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Soft Proofing

Lesson 24 from: Adobe Lightroom Classic CC Workflow for Photographers

Daniel Gregory

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Lesson Info

24. Soft Proofing

Soft proofing in Lightroom helps photographers better visualize the print before actually printing. This tool works with information about the paper you are using to create a more accurate preview of the output. Lightroom will even show you what colors in the image are out of your monitor's gamut range.
Next Lesson: Making the Print

Lesson Info

Soft Proofing

had a gambit. So what happens? Like stuff? Not there. Not only that. Did you know your monitor could be out of gamut? Let's get real for a minute. Your monitor could actually get out of gamut. Meaning it's showing you colors. It can't produce what? But I see colors on my monitor, but you're not seeing the accurate color on your monitor. That's well, how am I supposed to edit it if I can't see rendering a tent at a gamut gonna take care of it. So if we can kick over to the computer, I'm going to show you this great image. So in Seattle Public Library, the third floor, this is not edited. This is the red, and you walk out of that floor in your eyes burn. So it is crazy red, and nobody believes anybody who lives in Seattle and photographers show up and we march him down to the library and they walk up there and they're like, Okay, this photo is what I want. I want to print this photograph. I want to share this photograph of people. So in light room, once I'm in the development module, I'v...

e got an option for soft proofing If you don't see saw proofing you can click on the little down arrow in the toolbar piece and you could turn on soft proofing is a little additive there or in a freaky twist of fate The s key is the keyboard shortcut Soft proofing s I know what you're thinking you're like but wait a minute to crop I have to push our for Really want to crop? So why is it s not like p for pretty, please. Soft proof? No, it's where it's s I know it's freaking. So you just hit the s key. You're gonna go too soft proofing When you do that, you could see the background changes toe white initially and actually you click out in that whitespace. It's turning to paper white, not 100% white. What saw proofing does? That's reason these icy sea profiles air So important is in that icy sea profile when we go to print is the information about the color of the paper based So some papers air more yellow, some arm or white? Some have more texture. They all have some different characteristics about them. The I C C profile knows that information in light room will then attempt to compensate. So what soft proofing says is you have all the information about what the paper's gonna do attempt to make the screen simulate that. So I recommend you leave this paperweight. That way, you're just in the situation of the soft proofing is gonna make it a lot easier. So I deuce paper white and I mean saw proof and you could see the history Ram has now turned into soft proofing. So this is now showing me the hissed a gram of what the outputs gonna be. So it's no longer the history of the image. It's the history of the output. Now the model that the highlight and shadow clipping warnings have changed. There's a piece of paper and a little monitor. The monitor. What's blue? There is the colors that are out of gamma. To my monitor, a rendering intent has run and show me the colors that are out of gamut. These colors concern me mawr than the ones that are at a gamut of the paper. So when I print, that's an area. What kind of watch? To make sure there's something because that's where I'm seeing color potentially. That's not quite right how you tell you it's close because the other thing about a gamut warning If you're 0.1% out of gamut or you are 1 billion% out of gamut turns blue. I don't know how far out of Gammon I am. I know saw proofing. It's really helpful if I can know how far it again and I am, but we don't None of the tools that show game of warnings show that percentage yet. So had a game. I don't work. That's why. Don't worry about out of gaming warnings, and you're really going to see why. Don't worry about a game it warnings in a second. There are people who obsess about fixing out of gamut. You will destroy more images. Then you'll fix trying to deal with your out a gamut. So, unfortunately, when to see the at a gamut warning for the paper for the output profile is red and I can't change it. This is a red image, so it's a little bit little bit deceptive because I mouse over that everything that turns that bright red at a gamma so the word directories in GAM it and that one little reflections in game it. Other than that, everything's out of gamut. Now, the way saw proofing works in light room is going to get a virtual copy that I get to make my edits him. So my original file that I edited towards stays happy. Okay, so in this case, I'm gonna come down here, And as soon as I make any a slider adjustment and saw proving it's gonna ask me if I want to make the original the proof or create a proof copy. I recommend you always choose create a proof copy that's gonna build the virtual copy. And now I'm in my virtual copy. Now, I'm gonna turn on that warning, and I want to adjust saturation. Right now. My clipping warnings are gone. Everything's in gamut. My glad looks terrible. Maybe all just temperature. No, that didn't work. Okay, well, uh, back to a shot here. Well, maybe I'll go down and I'll try those h l sell sliders, and maybe I'll adjust the hue of red. Oh, that got something in. But that's even. I want it toe look like this to deal with the at a gamut warning. What most people do is they will come in and make a saturation adjustment. Yes, I get down to where? Pretty close. There. So somewhere around there I went everything in Game it. I want this. I got this. And here's my profile. So this is the S rgb color space. Okay, so I'm mimicking in soft proofing at this point ness rgb If I change that, I go to adobe rgb turn on my warning I've got a little more room so I start to clip there. So I've got you know, Adobe RGB is give me a lot more space but I'm gonna go to the internet. I want to sell my website so I have to be in the s rgb space. That's the language of the Internet. So I go to s rgb use my saturation. Now here's the problem with you doing it this way. This is why, at a gamut, warnings you're about to see are something that I think about is not as critical as we talk about them. The rendering intent knows everything about the color it knows. Does it need to move Hugh luminosity or saturation to bring it into gamut, and it knows how to pivot that in three dimensional space. That's the job of the color management engine. You only visually responded things, so you don't know. Well, I don't move a little Q and a little saturation, So I'm a little luminosity, a little saturation. What brings it into game? It you're just use them let you know, which is like, I just got to get this thing to not be weird. All right? Here's my one that I want. I'm gonna go to file and I'm gonna choose Export. I'm just gonna put this out on my desktop. We'll do a J peg s RGB. I'll even give it 100%. No, let's give a higher percent quality. We'll just try to give it everything all the help it can get big file. I'm gonna go ahead and export it. Now remember to get everything in gamut and he's gonna look like that. Go to my desktop. There's the export that looks pretty close. OK, but then we could quibble over that measure some numbers, but it's gonna be really, really close. The rendering intent did its job. So the reason I cover this up front in early is people obsessed. Like I said, when you learned printing, you'll read about you got to fix the game and warning. You got to fix the game and warning gamut. Warnings are to show you potentially where there may be a problem. And what you really want to watch for is in the gamut warning. Are you seeing a significant color shift as it starts to move all the stuff around is, am I seeing color change now? And when I changed, I mean, did read turned orange? Because if it did, that's a problem. I got the colors close to where I want, so I don't worry about them being out of game. But I don't adjust him out of gaming unless they do something weird after the fact. I would rather let the brains of the computers color management system do its job and have me worry less. Okay, so don't worry about the game at warnings. I don't even turn him on what I do. Like I said, watch for is I watch for color changes, saturation changes. I look for loss of detail. So when Inc it's paper, it's gonna spread out, it's gonna get a little soft. A matte paper holds mawr ink on and sucks in more ink than a glossy paper does. So there's a chance that shadows might lose detail. So those are the kind of things I'm looking for in my soft proofing. When I go to print, I go to export and my losing detail. Why don't highlight or shadow where I don't want it And my seen a significant saturation change, and the other one is contrast. A lot of times when we print, we're going to paper and it's gonna flatten a little bit. So our goal in soft proofing our goal the whole reason we wanted saw proofing put in here and it's been in light room since light room. Four reason we want that is can I then corrected the image and make output at it. So in that workflow we talked about earlier, we get to what are now output edits. I edit my photograph as if it were perfect. Once I have that, I'm making the decision to print now. The thing is, I might print for a glossy paper I might print on a matte paper, and I might export to the Web. All three of those Because they're different media. There's different paper. Once for the screen, I might need to make different edit, so they all kind of look the same. So those air output specific they those edits were about to make are tied specifically to the media We're going to. So that's why there at the very in there, the last edits we make because they're tied to the decision of where we out putting to relieving light room. And where we going? That decision has to be made before we can make these edits. Okay, I'm gonna come into a kind of a more normal looking image here. I'm gonna come up and create my soft proof. So I'm on my soft proof. Here s RGB If I go to the other menu, these air, all the paper profiles that I have installed on my computer. If you're in a photo shop user, you're used to scrolling for hours. Pretty not a light room is great. Soft proofing a light was great because I can come in to be like, you know, I only print to that paper, that paper, that paper and of that paper. Okay, now, in my menu are only the papers I work with. I don't have to scroll indefinitely. Remember, officiant lazy? I only want to work on what I'm working on. I don't wanna get distracted. I see that I could go by a velvet soft paper from Epson night in the profile. I think I should do that and stop working now and get on Amazon and buy stuff better that I should go to the camera store in town. Make a day of it. Meanwhile, I'm not working so anything to eliminate distraction. So in the soft proofing is this check box here called simulate paper and ink. If that's not checked, you'll see some subtle changes as I move through those. But when I checked simulate paper and ink, you'll start to see more significant changes and that, and you want that check box selected simulate paper and ink so you can. It's got that information about what the paper looks like. It's got that information about how much ink it can hold, and the profile can then display that if you don't have that checked, you're not getting that paper information, and you won't make good edits. And then here's that perception and relative. So I said, it's really easy to decide. Perceptual relative. You click on relative perceptual relative perceptual Now right in here. Hope that zoomed in like a 1,000,000,000 to relative perceptual. Okay, I don't see a big change. I see a big change in that deep green. A lot of saturation back there, but overall, I look at the image and I go relative perceptual. You know, in this case, I kind of like the look of perceptual. Okay, Perceptual. I'm print this perceptual. I've been told relative, but that's why I love that the buttons right there. It's really easy to make the decision. So I choose the perceptual. Now, if I change papers, though, I changed this hive press bright and I look at relative and perceptual, I might like Oh, you know, perceptual is got a little more punch, but I actually like the tones in relative. So on this paper, I might print relative, and that's why you got to check every time you will make a different decision based on the output media, you're going to so perception relative I'm gonna pick on relative here now in my workflow. What I'm trying to do is this is the photograph I like. Okay, this is the soft version. So what I'm gonna do is bring up my reference image, and I'm gonna drag my original photograph the non, the one that's actually edited. It has all the happy stuff in it that's done into my reference. And then the active is my soft proof. My goal is when I get onto the soft proof one. Oh, wait, wait. I lied. Sorry. Sorry. I lied. That's not true. It's a different workflow. Sorry. Will back that up? I've got myself proof there. I'm gonna click on the comparison view. Turn on saw proofing Cariou. And then, uh Come on, get I do where I was hanging out. When we get back to I was so proof I have myself proof. And then in the comparison view, I've got master photo. He'll have a before state current state or master photo Here I choose the master photo. So on this side, the current side, current state. If I change that to master photo, I'm now looking at the original raw file and the proof preview. Now is the soft proof. And my goal is to make this side reprove preview is as close to the master is possible. Okay, so this is why their output adjustments, Because the proof preview is taking into account the fact that I'm going to hot press bright paper. So if you look, it looks on screen, it looks a little like it's lost some contrast. So I'm gonna go ahead and come in and I'm gonna boost the contrast a little bit, okay? And it may be it's on Lee contrast. Lost in the green. So I go down to the HSE cell slider I'd boosted down there. I'm just trying to get those two to match. I can come in and look at some details where I say I've lost some like the blacks. A little soft. Okay, so I'm actually gonna deep in my shadow a little bit, okay? I think that looks closer. I'm getting it as close as I can. So I say at this point, I've got those that it's done. And like I say you're using in a fix saturation, you're using a fix contrast and we're gonna look for a loss of shadow detail. So all kind of zoom in and look like Did I lose some detail somewhere and hope that still got pretty good detail? I might come back and look back in here, Okay? That looks like it may have lost a little detail, but I can probably live with that. Like I'm not gonna worry about that. There's also times you'll sock proof something and you'll get in here and you'll see like, Oh, well, see this reds a little different than that. Rid. It's close. There's little orange in this one. So I might be like, actually kind of like the proof. Better. I might go back and edit the master to match the proof, but that's then moving forward. That's the way I mean, that's the benefit of printing. Sometimes I get that information. So I've got my proof. Preview done. I've made my adjustments. Those look relatively close to me. So now I'm ready to go print. This is the other place where people make their mistake. Which one of these am I gonna print? I'm gonna print the one. That's the soft proof copy. It has edits to make hot press bright paper look like my master image. If I print the master image, it's gonna look flat without that contrast, because those edits were made to make it behave like the original. And it's specific toe hot press, bright paper. If I change papers, I'll have a second virtual copy and different edits. Don't assume that it's one edit across all of them, okay? And one of the great things is, if I come back in here, one of the nice things that's happened if I bring up the Info Dialog box, bring up the info palette. You'll see that in my image for a P 800 printer hot press bright paper with the relative rendering intent. So if I go when we jump into the print dialog box in a second print model a second, if I go to print this and I choose Kansan rag, photographic and perceptual, it's not gonna work, Okay, because these edits are for that. So in the copy field, light rooms helped me remember what this is specifically for. This was there's been a life, a life changer. I mean, I have just been saved by this. Now it's a like a game changer in the editing world. It makes a huge difference to be able to come back in a year from now and know that right there in the actual name of the file is what the president's four. So if you called me and said, Hey, I love that photograph, can I get it a print for it? I come back in a year from now. I don't have to test anything. I don't have to do anything. It's hot. Press bright p 800. I still have both of those print. So what is this soft proofing actually getting me? What's the actual benefit of this? In the old days, the only way you knew was to print you Print wouldn't met. Be close but because your colors air close but you would see contrast love, fix the contrast. Well, my shadows little blocked up. You'd make 10 15 prints. That was not uncommon. I mean, there are people who would have killed to make 10 to 15 prints to like Sometimes it was just a lot harder in that soft proofing gets us down to either. Like somewhere. We usually between one and five, we get close quick as long as you spend the time to do that, prove comparison and make sure that, like, OK, I fixed the contrast. It looks close. Now when you make that print on that hot pressed paper and it comes back and you look at and you're like, I still think it needs more contrast, you fix the proof. You're always editing the virtual copy at this point cause you're trying to get it to match what your master was. So don't come back and met at the end of the master, cause that's not what your printing has. The one big mistake I see people make, They get in there like, Oh, it's wrong. I fix the master, the masters already fixed. And that is the way you want. You're coming back to edit that virtual copy.

Ratings and Reviews

a Creativelive Student

I watched this course live. Really good!. Of course, I like all of Daniel Gregory's classes. It's a real treasure when one finds a really good teacher who thinks like oneself. I thought that I already knew Lr well so I was really surprised about how much I learned from this course. I learned so many ways to improve my workflow efficiency.

Anne Dougherty

I was impressed by the amount of information covered in depth, and by Mr Gregory’s teaching style. I’m somewhat new to Lightroom and found his explanations of its capabilities, and why you would use it rather than Photoshop for specific processes, enormously helpful. I especially appreciated his lessons covering printing. This is invaluable information. Great class.

Warren Gedye

This was a great course. Daniel certainly explains it well and in terms I can understand! Super worth it and learnt loads of new tricks! Great job!!

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