How to Edit Drone Photos Like a Pro in Adobe Lightroom | Edin Chavez | Skillshare

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How to Edit Drone Photos Like a Pro in Adobe Lightroom

teacher avatar Edin Chavez, Changing the world one photo at a time.

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

7 Lessons (25m)
    • 1. Intro

    • 2. Camera Settings And Format

    • 3. How to Keep The Develop Module Organized

    • 4. The Basic Panel

    • 5. Lens Corrections

    • 6. Details

    • 7. Tone Curb

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About This Class

In this class, we will get into editing drone images without over-doing it. We will cover camera settings, and dive deep inside of Adobe Lightroom to finish off your epic creations. 

This course is for anyone from beginners to pros. I use these techniques to edit all my drone images. 

Follow this course and start editing drone images like the pros do. 

Meet Your Teacher

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Edin Chavez

Changing the world one photo at a time.


I am a Commercial Photographer based out of Miami Beach Florida. Some of my clients include Nikon, National Geographic, Corona, iHeart Radio, Volvo, Curtis Stone, Andrew Zimmern...

I have had the honor and pleasure to work with some incredible people in the industry and my love for the art continues to grow. I teach photography workshops across the glove and share what I know with others. 

Thanks to Skillshare now I can help more people across the glove with one platform.  I will be posting new classes often. Please come back and check them out. 

Ohh yea I also love to hang out of helicopters with my camera on hand to get new perspectives. 

You can look at my Portfolio keep up with my latest photo adventures on my blog. ... See full profile

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1. Intro: What's up, guys eating here and in this course, we're going to learn how to edit Drum photos were going to cover camera settings, and we're going to dive deep inside a lie room and show you guys how Don't edit this beautiful images without over doing it. Click the link below and I'll catch you in the other side. 2. Camera Settings And Format: What's up, guys eating here. And in this lesson, we're going to learn how to edit drone images like a pro. Now I should with a maverick pro. Um advocare Any phantom pro. Now this particular image is shot with a maverick air. Now, please keep in mind that whether you shoot a maverick, a deejay, magic, pro Air or a phantom or even any other camera, this will apply to those two. Any All those drones on Lee because we're shooting a draw Image a d N g, which is what you want to be shooting. Now, let me explain what I've done here. I shall decide 1 500 of a second F 22 I s 0 100 now the f stop. It's fixed on this drones. However, I do shoot in manual mode, which gives me control of my shutter speed and my I s o. Now, when you're shooting any sort of drone image, you want to make sure your eyes so is always at 100. Because Jones have a very small sensor and they tend to should very grainy images. You can help that by maintaining your eyes. So at 100 Now the shutter speed is going to depend on how bright it is outside or how dark it is outside and about the beach. It's really, really bright, so I have to raise my shutter speed in 1 500 off a second seems to work for this image, not try to not shoot anything on automatic as manual more gives you more control off your image. This is a DMG file, and what that basically means is a raw file gives you a lot more information to pull from when you edit. Then a J pig would so try to do your settings. Change them to ah de n G, which is the raw it's It's a raw images. Just what D. J calls him a DMG file. Always make sure you're shooting a rock, injured drones and make sure that you're always shooting in manual mode, that where you have more control of your entire image. So that being said, let's get started with the edit 3. How to Keep The Develop Module Organized: here we have our develop module and we have a bunch of panels over here now, in your computer, this might all look open. However, I like to keep mine nice and tight. How you can do this is your right Click on any of this panels and you're going to click solo more so if I own, check Sola more. This is what yours might possibly look like. Now you have a lot of things going on here that could possibly confuse you. And it just looks messy and on organized. So if you right click and then check Sola mode that will compress all of the panels you are not using. So if you come here to use the detail, you click on the detail and it will automatically close the rest. Now, I like to keep my stuff really nice and tidy really organized, and this is a way that helps me do that. Now, next thing we want to do here is we want to go to the basic panel. In my opinion, the basic panel is the most important panel in all off light room. This gives you great control of your image and you can get about 90% off your edit done within the basic panel. Now, keep in mind the basic panel is not the only panel here. However, I do believe is one of the most powerful panels in light room, and you can get most of your head. It done, if not all of your edit done within this panel. 4. The Basic Panel: first thing I want to do right of the bat. I want to open up my shadows. I want to come to about 60% now. What that does that just makes me look at the water a little more in depth. You can see that the water here opens up all these dark spots Open up, and it just brings out the image a little more to the viewer. Next thing I want to do is I want to bring down my highlights. Now you can bring him all the way down all the way up. I usually like to bring him down And let me tell you why. If you can see the water over here by bringing them down, and you can start to see this detail so supposed to the image being washed out, you can actually see a lot of the detail in this water, so usually bring the the highlights down to the point where you can actually see the most detail in your brightest parts. If it's the sky, bring it down just enough where you can start to see all of the detail in this particular image, I have to bring it all the way down in order for me to see all of the detail in the brightest part of this image, which is this wave right here. So if I bring it up, as you can see, kind of starts to wash away. But if I bring it all the way down, it gives me a lot more detail in this water. And that's the reason that I want to bring my highlights all the way down in this particular image. Be mindful off that when you're editing your particular image. Next thing I want to do is I want to come up here to the contrast slider. And here I just want to come up. Maybe about ah 30 or a between 30 and 50 is pretty good and what this does. As you can see, I'll reset the contrast off double click on the contrast that resets it on it. Just it's just flat without contrast, right? It doesn't look good. So if I bring this up to about a 40 look how nice it is. It just kind of makes it look really right. So let me reset that double click. On contrast, bring it up 30 to 40 50. You could even go 50 if you want. Um, I think 40 looks good for this particular image. At least right now, we can always come back to it. Everyone, But I think that looks really nice. Like I said, it just makes it look, really. It makes it gives it that that extra um, it just doesn't look flat anymore. It actually looks like a dimensional, beautiful image. Next thing I like to do is I want to come to my presence panel over here, and you hear you have a four sliders. You have the clarity, de Hayes, the vibrance and the saturation. Now let me get rid of the Hayes right away. You'll never use the D hace unless it's a really foggy photo just somewhere full of haste. And you want to take that off. I particularly rarely used this slider almost never. Especially in this image. Now the clarity, this is entirely up to taste. Some people like to bring it down. And like this soft images, I particularly do not like this. Look now, on the same tone, some people like to go all the way up on the clarity and make this kind off kind of hdr feel to this image kind of weird to too much. In my opinion, it's too much. It doesn't look riel. And to be honest, I like to keep my clarity at zero. If you do like clarity of you want a little bit of this punch, then you can always bring it up just a tad 15 to 20. However, I like to keep it at zero. Next thing we have is the vibrance and the saturation. Now the saturation is his lighter. I like to stay away from only for one reason because you've you're just starting out and you don't know what you're doing. You can easily get carried away with the saturation. You can get really, really color happy and destroy your image. And you won't realize this until you've been doing this enough where you know if something is oversaturated or just enough to make the image look just right. I'm a very colorful guy. I see everything in color and I like to make sure that my images are nice and colorful. That being said, I do not like to use the saturation slider at all. I always leave it at zero. How I like to make my images pop with color is with the vibrance slider. Now this lighter is really, really cool. It can bring your images to life, but bring in the color of just the vibrance up just a bit, you know, just makes it enough colorful enough. But you cannot destroy the image with vibrance. I mean, just certainly can if you go all the way up. But if you just bring it up enough, let me reset it so you can see if you just bring it up enough. It just gives it enough vibrance where it just looks just right, just looks pleasing to the eye. Now, in that same scenario, if you're a person that doesn't like color doesn't love color all that much, you can just bring the vibrance out. And as you can see, this gives that retro kind of seventies look which still a very beautiful image. It still looks really, really, really, really good. And you can get this accomplished without ever, ever touching the saturation slider. So I reset the vibrance, and like I said, I'm a colorful guy, so I bring this up to maybe like a 30 and that looks really nice. I can't even bring it out to like a 35. As you can see, it's colorful enough. It looks good. It doesn't look over done. It looks punchy. You can see the detail in this water. You can see the detail in the beach. You can see everything really, really, really nice. Ah, and that's basically what you can do in the basic panel. Now, here you also have your white balance. Now I should everything in my drones in automatic white balance that can usually that usually gets the job done for you automatically, so you don't have to worry about the sliders. Now, if you do, if your images a little cool or a little hot meaning blue or yellow, you can adjust the temperature. Here, let me show you. Did you bring it down and makes it cooler and in the same tone If you bring it up, it just makes it warmer now, but nothing wrong with both of these. Some people, like Teoh, make their images look really, really cool. Cool us and cold or make him look really, really hot. Hot us and warm However, I'm more of a realistic guy. I like my stuff to kind of look, look more realize, supposed to which this doesn't look back. This doesn't look better. All actually, this looks really, really nice. However, I'll reset that. And I think I think just I was before looks really good. I can't even warm it up a little bit. I remember when you're warming it up in this scenario, this will warm up your beach, your yellows. Ah, and it will kind of take away from the blues from the blues, the greens, the cold colors, the cool colors. It will detract from him because it's trying to warm up the entire image. So I'll reset the temperature. That's how he shot it. That's how I like it. So in this particular image, I will not mess around with the temperature. That being said, if you want you like to go either to the cool side or the warm side, you can certainly do so play around with it. Just be careful not to overdo it, such as that, or overdo it, such as that if you do, do not panic. Double click your temperature. Any of these words you can double click on and it will reset your slider. And that is the basic panel. Now let's see what how far we've gone with only the basic panel will presser Waikiki, and there's before and after. As you can see, here's a flat image, and with our basic panel just doing some slight tweaks, we already have a very, very, very powerful image. 5. Lens Corrections: after the basic paddle. Next thing I would like to do is I like to come to lens Corrections. Now, here you have to check marks. You have removed chromatic aberration, which is something I always keep checking all of my photos. If you want to learn a little more about chromatic aberration, you can google it. It will give you Ah, the exact definition, how I can more easily explain it, especially for those starting out. Chromatic aberration is happens in a lot of photos, especially when the sun is shining directly on something. You can see this red and blue or green lines kind of surrounding your your image. However, on this particular image, you cannot see chromatic aberration at all. But I like to keep this check on Lee because I like to get in the habit of removing chromatic aberration from all of my images. I wish we could see it more in this image so I could show you what I was talking about. However, do a quick Google search and he will explain exactly what chromatic aberration is now enabling profile. Corrections is really important. What this does is this on warps your image As you can see, the images worked here. It only works it. Now be mindful that if you're just starting out sometimes this will be great out. So the when you check that it won't pick up the the lancer the camera that you shot this with. So you'll manually have to choose it. And from that point forward, light room will remember that now, this is in some cases, not all cases. So always just enable profile corrections. I mean, if you like to work, but if you don't, then you can leave it unchecked. But that way your images on worked and just be mindful off the lens you are using make sure this is in some other weird camera. Make sure it's on the camera you actually used because this software light room is calibrated for this particular warp that this lens actually creates on your image. Now, down here is a distortion level. So if your images really, really distorted, you can, um you can correct that here, not double click, and it will come back to normal Now, guys, I wouldn't suggest using this distortion too much. I think light room does really, really nice job in creating the own warping itself, so don't get too carried away. This this software is calibrated with all of this cameras to make the right corrections for you. That way you don't have to overthink it. That being said, if you do have a little extra work or extra distortion, this is a nice way to correct it. We'll double click because we don't need to do anything, and that is the lens correction panel. 6. Details: now after my lens corrections. I like to come up here to my detail panel that the detail panel is really, really cool because I can actually sharpen up my entire image. The thing about drone images The sensors are so tiny the cameras are so tiny and so small, so they do have a little bit off softness to them. Most of these drone images can look a little bit soft. Look at this Sea lions, for example. They look a little soft. They don't look like 100% sharp or in focus, even though they are in focus. That just looks off. And this is where sharpening tool comes in handy. I just want to bring it up maybe, Ah, like a 60 And you can go all the way up. As you can see, if you come all the way up, it brings a lot of grain in the photo. However, in this image of you, zoom out all these green doesn't really matter Onley because there is so much texture here in this water. In this beach we have all the sea lions. We have all these things going on. So your eyes immediately trying to to go to the water trying to fear out with this animals are so it's not really focusing on the grain. So you can do that in images like this. However you don't need to. You can just be tasteful with it. And maybe like a 50 of 50 works really, really nice. You can see it makes everything look nice and sharp, and it doesn't make it your image super grainy or grainy at all, for that matter. Now, if you don't really know what you're doing or you're just starting out, you can pressure option key. Hold it down in in your masking slider. Here, what is white is being sharpened and what is black is staying the same. So as you can see, whoever sharp sea lions, water, everything else and everything else is the same. Now, if you can also do this without holding the option key. And the best way to tell is by looking at this at this sand, let me show you see how the sound looks soft and then come down and it starts to look a little better now. As I said before, I'm going to keep my masking all the way down. I want to sharpen the entire image, and it doesn't really affect this image because there's so much going on. I can't I can't tell you enough how important that is. There's a lot going on, so I don't really need to toe worry about all this extra noise on the image that brings me to noise reduction. Most reduction is he very touches lighter, a swell on. Lee used this when there's a lot of noise in your image in when you can actually tell on images not as busy as this. Why? Because if you get care away, let me put the noise reduction all the way up. If you could care away, you start to see patterns that this software creates to try to correct. For all the noise in the image now, you can't really tell in an image site. There's because again, it's busy, however, reviewer to export this is a J pick than zoom in on it. It would look really, really weird, so I like to ah, keep my noise reduction all the way down, especially with an image like this and most aerial images, you don't really need to touch. No, it's reduction, especially when shooting from the sky point aiming down. You're usually going to get a really busy image, busy as in people walking by or in this case, we have the waves of water, the sea lions. So the image is busy enough where my eyes will never, ever, ever wonder if the images grainy or not. My eye and my mind are trying to take all of his beauty and not the actual annoys. So be careful with the noise reduction guys. I would I would keep this off if you're undoubtable and you want to just make sure sharp give it like a like a 10. You know, just a nice, subtle touch that will keep you pretty safe. And that guy's is the detail panel. 7. Tone Curb: now after detail panel. We're pretty much done with this image. Let me press the Y key so you can see before and after. So there's before and there's after and that I think that photo looks really, really good. It doesn't look overdone. It looks just right. This image looks a little bit flat, and as you can see here, we're bringing out all the colors and everything just looks nice and tight and finished. However, if you want to finish it off just really, really nice and bring the image to the next level, we're going to come to our tone curb Now, talk tone curve can be really, really tricky If you press the stalker right here. This will make you, um, make the tone curve. Do it manually. So you can. You have complete control off everything, and everything is manual. However, if you're just starting out, it's a really easy way to destroy your image. As I've just done here. Now, I don't like to do that. Keep it at linear. Unless you do, you know what you're doing. You can make this subtle adjustments here by doing a custom, and that looks really, really really good, right? If you're comfortable with it, do it custom doing manual and just make this little nice as make those subtle adjustments and be done with it. However, if you're just starting out and you're not too comfortable, I would recommend you keep this only senior now a leaner. You have more sliders that you can actually do are supposed to the the actual curve. However, you can do the curve manually and make it look really, really, really nice. Not let me reset thes and let's walk through this together. So here we have our highlights that if you bring up the highlights so more, it makes it look wider. If you bring it down, it just makes it look flatter. I think the highlights look fine. I don't think you need to do anything more to the highlights. Remember, the highlights are usually for your brightest spot of the image. In this case, it's the water. In your case, it might be the sky. It might also be the water, but just remember, the highlights are for the brightest spot of the image, and that's the way to control it. Here we have the lights as you can see you can bring the lights up or bring him down. If you break him down, it makes image looks a little flat. If you bring it up, it makes a pop. Just how much more so remember, subtle changes. Maybe, like a plus 20. That looks really good. And again, I'm looking at the brightest part of the image, making sure that I don't blow it out. So if I go all the way up, it'll be blown out. But if I come right about there, I can still get all my detail, and it looks just a little bit brighter. It's a little bit more punchy. It just looks a little cleaner, a little bit better. That's the lights. Now let's come toward darks are darks. You can bring him out and then, like animals, your image look flat or you can bring him down attack and look at that. It just tightens the image up. It just brings it together. It makes it look realistic. It brings that punch, the punching. Is that real nous into it. It just makes it look so that's the darks. I think a minus 19 minus 20 looks really really nice. Ah, and again I'm looking at the dark spots such as the water, the darks off the water. But I think that looks really, really good. The shadows. Here you can open them up again, make your image look flat and dull. You can close the shadows, making your water disappear in this particular image. Don't do anything to it. I think it looks really, really good almost in any image when he comes to the tone curve. I wouldn't touch the shadows. I would just leave it, Um, again, You just want to make this image a little bit puncher a little bit better, and that guy's is a nice way to finish up your image. Now limit president before and after there's before and there's after, and I think that's a completed image. How close are that? Now? You can always come back to any of your settings and tweak him up as you see fit. However, if you're comfortable with the final image, just leave it and go with it. Remember, it's better to under do it than overdo it. If you overdo an image, you can get care away and it starts to look really, really, really fake. Always come down to your to your image. Press the Y key to check before and after and come down here and you can see ah left the right split. So here's what we started with. Ah, flat, dull, raw image. Here's what we finished with a beautiful, colorful, punchy image. Now you can always come back here again. You have top to bottom of your ice is better this way That looks really nice. Or the bottom is obviously the after the top is before, Click on that again. If you like the top to bottom split, there's before and after. I particularly like to look at my images like this. This is before and this is after. And that said, guys, as you can see, take your time, do subtle changes to small tweaks. And I just basically showed you doing most important panels e to make the most impact, and that's how you add it all off my drone images. That's a guys, thank you for watching, and I'll catch you guys on the next one