Retouch Tool in Adobe Camera Raw

Retouch Tool

As promised in the Spot Healing Brush Tutorial, we’re now taking a look at the Retouch Tool in ACR (and Lightroom?). This tool is a little more “hands on”, so I figured the best way to show it would be with a screen capture. I’ll outline a couple things here in the text, but the bulk of the information is in the video embedded at the end of the article.

HOW TO ACCESS THE RETOUCH TOOL

It’s only accessible from within the Adobe Camera Raw interface — so don’t start looking in for it in Photoshop. There’s a little icon along the top menu that looks like the image shown above. You can click on it to bring up a sub-menu, or you can access it by pressing “B”.

HOW TO USE THE RETOUCH TOOL

The retouch tool is used in a very similar fashion to a clone stamp or a spot healing brush. In general, you click on the spot and you’ll see a set of rings appear (one red and one green). The red ring is the target and the green ring is the source. They can be moved and resized with the mouse. The sampling mode can also be switched between “heal” and “clone”.

WHEN THE RETOUCH TOOL FAILS

Like with the Spot Healing Brush, hard edges can present a difficult fix, but this tool allows you to move the source sampling spot to a location of your choice. Hard edges are easier to deal with, but you may still run into difficult situations when very complex geometries are involved.

7 thoughts on “Retouch Tool in Adobe Camera Raw

  1. sven

    in fact lightroom and acr are identical raw converters.
    the only difference is the ui

  2. Jim Goldstein

    Nicely done Brian. I will add the added value in Lightroom is that you can carry over all retouches from one photo to another. This is a huge time saver as you can do all your retouching on one photo and then make minor adjustments to the others if there is variation in placement of your subject. This is perfect when spotting images from a common photo session.

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