Dodging and Burning Photoshop Tutorial:

Here is a short tutorial going over the different techniques I use to dodge and burn my images in Adobe Photoshop. I hope you all enjoy it! If you have any questions feel free to leave them below.


  1. Michael, very cool stuff… quick question, what benefits do you find by using a transparent Soft-Light Layer and not 50% grey on that layer for Dodge/Burn and painting in additional color?

    • Thanks man, no benefits from a visual side. The grey really does not change anything. I feel like the reason its used is to make the changes more visual on the layer thumbnails. But since I always check the effect by turning the layer visibility on and off. The extra step of creating 50% grey becomes pointless in my workflow, so awhile ago I just stopped doing it.

      • thanks, I wasn’t sure if there was a different effect using a transparent vs. 50% grey layer when dodging, burning or painting color in.

  2. Thanks for the tutorial. I was looking for new ways to do this. I have been using a 50 gray layer but not sure if there is a way I can see where I’ve brushed (other than clicking on and off)…If there is a way will you let me know? :)

    • I think thats one of the reasons people use the grey layer, because its a bit easier to see the brush strokes on the thumbnail. Personally I find it to be an unnecessary step, I am not sure if there is an easier way to see the brush strokes on the thumbnail then using grey.

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