Transform Tools

Transform Tools

Project Description

This video demonstrates how to use Exposure’s tools for correcting tilted or skewed perspectives, which enable you to easily make adjustments to image perspective, scale, position, and more.

Photo: Patrick Shipstad

In this shot, the building is leaning away from the camera, which happens when you’re shooting upwards at a tall building. This type of optical distortion is called keystoning. Let’s fix it.

In the Transform panel, I’ll enable grid lines so I can see the tilt of the building in the image. These grid lines are helpful visual guidelines for achieving a straight line, so I’ll leave them enabled as I edit.

First I’ll rotate the image so that the base of the building is aligned to the horizontal gridline and the central column is aligned to the vertical gridline. Now I’ll adjust the Vertical slider to correct for the vertical keystoning that causes the building to lean away from us. I’ll enable Constrain Crop to remove the empty space at the edges of the photo.

When shooting taller buildings from street level, be sure to leave enough space around the edges of your shot for cropping when you’re using the transform tools, so you aren’t forced to choose between straightening your shot or keeping your main subject uncropped.

The corrected version of this image is a definite improvement.

Sometimes keystoning corrections can noticeably widen or shrink your image. Exposure’s Aspect slider helps you counteract that by either squeezing the image, which makes your subject taller and thinner or by widening it, which makes it shorter and wider.

Our keystone correction compressed the building just a bit, making it taller. I’ll adjust the aspect just a bit to correct for that. Exposure’s Scale slider gives you an alternative to using the Constrain Crop option. Use it to zoom in or out of your image. I’ll adjust the scale to help crop out the people in the lower right of my image.

It works great if you’re using Exposure’s transform tools to make substantial corrections to your image and want to either recover content or further crop into it like I just did. After you’ve done your straightening and cropping, you might want to reposition your image. The X and Y Offset sliders enable you to do to just that.

There’s part of a person visible in the lower right and part of the building cropped in the far left, so I’ll correct for these by adjusting the X offset. Comparing this edit to the original, you can see how helpful Exposure’s transform tools are.