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Chapter 11. Standard Effects in Action > Using the Levels Effect

Using the Levels Effect

Whether you use it in Photoshop or After Effects, Levels inevitably proves to be one of the most useful effects at your disposal. Though the online documentation does provide an explanation of the effect, it can be difficult to decipher the jargon and draw out a useful method for working with the Levels effect.

Reading the Histogram

In the Levels effect's controls, you'll immediately notice a dark shape, resembling the silhouette of distant hills. This is actually a map, or graph, of all the pixels in the image, called a histogram. In the histogram, the darkest pixels appear on the left, and the brightest appear on the right. The "mountains" represent the number of pixels at a given brightness level (Figure 11.1).


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