Using the Lens Correction Filter in Photoshop

Using the Lens Correction Filter in Photoshop

by Lauren Scott

Lens correction techniques help to fix perspective issues that can occur when you take an image at an angle. In architectural photography, it’s one of the most common problems – when you shoot a tall building for example, it looks as though the vertical edges of the building are bending inwards. In this tutorial we’ll discover what the Lens Correction Filter in Photoshop’s Filter Menu can do to help straighten out things like wonky horizons or distorted perspective.


1. Assess the image

In the image we’re working with, the horizon isn’t straight, and the building also appears to bend inwards. We’re going to open up the image in Photoshop and fix some of the basic problems to achieve as more natural looking perspective.

Using the Lens Correction Filter in Photoshop

2. Level horizon

To create a level horizon, Go to Filter>Lens Correction, and select the straighten tool. In CS6 this is found to the left hand side of the image. Click and drag the horizon line to level it out, using the grid lines as a guide if this helps you.

Using the Lens Correction Filter in Photoshop

3. Reshape curvature

From the custom settings, select the Remove Distortion tool and drag the image from the top edge inwards to bend the horizon until it’s flat.

Using the Lens Correction Filter in Photoshop

4. Remove fringing

Zoom in to your image to check whether there’s any colour fringing.

Using the Lens Correction Filter in Photoshop

5. Remove vignette

The vignette controls are also in the custom adjustments, used to adjust overly light or dark corners of the image. Again, move the sliders either left or right depending on your image, to remove any lens vignetting.

Using the Lens Correction Filter in Photoshop

6. Tilt the perspective

The Transform controls in the filter change the vertical and horizontal perspective of your image. When altering these, be sure to keep checking whether your verticals are straight.

Using the Lens Correction Filter in Photoshop

7. Check your angles

After you’ve followed these steps, re-assess the angles in your image. Click on the Show Grid option if you haven’t already to make sure the image’s horizon is level. If not, use the straighten tool to tweak it once more and make it level.

8. Scale the image

You may need to scale your image up or down after you’ve corrected the distortion. Use the scale slider for this, shown in the red selection from step 6.

Save and compare

The final result now has a much more natural perspective, even if the results are subtle. Why not have a go yourself and upload your shots to the DP gallery.

Using the Lens Correction Filter in Photoshop

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