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Luminar Neo Mask AI – Fast But Not Perfect!

Luminar Neo

Luminar Neo Mask AI is an automated masking tool that uses artificial intelligence to recognize and automatically mask objects in your photo. For example, Mask AI can automatically mask people, skies, mountains, and more – all without manual brushing.

As a result, Luminar Neo makes selective editing easier and quicker than ever. For this post, I got hands-on with Mask AI to find out how good it is and how easy it is to use. Jump to Conclusion | Read Luminar Neo Review

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What is Mask AI in Luminar Neo

Mask AI is an AI-powered masking tool that automatically recognizes objects within your photo. Objects may include People, Mountains, Skies, Water, Architecture, and more.

Luminar Neo Mask AI
Using Mask AI to automatically mask the hills in this photo.

And by clicking on any of these objects, Luminar Neo will automatically mask it allowing you to apply adjustments exclusively to that object without affecting the rest of the photo.

As a result, Mask AI in Luminar Neo represents a faster, less tedious alternative to manually brushing on your own masks. But if you are feeling old-school, Mask AI also includes a Brush, as well as linear and radial grad filters.

Mask AI Release Date

Mask AI is released on the 12th of May and features in Luminar Neo version 1.0.6 and later.

How much does Mask AI cost

Mask AI is freely accessible to all existing owners of Luminar Neo. Simply upgrade your copy of Luminar Neo to version 1.0.6 or later. You can do this by right-clicking on the Luminar Neo logo, then clicking on Help and Check for Updates. If you don’t already own Luminar Neo, you can try it free – no credit card required.

How to upgrade Luminar Neo

How to use Mask AI in Luminar Neo

Mask AI is not a separate tool but one which is tied to all applicable adjustments such as Enhance AI, Structure AI, and Color. This somewhat unusual approach offers you the ability to apply unique masks for each adjustment. The illustration below shows me accessing Masking via the Enhance AI adjustment.

Mask AI Tools

You can apply masks using 4 different methods

  1. Brush – Manually Paint on a Mask
  2. Linear Gradient – Good for Skies
  3. Radial Gradient – Good for off-center vignette effects
  4. AI Mask – auto object recognition and masking.

Mask Actions

Once you have applied your mask, you have six mask actions

  1. Fill – Masks the whole screen
  2. Clear – Removes your mask
  3. Invert – Reverses your selection and masks everything other than your selection.
  4. Copy – Copies your mask so you can replicate it for your next adjustment
  5. Paste – Paste’s your previously copied mask into your present adjustment
  6. Show – Toggles the visibility of the mask overlay (the red highlighting).

Using Mask AI in Luminar Neo

When you click on AI Mask, Luminar Neo will pause to analyze the objects within your photo. After a few moments, it will produce a list. For the photo below, Mask AI recognized Sky, Flora, Water, Mountains, Natural Ground, and Man-made ground.

Luminar Neo Mask AI options

To automatically apply a mask, simply click on the object, or objects, of your choice. In the example below, I clicked on Sky and Mask AI automatically applied a mask to my photo’s sky. At this point, any adjustments I make will apply only to the masked area. The rest of the photo will remain unaffected.

Luminar Neo Mask AI

If your photo is more complex, you might find Mask AI falls short of a perfect result. If this is the case, you can fill in any gaps using the masking brush.

Is Mask AI any good

Mask AI can be very effective but it depends on the photo. At best, it works perfectly leaving you with nothing else to do. And at worst, it still offers a head-start, thus saving you some of the tedium of brushing on your own mask.

So far, I have found it to be most effective with people and skies. For instance, in the low-fi selfie below, Luminar Neo’s Mask AI masked me perfectly without any need for corrective brushing.

Luminar Neo Mask AI

But this isn’t to say Mask AI is bad at other things. In the example below, Mask AI correctly identified the lighthouse as Architecture and did a reasonable job of masking it giving me a head-start on my brushing. Overall, Mask AI is well worth having.

Luminar Neo Mask AI


Mask AI is a welcome addition to Luminar Neo. At its best, it will save you a lot of time. And at worst, it will only save you some time. Either way – you’re ahead. And since Mask AI is a free addition for all Luminar Neo owners, it’s an insanely easy recommendation. If you have yet to try Luminar Neo and would like to know more, check out my review or try Luminar Neo free for 7 days, no credit cards required.

GET Luminar Neo TODAY

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SP10NEO – SAVE 10%


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