Black and White Film Fade With Advanced Burning

In this tutorial we’re going to be taking an ordinary image and editing it to its extraordinary potential using the Lightroom Presets v5. We have an image of a groom and his groomsmen walking through a parking garage and we’re editing this photo so it has a great black and white, filmic, and cinematic look you see in the image below.


[Note: In the new Lightroom Presets v5, we have revamped all of the presets to improve image tonality and quality, allowing you to achieve even more amazing results. We’ve also added 95 new presets to reach a total of 311 presets in what is the gold standard of Lightroom image processing. In this series we’ll be going over how to use the new v5 presets to create great looking photos.  Click Here to learn more or purchase the system.]

With each of our Ordinary to Extraordinary Edits, we’re going to first be going through how we create our effects with the SLR Lounge Lightroom Presets v5, then we’ll be going through the details in the develop settings so everyone can understand exactly how we get to a specific look. This way, whether you have the presets or not, everyone can benefit from watching this video or reading the article below. For those that have the preset system, you can see the Preset Mixology below:

My Mixology

  • 01-40 BASE – VIVID STYLIZED: 42d. Punchy Fade – B&W Filmic
  • 03-70 ADJUST – VIGNETTING: 71d. Vignette – Light

Local Area Adjustments

  • Graduated Filter: 03 Burn (Darken) -0.5 Stops
  • Adjustment Brush: 03 Burn (Darken) -0.5 Stops
  • Radial Filter: 03 Burn (Darken) -0.5 Stops

Black and White Film Fade with Dodge and Burn Video

How to Make A Black and White Film Fade in Lightroom

The first preset we’re applying to this image is the “01-40 BASE – VIVID STYLIZED: 42d. Punchy Fade – B&W Filmic” preset, and after we raise the Exposure to +.67 this image is looking really good. With this preset everything in this image looks much more dramatic; the image looks more grungy and the men look more manly (if that is actually possible, haha).

Develop Settings

In the Develop settings the “01-40 BASE – VIVID STYLIZED: 42d. Punchy Fade – B&W Filmic” raised the Contrast, Shadows and Clarity while dropping the Highlights, Whites, and Blacks. These adjustments are adding great contrast and details to our image while pulling highlights and shadows closer to the midtones to give us that “B&W film fade” look. In the Tone Curve we have some shadow and highlight clipping, pulling up of the midtone highlights and pulling down of the midtone shadows. Here are the final develop settings below:

Lightroom Develop Settings

In the Sharpening settings we have our standard amount applied, and because there is grain added to this image we have no Noise Reduction settings applied. Our Lens Vignetting preset adjusted the Amount to -30 and the Midpoint to 30, and our Grain amount is at 70.

Develop Module

All of the global adjustments look great so now we move on to making local area adjustments. Here’s what our image looks like after our basic develop settings have been applied:

Original Image

Lightroom 5

Image With Preset Applied

Black and white photography

Burning With Graduated Filters and Adjustment Brushes

On the left side of the frame a flash was used, and that’s making everything on the left side brighter than the rest of the image. To even out the lighting we’re using a Graduated Filter with a “03 Burn (Darken) -0.5 Stops” preset and dragging it over 3/4 of the image. Then we adjust the Exposure to -0.40 to make the groomsmen evenly exposed. You can see where we placed the Graduated Filter in the image below.

Graduated Filter

Now we’re using an Adjustment Brush with the “03 Burn (Darken) -0.5 Stops” preset to darken the flash that brightens up the floor in front of our subjects. We’re going to apply the brush on the bright areas of the floor and erase the brush off our subjects. To get the brush adjustments dark enough, we’re lowering the Exposure of the brush to -.93. To see exactly where the brush adjustments were applied please watch the video above.

Adjustment Brush

The pipes above our groom and groomsmen are distracting and bright so we’re going to add another Graduated Filter with the “03 Burn (Darken) -0.5 Stops” preset over them. In the image below you can see that we pull down the filter halfway and adjust the Exposure to -0.90.

Lightroom Graduated Filter

To reduce the effects of the bright lights on the top we’re going to use our Adjustment Brush with the “03 Burn (Darken) -0.5 Stops” preset and apply that over the bright lights in the photo. This will fade out the lights and bring your attention to the center of the photo and the groom.

Lightroom Adjustment Brush

We’re going to add one last Graduated Filter with the “03 Burn (Darken) -0.5 Stops” preset and have it come down from the top left of the image. This added burn filter will give us a nice and even tone across the entire image. You can see exactly where we applied the Graduated Filter in the image below.

Graduated Filter Lightroom

Cropping The Image

We’re adjusting the Crop to this image to give a better composition for our subjects. We’re cropping to a 2×1 ratio and that will give this image a nice wide cinematic feel. It also focuses are attention on the groom and groomsmen and compliments the line they’re standing in.

lightroom crop

Adding Vignetting with 2 Presets

The last thing we want to do is add a nice vignette to this image using a vignette preset and a Radial Filter. We’re doing this in order to bring focus into our groom in the center and to darken the cars on edges of the frame. With the Radial Filter we’re going to adjust the Exposure to -0.40 to get a more subtle effect.

  • 03-70 ADJUST – VIGNETTING: 71d. Vignette – Light
  • Radial Filter: 03 Burn (Darken) -0.5 Stops

Radial Filter

Here is what our final image looks like after our develop settings and local area adjustments have been completed:


original image



Conclusion and Learn More

We hope you all enjoyed this tutorial. If you are interested in learning more or purchasing the SLR Lounge Lightroom Presets v5, please click any of the links in this article.

Stay tuned for more SLR Lounge Weekly Edits!