How to Turn a Dark Picture to Light in PhotoShop

The phrase "lighten up" usually is meant to encourage someone out of a dark mood, but the term may also be applied to images, such as those taken with a digital camera. If your snapshots have come out too dark for your liking, use Photoshop to lighten them up. Photoshop's lighting controls give you full mastery on the exposure or, in some cases, lack of exposure, in your pictures. Go from dark to light with a few clicks.


    • 1

      Open Photoshop and click the "File" menu. Select "Open" and browse to the dark picture to lighten. Double-click the image, opening it on the Photoshop work desk.

    • 2

      Click the "Image" menu. Select "Adjustments" and click "Levels." Drag the "Levels" window to the right of the picture so you can see both the window and the picture.

    • 3

      Slide the black triangle under the "Output Levels" section to the right, watching as the picture becomes lighter the further to the right you go.

    • 4

      Slide the white triangle under the "Input Levels" to the left to add brightness to the image; the further to the left, the more light will appear to be shining on the picture.

    • 5

      Click the "OK" button when satisfied to close the "Levels" window and return to the lightened image.

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