The Capture One Pro October 2023 update has brought a new AI masking (AI Select) tool to compete with Adobe Lightroom’s own AI masking options. So how does it work, is Capture One’s AI masking as good as Lightroom’s and will it really save you time and effort?
Masks are related to selections, but they're a more permanent way of masking out adjustments made to an image. For example, you might make an initial selection in an image-editor and then convert it into a layer mask which can be saved with the file and re-edited later if necessary.
This is a new feature introduced to Lightroom and Lightroom Classic in April 2023. It arrived in the same update as the new Lightroom AI Denoise feature, so it would be easy to overlook it, given all the fuss over the AI denoising.
These Control Lines can already be found in DxO PhotoLab 6, but they are new to the Nik Collection 6. Control Lines are a special kind of selective masking tool. They work like a linear gradient tool, but with an eyedropper which can be moved around to select the tones or areas you want the mask to be applied to.
This under-the-pier shot is a classic composition in black and white – you’ve probably seen a lot like it already – but the color original looks very ordinary indeed. So here’s a step-by-step guide to how I transformed it into a powerful graphic image in Lightroom.
Verdict: 4.8 stars Capture One 23 is a professional Lightroom rival that offers a step up in both image quality and editing tools, and supports a greater variety of professional workflows. The RAW processing is excellent, the editing tools are powerful and the new Cull view, layered Styles and improved Variant handling alone make the upgrade look worth it. Capture One is not cheap, but it’s designed for professional, quality-orientated workflows.
Selections and masks are subtly different, and the ‘parametric’ masks in non-destructive editors give more flexibility than ever.
‘Local adjustments’ is a bit of a catch-all term. It means picking out an area of an image for adjustment while leaving the rest unchanged. So how do local adjustments work and which software does them best?
Masking complex outlines can be a slow and fiddly business, but there are tools to help, and once you’ve got your mask, there’s a lot you can do with it.
Masks can quickly get confusing in ON1 Photo RAW. It’s not the tools themselves which are confusing, but the fact they can be used in three different places: Local adjustments: These are applied to the image as a whole in their own ‘Local’ panel. In other words, they are not associated with any specific layers […]
Often you want to apply an effect or adjustment to a whole picture, but not always. Sometimes you only want to apply it to part of the picture, and this is where the Luminar mask tools become really useful.