Two-click photo editing? Skylum Luminar teases A.I. photo app

Pro-level photo editing requires time and know-how, but Skylum, a company known for its Lightroom alternative software Luminar, aims to make photo editing a two-click process that requires no training. Luminar AI, unveiled on September 3, is an artificially intelligent photo editor that uses object detection to automatically determine what’s in the photo and what adjustments to apply.

Luminar AI mixes several different algorithms to edit a photo with processes called templates. First, the program recognizes the contents of the photo, such as if people are included, or if it’s a landscape shot with a sky. Then, the program suggests a template to apply to edit the complete photo. The whole process, Skylum says, takes as few as two clicks.

If the software recognizes people in the image, for example, it will suggest using Body AI or Face AI to “sculpt and refine.” Another option fixes skin blemishes, while another enhances the eyes.

Borrowing features from the original Luminar, the program can also enhance a sky or simply replace it entirely. The program also has a built-in Golden Hour option, as well as a way to add sun rays to the photo.

Luminar AI doesn’t ignore the basics either — Accent AI corrects exposure and color. Crooked images will be corrected with an A.I. crop tool, while another enhances detail and texture.

While the entire edit could be done in two clicks, the company says there are options that allow the photographer to retain more control over the image — a must for results that are over-edited, or photographers who don’t want to alter the body shape or skin of a portrait with the risk of offending the person in the photo. Choosing a template will also help the user select which of those tools mix best to create the ideal result.

The capabilities of Luminar AI, such as replacing a sky without complex masking, aren’t new but brought over from the original Luminar. A Lightroom alternative, Luminar includes the usual slew of photo editing tools with some A.I.-based extras, like the aforementioned replacing a sky or correcting facial distortion from wide lenses in fewer clicks. With all the tools already inside the original, Luminar is an unsurprising branch off that brings some of those tools to users without the know-how or time to devote to more complex edits, such as influencers, small business owners, or the average social media user. 

It’s worth noting, however, that Luminar AI isn’t the only program that advertises complete photo editing in a few clicks. Photolemur is another program that uses A.I for fast edits.

Luminar AI, which will be available both as a stand-alone program and as a plug-in, will launch sometime during the holidays. Skylum hasn’t yet shared pricing details or a more specific launch date.

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