via VicLovan.com - Lighten a photo the "right" way using Paint.NET!.
Lighten a photo the "right" way for free using Paint.NET!
This page gives information on how to lighten a photo the "right" way other than just hitting the "lighten" button on a photo program and blowing out any detail that the image had. Save a copy of your original image and give it a try both ways to see the difference.
In order to use Paint.NET you need to have XP or later and the .NET Framework 2.0 or later for the main system requirements*.
Open the photo. Save a copy of the photo so you're not working on the original.
Create a new layer - "CTRL" + "Shift" + "d".
Open layer properties - F4.
Hit the tab key twice to get to the "Blending Mode". You'll see the drop down highlight blue and then hit the "s" key(this changes the drop down to "Screen"). Hit the "Enter" key and it will apply. If you have a really dark photo, you may have to repeat the create layer again to make another layer or two. You won't have to do the Blending mode change again.
To "Flatten" the layers - "CTRL" + "shift" + "f".
When you go to save the photo - "ALT", "F", "S" - you get a box that is the "Save Configuration" and you can change the quality down, or leave it at 100%. If you drop it down to about 70%, you'll get nice looking photos and the file size will be smaller. If you are going to resize the photos with the "Fast Stone" program, you won't need to lower the quality and can just leave it at 100%.
* Windows XP (SP2 or later),
or Windows Vista,
or Windows Server (2003 SP1 or later)
* .NET Framework 2.0 - (whatever version you need can be found here)
* 500 MHz processor (Recommended: 800 MHz or faster)
* 256 MB of RAM (Recommended: 512 MB or more)
* 1024 x 768 screen resolution
* 200+ MB hard drive space
* 64-bit support requires a 64-bit CPU that is running a 64-bit version of Windows, and an additional 128 MB of RAM
Please note that Paint.NET uses your hard drive to store temporary files related to undo/redo. Because of this, actual disk space requirements will depend on the type of actions you perform on an image, and on the size of the image.
Other Image Organization and Manipulation info.