Deke’s Techniques 294: Mastering Exposure in Camera Raw

In this week’s free episode of Deke’s Techniques, Deke reveals not only the mysterious workings of the Camera Raw Exposure controls, but also the less inscrutable visage of his dear friend and fellow author James Williamson. While you may not have photos of James-by-lantern-light-at-Bonarroo-Music-Festival lying around, my guess is that you have something equivalent——a photo of a similarly beloved character shot in unusual lighting conditions that is perhaps an equal exposure challenge.

Here is what the photo Deke’s working on looked like originally: 

In the movie, you’ll see how Deke approaches processing this in Camera Raw, most notably, how he handles the puzzling Exposure slider. While it seems as though this slider represents the equivalent behavior of setting exposure in camera, it doesn’t, exactly. 

Nonetheless, by the end of the free video, Deke will have exposed the raw, rugged, and, in this case, completely unwashed handsomeness that is James after four days of plus-100 degree camping: 

You’ll note that the process also "exposes" quite a bit of noise. For members of, Deke’s got an exclusive technique this week in which he shows you how to smooth out that noise, whilst still retaining detail. As you can see, James is rendered smooth and sharp, as befits such a fine (if momentarily unwashed) Southern gentleman: 

For members, you can click below to watch the movie at Not a member? You can sign up for a free week at and enjoy not only this movie but literally thousands of others (including the entire collection of Deke’s Techniques). 

Next entry:Russell Brown’s Adobe Master Class (ADIM) Returns to Boulder, and Deke returns to ADIM

Previous entry:Deke’s Techniques 292: Enlarging a Low-Res Photograph in Photoshop


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