Having some fun with HSL in Lightroom 1.1

by George Mann


The Cross-Roads Restaurant & Motel, Pembroke, Maine

I was going to write about some of the new features in Lightroom 1.1 again, but then I remembered one of the first rules of Lightroom, to enjoy the program and have fun with your digital images. So I hope you don't mind if we just play with an image today and see what develops.

When I was still in school one of my favorite TV programs was the Twilight Zone. I could never get enough of those weird towns, truck stops and twisted characters, who lived alongside the now long forgotten two lane highways that crisscross America.

Route 1 in the cold north eastern state of Maine is still 100 percent Twilight Zone territory and the once popular Cross Roads Restaurant & Motel in Pembroke (close to the eastern most point in the US) could well have been in an episode. Adding to the mystery of the now almost deserted establishment is the fact that many food reviewers have rated the restaurant as one of the best in Down East Maine.


The original full color image

I was actually planning to simulate a black and white infrared look in this picture, but I ended up going for what I think is more of a hand colored black and white look instead. The original Twilight Zone episodes where black and white and had a strange eerie feeling about them. Full color would not suit them.

To make the changes in the image I used only the HSL (Hue, Saturation and Luminance) controls. To determine where to apply the HSL changes, I used the Target Adjustment Mode button.


The HSL adjustments

Hue - I did not like the color of the grass so I clicked on it with the Target Adjustment Mode button and cranked up the color. It came out a real nice green but the adjustment was actually +100 Yellow

Saturation - The big change was in the color of the sky from deep blue to grey. Again I used the Target Adjustment Mode button and it resulted in -100 Blue. I applied the same technique to the red trim of the building but it gave me a funny orange color so I set the red to +100 in the Saturation Panel and reduced the Orange setting.

Luminance - To give the red trim on the building a little more punch I applied +85 Red in the Luminance panel.

That was basically it, I kind of like the results because it reminds me of a time and place that I really enjoyed in my youth, and still enjoy to this day.


2007-07-10 11:45:11
Looks great :D and i have to say that i instantly recognized the spot when i saw it. I just drove Route 1 from Calais to Bar Harbor and then up to bangor Via Belfast back to Calais on the 9 (i think) on saturday, and this is one of those spots i saw whiz by and thought "shoot, shoulda have stopped for a photo or 7"


George Mann
2007-07-10 23:27:46
Thanks Graham, the Cross Roads is between Machias and Calais on Route 1, I lived in Calais for just a little over a year (Jan 2005 to April 2006) and drove by it many times. As I said it reminds me of the Twilight Zone but it also has a little bit of that Bates Motel (Psycho) feel to it. It has been for sale for a long time and I sometimes day dream about going back and buying it, to live in the Twilight Zone for the rest of my years.