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Author Topic: Preparing a Raw file in Lightroom for Photoshop  (Read 11427 times)
digitaldog
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« Reply #20 on: October 25, 2011, 07:52:06 PM »
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I like Lee and we've been friends for a long time but Lee is wrong for the vast majority of photo users.

So true, oh so true. To dismiss the power of a good raw processor only to fix the mess from careless rendering, as he suggests in Photoshop, shows a severe lack of understaind of modern image processing.
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Andrew Rodney
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leuallen
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« Reply #21 on: October 25, 2011, 09:49:59 PM »
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I have watched Lee's videos and have gotten Lee's book on 10 channel processing. He does state that this method is not for everyday work but for the images that are your best "keepers", a small portion of your workflow (at least mine!).  I have used his methods and like the results but don't know if conventional processing would equal the results his methods produce as I have been to lazy to test. The benefits are supposedly better color-saturation control in the final image. I don't consider his methods to be careless processing but well thought out. There is no distortion of the original image due to radical curves or hue-saturation adjustments. The basis for the technique is to use the layers of the original image, a lab copy, and a CYMK copy and apply them using blend modes, opacity, and the blend-if command to control contrast and saturation. There are some pretty neat methods for controlling the saturation of shadow areas and for darkening blues. Go on his web site and check out his tutorials and then make up your mind.

Larry
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Schewe
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« Reply #22 on: October 25, 2011, 10:15:43 PM »
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...He does state that this method is not for everyday work but for the images that are your best "keepers", a small portion of your workflow (at least mine!).

Uh huh...again, unless you can show a before/after with an optimized original raw in ACR/LR and one sent through the alleged 10 step process done in Photoshop, I'll reserve judgement. I've seen Dan's Picture Postcard process and I'm not in the least bit impressed. The initial steps make the image look like crap only to be saved in the end. I think you'll be better severed optimizing your image from the very beginning rather than "saving" the image in the end in Photoshop.
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Bryan Conner
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« Reply #23 on: October 25, 2011, 11:55:27 PM »
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With regards to capture sharpening, I would rate LR's ability to capture sharpen to be slightly better than either PhotoKit Sharpener (which I am involved with) or Photoshop's. With regards to creative sharpening, no, Photoshop is still King. But when you are ready to print, I would suggest printing from LR and use LR's output sharpening–which is based on PhotoKit Sharpener's output sharpening.

In either case, I suggest using LR to do all your global and local adjustments to tone, color and detail in Lightroom before going to Photoshop. For me, I take back out of Photoshop and into LR for printing or other consumption...I hate having to spawn off too many iterations of the original. I use raw when possible but generally make an RGB master for retouching and soft proofing and keep the original raw and rendered TIFF from Photoshop in Lightroom.

Thanks Jeff.  As always, your advice makes sense.   Well...unless you are giving advice on which shirt to wear.....just kidding...LOL.
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Schewe
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« Reply #24 on: October 26, 2011, 12:12:44 AM »
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Thanks Jeff.  As always, your advice makes sense.   Well...unless you are giving advice on which shirt to wear.....just kidding...LOL.

Well, I always advocate Tommie Bahama Hawaiian shirts (unless you're into "black" TEE shirts which I Also wear when I'm not on camera).
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stamper
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« Reply #25 on: October 26, 2011, 05:21:05 AM »
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BTW, which book?

I think I'll give Lee a call and talk about it...
:~)
[/quote]

Mastering Exposure and the Zone system. Lee Varis published 2011. The main idea of his book is that you have access to different channels in Photoshop as well as using the zone system. I was a little surprised he advocated the use of Lab. Probably as a selling point to be different from other books. Smiley

« Last Edit: October 26, 2011, 05:26:09 AM by stamper » Logged

stamper
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« Reply #26 on: October 26, 2011, 05:25:44 AM »
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So true, oh so true. To dismiss the power of a good raw processor only to fix the mess from careless rendering, as he suggests in Photoshop, shows a severe lack of understaind of modern image processing.

What do you mean by careless rendering? It seems like you have alleged this just to score a point with a fellow photographer and author. Have you read the book in question? Sad
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digitaldog
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« Reply #27 on: October 26, 2011, 09:45:39 AM »
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What do you mean by careless rendering? It seems like you have alleged this just to score a point with a fellow photographer and author. Have you read the book in question? Sad

Go here:
http://blogs.adobe.com/jnack/2011/05/lee-varis-lecture-recording-now-available.html

Watch the video, up to 35 minutes when ACR is thrown under the bus.

Careless rendering, in this context, much like the 10 channle technique Lee appears to have got from Dan M is the idea that one should zero out the ACR sliders, or in Lee’s case, not using them to their full functionality to then fix the mess in Photoshop that could and should be properly rendered in the first place.

Now here’s an idea. Instead of using whatever you carelessly create in ACR or LR to build channels from some fixed CMYK conversion, USE ACR or LR to build an iteration for a channel you can blend! Instead of making lemonade out of the lemons you got from a lazy rendering, render correctly, even if that rendering is solely to build a channel. Of you could just create a crappy rendering, then use some generic CMYK conversion and hope one of the channels is useful for the blend. GIGO:GARBAGE IN GARBAGE OUT. Your call.

Now the idea Lee (and originally Dan) came up with, using channels for blending IS useful in some cases. Lee’s example of bulding a mask for shadows to reduce saturation (seen in the above video) is quite useful! But how the process is created is laborious and unnecessary in many ways, especially in light of what we can end up with in Photoshop from ACR or LR.
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Andrew Rodney
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« Reply #28 on: October 26, 2011, 05:09:17 PM »
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Andrew,

Thanks for posting that. It's been years since I've seen Lee present (maybe since the last 13 Forum). I got a real kick out of seeing his early work. I forgot he did the Silence of the Lambs poster.

As for his 10 Channel demo, yes, it's what I expected. He intentionally processed the raw flat and fixed it in Photoshop. Photoshop is Lee's strength...his approach is more like the old days of film scans where you intentionally waited to do anything other than base cast correction and brought it into Photoshop flat. I used to do that with raw files early back when I had to use the crappy Canon software before Thomas wrote Camera Raw.

Clearly he could have done a lot more to improve the images in ACR/LR (and even admitted he does use LR's controls when he's doing a lot of images). I also thought his corrections were a bit over the top...but something that could be adjusted using masks and opacity.

I did get a kick out of his answer regarding 8 bit–note he was working in 8 bit sRGB and had his workflow settings in ACR to 72PPI and had web output sharpening on. He mentioned my "recreational user" comment regarding not using 16 bit. I suspect he doesn't normally use sRGB–he must had been doing some web images before. I was sort of shocked how slow his computer was running...

The bottom line is it's useful for a user to know many ways to work on images and pick and choose when to do what where. I always go into Photoshop for retouching, midtone contrast and fine tuning with layers and of course, soft proofing. Much of what Lee demoed regarding contrast, color and saturation could easily be done parametrically in ACR/LR and leave some tuning work for Photoshop. I'm not at all convinced that people should ignore the toolset ACR/LR has just to go into Photoshop to fix it, unless maybe you're doing a book on the process. Course, I may be biased since I've been involved with the development of ACR/LR and write a book about ACR. On the other hand, maybe it's because I've been involved that I also know how to use the controls so well.

I'm also pretty darn good at Photoshop as well...Lee and I have been in the biz about the same length of time although I think I've got him beat in terms of shooting for digital manipulation. My first digitally imaged job was in 1984 well before Thomas ever started work on Photoshop. I didn't do the imaging but shot the elements specifically for digital assembly by Rafael at Digital Transparencies Inc in Huston. That was my first taste of what would eventually happen because of Photoshop.

I like Lee, I wish him well and happen to thing he's wrong but provides useful techniques...
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digitaldog
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« Reply #29 on: October 26, 2011, 07:29:48 PM »
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I'm not at all convinced that people should ignore the toolset ACR/LR has just to go into Photoshop to fix it, unless maybe you're doing a book on the process.

Indeed. Its also a bit alarming to disregard such a powerful tool as a good raw processor, end up with far less than ideal data, then waste a lot of time to fix the resulting mess you’ve made in Photoshop. Useful if you charge by the hour or are inexperienced in raw processing.

I’ve got no dog in this fight in terms of using a good raw processor then moving into Photoshop in terms of selling books on such workflows. It just makes no sense to me to dismiss proper parametric rendering in a good raw converter just to spin my wheels using Photoshop. I’m surprised that some pundits and ‘experts’ suggest people zero out all sliders or ignore all the tools in a good raw processor. Why?
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Andrew Rodney
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« Reply #30 on: October 26, 2011, 07:36:26 PM »
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I’m surprised that some pundits and ‘experts’ suggest people zero out all sliders or ignore all the tools in a good raw processor. Why?

Well, in the case of Dan, we know why...he doesn't think Camera Raw is a "professional tool".

:~)
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stamper
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« Reply #31 on: October 27, 2011, 03:29:27 AM »
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Quote Digital Dog.

Careless rendering, in this context, much like the 10 channle technique Lee appears to have got from Dan M is the idea that one should zero out the ACR sliders, or in Lee’s case, not using them to their full functionality to then fix the mess in Photoshop that could and should be properly rendered in the first place.

Unquote

Digital Dog,
            
am I right in saying that you did the same or similar before Raw Processing became the efficient program it is now? It is easy - you are proving it - to knock what went before and dismiss it to the bin. You obviously have a commercial interest in the latest technology and it shows. I think your attitude may put people off buying your books. Personally  - I have many books - but I haven't bought any of yours. There are many ways to skin a cat. I have no doubt that a competent user of Photoshop can process an image using "the old ways" that was so good that you couldn't tell it hadn't been processed mostly by raw. BTW you haven't mentioned "polishing turds" was you saving that? Sad
« Last Edit: October 27, 2011, 05:22:02 AM by stamper » Logged

john beardsworth
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« Reply #32 on: October 27, 2011, 04:18:01 AM »
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Are you really happy with your insinuations? Just because someone might have a "commercial interest in the latest technology" doesn't invalidate his opinion that a particular workflow is now less than optimal and its presentation is questionable. Just because there are many ways to skin a cat doesn't mean they are all of equal value. Why advocate arcane turd-polishing workflows when in the same time people can use the latest methods to do more work of equal quality?
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stamper
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« Reply #33 on: October 27, 2011, 04:27:56 AM »
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Having a commercial interest may mean a bias is involved that means objectivity is lost. Your post makes it obvious that you think the "latest" is best and older methods should scorned. These "arcane turd-polishing workflows" still work. I believe you have commercial interests in publishing photographic theories. If I had the time or inclination I bet that I could scour the internet and see some of the things you advocated in the past as being worthwhile. Are they now not worth the paper they were printed on? Lighten up and be more objective. Smiley
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #34 on: October 27, 2011, 05:18:31 AM »
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Lee has a commercial interest too. So effing what??? Has Andrew or Jeff used that to question his professionalism? Can you not see that while obsolete methods still work, for a variety of reasons they may no longer be best practice? It was 2011 when I last looked.... And what's more ethical, continuing to peddle obsolete methods or pointing out the right ways forward? Frankly, and sorry if you feel patronised by this comment, but if you thought about it you'd realise that it's probably as much in one's commercial interest to dig up up an old turd of a method and promote it as if it's the golden egg. The Lab for B&W book, anyone?

You need to take a look at yourself and cut out all your silly insinuations....

John
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stamper
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« Reply #35 on: October 27, 2011, 05:33:04 AM »
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Tut tut John. Feeling better? I addressed my comment to the Digital Dog who had - imo - made a scathing remark that I felt was unnecessary. You jumped in with both feet and tried to defend him. I take it you and him are on the same wavelength?

>And what's more ethical, continuing to peddle obsolete methods or pointing out the right ways forward?<

The method worked well in the past and that HASN'T  changed because raw processing has improved. Let me guess. In about 5 years raw processing will have been surpassed by something else and the ones praising it will probably be in the same frame of mind? Pissing on it? There are room for all methods and and I feel commercial interests are evident. BTW I am a user of ACR and do most of my work with it. As stated lighten up. Grin
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pegelli
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« Reply #36 on: October 27, 2011, 05:37:16 AM »
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I don't think this debate should be based on alledged commercial bias or of "old" technology vs. "new" technology but it would be much better held on the technical merits of the different possible workflows.

I think Jeff and digitaldog have explained why they think it's better to start with the best rendered picture you can get from the raw converter and apply photoshop tricks after that for things you want to do that cannot be done in the raw converter.

However I have not seen a technical explanation why it is better (in terms of workflow efficiency or quality of end result) why it's better to start with a nearly "flat" raw conversion and do all the upgrading in photoshop.

So maybe we should put all the accusitions aside and focus on that aspect of the discussion.
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pieter, aka pegelli
stamper
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« Reply #37 on: October 27, 2011, 05:59:39 AM »
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The persons that advocate the "flat" raw conversion aren't to my knowledge members of this forum so they can't defend themselves. Anyone interested in their methods will have to Google for information. I started out in digital 11 years ago and I have dozens of books on Photoshop, many from before the advent of raw processing. Raw processing is real progress but it doesn't mean the older methods deserve the disdain of the above adjectives.

careless rendering
lazy rendering
crappy rendering
arcane turd polishing workflows

Six or seven years ago they were the "in thing". A well known Scottish Professional wedding photographer I know was producing amazing images and getting them published four years ago using Photoshop 5.5. I don't know if he has upgraded now. It doesn't really matter how you do it as long as the final image is fine?
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #38 on: October 27, 2011, 06:12:33 AM »
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Again, Stamper, it's you that needs to look at yourself and put a bit more thought into it. The method does the same job now as then, but it has been comfortably surpassed as the best way to work. You seem happy to question the ethics of those who point that out, yet fail to understand that "commercial interests" are pretty well the same, at least in the short term, whether you're promoting the obscure and the obsolete or advocating best practice.

However I have not seen a technical explanation why it is better (in terms of workflow efficiency or quality of end result) why it's better to start with a nearly "flat" raw conversion and do all the upgrading in photoshop.
I wouldn't argue it in terms of quality, but certainly in terms of time effectiveness. Correcting the images in raw means you can get far more images finished to the same level of quality - just switch to Lightroom's AutoSync mode, for example, and with a single drag of the slider you can adjust dozens or even hundreds of images simultaneously. It's not speed for its own sake, but more properly-corrected images in the bag, more of the day is left for whatever pixel-level jiggery-pokery you really need to do in Photoshop.

John
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Bryan Conner
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« Reply #39 on: October 27, 2011, 06:15:39 AM »
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It doesn't really matter how you do it as long as the final image is fine?

I agree with this statement...with a small change:  It doesn't really matter how you do it as long as you are happy with it.

However, I think that the focus of Andrew's position may be that it is better to be teaching the latest and best processing philosophy to the students.  This does not mean that the old methods are terrible, wrong, or unusable.  It only means that the latest, proven better, methods are the best to offer first.

If you are happy processing your jpegs from your camera using a freeware program....then more power to you!  Nothing wrong with that.

In the end, I think most intelligent and open minded people will eventually realize what is the best method for their workflow, their abilities, and their needs.
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