by Julieanne Kost

 Comments (4)


October 23, 2012

If you select an area in your image (a person’s face for example), and then add an adjustment layer (such as Curves), clicking the Auto button, will make the adjustment based on the selected area. Then, you can always disable or delete the mask to apply the effect over the entire image. This produces a different result (based on the area selected) than if the Curve adjustment layer was added to the image without a selection and the Auto button clicked.


  • By Carl Green - 6:08 AM on October 23, 2012  

    That sounds very much like a post-processing version of spot metering. So for example, if my subject was a portrait with a bright background the person may be a silhouette.

    Using this method allows exposing for the face AFTER the shot was taken, and the background will blend in a better way than it could be by using an adjustment brush/layer with a layer mask, which may have an unwanted halo or glow even when feathered. I like it!

  • By ellen rundle - 10:47 AM on November 19, 2012  

    Hi Julieanne,
    I have created a custom gradient and saved it in the gradients presets folder. Its a very simple gradient. I used to do this operation in a new channel. But even if I ad an adjustment layer I CANNOT load the new gradient in any way so that I can make a selection on the desired layer (load) and lighten a photo where I need. Can you help?

    • By Julieanne Kost - 12:55 PM on November 25, 2012  

      Ellen, I’m not sure that I understand exactly what you’re trying to do, but if you create a gradient in a channel, you can then Command (MAC) / Control (WIN) click on the thumbnail icon (for the channel) to load that channel (the gradient) as a selection that can be used with any layer or mask. I hope that helps, if not, I would post the issue to either of these forums to see if other customers are experiencing the same problem and if so, if they have found a solution.


  • By Andrew Davies - 10:36 AM on December 10, 2012  

    Hi Julieanne,
    I came up with “selective auto colour” in May 2006, emailed Russell Brown about it.
    Always odd hearing about something like this 6 and a half years later and finding its still new to everyone else!