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Author Topic: 12 Suggestions for developing images in Lightroom  (Read 7064 times)
Scott Martin
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« on: January 05, 2010, 02:01:06 PM »
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FWIW, I just posted 12 suggestions for developing images in Lightroom:

http://www.on-sight.com/blog/

I hope you'll find a few helpful goodies in there!
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geesbert
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« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2010, 04:12:58 PM »
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Quote from: Onsight
FWIW, I just posted 12 suggestions for developing images in Lightroom:

http://www.on-sight.com/blog/

I hope you'll find a few helpful goodies in there!
good stuff, I want more!
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once2work
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« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2010, 04:26:54 AM »
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Quote from: Onsight
FWIW, I just posted 12 suggestions for developing images in Lightroom:

http://www.on-sight.com/blog/

I hope you'll find a few helpful goodies in there!
Hi Scott,
Thank you so much on the guideline on the LR. For number "5", I don't quite get it, would you please kick-in some more explanation.

5) Don't skip correcting for Chromatic Aberration in the Detail panel! Chromatic Aberration is one of the most overlooked features yet it can easily improve the sharpness of an image in addition to removing unwanted color fringing. Hold down the Option/Alt key and look at the corners of your frame at 1:1 while adjusting chromatic aberration.

Thank you!
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2010, 07:01:22 AM »
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Hi,

Sounds good to me, would be nice if you could have a permanent link.

Best regards
erik


Quote from: Onsight
FWIW, I just posted 12 suggestions for developing images in Lightroom:

http://www.on-sight.com/blog/

I hope you'll find a few helpful goodies in there!
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Scott Martin
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« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2010, 08:27:45 AM »
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Quote from: once2work
Thank you so much on the guideline on the LR. For number "5", I don't quite get it, would you please kick-in some more explanation.
#5 is kind of three suggestions in one. The first is just to do it! I feel like chromatic aberration adjustments could be the most overlooked feature in LR's Development module. I'm surprised at not only how often people overlook it but at how many people have never actually corrected for it before. So definitely evaluate and correct for chromatic aberration on all images.

The second point is that you must be viewing an image at 1:1 or greater to actually see chromatic aberration. Lightroom doesn't render any of the detail tab adjustments at lower viewing ratios. If you only view your image in the default "Fit" mode you'll never see the chromatic aberration that will show up in final prints.

The third point is to hold down  the option/alt key when sliding the chromatic aberration sliders in LR. LR limits to colors displayed to just those colors that a particular slider will correct. In short, holding down the option/alt key while sliding the chromatic aberration sliders allows you too see and correct the aberrations better.

Since we're talking about it, I'll make a fourth point here: if you turn down the sharpening amount and noise reduction you'll be able to see chromatic aberrations even better. It's not necessary to do this all the time but occasionally its really helpful. Turn the sharpening and noise reduction back on after you've dialed in the chromatic aberration adjustments.

Once dialed in, chromatic aberration correction can provide improved image quality. It's an important step to high quality printmaking.

Quote
Sounds good to me, would be nice if you could have a permanent link.
Good point. http://www.on-sight.com/2010/01/05/12-pro-...ng-your-images/
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rdonson
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« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2010, 08:31:18 AM »
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Solid advice, Scott.  Please consider applying #11 to your blog page.      Its kind of difficult to read.  
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francois
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« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2010, 10:35:07 AM »
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Thanks for sharing.
I always try to correct chromatic aberration and clean dust spots first. This gives me a "clean" basis to start developping my photos.
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Francois
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« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2010, 10:36:59 AM »
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Quote from: Onsight
#5 is kind of three suggestions in one. The first is just to do it! I feel like chromatic aberration adjustments could be the most overlooked feature in LR's Development module. I'm surprised at not only how often people overlook it but at how many people have never actually corrected for it before. So definitely evaluate and correct for chromatic aberration on all images.

The second point is that you must be viewing an image at 1:1 or greater to actually see chromatic aberration. Lightroom doesn't render any of the detail tab adjustments at lower viewing ratios. If you only view your image in the default "Fit" mode you'll never see the chromatic aberration that will show up in final prints.

The third point is to hold down  the option/alt key when sliding the chromatic aberration sliders in LR. LR limits to colors displayed to just those colors that a particular slider will correct. In short, holding down the option/alt key while sliding the chromatic aberration sliders allows you too see and correct the aberrations better.

Since we're talking about it, I'll make a fourth point here: if you turn down the sharpening amount and noise reduction you'll be able to see chromatic aberrations even better. It's not necessary to do this all the time but occasionally its really helpful. Turn the sharpening and noise reduction back on after you've dialed in the chromatic aberration adjustments.

Once dialed in, chromatic aberration correction can provide improved image quality. It's an important step to high quality printmaking.

The part above in bold is one of the reasons I disagree with the #1 suggestion to work from the top down.  Or maybe I just disagree with the way things are ordered in Lightroom - in my mind, camera calibration and chromatic aberration should be up at the top, because I just don't understand why anyone would want to adjust the camera calibration settings AFTER adjusting everything else?  Same goes for chromatic aberration adjustments - shouldn't any chromatic aberration flaws in the image be corrected as much as possible BEFORE a whole bunch of other things like, for example, converting to B&W or sharpening?

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Scott Martin
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« Reply #8 on: January 06, 2010, 11:34:51 AM »
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Quote from: tokengirl
I disagree with the #1 suggestion to work from the top down.
I agree that some work could be done, and some elements could be rearranged for a better "top down " experience. The localized adjustment tools, for example, are something that you probably don't want to work with until you've completed the adjustments below them. The Camera Calibration (as you point out) certainly needs to be considered first in the workflow. The RGB Hue and Sat sliders in camera calibration are not only seemingly redundant to HSL (to the common user) but have more or less become obsolete with the (use at your own risk) unofficial  DNG Profile Editor.

So yes, there certainly are exceptions and fine print to the "top down" approach but I think encouraging people to mostly work from the top down is a good thing. The developers have, after all, put these tools in the order they intend them to be used. I cringe when I see people jump into a new image and start randomly adjusting sliders by the seat of their pants. That's something that happens all to often with new users without formal training, and becomes a bad habit to break.
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kwalsh
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« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2010, 02:33:32 PM »
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Thanks for sharing some of your workflow, there is some really good stuff in there!

A lot of LR "experts" and book authors would argue that for #9 virtual copies are more appropriate for most of the uses you state.  After trying both approaches I've come to agree with their viewpoint.  Of course snapshots do still work and it seems a lot of people use them just as you suggest.

I actually don't agree with #8 at all.  I find color development and B&W development of an image bear no resemblance at all to each other and a well developed color image is rarely a useful starting point for a B&W conversion (excepting perhaps the grossest exposure and blacks settings).  Anytime I try this I end up undoing essentially all of the fine tuning that was applied to the color image as the final tone mappings of a B&W image are typically dramatically different from a color image - sort of the whole point to B&W actually.  Hardly a single slider even ends up close to the same position in any of my images I've done as both B&W and color, they are two different ways of seeing and hence developing as well.  Even my local edits are frequently very different.

Anyway, thanks - I found some good pointers in your list that I'm going to try to incorporate into my workflow.  One of the great things about LR is so many capable folks use it and take the time to share their knowledge!  Thanks!

Ken

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Scott Martin
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« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2010, 05:54:12 PM »
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Quote from: kwalsh
A lot of LR "experts" and book authors would argue that for #9 virtual copies are more appropriate for most of the uses you state.  After trying both approaches I've come to agree with their viewpoint.  Of course snapshots do still work and it seems a lot of people use them just as you suggest.
I think they compliment one another and serve very different purposes. Start with the snapshots - they are quick and easy and might prove to be more helpful then you thought later on. Start creating virtual copies *only when you need them*, like if you want to visually see a B&W version next to a color version, or print both at the same time or when you need to have a B&W version in one collection and a color version in another. The snapshots will be present in all of your virtual copies.

It can be confusing to have lots of virtual copies of the same image around so I like to encourage people to start with snapshots and add virtual copies only when needed. This also keeps their different functionality distinct.
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madmanchan
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« Reply #11 on: January 09, 2010, 12:22:08 PM »
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There is a case to be made for placing something like the profile popup earlier (e.g., in the Basic pane); however, it really depends on the user and the workflow. Some users really do choose a profile on a per-image basis, and in that case it does make sense to choose it near the beginning of the workflow, since the profile forms the basis (starting point) of the rendering. Other users always use one profile and just have it auto-selected via a camera default or an import preset, so for these users having the profile popup in the Basic pane would not be helpful and would arguably just clutter up the already-populated Basic pane.
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« Reply #12 on: January 09, 2010, 12:48:49 PM »
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Suggestion #1 while a good idea for those who want to work effectively, it doesn’t matter in terms of final quality, LR will apply the edits in a preferred processing order. That’s way cool. In Photoshop, burning the pixels in the less than ideal order can be quite problematic in terms of effective workflow but in terms of image quality.

#3, Clarity is a very useful Midtone contrast boost that really works very well when not overdone (or overdone for an effect. After all, its non destructive like all other edits, you can always “go back”). So yes, moderation is always appropriate.

#7, well for me (and many others), using a default custom DNG profile is a major big deal as a starting point. Depending on your camera, the Adobe default is OK or not so much (YMMV).

The tip about white is super, super good! It will greatly reduce the “My prints are too dark” effect, and it would be nice if we could fully control the amount (say 20% all around the image). Folks can test this in Photoshop easily. Edit an image for tone with a dark bkgnd until it looks good. Print darker than you’d like compared to the display? Put white around the image and look at it now. Probably will look “too dark”.
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Andrew Rodney
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« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2010, 08:12:20 AM »
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Quote from: digitaldog
The tip about white is super, super good!
That tip is brilliant!  
How can I not have noticed until just now that LR's background could be set to white?  This is halfway to having a print preview!  Okay, maybe only one-tenth of the way, but still...

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Scott Martin
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« Reply #14 on: January 10, 2010, 10:05:34 AM »
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Quote from: madmanchan
There is a case to be made for placing something like the profile popup earlier (e.g., in the Basic pane); however, it really depends on the user and the workflow. Some users really do choose a profile on a per-image basis, and in that case it does make sense to choose it near the beginning of the workflow, since the profile forms the basis (starting point) of the rendering. Other users always use one profile and just have it auto-selected via a camera default or an import preset, so for these users having the profile popup in the Basic pane would not be helpful and would arguably just clutter up the already-populated Basic pane.
Well said. The current setup is great for many but a little odd for a smaller number of users. Is there a win win solution to be found? The fact that the panels can be hidden could be key here. Perhaps a small "Camera Profile" panel could be positioned above Basic but hidden by default?

Appealing to different types of users *is* a big challenge. While I lean toward having lots of control, all the sliders can be daunting for users that long for greater simplicity. In workshops, when I say "Just because we have a bunch of sliders doesn't mean we need to adjust them all with every image" I hear a few sighs of relief. Customizing the right hand develop panels might be a good thing. There's only so much space over there and scrolling gets tiring. I could see how hiding some sliders could simplify things. For example, some users might appreciate a smaller Detail panel without radius, details, masking and luminance sliders and a Vignette panel with just the Post Crop amount and feather sliders. Capture One really does an impressive amount with very few sliders. Perhaps a little LR UI customization might allow for a 'best of both worlds' situation.
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #15 on: January 11, 2010, 02:48:03 AM »
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Quote from: Onsight
I think they compliment one another and serve very different purposes. Start with the snapshots - they are quick and easy and might prove to be more helpful then you thought later on. Start creating virtual copies *only when you need them*, like if you want to visually see a B&W version next to a color version, or print both at the same time or when you need to have a B&W version in one collection and a color version in another. The snapshots will be present in all of your virtual copies.

It can be confusing to have lots of virtual copies of the same image around so I like to encourage people to start with snapshots and add virtual copies only when needed. This also keeps their different functionality distinct.

I take pretty well the opposite point of view here. Far from complementing each other, VCs and snapshots compete and are muddled thinking - or maybe it's fairer to say incompletely executed by Adobe. VCs are what LR is all about - rethinking from the ground up, and handling the problem of quanity. Snapshots are Photoshop-style OldThink which are only of value for a single image. Each has its advantages in certain cases, but sooner or later Adobe will need to make VCs and Snapshots into a single entity or at least allow you to explode snapshots out into VCs, and vice versa so you do actually get the best of both.

If you want alternative renditions of an image, that you can output independently and manage in Library, start with VCs. If you want extra history steps that you can access through Bridge, but which you have to know exist, use Snapshots. In other words, start with VCs. If you find having lots of VCs confusing, I suggest returning to film.

John

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kwalsh
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« Reply #16 on: January 11, 2010, 08:23:39 AM »
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I just wanted to come back and highlight the "set background to white when preparing for printing" advice.

This is "paper clip" type advice - absolutely obvious once you see it, invaluably useful, and brilliant in its simplicity.

And like the paper clip, I couldn't think of it on my own!

Anyway, just wanted to add double thanks for that one.

Ken
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DarkPenguin
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« Reply #17 on: January 17, 2010, 10:37:01 AM »
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Quote from: kwalsh
I just wanted to come back and highlight the "set background to white when preparing for printing" advice.

This is "paper clip" type advice - absolutely obvious once you see it, invaluably useful, and brilliant in its simplicity.

And like the paper clip, I couldn't think of it on my own!

Anyway, just wanted to add double thanks for that one.

Ken

+1
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« Reply #18 on: January 18, 2010, 02:32:00 PM »
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Great post/tips!
Thanks for the information.
Also, I have one to add. Sometimes it's better to adjust the shadows/darks slider in the tone curve to adjust your blacks than the actual blacks slider because it tends to clip the shadows more easily.
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