Spit Tone Test 1

Split Toning in Lightroom

I read an interesting article on dPS (Digital Photography School) today about using the split toning tool in Lightroom.  It caught my eye, because that’s one of the keys of Lightroom that I haven’t figured out yet.  DPS’s article cleared that up for me, especially after playing around with it on a few photos.

For the first test and above photo, I used both the shadow and highlight tool to create very blue cast to the photo, which was taken in Pennsylvania’s Bald Eagle State Park.  I wasn’t quite sold on split toning with this photo, but I kept playing around.  For reference, here’s the original below.

Lightroom Test 1 original

Next, I decided to use this photo and see what I could do with some minor adjustments and contrasting colors with split toning.

Split Toning Test 2

For reference, here are the settings I used in Lightroom in the screenshot below.

split tone screenshot 1

I rather like the results I got, but I read the dPS article further, which was written by Pete DeMarco, by the way, and had an a ha moment.  Before that, though, here’s the original for the tree and flowers photo.

Split Tone Test 2 Original

Now for that A HA! moment I promised.  I read DeMarco’s article further, and he usually uses either the highlight part OR the shadow part, but usually not both.  DUH!!! I was using both.  The results for me were gaudy, especially with the lake photo.

Ok, I can do this.  Here’s my photo using just the Highlights sliders.  It’s crane in a junkyard, and I’m using a magenta cast, which DeMarco uses a lot, so I wanted to see what the results were like for myself.

Use highlights if your photo is bright, such as the sun in the original below, according to DeMarco’s advice.

Split Tone Test 3 Original

If your photo is dark, he suggests using the Shhadows sliders if a photo is dark.  Here’s the original photo of a chicken I took at a local farm.  It’s darkish.

Split Tone Test 4 Original

Here’s what happened when I used the Shadows slider with a blue cast.

Split Tone Test 4 Shadows

Funky chicken!

This split toning thing for is going to take some practice, and that’s fine!  I like learning new post-processing tips and tricks.  I encourage you to read the entire article and learn more about split toning on dPS.  They have some stuff over there.



3 thoughts on “Split Toning in Lightroom

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