Please refer back to the previous post for an introduction to Adobe Bridge, Camera Raw, Photoshop and Lightroom.
This will pick back up from where we left off with a base image as shown during the demonstration and a walk through for taking that from start to completion.
First of all, Lightroom with Camera Raw below:
First stage in the process is to correct the exposure, as can clearly be seen in the histogram view this base image is under exposed. The histogram is distributed in the left side meaning it is concentrated around the black and dark tones.
Sliding the exposure slider up to +3, you'll now see the histogram is more evenly distributed and the image looks much more balanced. This is not always the right approach however as if an image contains mostly black, adjusting so it is evenly balanced will overexpose the dark areas, likewise if an image has mostly light tones, balancing the histogram will underexpose the whites. Please refer to another post that I will put up shortly that contains slides from a club talk on metering and exposure from last season which we will recap again at some point for everyone.
Lightroom, followed by Camera Raw showing things so far:
The deer itself still seems rather dark in places, so we can utilise the Shadows control to bring out further detail. The grass seems quite bright by comparison also, so we can use the highlights slider to reduce the brightness of the light tones.
Here, I have adjusted the shadows to +50 and the highlights to -50:
Zoom in on the image using the "CTRL" key combined with the "+" or "-" key to zoom in and out, if using a Mac, then its the "cmd" key combined with the "+" or "-" key. If using Camera Raw, the CTRL + 0 or CMD + 0 zooms to extents.
Once I have the head of the animal in view, I'm now going to adjust the texture slider which acts to increase the definition between lights and darks whilst controlling noise. This results in the texture detail being brought out more. Comparison with the texture slider increased to +80 showing before and after, before on the top:
This may make things look slightly harsh, so using the clarity control you can make things harsher still by dragging to the right, or by dragging it to the left you apply a softening effect. Dehaze does a similar thing but is focused on green and blue colour channels. I'll drag the Dehaze slider to -20, here is the result, effectively it also helps lighten the fur of the animal:
Finally we are going to add some vibrancy to the image, vibrancy and saturation do very similar things. Crucially though, vibrancy is biased towards the green and blue colour channels which lends itself very well to landscape and nature shots. Saturation applies colour boosting across the whole colour spectrum which can often make images look very fake. Boosting the Vibrancy to +30 results in this, subtle but much more richness in the green:
Next, I am going to jump forward to the "Detail" set of tools so we can manage any noise in the image and add some sharpening.
Zooming in again to the animals eyes, the first operation should always be noise reduction, otherwise you are simply sharpening the noise and making things worse. Noise reduction is split into two sections, luminance noise and colour noise. Luminance noise is differences in brightness of surrounding pixels, colour noise is particularly noticeable in black sections of an image and can often be spotted by magenta pixels. Adjusting the colour noise therefore evens up colours, luminance noise evens up brightness. Play with the sliders to see the effect, in this case I'm going to apply both as follows, +30 on luminance and +30 on colour, before and after:
Next I'm going to add sharpening. As the controls suggest, radius looks at the area around each pixel to control the effect of the sharpening, Detail retains as much detail in the image as it can during the sharpening process. Increasing the sharpening to 80 and the Detail to 80 results in this:
Jumping back to the "Tone Curve" controls now, this allows the user to grab as many control points as they want in order to selectively boost the lows, mid tones, high tones or highlights. I have clicked on the lower part of the straight line and dragged it upwards then clicked on the upper part of the line and dragged it downwards to form a gentle S shape. This has the effect of boosting the shadow tones further still and reducing the highlight tones.:
Finally we are going to move onto the "HSL" controls. This stands for Hue, Saturation and Luminance.
This gives you great control as you can selectively (by colour channel) adjust brightness, saturation and colour hue.
I am going to selectively colour this image, so first of all let's go to the saturation panel and drag all the colour channels down to the left apart from the orange:
Next, I'm going to boost the saturation on the orange channel to +20 before switching to the luminance controls.
Adjust the luminance controls for the orange channel to +50 also and you'll see the coat of the animal lighten.
Next, drag the yellow and green luminance sliders down to -50, you'll see that darkens the grass to keep more focus on the animal:
In Camera Raw, click and hold on the crop icon to bring up the additional box that allows you to choose the aspect ratio. On Lightroom you get the following control panel which allows you to select the ratio in the same way.
Click on Original and select 2x3 as the ratio required.
Adjust the size of the rectangle and reposition the image as required. in Camera Raw, you click on the start corner then draw the box you want, then you can reposition as required.
If using Lightroom, click on "close" within the crop panel to apply the crop. In Camera Raw, click back onto another tool such as the hand icon to apply the crop:
If you want to export from Lightroom at this stage, go to the file menu and click on export to bring up the export tools window. Scrolling down this window you will find "file settings" where you can choose the format such as "JPEG" and the "image sizing" settings where you can size your image to suit competitions for example as 1900 on the long edge. Clicking on export will save the image based on what you specify in the "Export Location" settings.
However, I want to get rid of the distractions in the top left of the image, so I'm going to progress into photoshop to finish the process first. If still in Camera Raw, just click on open at the bottom right to open it into photoshop. If using Lightroom, click back on to the Library module instead of Develop, then right click on the image you have just been editing, in the menu that appears you will see an option titled "edit in", hovering over that will then bring up an additional menu option where you can choose to edit in photoshop.
Go ahead and open the image into photoshop so you see the following, notice the tool bars on the left hand side. Select the third one down which is the lasso tool.
Use the lasso tool to draw a selection around the parts of the image you want to remove. Note it can be done several times so you can do this as one large area or 2 smaller areas. I'm going for one large area:
Once the selection has been made, go to the edit menu, and choose "content aware fill", you'll see the following control panel. Make sure that the bottom option on the right is set to "Output to: Current Layer"
The green area is the image area that Photoshop will scan to look for suitable content to replace the selection chosen. You can click and paint on the green section to remove parts of the image you don't want to be considered for inclusion in the algorithm, most of the time you are fine to leave it as it is. on the Preview, you'll notice that the blemishes are completely gone. Click on "Ok" to apply the replacement. Here is the end result:
All that remains is to go to the File menu and click on export, on the next menu that expands choose "export as". On the export screen, you can resize the image to whatever size you wish including choosing the format from a variety of options such as PNG or JPEG. In this case I have chosen JPEG but left the size as cropped. Click on Export As to complete the export and choose where you wish to save it.
Job Done ! If any questions, don't hesitate to ask.
Here is the final result, hopefully this combined with the live walk through and the previous post describing the tools available will give a good reference guide for everyone to benefit from.
Welcome to our photo editing basics guide.
Focus will be on the following workflows, on the club night associated with this we will be covering these two workflows side by side to show the similarity but also the differences.
Other software editing packages are available for RAW processing and more advanced photo editing such as:
This site gives some quick descriptions of some of these:
The package shown in the demonstration and walk through is based on the Adobe Photography Plan, which is a subscription services that can be paid for monthly or annually:
This gives you a control panel on your laptop where you get the option to install various apps including these:
We are going to start with Adobe Bridge and Lightroom side by side to show the differences between the interface and the purpose of the packages.
First of all, with Adobe Bridge, browse to the folder containing the image(s) you wish to look at working on. In Lightroom, you can go to the "Folders" section on the left hand side tools followed by hitting the add button, browse to the same folder and you will have the option to start adding the images into Lightroom's catalogue ready for processing.
With Lightroom, on the right hand side tools, you will see an option to apply develop settings during import. If you always apply lens correction for example, or permanently under expose all images by 1ev stop, you can save default editing options as a template for application during import. With Adobe Bridge, you can select one or more image to edit at the same time and edit them all to the same base settings during the open process.
In Lightroom, let's go ahead and add those images into the catalogue so they are ready for editing in comparison to Adobe RAW and Photoshop. Note the tick box option to "build smart previews", previews can be generated as you edit each image, generating them now will take longer but can speed up the editing process later on.
Once imported, the images should now be sitting waiting to be worked on with a new set of tools available on the right hand side of the screen:
We're now at a common starting point for comparison between the two different workflows being discussed in this post. As mentioned above, this is where Lightroom is useful for its catalogue capability. More on the use of the catalogue capabilities can be covered off in separate short sessions on future evenings or future blog posts specifically on this subject.
Bridge and Lightroom share many commonalities, essentially the core difference is the separation from editing that Bridge allows where Lightroom does everything in the same tool. Organising images is similar in both such as tagging with labels or creating stacks of related images such as several shots designed for panoramic merging, or perhaps 3 or 5 images shot as bracketed images ready for merging. This will be demonstrated including the different panels available such as the keywords panel to aid in organisation and searching and the EXIF information as shown as follows:
Locate the image we are going to be working on in Lightroom or Adobe Bridge and let's get started.
Within Lightroom, you will see a series of options along the top right of the screen. Click on Develop to enter into the develop module, it should look something like the following with all the tools available on the RHS of the screen:
In Adobe Bridge, right click on the image and choose open or click on the icon demonstrated to open into Camera Raw:
You will start to see similarities straight away in the tools now available on the RHS of the Camera RAW application and the Develop module of Lightroom. Hence working from Bridge into Photoshop via Camera RAW is not a large leap in terms of how to edit the image itself.
The available tabs of controls in Camera RAW are described in the following web page available on Adobe's Website
The first tab of controls cover the following which are common with those found in Lightroom under the "Basics" tab:
On the images below, the LHS shows Lightroom where you can see the different control panels are labelled in text form. On the RHS, Camera RAW replaces this with a horizontal tab layout represented by icons. These icons represent the same tools however so the same editing capabilities are available from both. They are in slightly different order, but everything is available.
The adjustment controls shown in Lightroom (top image) are available as a standalone toolbar along the top in Camera RAW (bottom image)
"Tone Curve" is the next control, it allows very accurate adjustment to the complete tonal spectrum of the image. You can select control points to adjust the image until it perfectly achieves what you want. Drawing in a "S" style curve for example has the effect of increasing contrast.
"HSL" is the next control and is probably the most powerful set of controls beyond the "Basics" control panel. HSL stands for "Hue", "Saturation" and "Luminance". The slides allow each of those 3 elements to be individually adjusted for the 8 colour channels. When processing in Black and White, they switch to single sliders for the 8 colour channels which adjust luminance only. The sliders will be demonstrated on the night so the effects can be clearly understood.
"Split Toning" is a very creative option for taking a different approach to what might otherwise be a monochrome image. It allows different colour bases to be applied to the shadow tones vs the highlight tones. This can be used to great effect with images that contain strong tonal differences such as landscapes and some forms of astro photography such as Milky Way images.
"Detail" is a very useful set of controls for increasing sharpness in the image and also controlling visible noise within the image.
"Lens Corrections" is very useful when shooting in RAW, shooting in JPEG don't allow the same options to be available. Lightroom and Camera RAW can fetch lens and camera presets to help correct any edge distortions, or subtle vignetting automatically to save any manual editing being required. This is very subjective as sometimes it helps the image but sometimes it actually detracts from the original capture. Check first to see if your camera is already doing this in camera, otherwise it can over-correct if applied twice.
"Transform" is the control panel for anyone who loves architecture photography and landscape photography in general. It can be used to correct a large variety in perspective distortions such as fixing leaning lighthouses and perspective distortion from shooting a tall building from its base rather than looking flat onto it from its centre. Easiest to show this in action than explaining it in text.
"Effects" are where you can add vignetting to your image to help draw the viewers eye into the centre of the image. An additional control allows the editor to simulate grain from the file era to achieve exactly the look required rather than the default clean look that digital photography often gives.
"Calibration" is the final set of controls and generally shouldn't require to be touched unless specifically calibrating your screen or print settings due to colour differences.
Camera Raw contains two additional control panels which are Presets and Snapshots. These are represent in different sections of the Lightroom layout on the left hand side with different drop down areas respectively. Several presets are directly available and customised ones can be created. The use and creation of presets will be covered later in the season on an additional club night.
The demonstration on the club night will take you through a sample of images and the effect that these controls have on the end result. If time allows, further editing options such as merging images to form a Panoramic may also be covered.