Even if you rarely change your lenses, you’ll end up with some dust on your sensor. Naturally, it will be visible in your photos, and let’s face it, we normally see the sensor dust only when we’re already done shooting.
Thankfully, this can be resolved in post. Although it sounds like a tedious job to remove all those little specks of dust, there’s a neat trick that will speed it up immensely. Micael Widell shares it in his latest video, so let’s check it out, along with some bonus tips from me.
When you import the photos into Lightroom, choose the one where the dust spots are the most prominent. It should be one without too many details so that you can easily see the spots. Now, select the “Spot Removal” tool. At the bottom of the image you’ll find the “Visualize spots” tool which will help you see the dust spots more clearly. Or you can just hit A on your keyboard to make it happen.
Now, go over the dust spots with your brush until you clean all (or at least most) of them. Click Ctrl/Cmd + Shift + C to copy settings, uncheck all, and only check Spot Removal. Then, select the rest of the photos and right-click, go to Develop Settings > Paste Settings. It also works by just hitting the Copy and Paste buttons beneath the edit history.
Since there is no camera shop that performs sensor cleaning in my hometown, I have to go to the capital when I want to have my sensor cleaned. This is why I won’t tell you “keep your sensor clean.” It goes without saying, but sometimes it’s easier said than done, especially if you don’t want to mess with it yourself.
So, if you do have some dust spots and won’t be able to get your sensor cleaned for a while, here’s something that crossed my mind. Before or after you’re done shooting, take a photo of the sky. It can also be a piece of plain white paper if you’re shooting indoors. Set your camera on Aperture Priority, use low ISO, and a small aperture like f/16 or f/22. This will make the dust spots more visible so you’ll know where to look for them.
Also, when changing your lenses, make sure to have everything prepared so you can do it as quickly as possible. Have your camera facing down while doing it so less dust will get trapped inside. Naturally, avoid changing lenses in the wind, at the beach, desert or other sandy and dusty places – if it’s possible.
Let us know if you have any additional tips. How do you keep your sensor clean between two cleaning sessions? And do you use this method for removing the dust spots in Lightroom?
[How to Clean Sensor Dust in Lightroom – All Photos in One Go! | Misael Widell]