Dodging & Burning Tips

21 May 2010

  • Use what ever works, tools, cardboard, hands, etc.
  • Unless the obvious is part of the print, work subtly, don’t let the viewer see your dodges and burns.
  • When using dodgers on a wire, and bend the wire so it goes up the light path before out of the print. This will help diffuse the light the runs along the path of the wire, helping to make it more invisible.
  • Try to follow natural lines in the print when dodging or burning.
  • Moving the dodger or burn item up and down the light path will help to diffuse and work the correction in to the print and make it look more natural.
  • Bleach may be a better alternative to dodging.
  • A foot switch will give you an extra hand.
  • With VC paper, you can dodge/burn at different filters, allowing you to show more detail in highlights or other areas.
  • Burning the sky in a bit will help enhance the ariel perspective, and give a greater realistic view.
  • Burning the edges and/or corners will help to keep the image contained and prevent it from “falling out”.
  • It may be easier to think in tones and f-stops when burning, rather than times. Though if you do use times, use percentages, as it’s easier to convert to larger images when the times comes.