3.17. Dodge/Burn

Figure 14.109. Dodge tool

Dodge tool

The Dodge or Burn tool uses the current brush to lighten or darken the colors in your image. The mode will determine which type of pixels are affected.

3.17.1. Activating the Tool

There are different possibilities to activate the tool:

  • From the image-menu: ToolsPaint ToolsDodge / Burn.

  • The Tool can also be called by clicking the tool icon: ,

  • or by using the Shift+D keyboard shortcut.

3.17.2. Key modifiers (Defaults)


Toggle between dodge or burn types. The type will remain switched until Ctrl is released.


Shift places the Dodge or Burn tool into straight line mode. Holding Shift while clicking the mouse Left Button will Dodge or Burn in a straight line. Consecutive clicks will continue Dodge or Burn in straight lines that originate from the end of the last line.

3.17.3. Options

Figure 14.110. Dodge/Burn tool options

“Dodge/Burn” tool options

Normally, tool options are displayed in a window attached under the Toolbox as soon as you activate a tool. If they are not, you can access them from the image menu bar through WindowsDockable WindowsTool Options which opens the option window of the selected tool.

Mode; Opacity; Brush; Size; Aspect Ratio; Angle; Spacing; Hardness; Dynamics; Dynamics Options; Force; Apply Jitter; Smooth Stroke; Lock brush to view, Incremental

See the Common Paint Tool Options for a description of tool options that apply to many or all paint tools.

Hard edge: this option gives a hard contour to the treated area.


The dodge effect lightens colors.

The burn effect darkens colors.


There are three modes:

  • Shadows restricts the effect to darkest pixels.

  • Midtones restricts the effect to pixels of average tone.

  • Highlights restricts the effect to lightest pixels.


Exposure defines how much the tool effect will be strong, as a more or less exposed photograph. Default slider is 50 but can vary from 0 to 100.