A week or two ago I got an email from Jane Grates from sleeklens.com regarding a review for the “Through the Woods” brushes for Lightroom and Photoshop.
Although I am not a number one fan of brushes I love doing these reviews and checking out the different options available when retouching images. I usually use Lightroom for the basic adjustments like contrast, saturation and all the other lovely sliders available in the develop panel. I must admit that I am impressed with these brushes available and if you are into some surreal landscapes and creating some more to the creative side, you will enjoy these.
All my landscape and architectural images are processed using from 1 to 7 differently exposed images, depending on what the scene requires. So what was I going to be looking for in the brushes.
- Ease of use
- Are the effective in what they do?
- Do they tend to overdo the effect they are designed for?
- How easy is it to adapt them
- What is the end result.
So lets kick off with number one.
- Are the easy to use?…yep. I received the zip file, extracted the brushes to the required folder under the Lightroom folder and “voila”…you are ready to go. Click on the brush icon in Lightroom, select the custom drop down menu and scroll down to the brush you want to use, they are all there.
- Are the effective? …well if you are the kind of person that prefers brushes, yes they are. It is quite clear to see the effect they have and this can in turn be adjusted again by the using the “amount” slider in Lightroom. I collapsed the menu by using the little black arrow next to your brush description. For the purpose of this review I used the brushes at their default settings and adjusted only the “amount” that was applied.
- Do they tend to overdo the effect they are designed for?…they are prone to overdo things a bit at their default setting. This however is easily adjusted with the “amount” slider again.
- How easy is it to adapt them?…Easy enough I would say. You can just about adjust every aspect you want, but again, for the purpose of this review I left them at default and did the “amount slider” where I felt it needed.
- What is the end result?…If you need to do a quick edit or just need to tweak your images for that little extra pop these will do the job well. Used in combination with Lightroom brushes and standard settings you will get an image that is pretty rounded and complete.
Below are just a few images showing the effect of some of the brushes and the end result. This was done from a single RAW image in Lightroom with only and exposure brush used to add some light to the foreground. I simply used the brushes to show what they do.
All in all I like these. When I get the chance and time I enjoy playing with images to see the different effects and results. You learn a helluva lot doing this.
The whole retouching process took me around 10 minutes.
Thanks Jane for the opportunity.
Here are the links to what you need.
PS – They also have some portrait options available which look really promising.