Login or Join Now

Upload your photos, chat, win prizes and much more

Remember Me

Can't Access your Account?

New to ePHOTOzine? Join ePHOTOzine for free!

Dodge, burn and sponge tools

Join Now

Join ePHOTOzine, the friendliest photography community.

Upload photos, chat with photographers, win prizes and much more for free!

50% OFF new PortraitPro 12, plus EXTRA 5% OFF code EPHZROS414
Category: Specialist

Dodge, burn and sponge tools - A guide to Photoshop's Dodge, Burn and Sponge tools

Print Article Add Comment Add CommentJargon Buster: Off Jargon Buster: Off

Words & Pictures Barry Beckham/David Rowley

The dodge and burn tools (shortcut O) perform a similar function to their darkroom namesake and are ideal for localised tonal control. Also under this menu you will find the sponge tool which can be used to alter the saturation of local areas in your image.

Photoshop 6 displays the options for the dodge and burn tools under the menu bar when the tool is selected - if you are using Photoshop 5 double click on the the icon in the tool box to call up the options palette. Photoshop sets the exposure default for these tool at 50%. You will need to reduce this figure to around 10% or less because much like the darkroom technique you need to gradually build up these effects.

You can also choose which tonal areas you want to work on by selecting shadows midtones and highlights from the drop down menu together with the brush size.

The burn tool lets you darken an area of an image, and works in the same ways as the dodge tool as shown above.

The sponge tool can either be used to desaturate, which remove saturation and contrast from an image (see above), or you can choose to boost the saturation saturate and add contrasts (see below). These options can be found in the mode drop down menu. Start with the pressure set at around 10% and slowly build up the effect.
With all these tools a subtle approach will give the best results and as with many of the Photoshop tools you may find you get better results with the image greatly enlarged.


Explore More

Photographing The Night Sky With Your Nikon Camera

Star Photography With Your Nikon Camera

Here are some top tips for having a go a night sky photograp...

Quick Food Photography Tips

Food Photography

What better time to try a spot of food photography than Chri...

Playing With White Balance To Create Interesting Images

Get Creative With Colour Balance

You don't always have to play by the rules when you're takin...

Join ePHOTOzine and remove these ads.


There are no comments here! Be the first!
- Original Poster Comments
- Your Posts

Add a Comment

You must be a member to leave a comment

Remember me:
Un-tick this box if you want to login each time you visit.