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The Three Photo Effects in Luminar You’ll Fall in Love With

Category: Stock Photos

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Every image, in every webpage you work on, should be flawless in terms of its quality, and its ability to fit with the concept or idea behind the page. An image should also fit in contextually with the accompanying text.

These considerations, and how cleverly you apply them, can make or break user perception of your website.

Images have three super-important roles to play:

  • They help us to better understand something.
  • They teach us how to use something, and;
  • They show us how something is done.


When you are tasked with building a more indie, artsy, or outside-the-envelope project, the images you use can take on an entirely new meaning. They could represent a departure from the norm, be used to establish a context, or help to tell a story.

Images are always an important part of your design work. To make them suitable for the task at hand, they often require a certain degree of processing before you feel comfortable using them. With that in mind, we’ve selected 3 photo effects in Luminar, (the only Mac photo editor that adapts to your style and skill level) that we are sure you’ll fall in love with.

1. Work with Presets

Presets offer the simplest way to give a web image a certain “wow” effect. They can, for example, be used to make a photo appear classic or edgy, or give it an ethereal quality.

This video gives a brief presentation on the use and power of presets in Luminar.

Pre-defined Presets include those created by professional photographers and by the Macphun team. You can also create your own. The pre-defined presets have been organized into categories, including:

Basic – used to add clarity, intensify colors, and produce other subtle changes.

Street – used to bring out detail, or add contrast; they work particularly well with street scenes.

Outdoor – used when outdoor lighting effects need to be changed to improve skies, add detail to dark areas, or add contrast.

Portrait – enable you to smooth skin tones and/or add color or warmth to a subject.


How it’s possible to transform an image using different presets in Luminar.

Travel – often used to evoke a mood.

Dramatic – Using these presets can give an image a dramatic flair. A variety of looks are possible, ranging from rich colors and high-contrast tones, to soft focus and desaturated colors.

Presets are a great help to beginners, but while a given preset may work wonders for one image, it may not do the same for another. A Preset is just a starting point however; it can easily be modified using Luminar’s selection of filters.

2. Add Filters

Image filters offer a variety of opportunities to create images that can make your design stand out.

The Adjustable Gradient Filter

This filter enables you make selective modifications to an image by working with 2 different (and adjustable) parts of the image to adjust its contrast, exposure, vibrancy, and warmth. This filter is especially suited for adjusting outdoors photos that feature lots of sky.


        A snapshot of what it’s like to be photo editing in Luminar’s work environment.  

  • Contrast controls (sliders) enables you to modify the contrast in two separate parts of an image (top and bottom).
  • The Vibrance slider allows you to increase the strength of less vibrant colors, or lessen the strength of more vibrant colors.
  • The Warmth slider can be used to add warmth to an image, or make it appear cooler.
  • A Shift option is available to move the transition point between adjustments. The default setting is centered top-to-bottom.

Advanced Contrast and Other Useful Filters

The Advanced Contrast Filters allows you to fine-tune the tonal content of an image. Six separate slider controls are used to adjust an image’s highlights, mid-tones, and shadows.

Additional filters Luminar makes available include Black and White Conversion and Bi Color Toning; Color Contrast, Balance, Contrast, and Temperature; Fog and Dehaze; Foliage Enhancer and Golden Hour (for sunrise/sunset), etc.

3. Restore Vintage Photos

Photo Restoration provides the third photo effect you’ll genuinely love. This popular feature allows you to use vintage photos of seemingly subpar quality in your web design, or for a personal project.

For example:


        Errors/flaws in this old photo have been fixed and masterfully managed.

  • Old photographs can be heartwarming, but they can also be heartbreaking if they’ve become damaged. Sometimes, the damage is beyond repair; but damage due to splotches, creases, and tears can often be minimized, or even eliminated. Of the many photo-editing tools Luminar offers, the best one for restoring a damaged photo is the Clone Stamp.
  • The Clone Stamp allows you to copy an undamaged area in a photo and use it to replace a damaged area.
  • You can also use filters, presets, and color characteristics to restore a photo to, or close to, its former glory. Filters can give you the maximum amount of control when restoring a photo, since you can adjust various parameters to achieve precisely what you’re looking for.
  • Presets can provide a quicker way by giving you a good starting point, plus the ability to adjust the photo until you achieve something to your liking. Color adjustments are appropriate when restoration primarily involves adjusting temperature, tint, and other subtleties.

Why Luminar Is the Best Image Editor for the Mac User

Matt Granger, a world-class photographer and educator may have said it best.

“Finally, a creative editing software that has an intuitive layout that is so simple to use and helps me create unique looking images. Luminar is a great addition to my workflow – I can drop in images and be confident I can quickly turnaround a cool image ready for sharing.”


Millions of creative professionals from around the globe; photographers, web designers, and graphic designers, use Luminar as their go-to photo editor.

And, Richard Harrington, Photofocus publisher, had this to say:

“Luminar is a welcome addition to my digital toolbox. Even a software guru like me found that my control-freak expectations were met or exceeded. Highly recommended for all photographers who have a Mac and are looking for more options to change the look of their photos or fix tough problems with precise manual control. “

Learn more about this popular image editing software


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