Luminar AI Preview (+ Preorder)


Skylum has rocked the photography industry yet again with the announcement of Luminar AI: the world’s first image editor fully powered by Artificial Intelligence.

Automating the most common manual tasks and simplify complexity in post production, Luminar AI is set to revolutionise how we use computers to interact with our photography.

shk-fs-table__imagePre-order now to SaveThe most powerful image editor of 2020, simple enough for anyone to create a visual masterpiece.Get Discount

Releasing later this year, now’s a great chance to hop onboard an early-bird Luminar AI discount, available for the first 30,000 people who place a pre order.

(Once these copies are sold, the price will go up.)

Since Luminar AI hasn’t been released yet, I’m unable to bring you a full Luminar AI review, but I am getting regular press updates to drip-feed the info here for you.

In the mean time, let’s have a closer look at this exciting new image editing software.

What is Skylum Luminar AI?


Luminar AI is a revolutionary new image editing software that uses artificial intelligence to help with time-consuming and complex editing tasks.

It will be a stand alone Windows and Mac application, as well as a Plug in for Lightroom and Photoshop, allowing users ingrained in an Adobe workflow to also take advantage.

Luminar AI is designed for every level of creative – from complete beginner photographers to seasoned pros.

Despite being incredibly powerful, it’s simple enough for anyone to pick up quickly to use to create a visual masterpiece.

According to Dima Sytnik, CPO of Skylum:

Luminar AI will bring an entirely new, non-conventional approach to the world of photo editing, focusing on the results instead of the process.

As the world’s first photo editing tool that’s fully powered by artificial intelligence, Luminar AI offers a simplified approach to image manipulation, while still retaining full manual control for power users.

The goal of Luminar AI is to make the editing process fun and easy, letting users hone in their creative skills, while being guided with Templates and other handy features.

Skylum has attempted to remove all the tedious and complex parts of photo editing, without sacrificing creativity – you as the artist, will still be in complete control of the outcome.

New Features of Luminar AI


With artificial intelligence at the core of Luminar AI, here are some of the exciting new features set to make photo editing easier and more efficient than ever before.

Here are the key features that we already know about:

Luminar AI Templates

Luminar AI recognises the contents of a photo, suggesting the best ‘Templates’ to speed up the editing process. These edits can be applied and refined to perfection.

Portrait Photography

  • Body AI and Face AI – gently sculpt and refine a portrait
  • Iris AI – create eyes that are rich and expressive
  • Skin AI – remove blemishes and imperfections for more natural portrait photography

Landscape Photography

  • Atmosphere AI and Sky Enhancer – add depth and detail to skies in landscape photography
  • Golden Hour and Sunrays – bring warmth and enhance the sun in photos
  • Sky AI 2.0  – transform photos and add an all-new sky in seconds – also includes Water Reflections (see video above)
    With SkyAI, your replaced sky will reflect on water in your photos automatically. This means no more duplicating your scene, flipping it and applying a bunch of masking to make it look realistic. Just like your main sky, your reflected sky will adapt to the new relight settings, and be blurred into the scene without any manual work. If you need to dial it in a bit more, you can adjust the levels of the reflection. You can even bring in water ripples to show some motion in your photos!

Professional Finishing

  • Structure AI – enhance detail and texture
  • Composition AI – get the perfect crop and fix crooked images
  • Accent AI – get the perfect exposure and color

All the image editing tools can be applied with just one click. There’s no more fiddling around for hours with confusing sliders and settings – just the results you want, instantly.

This has always been the beauty of Luminar – even the most novice photographer can edit and produce incredible images, aided by a suite of powerful and intuitive tools that are simple and fun to use.

At this time, the landscape photography tools are most exciting, with the new features of Sky AI including realistic water reflections being something I can see many photographers using. No other image editing software (with or without AI tools) is currently able to do this with just one click – introducing reflections to a photo can take an image editor hours in Photoshop, but with Luminar AI, it can be done in seconds.

Luminar AI vs Luminar 4

model standing tall - luminar ai

As mentioned before, it’s not possible to write a full review of Luminar AI until its release later this year – however, based on what we know already and our existing Luminar 4 review (and previous Luminar 3 review), we can start to make some comparisons.

(Skylum is supplying Shotkit with exclusive news about Luminar AI – we’ll keep this review up to date as and when we get the information.)

While Luminar 4 impressed us with some incredible AI tools, Luminar AI is completely powered by artificial intelligence, and features several new tools that you won’t find anywhere else.

Additionally, Luminar AI navigates you throughout the photo editing process, letting you focus more on the results, instead of how you get there.

Skylum already won Best Imaging Software by TIPA and EISA for its popular Luminar 4 photo editor, so is there really any need to upgrade to Luminar AI? In a word: YES!

Luminar AI isn’t just another upgrade to Luminar 4. It’s a brand-new and totally different product that’s never been seen before.

While working on Luminar AI, Skylum will continue to bring updates to existing Luminar 4 users in the future.

Luminar 4 impressed us all with a small handful of AI tools, but Luminar AI has been redesigned from the ground up to be completely powered by artificial intelligence – photographers of all standards can take advantage of the AI tools for landscape photography, portrait retouching, general image enhancement and more.

In addition, the new Templates are an innovative concept set to vastly reduce time spent fiddling with your images. Templates provide a starting point with your photo editing (and in many cases, offer a complete one-click solution).

Luminar AI vs Lightroom

Without getting our hands on the final version of Luminar AI, it’s impossible to give a complete comparison review of how Luminar AI stacks up against its biggest competitor in the photography editing program space – Adobe Lightroom.

Lightroom has always been the most popular editing tool for photographers, but since the introduction of annual subscription fees, many users have been searching for alternative software.

We’ve compared Luminar 4 with Lightroom in the past, and found that while LR is still better for organising thousands of photos, Luminar has more powerful photography editing tools, including Structure AI, Skin AI, Sun Rays, and all the other various artificial intelligence adjustments.

As for basic image adjustments and edits, both software are on par, and ease of use is also similar… although Luminar is the clear winner when it comes to simplicity – there’s quite a learning curve with Lightroom.

However, Skylum’s CEO Alex Tsepko is quite clear that they don’t intend for the Luminar software to compete with Lightroom – it can actually be used efficiently in conjunction with it as a plug in.

In this way, existing Adobe users can take advantage of all the AI tools from within Luminar, then continue with photography edits and file organisation in LR. Similarly, images can be opened in LR (or Photoshop), then opened in Luminar via the plugin, edited with the various AI tools, and finalised in Luminar ready for sharing.

How to buy Luminar AI – Presale Discount

Luminar AI is due to be released this holiday season, but thankfully, you can place a pre order right now.

Early bird pricing is available for the first 30,000 copies only.

Once these are sold, the price will go up, so grab this offer before it’s too late.

Luminar AI Discount Pricing for Pre Order

  • Current Luminar 4 / Aurora HDR owners – US$59
  • New customers – US$69

All early bird purchases include access to the Luminar AI Insiders community.

There’s also a 30-day money-back guarantee from the time of shipping, so there’s no risk in placing a Luminar AI pre order now to take advantage of this discount.


Luminar AI Review

As soon as the Beta version becomes available of this exciting new photo editing software, we’ll update this article with a full Luminar AI review.

In the meantime, I highly recommend you hop onboard the Luminar AI early bird discount and pre order today – while there’s no information about the official price, it’s sure to be a lot more than this current offer.

Be sure to subscribe to the Shotkit newsletter to be notified as soon as this AI review is updated!

Disclaimer: All recommendations are impartial and based on user experience, with no bias to the products or the brand. The products in this post may contain affiliate links.

Mark Condon

Mark Condon is a British wedding photographer based in Australia and the founder of Shotkit.