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Author Topic: Curves  (Read 105517 times)
Schewe
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« Reply #40 on: July 12, 2007, 01:22:23 AM »
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But... overlooking the "want" to focus on the "need" will not capture the fact that if I don't get what I "want" I'll probably decide at some point of time to use a piece of software that does give me what I "want".
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And that's your right. Look, the Lightroom engineers can only do what they can do. LR 1.1 was required for a variety of bug fixes and functionality enhancements-which meant that that other work went undone. What current Lightroom feature would you give up in exchange for point editing? Prolly not mergable catalogs, prolly not sharpening, prolly not a lot that is in 1.1 that ain't in 1.0.

Want will always take a backseat to need. So, unless you can elevate a want to a need, it will remain optional as apposed to mission critical.

Can you get really great output now from Lightroom? Would a point editor make a big difference? Prove it. Try to find use cases where Camera Raw can do a substantially better job than Lightroom.
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« Reply #41 on: July 12, 2007, 02:07:32 AM »
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And that's your right. Look, the Lightroom engineers can only do what they can do. LR 1.1 was required for a variety of bug fixes and functionality enhancements-which meant that that other work went undone. What current Lightroom feature would you give up in exchange for point editing? Prolly not mergable catalogs, prolly not sharpening, prolly not a lot that is in 1.1 that ain't in 1.0.

Want will always take a backseat to need. So, unless you can elevate a want to a need, it will remain optional as apposed to mission critical.

Can you get really great output now from Lightroom? Would a point editor make a big difference? Prove it. Try to find use cases where Camera Raw can do a substantially better job than Lightroom.
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Jeff,

As you might remember, I was not too enthousiastic about LR in the past for various reasons having to do with the need to import data and the lack of opening to other raw converters (I see that DxO is now proposing an intregration which is great).

This being said, I have to admit that the quality of the conversions in 1.1 is now excellent and have to acknowledge the fact that it is possible to get great results with 1.1. It works especially well with my ZD files as long as the exposures are reasonnably short.

Now, the main reasons why I think I need point curves in Lightroom nonetheless are:

- point control enables me to increase the local contrast of an image exactly where it has to be done based on the actual histogram. The current sliders work on pre-defined areas of the curve that do not always meet the actual needs of an image.

How about those high key images that do not have a lot of information in the lower 25% of the histogram but where more contrast is needed elsewhere for instance?

Since this is currently not easy to do - or at least I haven't found an easy way to do it - you often end up having to apply more global curves inside PS, which defeats the very purpose of LR as a comprehensive global image modification engine. Multiple curve application can only increase the entropy of the image and should be avoided.

- highlight control - we all know that those brightest bits can often make or break an image, especially those shot with natural light. I believe that this has been mentioned by others also,

- consistency with ACR. I am not yet sold on the idea that I need to batch import all my images in Lightroom, especially all the legacy ones. Using ACR on those is much faster and I would typically use point control for those images. I'd like to be able to stick the same workflow for those new images I'll handle with Lightroom,

- consistency with other RAW converters like Capture NX,

- I am used to working with point curve.

Regards,
Bernard
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 02:08:07 AM by BernardLanguillier » Logged

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Hermie
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« Reply #42 on: July 12, 2007, 02:32:25 AM »
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Jeff,

As you might remember, I was not too enthousiastic about LR in the past for various reasons having to do with the need to import data and the lack of opening to other raw converters (I see that DxO is now proposing an intregration which is great).

This being said, I have to admit that the quality of the conversions in 1.1 is now excellent and have to acknowledge the fact that it is possible to get great results with 1.1. It works especially well with my ZD files as long as the exposures are reasonnably short.

Now, the main reasons why I think I need point curves in Lightroom nonetheless are:

- point control enables me to increase the local contrast of an image exactly where it has to be done based on the actual histogram. The current sliders work on pre-defined areas of the curve that do not always meet the actual needs of an image.

How about those high key images that do not have a lot of information in the lower 25% of the histogram but where more contrast is needed elsewhere for instance?

Since this is currently not easy to do - or at least I haven't found an easy way to do it - you often end up having to apply more global curves inside PS, which defeats the very purpose of LR as a comprehensive global image modification engine. Multiple curve application can only increase the entropy of the image and should be avoided.

- highlight control - we all know that those brightest bits can often make or break an image, especially those shot with natural light. I believe that this has been mentioned by others also,

- consistency with ACR. I am not yet sold on the idea that I need to batch import all my images in Lightroom, especially all the legacy ones. Using ACR on those is much faster and I would typically use point control for those images. I'd like to be able to stick the same workflow for those new images I'll handle with Lightroom,

- consistency with other RAW converters like Capture NX,

- I am used to working with point curve.

Regards,
Bernard
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127754\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Wouldn't you just love the fine control of LightZone's ZoneMapper in Lightroom :-) ?

Adobe should acquire Lightcrafts and use its nifty tooling like ZoneMapper, Re-light and especially its selection tools.

Herman
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 02:35:06 AM by Hermie » Logged
Mark D Segal
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« Reply #43 on: July 12, 2007, 07:23:35 AM »
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Jeff,

As you might remember, I was not too enthousiastic about LR in the past for various reasons having to do with the need to import data and the lack of opening to other raw converters (I see that DxO is now proposing an intregration which is great).

This being said, I have to admit that the quality of the conversions in 1.1 is now excellent and have to acknowledge the fact that it is possible to get great results with 1.1. It works especially well with my ZD files as long as the exposures are reasonnably short.

Now, the main reasons why I think I need point curves in Lightroom nonetheless are:

- point control enables me to increase the local contrast of an image exactly where it has to be done based on the actual histogram. The current sliders work on pre-defined areas of the curve that do not always meet the actual needs of an image.

How about those high key images that do not have a lot of information in the lower 25% of the histogram but where more contrast is needed elsewhere for instance?

Since this is currently not easy to do - or at least I haven't found an easy way to do it - you often end up having to apply more global curves inside PS, which defeats the very purpose of LR as a comprehensive global image modification engine. Multiple curve application can only increase the entropy of the image and should be avoided.

- highlight control - we all know that those brightest bits can often make or break an image, especially those shot with natural light. I believe that this has been mentioned by others also,

- consistency with ACR. I am not yet sold on the idea that I need to batch import all my images in Lightroom, especially all the legacy ones. Using ACR on those is much faster and I would typically use point control for those images. I'd like to be able to stick the same workflow for those new images I'll handle with Lightroom,

- consistency with other RAW converters like Capture NX,

- I am used to working with point curve.

Regards,
Bernard
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127754\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Bernard,

While I hear Jeff loud and clear (no way you can't)    and he has a point (or two) I still find myself firmly within the group who "wants" point curves. Do I really "need" them? - yes and no - I'm moving from being less convinced of yes to not convinced of no - if you see what I mean. So while I still "want" the Point Curve, at the same time I recognize the value and potential of the Parametric approach.

You say above the current sliders work on pre-defined areas of the Curve. This is not necessarily quite correct, depending on what you mean by "pre-defined" - you can re-define those areas by shifting the zone demarcation sliders on the x-axis of the Curve U.I. box. In fact you have seven controls in that U.I. - the four sliders below the box and three markers immediately under the box. You can work back and forth between them to shape that Curve with remarkable effectiveness. I've processed over a thousand images over the past several months using the new Camera Raw (same thing as LR Develop except ACR does have the point curve in a separate tab), and I find myself needing the Point Curve less and less - but when I need it, I do need it.

This is not because I absolutely can't do with Parametric what I can do with Point, but because the distinction between "want" and "need" is less clear-cut than Jeff's posts would imply. There is also a consideration of "time-effectiveness" in all this. I can probably get 90% of what I "need" from a Parametric Curve quite easily. The other 10% I could probably get as well - with much more time spent fiddling with sliders rather than plunking down several points. I would also like to see composite luminosity, Lab and HSB data read-outs in an expanded info palette. Maybe this needs to be a "feature request".

I agree with Jeff that there are trade-offs between priorities, especially when a company - which is after all a for profit enterprise (absent which we wouln't have all this stuff) feels it's under commercial pressure to put a product on the market by a certain date. That said, the Point Curve add-in is probably one of the easiest and fastest things they could do, because all the technology for it is sitting right under their own roof in Camera Raw. OK, says me who isn't a software engineer - and I know everything takes time even if it's been done before - but common sense would suggest this is not a monumental development problem for them. And I'm still not convinced that leaving this out of Lightroom was a matter of this priority versus that. I do believe that I heard and interpreted correctly what I was told: they wanted to keep LR "simple" - well - it ain't all that simple, but..............that's what they "wanted" - and felt they "needed".

Bernard, your last point - "I am used to working with Point curve" - yah, so am I, so is Jack, so is everyone. I don't know how old you guys are, but I'm getting on up there, and I still like to believe that old dogs can learn new tricks. But they'd best be better ones!  

Cheers,

Mark
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 07:24:20 AM by MarkDS » Logged

Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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digitaldog
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« Reply #44 on: July 12, 2007, 07:35:07 AM »
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Given the fact that ACR has point curve and given the fact (well it may not be a fact but it appears to be true) that Adobe is trying to produce feature parity between LR and ACR with minor exceptions, and given the fact that users appear to want point curves, I think it should be easily accomplished should enough people make their voices heard. It seems obvious that Thomas Knoll feels point curves are necessary and useful. Now you can import the point curve settings from ACR into LR but man, that's a kludge.

Unlike Jeff, I don't know the rational or have heard discussions of the two teams lead engineers but it appears from the outside as if the two team leaders don't necessarily agree in the need for point curve. More the reason why it would be useful to provide examples of images using BOTH products to illustrate your points to the LR group.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 07:35:43 AM by digitaldog » Logged

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« Reply #45 on: July 12, 2007, 09:06:10 AM »
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More the reason why it would be useful to provide examples of images using BOTH products to illustrate your points to the LR group.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127782\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

OR we can choose to use -- and pay for -- a tool that gives us what we want in lieu of a tool that doesn't, even though some third party tells us it has everything we need... (AKA, "drink their Kool-Aid!")  Here I use the word "want" specifically as respects my purchasing criteria.  

Cheers,
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 09:07:22 AM by Jack Flesher » Logged

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« Reply #46 on: July 12, 2007, 09:15:40 AM »
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...it would be useful to provide examples of images using BOTH products to illustrate your points to the LR group...
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This has been a very interesting discussion.  Jack, could you show us how we can benefit from point curves in post processing?  And could others show us how that can be done in LR?

Thank you all.

Fred
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Mark D Segal
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« Reply #47 on: July 12, 2007, 09:25:54 AM »
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OR we can choose to use -- and pay for -- a tool that gives us what we want in lieu of a tool that doesn't, even though some third party tells us it has everything we need... (AKA, "drink their Kool-Aid!")  Here I use the word "want" specifically as respects my purchasing criteria. 

Cheers,
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127799\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Jack - we all know nothing is perfect out there and I think you'd have a hard time - if not an impossible one - replicating in one package all which LR offers. If what you lack is a point Curve, use Camera Raw instead - does the same stuff with this added benefit.

Cheers,

Mark
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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« Reply #48 on: July 12, 2007, 09:27:38 AM »
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This has been a very interesting discussion.  Jack, could you show us how we can benefit from point curves in post processing?  And could others show us how that can be done in LR?

Thank you all.

Fred
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OK, I'm not Jack so I won't get into the specifics of answering your question, but I must confess to being puzzled by te question itself. A point Curve is the same animal we've had in Photoshop from the get-go. Presumably you've been using it?
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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« Reply #49 on: July 12, 2007, 09:50:18 AM »
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OK, I'm not Jack so I won't get into the specifics of answering your question, but I must confess to being puzzled by te question itself. A point Curve is the same animal we've had in Photoshop from the get-go. Presumably you've been using it?
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Yes, but it would be helpful to see an example of how an image enhanced with point curves could be enhanced with LR.  The baseline is the point curve image.  The question is whether LR can do as well or better with equal or less effort.

Fred
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« Reply #50 on: July 12, 2007, 09:52:11 AM »
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Jack, could you show us how we can benefit from point curves in post processing?  [a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127803\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Fred: I gave a verbal example in detail a few posts back.  If, as Mark asked, you use point curves already, it should be very easy to understand the benefit; more precise adjustments to small tonal ranges of the image.  If you were a user of point curves, you would know how *REALLY* sweet the workflow is.  To simply ctrl/cmd-click a tone in your image, then have the point for that tone appear on the curve ready to be adjusted with the cursor keys or directly, is about as convenient as it gets.

The debate here as I see it, is really over whether we *need* them or just *want* them.  And apparently Adobe feels we don't need them, so they are not a priority.  Personally, I want them so the argument ends there for me.  However, at this point in time, I also need them since *I* cannot get the parametric sliders to give me the adjustment precision I want in a format I'm used to using -- yes, I can get close with the LR sliders, but not as easily nor as precisely.  

Mark, you are of course correct, and it's what I am doing; using ACR because it works well for me.

Cheers,
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 10:09:28 AM by Jack Flesher » Logged

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« Reply #51 on: July 12, 2007, 10:17:29 AM »
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Yes, but it would be helpful to see an example of how an image enhanced with point curves could be enhanced with LR.  The baseline is the point curve image.  The question is whether LR can do as well or better with equal or less effort.

Fred
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Frankly Fred, it wouldn't be very helpful at all. There are images and there are images. Many images will come out just as well either way, some won't. Then there is the efficiency dimension - with some you'll get to home base faster and more easily using LR sliders, with others you'll still get there but not as easily.

I share Jack's view that if we have a tool that millions of people are using successfully and efficiently it should be retained unless something truly better (in terms of both efficiency and effectiveness) is developed to replace it. That hasn't happened with Curves yet, as nifty as the Parametric curve really is.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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« Reply #52 on: July 12, 2007, 10:37:08 AM »
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What about the Target Adjustment Tool in LR? Does this give you "point curve"-like functionality? (haven't used it much myself, but sounded relevant so I brought it up)
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Schewe
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« Reply #53 on: July 12, 2007, 12:42:11 PM »
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- consistency with other RAW converters like Capture NX,
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That seriously isn't the way to try to move Adobe...pointing to OTHER products is a sure way to watch them shut down and quit listening. They seriously couldn't care less what other products do and will go out of their way to innovate around or beyond the competition.

Bringing up the competition is like the kiss of death in an argument.

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- I am used to working with point curve.

And while true, would make little impact on their thinking...you have to understand that Hamburg in particular is really and truley trying to do new things. So, they will bust their butts to do something in a manner and approach that is new–even if it's a lot more work–than to do the expected and comfortable.

No, you really need to make the arguments only on the basis of optimal image output...that's the one area where proving better results will make them blink because regardless of ALL the other factors, it's really all about image quality. That's the one driving force behind their commitment where you can get traction.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 12:43:23 PM by Schewe » Logged
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« Reply #54 on: July 12, 2007, 12:56:53 PM »
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What about the Target Adjustment Tool in LR? Does this give you "point curve"-like functionality? (haven't used it much myself, but sounded relevant so I brought it up)
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127822\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Eric, the Targeted Adjustment Tool is fine-tuning with the HSL sliders according to colour family in the HSL/Color section of the Develop Module. It isn't really akin to point-curve functionality in the sense that Jack means it (making fine adjustments to Luminosity in specific tonal ranges of the image). That said, depending on the relationship between the colours and their luminosity distribution in the image, those sliders can be used to impact on localized luminosity directly associated with particular colour families. It's still not the kind of functionality you get via the direct route of a point on a luminosity or composite curve.
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Mark D Segal (formerly MarkDS)
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« Reply #55 on: July 12, 2007, 01:08:02 PM »
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Eric, the Targeted Adjustment Tool is fine-tuning with the HSL sliders according to colour family in the HSL/Color section of the Develop Module.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127848\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Yeah, well, the parametric curves ALSO has a TAT...it ain't just for HSL.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 01:08:26 PM by Schewe » Logged
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« Reply #56 on: July 12, 2007, 01:13:14 PM »
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And while true, would make little impact on their thinking...you have to understand that Hamburg in particular is really and truley trying to do new things. [a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127844\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

And he doesn't care about the interface Adobe has had us using for the last 10 years, an interface that works intuitively and brilliantly?  Come on Jeff, that would be corporate suicide and any software developer will tell you that.  This must be the Macromedia influence speaking.
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« Reply #57 on: July 12, 2007, 01:28:37 PM »
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Yeah, well, the parametric curves ALSO has a TAT...it ain't just for HSL.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127852\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Jeff, if you mean by that the use of the cursor over the specific luminosity areas in the image you want to affect with the Parametric Curve - yes - but that is more of an interface convenience rather than an additional layer of fine-tuning control over the image in the sense that Jack means. It is in this latter context I was speaking. In Lightroom Help - I just checked - I did not find reference to the Parametric Curve under TAT.
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« Reply #58 on: July 12, 2007, 01:30:21 PM »
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And he doesn't care about the interface Adobe has had us using for the last 10 years, an interface that works intuitively and brilliantly?  Come on Jeff, that would be corporate suicide and any software developer will tell you that.  This must be the Macromedia influence speaking.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127856\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

To play devils advocate and based on years of teaching Photoshop, there's really nothing intuitive about using Curves initially. Once you 'get it' it seems simple. But intuitive? I don't think so.
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« Reply #59 on: July 12, 2007, 01:30:42 PM »
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And he doesn't care about the interface Adobe has had us using for the last 10 years, an interface that works intuitively and brilliantly?[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=127856\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

He's worked on Photoshop. . .he was the second engineer to work on Photoshop, he was the architect of Photoshop. He knows the code (prolly wrote most of it) and I'm telling you that the LAST thing he would want to do is do it the Photoshop Way™. Lightroom is The UnPhotoshop™.

And completely forget the Macromedia connection. . .nobody that I know working on Lightroom worked at MM...and I'm pretty sure nothing about LR is influenced by MM. Everything about Lightroom is Adobe bred (as far as I know). There is FAR more ImageReady influence than anything else since other than Hamburg, most of the top LR engineers worked on IR. And ironically, the UI is coming from a Kai Krause influence via Phil Clevenger, who worked for Kai.

Almost all of the assumptions people are making about Lightroom's genesis are incorrect as are the assumptions regarding motivation. Photoshop was Thomas' Photoshop. Lightroom is Hamburg's Photoshop and the less it looks and behaves like Photoshop the happier Mark will be. Given a choice between a feature looking and working like Photoshop and a feature looking and working like something you've never seen before, he will go towards the looking and working like something you've never seen before, 9 out 10.

And he has had a MAJOR impact...look at Camera Raw 3 (not 3.7 which started the migration to 4) and Camera Raw 4. Look at ALL the things Thomas adopted from Mark.

Then you start to get the idea...

There's a funny story (which I _THINK_ is true). When Thomas was a senior in HS he went out for the All Michigan Math Conference and placed in the top 10.

Mark being younger (but also from Michigan-Thomas in Ann Arbor, Mark in Midland) followed in Thomas' footsteps later. He went out for the Conference as a HS freshman...placed #1. As a sophomore placed #1. As a junior was invited not to compete...

Not many people can impress Thomas Knoll. Hamburg does...
« Last Edit: July 12, 2007, 02:13:18 PM by Schewe » Logged
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