I have become a fan of doing the tonal adjustments “by hand” using Develop/basic Tonal sliders. Rather than the Tone Curves and Presets. This is because this approach matches the way I like to develop a drawing or painting. So here I will take you through my approach to developing a pastel sketch based (loosely) on this photo taken at Mt. Buffalo looking down into the gorge.
Staring in the midtones, in this case I have selected a colour paper that is perhaps a bit darker than the mid tone i want to establish. So I am adding a few areas of colour and tone to set up the composition and develop the midtones
These steps are bringing in more of the shadows and then emphasising the highlights. A few darks help settle the image and bring out the feeling of depth in the painting. The final steps are really just adding some extra colour and detail.