Will This Editing Trend Take the Place of the Cinematic Edit?

The cinematic look is everywhere in photography. But is this trend, rich with orange and teal tones, on its way out? PJ Pantelis thinks so, and he has an idea of what he thinks the next big editing movement will be.

The last few years have seen an increase in popularity of cinematic edits in photography. They mimic the lighting in blockbuster movies, and much of the time focus on the contrast created in a color grade that is centered around complimentary oranges and teals. Many photographers love this style for good reason; it sort of mimics the warmth of the golden hour, it renders warm, beautiful skin tones, and it adds a dramatic pop of contrast with its use of complementary colors.

PJ Pantelis, a Melbourne based music photographer, believes that film emulation in the commercial photography industry is not suited for lots of professional applications, and he sees a need for a cleaner, more natural commercial edit. In this video, he shows us what he believes we’ll soon be seeing more of; a fresh, crisp edit with good dynamic range.

Using Lightroom CC, and changing the process to Version 1, he is able to bring back the old Recovery, Fill Lights, and Blacks sliders, which he prefers to use in this particular editing style. He walks us through a quick edit, making some hue/saturation adjustments for subtle color grading that mimics the old teal and orange style, on a much smaller scale. Using the aforementioned old-school panel, he works some magic on the highlights, shadows, and blacks. The result is a lifted, lighter edit without being overly bright, and with great dynamic range that doesn’t have the rough feel of an HDR treatment.

Finally, he creates a preset from this process, and he demonstrates its application on several different photos, to great effect. You can download his preset for free here. Enjoy!



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