ReTouch Tool on MacOS (and Windows too)

I’ve been making a video showing the use of the Repair and Clone tool and I have a couple of observations.

Firstly the ReTouch tool is massively improved and although it’s very close, I think the extra flexibility moves it just ahead of Lightroom’s offering. Worth noting though that Generative Fill in Photoshop is very good indeed at removing telephone lines from in front of trees! I know, different tool with different intent but that’s the state of the art right now.

Improvements in the ReTouch tool usability could be made. When adjusting the source at 100%, which is necessary for detailed work, it is difficult to see the outline of the “patch” - I’m a landscape photographer and a difficult job like removing telephone lines from in front of trees would be easier if I could see the outline of the patch better. Adobe has bolder linking arrows and heavier outline. It’s more usable because of this.

A few people on Facebook have mentioned that they can’t work out how to use the tool at all (hence the video). I think this is partly down to the visibility issue (see above), but also it is difficult, compared again to say Photoshop, to move a selection precisely into place. This matters to probably 10% of use cases - trees and bushes in my case.

The “pin” obscures the pixels in the case of very small adjustments so it’s hard to repair or clone with accuracy.

Otherwise, fantastically improved tool!


…you basically request that (outl)ines of repair tools and linking lines should be more visible?

PS: you can add your vote by clicking on the blue box left of the thread title, just below the vote counter.


Interesting that you’re working on a video to demo/explain PL’s ReTouch tool, Chris … You may like to provide a link to it here, for benefit of Forum-members.

Note: The title of this post is misleading (as a PL-on-Win user, I nearly skipped over it) … since PL’s ReTouch tool is not only specific to Apple OS X …

  • You can change that via the little pencil/edit “button” near the title itself
1 Like

Just a little “by the way” Apple OS X hasn’t existed for years as the ‘X’ stood for v10 and we are way beyond that. It is now known as macOS and we are now at v14

1 Like

Thanks John, I have a playlist on YouTube of (so far) 14 videos relating to PhotoLab 7. They are aimed at beginners and improving photographers. I’ve had requests to cover the ReTouch tool and the Tone Curve in more detail; those will be coming up this week and next week, respectively.

1 Like

Nice work, Chris - Impressive that you’ve taken the time to create all those videos.

I watched the PL-intro video - and have a couple of comments that may help …

  • You mentioned leaving the Cropping process until after you’ve adjusted for Light & Colour … That’s fine - but just be sure to apply any geometry adjustments before you use the Local Adjustment tools - to avoid problems with LAs getting inappropriately “nudged” !

  • If you double-click on a slider control it will reset to its default position (typically = 0)

John M

Thanks John, good tip. I’ll mention this explicitly when I do the Geometry overview. It is implicit in the workflow description - I advocate beginners working through - Light - Colour - Detail - Geometry - Local Adjustments. There are always exceptions, but it’s a “safe” workflow designed to deter people from making a pigs ear of a picture. If I followed my own advice 100% of the time I’d spend a lot less time correcting!


While this is more or less what all apps suggest if one works their sliders from top to bottom, one might consider the following:

Colour adjustments based on more complex items like LUTs and DCP profiles can change the looks of an image in a way to make all prior adjustments counterproductive and/or in need of redoing, specially if one is to achieve a certain “style”.

I therefore often start out with a decision about whether I want to engage a LUT or DCP setting. If I do, then these items are engaged before anything else.


It does makes sense to apply Profiles and/or LUTs before processing and build out from the output. But unlike Presets, I’m not sure that LUTs and DCP profiles make for an accessible starting point for beginners!

Most beginners might start without them indeed. My point is, that teaching procedures include the caveat that said procedure is intended for a case or purpose and that any other case or purpose can change the procedure. It’s about remaining flexible enough to adapt…not in the sense of a disclaimer, but as a reiterated part of almost every lesson.

1 Like