informative webinar from a nationally known photographer and one thing she said that I’ve never forgotten was to make it our goal to get it right IN CAMERA first – as often as possible. I never forgot that. She went on to mention that we shouldn’t rely on post processing such a Photoshop or Lightroom to fix what we didn’t get right at the shoot. In addition to that, she also mentions that by having a mindset of fixing it later would be doing our clients a disservice as well as our business as professionals a disservice. I couldn’t have agreed more. She got me.  At that stage of my journey I had little confidence in shooting manual let alone blending all the aperture and ISO stuff together.  Over the years I’ve made it a goal of mine to get it right in camera first.  I’ve been practicing with shooting in manual mode and prefer it these days. From time to time I’ll meter in a bright spot which will throw off the exposure but now I know there is a fix for that.

So, in this video I want to specifically show you how I took one of my favorite pictures (that I no longer delete) from a recent vacation and adjusted the exposure. Enjoy!