Hey hey!!!  Today I wanted to take you on a little walk through showing how I edited an image in Lightroom to give it a more dramatic looking sky and a bit more of a glowy sun.


The most important thing to keep in mind for an edit like this is to expose for the highlights in the image when you’re shooting.

Simply put, that means I made sure I could see detail in whatever was brightest in my image when I captured it on the camera. No detail I wanted to see in the final image would be blown out.

SOOC 1/320, f/2.5, iso 100 taken on Sony A7III at 35mm

To ensure this, I usually have my blinkies, zebra stripes, whatever it is you want to call them….those black and white lines or flahing red/black colors you see on the back of your camera TURNED ON when you’re reviewing your images.


You can usually cycle through the display options for the back of your camera to show you a number of different ways to view your images and the information captured (histogram, settings, etc)


Next, I usually bring up the exposure of the image until the exposure of my subjects is where I would like it to be.  This usually means the sky turns to white.

editing dramatic skies using lightroom brushes

exposure +2.25

Then I edit the picture as usual.

editing dramatic skies using lightroom brushes

Hand edit in Lightoom to bring out my favorite tones and colors.

THEN I bring in a graduated filter over the sky…

editing dramatic skies using lightroom brushes

Graduated filter for the sky

and sometimes even add a radial filter if I’d like to bring out some sunshine!

editing dramatic skies using lightroom brushes

Radial filter for glowy sunshine.

Watch the video below to see how I bring it all together and you can download a couple of my favorite brushes for bringing out the sky and sun here.


Join me in my editing course Embracing the Storm here.