Archive for December, 2014

Merry Christmas from Adobe – Dissecting the Lightroom and Photoshop Workflow.

I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you for visiting my Adobe Blog and I hope you have found it interesting and informative thought 2014. We are looking forward to creating and sharing lots of new content in 2015 and very much looking forward to your comments and feedback.

Until then, I would like to leave you with this video that Richard West (DataColour) and myself made in December on Dissecting the Lightroom and Photoshop workflow.

‘In this joint Webinar from Datacolor and Adobe Richard Curtis (Adobe) and Richard West (Datacolor) will look at the Photographic editing process from start to finish when using Adobe Lightroom. We will dissect key points in the workflow and look how they affect each stage of the editing process. From key considerations when importing images, such as capture options to which options make the biggest difference in the development module.’

 

Finally, I would like to wish you and your family a Merry Christmas from all of us at Adobe and a very happy new year.
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#CreativeFriday – Photoshop and Lightroom Workflows, Smart Objects and Compositing Images

The Creative Cloud Photography bundle offers the Photographer even more flexibility when it comes to editing their photographs and opportunities to make their images look even more amazing. Integration between the two products is a key benefit and is re-enforced with this bundle. The integration is not new and has been in place some time now, however, with the release of the Photography bundle and the ongoing updates to the Creative Cloud, this integration has become much stronger and offers even more possibilities to make images look even more beautiful.

The typical workflow between the two solutions is to let Lightroom render it’s adjustments and take the results into Photoshop. This is a great and well defined workflow, however, it does not offer an option to re-edit the Lightroom adjustments from within Photoshop. The integration between Lightroom and Photoshop in the Photography bundle has become much more flexible, by making use of Photoshop Smart Objects. The ability to open a Smart Object from Lightroom into Photoshop is not unique to the Photography bundle, but, there has been a number of significant improvements to the workflow and the ability to use more Photoshop Filters in a non destructive way on Smart Objects as well as the traditional adjustment layers.

With traditional Photoshop workflows, any Lightroom / Photoshop adjustment(s) had to be rasterised early in the workflow and reduced the options for any non destructive work. There are classic ways of editing images in Photoshop and work arounds to try create a non destructive process, however, this can result in workflows with a large number of layers and committing to adjustments early in the workflow with no way to re-edit previous enhancements.

The Creative Cloud Photography bundle, offers new workflows for the photographer to embrace a true non destructive workflow, without having to commit to adjustments early in the process. Images now can be saved with all of their Lightroom or Camera RAW adjustments in tact, with supported ways to re-edit the original RAW adjustments from Camera RAW or from Lightroom. This new workflow is a saviour for anybody that is wanting to tweak, enhance and re-tweak their pictures to get the best result at any time in the process.This new workflow can also be used when compositing images when using Lightroom or Camera RAW as a source.

To demonstrate this, here are two pictures that I took in Bhutan. I like the crowd image, and as well as helping to tell a story about the event, it might make a great replacement background on another image. The second image is of a chap in a mask used at the ritual, but the background could be improved.

One of the most common tasks in Photoshop is to cut something out of a photograph and then replace the background with another image. In the following example we will use Photoshop to extract the person in the mask from the it’s original scene, then replace it’s background with the crowd scene. The example will demonstrate how Smart Objects can be used in the compositing process, as well a new tool in the 2014 release of Photoshop CC, called the Focus Area. The Focus Area tool is used to make a selection based on the depth of field, rather than edge contrast, this enables a fast and accurate way to select in-focus parts of a scene.

The example will also show the workflow and integration of image editing between Lightroom and Photoshop and another way to open and process photographs. It will also show how to keep the Lightroom adjustments active and improve the non destructive editing process between the two applications, allowing you to tweak, review and re-tweak any enhancements at any time.

Any of these images can have Initial adjustments made in the Development module of Lightroom, there is no need need to worry if the initial results are not exactly what we are looking for, as we can modify them later once our editing process moves into Photoshop, and we have more information about how the composite will look once we see it.

 

 

Below is the first image that will be used as a background, this image of the crowd is located in the Lightroom catalog.

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To open this image with a non-destructive editing workflow in mind, it will need to be opened as a Smart Object into Photoshop from Lightroom. The open as a Smart Object is available under the menu item ‘Photo / Edit in / Smart Object in Photoshop’ or by right clicking on the image in the filmstrip or in the middle view.

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The image that has the person in the mask (with a not very interesting background), is also found in Lightroom. To show the integration, initial adjustments are made inside Lightroom before the image is taken into Photoshop for compositing.

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Lightroom adjustments are made at this stage (setting the white and black points in the image) and highlight and shadow recovery mostly. These adjustments will be modified later, once the composite has started to take shape. The white point and black point adjustments are controlled from the Basic panel in Lightroom. In Lightroom, there is a very precise way to choose which elements of the image are clipped. Whilst either the white point or black point, shadow/highlight recovery settings are modified, the ALT key can be pressed. The ALT key will reveal the mask and show the areas that are being clipped to white/black.

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the file is opened the same way as the background image, as a Smart Object into Photoshop.

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Once inside Photoshop, the two Smart Object enabled layers, will be opened as two canvases. The two canvases will need to be merged into one to allow the composite to take effect. This can be done by un-docking one canvas, selecting its contents using CMD (Mac)+A or CTRL (Pc)+A, then using the move tool (selectable using the V key) and dragging it across to the other canvas. The SHIFT key may also be used to center the image on to the receiving canvas. If the SHIFT key is not used, the new image will need to be moved into position by dragging the layer into the correct position (by using the move tool). The crowd scene will need to be placed under the person with the mask, if it’s to be used as a background. To do this, grab the layer and move it to bottom of the layer stack.

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Even though the canvases have been merged, the contents of them can still be opened, in this case, the original RAW file and the Lightroom Edits can be adjusted using Camera RAW inside Photoshop CC. Any adjustments here will then be re-applied to the RAW file and the results will be shown in the Smart Object layer in Photoshop.

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The person in the mask is mostly in focus (expect just behind the head), to extract this object quickly and accurately from it’s background, the new Focus Area tool can be used. Selecting objects from a scene can be a tricky and time consuming business, this new feature is able to save huge amounts of time, and make an initial selections based on the depth of field of the image. If parts of the selected area are not in focus and not picked up by the ‘Focus Area’ tool, then modifications to the initial selection can be made by using tools within the Focus Area tool. The tool is available from the menu item ‘Select / Focus Area’.

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Once the tool is selected it will start to work straight away. Focus Area will start to look for parts of the scene that are in focus and reveal appropriate parts of the mask (The mask is shown in red below, the mask options are configured in the view option of the tool).

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If other areas of the image need selecting, and are not within the initial depth of field range, they can be added or removed from the initial selection by using the +/- brush tools and marking the area to include manually. In this example the + brush tool is used to include parts of the person costume and shoulders (parts of the person are slightly out of focus due to the aperture used when the picture was taken). Both of these tools are on the Focus area dialog box and are shown below (as seen on the image below). Including a new depth of field range is as simple as drawing a line on the red section of the mask.

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The output of the Focus Area can be modified and different options are available, in the example below, the Layer Mask is used. This will return the mask selection as a layer mask, which will be added to the Smart Object layer, and essentially hide the background in this case. If the mask needs to be refined (i.e. fine element selections, such as hair can be made more accurate by using the refine edge tool), Refine Edge can be opened from the Focus Area tool, by clicking the Refine Edge button. (Don’t forget when using masks, non of the original layer is destroyed, it’s only hidden by the mask).

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Once the mask has been applied, it will hide certain parts of the Smart Object and will allow the crowd scene to be seen.

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At any time, the mask can be re-worked by selecting it on the appropriate layer, then choosing ‘Mask Edge’ on the properties panel. The Refine Mask dialog will be shown and the existing mask will be loaded into it for more refinement. As mentioned above, selection of fine elements like grass, hair etc can sometimes be improved with the refine edge option.

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Once the selection has been made and the mask is working correctly, there can sometimes be a hard edge that, if not worked on can make the composite look fake. To get around this and make the blend look more natural, the edge of the mask can have a Gaussian blur applied to it. This can be achieved by selecting the mask by clicking on it with the mouse, then choosing Gaussian Blur Filter option. Gaussian blur filter can be found from the menu ‘Filter / Blur / Gaussian blur’. A large pixel radius won’t be required, as it’s just used to smooth the edge (but please try other values, and experiment with any of the settings in this guide).

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Once the Gaussian blur has been applied, there might still be a white glow around the edges of the cut out/selection. In this case the mask/Gaussian blur effect will need shrinking. This can be achieved by using the levels command directly on the mask. To do this, select the mask by clicking on it from the Smart Object layer, then press the ALT key and click on the mask. The mask should be shown in black and white. The black areas are hiding parts of the Smart Object; the white is revealing areas of it. To apply the levels command to the mask, it will need to be selected from the menu item Image / Adjustments / Levels and not by using an adjustment layer. The levels command needs to be used in a destructive way directly on the mask.

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Taking a closer look at the composite will show that there are now areas that are in focus areas and out of focus, all over the image. To the eye this won’t look very real, as it expects a gradual depth of field effect started by the body of the person with the mask. To make all elements of the image look realistic, the crowd will need to follow on from the out out focus areas from the persons body, especially the far shoulder.

Smart Objects and the use of filters have been significantly improved in Photoshop for Creative Cloud. Almost all of the filters under the Filters menu can now be used on a Smart Object and be used in a non-destructive workflow. This essentially means that once the Filter has been applied, it can be re-edited at any time (as long as the layer stays as a Smart Object and is not rasterized (or flattened)).

The Filter options can be found under the menu item ‘Filter’ and the Filter that will be used to apply blur (as if the camera/lens created it), can be found under ‘Filter / Blur Gallery / Field Blur’).

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Once the Field Blur option has been selected, a dialog with an on screen widget will be shown. The amount of blur that will be applied to the Smart Object can be controlled by either using the on screen widget, or by using the sliders or value box on the right hand side of the screen. The blur effect will be applied to the Smart Object, which allows the blur to be added non-destructively, It’s not critical that the blur is exact at this time as it can be adjusted and refined at any time in the future.

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Once the blur has been applied, the results will be added to the Smart Object layer and will be shown underneath it. This allows this effect or any Filter effect that is applied in this way to be re-edited; also, the eye icons will turn the effect on or off.

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The rectangular white object on the effect (as shown above), is the mask, this mask will be used to hide/show parts of the effect, as required. Multiple effects can be applied to any one Smart Object and they will be added to the Filters list. The mask will be applied to all Filters that applied to a Smart Object. I suggest, that if multiple filters are required and each one requires a different mask or no mask even, then the appropriate layers are selected and wrapped up as a Smart Object. To wrap layers as a Smart Object, select the layers to be included (see below). To do this, open the layers fly out menu and choose ‘Convert to Smart Object’.

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The two layers have been wrapped into a new Smart Object, it’s contents can be edited at any time by double clicking on the Smart Object layer.

Composite images can sometimes have different lighting, colours etc, which can result in an image that is not colour consistent. A quick way to achieve an aggregated colour effect, is to add a Blur Average effect (available from the menu item Filter / Blur / Average). This filter will essentially average out of the the colours in the composite image and create a single colour. The result will be added to this Smart Object and can be edited at an point in time.

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Once the effect has been applied, the strength of the filter and blending mode can be adjusted. There is an icon on the Filter (this is shown to the right hand side of the Average Filter text (represented at two arrows separated by two lines). When this icon is double clicked, then the properties dialog will be displayed. To use the colour information only for the blend, choose colour blending mode.

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The colour is too strong for the result and is overriding the natural colours, the opacity of the effect can be modified using the opacity controller. In the example 12% has been used, but is open to the effect that is required and suits the final image.

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it may be required to adjust final values of the image (as would have been achieved in Lightroom or Camera RAW when working on a single image). This can be achieved on the composite by using the Camera RAW Filter on the Smart Object. The Camera RAW Filter is available on the menu item ‘Filter / Camera RAW Filter’. The Camera RAW Filter is added to the Average filter in this case, because the mask is not used on any of the filters. If it was, then I would wrap these adjustments into another Smart Object.

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All of the usual controls that are expected in Camera RAW or in Lightroom are available for adjustment in this Filter. This includes controls such as the radial filter, spot healing brush, white point, black point, lens corrections etc. All of these adjustments can be added to this final composite using this non-destructive approach and cane be re-edited at any point in time.

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In the following example a few tools in Camera RAW have been used to enhance the image, including the use of the Upright tool to straighten out any verticals and horizontal lines that occur in the photograph, as well as the radial filter to darken the crown and give the person in the mask more impact.

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Once the Camera RAW adjustment has been applied, it will be added to the Smart Object, as shown below.

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The original Lightroom adjustments are still available by double clicking into the Smart Object, then double clicking on the original Smart Object that is storing the Original RAW file and the Lightroom adjustments.

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The Original Lightroom adjustments and the original RAW file are show below.

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Learn about Photoshop Painting from Real Digital Painters

One YouTube channel that I keep my eye one is the one created by the guys at Level Up. Ok, these videos are hangouts, and may not be the best edited and produced films out there and they are longer than the usual YouTube video (over 2 hours most of the time). However, what I really like about these videos is that the organisers interview and talk with guest speakers who let you into their Photoshop Digital Painting world, and they talk about their workflow and processes. I think this is a great way to learn about other processes that Photoshop does, as well as some great nugets of information that only Digital Painters know. There are lots of them to watch and are great to have on just in the background, enjoy the shows here.

Here is one to get you started, Colour Theory

 

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#CreativeFriday – Lightroom and Photoshop Workflows, Smart Objects and Camera RAW filter

The Creative Cloud Photography bundle offers the Photographer even more flexibility when it comes to editing their photographs and opportunities to make their images look even more amazing. Integration between the two products is a key benefit and is re-enforced with this bundle. The integration is not new and has been in place some time now, however, with the release of the Photography bundle and the ongoing updates to the Creative Cloud, this integration has become much stronger and offers even more possibilities to make images look even more beautiful.

With traditional Photoshop workflows, any Lightroom / Photoshop adjustment(s) are rasterised early in the workflow and this reduces the options for any non-destructive work later in the process. There are classic ways of editing images in Photoshop and work arounds to try create a non destructive processes, however, this can result in workflows with a large number of layers and committing to adjustments early in the workflow with no way to re-edit previous enhancements.

The Creative Cloud Photography bundle, offers new workflows for the photographer to embrace a true non-destructive workflow, without having to commit to adjustments early in the process. Images now can be saved with all of their Lightroom or Camera RAW adjustments in tact, with supported ways to re-edit the original RAW adjustments from Camera RAW or from Lightroom. This new workflow is a saviour for anybody that is wanting to tweak, enhance and re-tweak their pictures to get the best result at any time in the process.

Photoshop CC has now been enhanced to include the Camera RAW engine as a Filter as well as numerous additions to the already powerful Blur Gallery.

 

The Camera RAW filter will allow you to make adjustments to your photographs, as you would have done in the Lightroom development module. However, the Camera RAW filter in Photoshop, is not just restricted to RAW files, it can be used on almost any layer inside Photoshop, including video clips, groups, layers and smart objects.

 

The Blur Gallery Filters enable in-camera motion effects to be applied in the post process. For example, previously in CS6 you could add field blur, iris blur and tilt shift blur, now Photoshop CC adds the ability to add spinning blur and motion blur to an image, just as you are able to create in the camera.

 

Both of the above filters, as well as most of the other filters in Photoshop CC are now useable on a Smart Objects, which means that any modifications can be re-edited at any time even after the Photoshop file has been saved. This workflow will allow images to be fine tuned at any time and will save a huge amount of time during the refinement process. The filters in Photoshop are now even more powerful and will allow you to make even better, creative images, and most importantly, they will naturally fit into your workflow.

 

The following example will show how images can be brought into Photoshop from Lightroom, and keep any adjustments editable using Camera RAW and a combination of Smart Objects. This example will also show how unwanted parts of an image can removed and repaired whilst at the same time improving performance in Photoshop, and keeping the modifications editable for the future. New Blur Gallery Filters will be used to simulate movement that may have been lost when the picture was taken, or if the image needs it for creative effect.

 

 

The image below was taken at a festival in Bhutan, to be critical about the original picture from the camera, I feel the dancer in the foreground is an important part of the story, however, there are additional elements in the background, like the chair and the additional person, which I feel does not help the picture and will be tricky to fix in Lightroom alone, but where Photoshop really excels.

 

N.B. This example is using the 2014 version of Photoshop CC.

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Keeping Lightroom adjustments editable inside Photoshop CC

 

The traditional workflow from Lightroom to Photoshop is to let Lightroom apply the adjustments and send a rasterized image into Photoshop. This can be easily achieved using the CTRL (PC)+E or CMD (Mac)+E. There is nothing wrong with this workflow and has been tried an tested for a long time, however, when the adjusted file is then sent to Photoshop there is no way to go back and re-edit any Lightroom adjustments. If changes are required, then the process will need to re-start and any Photoshop edits will need to re-apply.

 

An alternative way of working is to open the file into Photoshop from Lightroom as a Smart Object. This will send both the RAW file as well as any Lightroom adjustments into Photoshop and keep the edits alive and re-editable into the future. To do this, right click on the picture in the filmstrip, or from the menu bar Photo / Edit in / Photoshop as a Smart Object.

 

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Inside Photoshop CC only a single layer will be shown in the layers palette. This layer is the Smart Object and will hold both the RAW file as any adjustments from Lightroom. Smart Objects can hold anything inside Photoshop (not just RAW files and meta data), it can also store video files/clips, groups of layers, other smart objects, Layer Adjustments etc etc, and in any combination.

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At any point in time, the Smart Object layer can be double clicked and the contents will be opened. In this example, the RAW file will be opened using Camera RAW, as well as any Lightroom adjustments that are found (If the file came from Bridge into Photoshop via Camera RAW, then the same screen will be displayed). The RAW file and Lightroom adjustments will be available even after the file has been saved (as long as the layer stays as a Smart Object and is not rasterised inside Photoshop).

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Using Photoshop to make complex image edits. 

 

Sudden activities inside the frame are a classic occurrence that regularly happens when a photo is taken. These additional elements sometimes, don’t help convey the story. In the example, there is a green chair as well as an additional person walking in the background. A few extra seconds and a move to the right would have eliminated them, but the position of the dancer might have been sacrificed.  Elements like these are easy to removed in Photoshop using many of its tools, the one that will be used here is the Content aware patch tool.

 

The traditional workflow for removing anything in an image (including spotting), is to duplicate the background layer and work on this new layer. It’s a tried and tested route and works very well, but, one of the issues with this approach is that duplicating layers can drastically increase the number of pixels and in turn increase the physical document size. It’s also difficult to look at what was changed at a future time. A different way to achieve exactly the same thing, and not radically increase the file size, as well as improving the workflow, is to create a new empty layer above the background and use this to store any changes.

 

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Content Aware Patch provides a fast and accurate way of fixing/replacing the areas that need to be modified, as well as showing a preview of what will be changed. When using an empty layer (is in this approach), it’s important to have the ’Sample all Layers’ icon turned on, as this will allow the tool to sample all layers in the stack and place the processed result into the empty layer (this option in the following screen shot is depicted using the multiple layers icon in the tool bar).

 

When working with the Content Aware Patch tool and where there is a defined line (below there is a hard line between the crowd and the floor), try to make sure that the source and destinations are lined up on the preview.

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Once applied, the replacement patch can sometimes have colour issues, especially when there is a gradient involved. In the above image there is a gradient on the floor, therefore the blend is not a seamless as it could be. Photoshop CC 2014 has the ability to control the colour values on the patch to make a consistent colour blend; this is available on the adaption tool bar options (Colour has a range of 1 to 10). This value can be changed even whilst the selection and patched area are still active.

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At this point in a traditional workflow, the Photoshop user might create a new layer that is a merge of the two layers, and place it above the modification (sometimes called a lock off layer, and will contain the results of the fix). However, this will commit the modifications and would make it much harder to modify the patch (if required), in the future.

 

A new workflow is to wrap this adjustment into a Smart Object, which will allow the re-editing of the patch in the future. To do this, select the layers that need to be converted then choose Convert to Smart Object. Once the conversion has completed, a single layer will be shown, and any adjustments to the image can be made using this as a base image.

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Once the Smart Object has been created, it can be used to hold for any Filter adjustments or any Layer adjustments. Using this method will keep any image edits non destructive for much longer time in the editing process.

 

In this example, the dancer was taken with a high shutter speed, resulting in freezing of any motion. It’s not until the editing process, where other pictures that were taken can be seen, that the creative decision may be to add some motion to help tell the story to this particular photograph. A new tool in Photoshop CC, called the Path Blur filter can be used to re-create motion in the scene (this motion can usually be created in camera, using a slower shutter speed). This filter will be applied to the results of the Smart Object, therefore, not changing its contents, and is re-editable in the future.

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Once the Path blur window is open, a Bezier like curve/path can be drawn. This curve/path can be used to show the motion of some areas of the scene or the entire scene. Once a curve/path has been drawn, the speed of the motion can be controlled by either using the on screen widget, or by using the controls on the right hand side of the screen.

 

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The curve/path can be moved or bent into position by dragging any point including the center point. Other points and curves/paths can also be created to create fluid motion in the scene if required.

 

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Only the dancer needs the movement, but the result of the single curve/path will affect the whole scene. In this case more lines can be created to stop motion in other parts of the picture. In the example below, another straight line is created to the left of the dancer. Stopping the motion will help convince the viewer that the dancer is the only part of the scene that is moving (Motion like this can be controlled in the camera by using a slower shutter speed and a tripod).

 

Slowing the motion in this part of the scene is controlled at either end of the curve/path. Each end of the curve/path has a speed value that can be reduced. These values are controlled by turning on the Edit Blur Shapes (right hand properties panel below), this action will show two red arrows at either end of the curve/path. Changing the End Point speed at each end will slow the motion down. A zero value at each end should work just fine.

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 Once the effect has been applied, Photoshop will add the effect to the Smart Object, and provide a free mask. The mask can be used to mask out specific areas of the effect on the rest of the photograph. The effect can be re-edited at any point in time by double clicking on the Blur Gallery Filter on the Smart Object. The effect can also be temporarily removed by clicking on the eye icon next to the mask (will turn off all effects) or the eye icon next to the Filter (in this case the Blur Gallery Filter). Turning off individual Filters is useful to turn off filters when more than once filter is used on the Smart Object.

 

 

The white mask can be painted using the Photoshop Brush tool (B key). Painting in black will hide the effect and painting in white will reveal the effect. Once the Brush has been selected, the D key can be used to reset the foreground and background colours (black and white). This reset is useful if other colours have been used in a process before this step. The X key can be used to quickly switch the foreground and background colours around when painting.  The mask can be accessed at any time by selecting it with the mouse and holding the ALT key down whilst double clicking it. This is a good place to see what the mask looks like and to refine it further if required.

 

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If a mask has been used on the layer, it will affect filters that are applied. If any new Filter adjustments are required and they don’t require the mask, to keep the edits non destructive and re-editable in the future, this adjustment to the Smart Object can be wrapped up into another Smart Object. This option is available by selecting the layer(s) that need to be converted, and using the right click on the layer, or by opening the layers fly out menu (top right hand side of the layers panel) and choosing ‘Convert to Smart Object’.

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The result will be a single layer that contains all of the previous adjustments. This method will also increase Photoshop performance when working with layers and complex edits, the resulting layer size will be smaller and Photoshop will be faster.

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Now that a single Smart Object layer has been created and it contains all of the adjustments, the edit can continue. In this case, the Camera RAW filter can be used to further enhance the image.

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The Camera RAW filter will open up the Camera RAW dialog screen and provide comprehensive adjustments of this powerful filter. Any adjustments available in this dialog box can be performed at this stage (i.e. Split tone, radial filter, clone/heal, lens corrections etc. etc.).

 

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To further enhance the viewers experience and to keep the viewer in the picture much longer, we can use traditional dark room techniques to guide the eyes into where we need the viewer to focus. Dark areas of a picture will repel the eyes and bright areas will attract the eyes. In the dark room, master printers would use this technique and create something called an edge burn (which is similar to a vignette). Essentially this keeps the viewer in the photograph and will keep the view from ‘falling out of the frame’. This effect can be achieved in Lightroom or Camera RAW by using the Post Crop Vignette, but sometimes we might need a more impactful way of doing this. The Position of the Post Crop Vignette cannot be modified and will be applied from the center outward, this is heavily dependent on the final crop of the image. The Radial Filter in Lightroom and Camera RAW will allow a customised area to be created, and then apply adjustments outside or inside of it. In this example, the exposure can be reduced outside to give a much more controlled effect (this is also a great tool to use on portraits or anything that needs focused impact).

 

The radial filter can be selected and drawn on to the image at the desired location. The radial filter’s size and shape can be changed at will by dragging it or by expanding/contracting the handles on the ellipse. The image below is showing the area covered by the radial filter by having the mask turned on.

 

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The initial round/elliptical shape of the Radial Filter isn’t quite correct and a part of the dancer is affected. The Radial Filter in Camera RAW now includes a brush that is used to customise its shape. To turn the brush on, select it in the radial filter options panel (or press SHIFT+K), then choose + or – to add or subtract the mask area.

 

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Once the Camera RAW filter adjustments have been completed, press OK and commit the results. The results are then added to the Smart Object. The Camera RAW settings can be modified at any point in time by double clicking on the Camera RAW filter option. Also, the layer mask can be used to further refine the filter(s) adjustments.

 

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Once the edit has been completed, it can be saved from Photoshop CC using the CMD (Mac)+S or CTRL (Pc)+S, the file will automatically be saved next to the original RAW file and will be available inside Lightroom.

 

If the file needs to be worked on further (now or in the future), it’s best to edit the original and don’t make any additional adjustments in Lightroom to the Photoshop (PSD) file. To open the file quickly into Photoshop from Lightroom the CTRL (PC)+E or CMD (Mac)+E combination can be used This will keep the workflow simple and not add any complexities. If Lightroom adjustments are required, then they can be made using the Camera RAW filter and Smart Objects inside Photoshop CC.

 

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Once re-opened inside Photoshop. All Smart Objects and adjustments are available. This means that the PSD file doesn’t have to be flattened once the Photoshop Edits have been initially made. Other adjustments / enhancements can be made to your picture in the future, as your Photoshop editing skills become stronger and more refined.

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The Times UK – 3D Printing Article.

Are you interested in 3D Printing? There was a great supplement in the UK Times magazine today (December 11th 2014). It looks to provide an overview of the current state of 3D Printing. There are also micro sections and one happens to be about Desktop 3D Printers in the home. There are more articles, but just wanted to focus on this one as there is a great section on what Adobe is doing in this space to make 3D printing more accessible to all.

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The Societies (SWPP) Adobe Seminar Schedule – January 2015

Adobe will be attending the Societies trade show in 2015, which will run from Friday 16th to Sunday 18th of January at the Hilton London Metropole.  We will have designed a seminar room running free talks on lots of different and exciting topics for Photographers (times listed below). We will not be pre-registering for the talks, so it’s a first come first served basis, but you will need to register for the show itself. Please feel free to  just turn up and join in on the talks, it will be great to see you at the event.

You can visit the Trade Show (Jan 16-18) completely FREE, as long as they register with the SWPP before 10th January 2015. You can register here.

For travel planning, the event will be held at the Hilton London Metropole 225 Edgware Road, London, W2 1JU.

Friday & Saturday

10:30 – 11:00 – Lightroom and Photoshop retouching workflow

11:15 -11:45 – Hidden gems in Photoshop  CC 

12:00 – 12:30 – Video Editing in Photoshop 

12:45 – 13:15 – New features in Photoshop for Photographers

13:30 – 14:00 – Colour Management – Perfecting your workflow 

14:15 -14:45 – 3D Printing for Photographers 

15:00 – 15:30 – Lightroom and Lightroom Mobile 

15:45 – 16:15 – Raising your game using Behance 

16:30 -17:00 – What is the Creative Cloud Photography Plan?

Sunday

10:30 – 11:00 – Lightroom and Photoshop retouching workflow

11:15 -11:45 – Hidden gems in Photoshop  CC

12:00 – 12:30 – Video Editing in Photoshop 

12:45 – 13:15 – New features in Photoshop for Photographers

13:30 – 14:00 – Colour Management – Perfecting your workflow 

14:15 -14:45 – 3D Printing for Photographers 

15:00 – 15:30 – Lightroom and Lightroom Mobile 

15:45 – 16:15 – Raising your game using Behance 

Lightroom and Photoshop retouching workflow.
In
 the past few releases in the Creative Cloud, Lightroom and Photoshop have seen workflow improvements for Photographers. This session, hosted by a re-touching expert, will look in detail at the new tools and explain how to improve your post production/re-touching workflows, to create even more beautiful images. 

Hidden gems in Photoshop  CC.

This talk will explore overlooked features inside Photoshop CC that we think are underused and valuable to the Photographer or anyone that would like to learn more about the application.

What is the Creative Cloud Photography Plan?

The Adobe Photography Plan includes more than just Lightroom and Photoshop. In fact, it has been designed to include all the tools required to survive in the modern photographic world. This talk will demonstrate and break down what is included as part of the Adobe Photography Plan and explain how it works, as well as some of the new features that are available in Lightroom and Photoshop and new opportunities for both the Professional and Amateur photographer.

Raising your game using Behance.

Online portfolios, mobile devices and social networks are a great way to show case your work as a photographer, as well as engaging your audience and building your photographic brand. The Adobe Photography Plan contains all of the tools you need to make your images look great, as well as including modern ways of showing off your work, either on the web, using social networks or on mobile devices. The Behance platform is part of the Adobe Photography Plan, and a great way to show off your work, as well as an way to engage the existing community of image makers of all disciplines. This session will walk you through how the system works, how to place content in Behance from Photoshop and Lightroom, and how you can use it to raise your profile as a photographer or digital artist. 

Lightroom Mobile.

Lightroom mobile is a new addition to the Adobe Photography Plan and is available free for both the iPhone and the iPad. Mobile viewing, as well as editing your photographs, without being tied to the desktop version of Lightroom is enabling photographers to work in very different ways. This talk will walk you through how to set up and configure Lightroom mobile, as well as how it can be used as part of your editing workflow.

3D Printing in Photoshop for Photographers. 

3D Printing is taking the world by storm, and this technology is opening up new creative ideas for Photographers. In early 2014 Photoshop gained the ability to create/print 3D objects using a variety of printers, materials and services. This talk will walk you through 3D printing in Photoshop with examples of how Photographers can embrace it in their work.

Colour Management – Perfecting your workflow.

This session is brought in conjunction with Adobe and Datacolor and will provide an end to end solution for colour management.  We will explain how colour management can easily be incorporated into your workflow from ‘in the camera’, to the screen and finishing at the printer and transform your workflow forever. This session will ensure that you are able to make perfect looking prints every time.

New features in Photoshop.
In the Creative Cloud, Lightroom and Photoshop updates have both seen the addition of new tools for Photographers. This session will look in detail at the new tools and explain how to improve your post production/re-touching, to create even more beautiful images. Photo editing and retouching techniques can always be improved by embracing new innovation that is available in software. 

Video Editing in Photoshop. 

We all have cameras that are able to create stunning photographs, and many can now record stunning HD quality video too. This session will show how you can import your video clips into Photoshop and use your existing Photoshop skills to edit and create a compelling short film. 

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#CreativeFriday – Using Lightroom and Photoshop to Edit your Photos

The Creative Cloud Photography bundle offers the Photographer even more flexibility when it comes to editing their photographs and opportunities to make their images look even more amazing. Integration between the two products is a key benefit and is re-enforced with this bundle. The integration is not new and has been in place some time now, however, with the release of the Photography bundle and the ongoing updates to the Creative Cloud, this integration has become much stronger and offers even more possibilities to make images look even more beautiful.

 

The typical workflow between the two solutions is to let Lightroom render it’s adjustments and take the results into Photoshop. This is a great and well defined workflow, however, it does not offer an option to re-edit the Lightroom adjustments from within Photoshop. The integration between Lightroom and Photoshop in the Photography bundle has become much more flexible, by making use of Photoshop Smart Objects. The ability to open a Smart Object from Lightroom into Photoshop is not unique to the Photography bundle, but, there has been a number of significant improvements to the workflow and the ability to use more Photoshop Filters in a non destructive way on Smart Objects as well as the traditional adjustment layers.

 

With traditional Photoshop workflows, any Lightroom / Photoshop adjustment(s) had to be rasterised early in the workflow and reduced the options for any non-destructive work. There are classic ways of editing images in Photoshop and work a rounds to try create a non destructive process, however, this can result in workflows with a large number of layers and committing to adjustments early in the workflow with no way to re-edit previous enhancements.

 

The Creative Cloud Photography bundle, offers new workflows for the photographer to embrace a true non-destructive workflow, without having to commit to adjustments early in the process. Images now can be saved with all of their Lightroom or Camera RAW adjustments in tact, with supported ways to re-edit the original RAW adjustments from Camera RAW or from Lightroom. This new workflow is a savior for anybody that is wanting to tweak, enhance and re-tweak their pictures to get the best result at any time in the process.

 

To demonstrate this, here is a picture that I took in Bhutan. I like the way that the monks are running up and down the stairs, carrying food and other items, I think it nicely shows part of the Buddhists monks way of life. However, there are a few issues that I would like to solve, and after all, both Lightroom and Photoshop are tools to help fix any photographic problems with the picture. First of all, when I took the picture I was stood to the right of the scene, this angle has created awkward result. Also, to me the monk disappearing out of the frame is not something in my opinion that helps the photograph. Of course all of these issues might not be what you would look to fix in the photograph.

 

The objective of this walk through is to show the integration of image editing between Lightroom and Photoshop and another way to open pictures, keep the Lightroom adjustments active and create a non destructive workflow for any future enhancements.

 

N.B. This walkthrough uses the 2014 release of Photoshop CC.

 

 

Initial adjustments can be made in the Development module of Lightroom, we don’t need to worry if the results are not exactly what we are looking for, as we can modify them later once our work is inside Photoshop.

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To enable the non-destructive workflow and the powerful features of Photoshop CC, the RAW image will need to be opened into Photoshop, and in the mean time keeping our Lightroom changes so that we can work on them later. Instead of using the ‘Edit in Adobe Photoshop’ option in Lightroom (CMD (Mac)+E or CTRL (PC)+E), the option ‘Open as Smart Object in Photoshop’ will be used. This menu option can be reached by right clicking on the image in the film strip or the middle window, or by using menu item ‘Photo / Edit in / Open as Smart Object in Photoshop’

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Once in Photoshop you will see the same single layer result as in a traditional workflow. The difference is the small icon in the bottom right hand corner of the image on the layer. This icon denotes that a Smart Object is in use. The Smart Object is effectively a container, which is storing Photoshop Objects. In this example the Smart Object is holding the RAW file as well as the Lightroom adjustments (in the form of metadata). The Smart Object could also contain layers, masks, video as well as any other Photoshop object.

 

To access the contents, just double click on the image on the layer. Before the contents are opened in this example, a Photoshop Adjustment layer will be added to make an enhancement to the photograph.

 

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Photoshop adjustment layers are accessed from the Layer menu option and are placed above the layer that is selected in the layers pallet.

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The curves adjustment layer has been applied (as shown below) and the image has had a simple ’S’ curve applied to it (The ’S’ curve will deepen the shadows and lift the highlights, adding contrast to the image).

 

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Even though the curves layer is applied to the image, the contents of the Smart Object can still be accessed by double clicking the original Smart Object layer. This action will open the Camera RAW filter and allow modifications to the original Lightroom edits. The values in Camera RAW interface will be the same as from the initial settings in Lightroom (both Lightroom and Camera RAW share the same technology).  The usual features in Camera RAW (Lightroom) are also available in this dialog, including lens corrections, radial filters, adjustment brushes, split tone, etc.

 

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Once adjustments have been made/refined and OK has been pressed in the Camera RAW dialog, Camera RAW adjustments will then be re-applied to the Photoshop Smart Object layer. The Smart Object will always show the final result of its contents.

 

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Previous to Photoshop CC only a few of the available Filters could be applied to a Smart Object and used in a non-destructive workflow. In Photoshop CC almost all of the Filters can be used on the Smart Object and provide a re-editable, non-destructive enhancement to the photograph.  Photoshop Filters can be found under the Filter menu item.

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The Filter to be used in this example and one that will fix the perspective is the Adaptive Wide Angle Filter. To use this Filter, lines are drawn across the image, in both the horizontal and vertical positions, where required. This will tell Photoshop where in the image the straight lines are. If there was any barrel distortion (including fish eye lenses or wide angle lenses), then the lines that are draw will follow inherent lens curvature and Photoshop will draw a curved line instead of a straight one. For each line there is an option to right click and pull up a dialog that will straighten out and fix to the vertical/horizontal.

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Once the correction(s) have been made, the result will be sent back to Photoshop and shown on the original Smart Object layer. Notice the Curves adjustment layer is still in place above the original Smart Object layer. The Filter is applied to the Smart Object and will be positioned underneath it (as shown below). The Filter adjustment will be created with a mask, the mask can be used to show/hide parts of the filter effect. Also, using the eye icons that are next to the mask, the filters can be turned. The filter adjustments can be re-edited by double clicking on the filter.

 

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Everything at this point is re-editable including the curves adjustment, original RAW edits from Lightroom as well as the Adaptive Wide Angle, all by double clicking on the relevant object.

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Once back in Photoshop the crop tool can be used to trim the picture up and remove the monk from the edge. The Crop inside Photoshop CC as well as Photoshop CS6 has the non-destructive crop feature. The non-destructive crop feature has a small icon on the tool bar which can be used to control the removal of pixels after the crop. In this example, the pixels will not be removed and can be re-edited at any time (this option may also be marked as ‘Delete Cropped Pixels’ on the crop toolbar).

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Once the Photoshop file is saved (CTRL (PC)+S / (CMD (Mac)+S) the result will be placed in the same location as the original RAW file and will also appear next to the original file inside Lightroom.

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Once the PSD file is inside Lightroom, it can stay there an be part of the search/index system and can be found during the Lightroom filtering process. If the PSD file needs to be re-opened inside Photoshop then the regular CTRL (PC)+E/CMD (Mac)+E keystroke can be used to send it to Photoshop. Additional Lightroom adjustments can be made inside Lightroom at this point and re-opened using the Edit a copy with Lightroom Adjustments (remember that Lightroom will never modify an original file). However, the benefit of having the Camera RAW filter inside Photoshop means that adjustments at this stage in Lightroom are no longer required, the file can be simply opened into Photoshop and made using the Smart Objects and Camera RAW filter. This approach can make the editing process non destructive even after the Photoshop file has been saved.

 

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Once the file is opened as the original from Lightroom, then the file will be opened from where it was left.

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If in Camera RAW, the PSD file can be opened by using the ‘Open With – Photoshop CC’.

 

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www.be.net/richard-curtis

 

 

 

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