ACR as a Filter
The first filter that we're gonna start with is going to be the Adobe Camera Raw as a filter. So if you open up Adobe Camera Raw, for a JPEG or a RAW image, you're gonna get the Adobe Camera Raw dialogue. But inside Photoshop, you have what looks like the Adobe Camera Raw dialogue, but it has some features that are removed because they aren't working on a RAW file they're just working on a static image. So I'll just open up this JPEG in Photoshop. Now this is a recent shot that I did in Paris. And I didn't necessarily like the shot, but I took it anyway. As we seemingly do. But what I want to do with this is I want to give it the feel of that Paris feel that you would see like a stylish filtered look. So I'm gonna go ahead and just duplicate the background layer. Press Command + Control + J to duplicate that background layer. And then I'm gonna jump into Adobe Camera Raw as a filter. All the filters in Photoshop can be found up here in this top area where you see the word 'filter'. Wha...
t I would suggest is that when you use these filters, you use these filters on a duplicate copy or as we've talked about in the past, a stamped layer. So if you have work that's happening within your image, you can make a layer stamp and do that work on top of there. Another thing about filters is that, some of them will only work... They won't work on adjustment layers. An adjustment layer as we've talked about before, is a calculation layer. It's a layer that knows no bounds, sits on top of your image and if I were to come in here real quick and just put curves adjustment layer on here and go to filter, you'll notice I don't have anything here. There's nothing there, it's all grayed out. I can't do anything with it. But, on the flip side of that, you'll notice that if I click on the mask and go to the filter, I can do some things to a mask. Because a mask is a pixel based object and not a vector based thing or something that knows no bounds. Now let's see what happens with text. So if I were to just type something on here, (typing) and if I were to go to filter, you're gonna see that you do have the option to go to filters but they aren't gonna interact with this quite the same way that they would with a pixel based layer. So for instance, if we go to something like distort, and go to something like twirl, it's gonna say "hey, before we can do this "we have to convert this to either a smart object or rasterize it. Because as it is right now, as a piece of text, it can't do that. So just know that if you're gonna be using filters on text, you might lose that. What happens is if you convert text to a smart object, you can't go back and type in there again. It becomes basically a vector based layer made of pixels. Or if you rasterize it, it becomes a pixel based layer with transparency. So I'm just gonna go ahead and hit 'cancel'. That was really just to show you what happens, cause as we've talked about, pixel based layers, which is what we see right here, we've talked about vector based layers, and we've also talked about adjustment layers, how filters will interact with those. That's why, if we're going to be using filters, we either want to use a stamp on the top of all the layers, or a duplicate of the background layer. So if I wanted to access Adobe Camera Raw as a filter, I can either go up to 'filter' right here, and click on 'Camera Raw Filter'. Or I could press Control + Shift + A and that's gonna pop me into Adobe Camera Raw as a filter. What you'll notice is that there's some things missing here though. You'll notice that we don't have... What don't we have? If we go into lens corrections, we do not have the ability to find the lens profile. Why would we not have that? Well that's because this is looking at a pixel based image and not a raw image, so because it's not looking at a raw image, it doesn't necessarily know what that would be anyway. Because it's a pixel based version. So it's giving you access to things that happen in Adobe Camera Raw, but it's making it a filter and removing some of the raw-based items. So this would work just like it would if you were using Adobe Camera Raw. You've got your exposure, your contrast, your highlights, your shadows, but it's working on basically, it's not working on a RAW file. It's working on that pixel data that you're bringing into it. Another way that Adobe Camera Raw can be used as a filter is if your traditionally a Lightroom user and you want some of those Lightroom things in Photoshop and you're like "man, I really wish I could just "bump the exposure up like I would in Lightroom." Well you can make a copy or a stamp of all the stuff that's happening, and you could bump that up right in Adobe Camera Raw as a filter. It gives you access to all of the things in Adobe Camera Raw that you would have beyond the Raw capabilities and maybe lens corrections. In that case, we would use lens corrections like we used in the prior lesson in Photoshop. One of the things that I often do with Adobe Camera Raw as a filter is if I'm not using things like gradient maps and I wanna color grade my image, I've got access to split toning. So if I come into the hue of any of my colors, I can select what color I want to make my highlights, what color I want to make my shadows, and what the saturation would be on those colors. So what I suggest for this is just like we showed before, bumping up all of the saturation in those colors and then selecting the exact color you want. I'm gonna go with something that's like a cream ish color. Cream ish yellow like that and then bump this up to a nice cyan ish blue, maybe make this a little bit more on the orange and get a little bit more of that reddish color in there. And then from there I could drop down the saturation of these colors. But you know, your not just stuck, I tend to get really stuck into these two colors. I love what happens when I color grade with a blue in my shadows and in my highlights it gets a kind of a yellowish color. But you know, push yourself a little bit, see what happens when you go to something like the magentas or the reds, drop that saturation down so it's not so vibrant and then maybe bring this into something like your greens or something like that and drop that down so it's not so vibrant and then we can adjust the balance of where we want that to be. And now, really quickly we've got an image that now has a little bit more mood and feeling to it. Once I press 'Ok', you're gonna see that this isn't a smart object. Like we opened Camera Raw as a smart object before. We could've made this a smart object before we went into Adobe Camera Raw, but it's not gonna give you that option to turn it into a smart object to come into Photoshop. So if we would've gone back in history a little bit here, right click and say 'convert to smart object', I don't have to fear losing those settings. Cause the last thing I did was Adobe Camera Raw. If we go up to 'filter', you'll see up here, it says Camera Raw as a filter it remembers all things I did from Adobe Camera Raw. It will only remember the last filter that you chose though. So if I press Alt + Control + F It's gonna open up Adobe Camera Raw and it should've just applied those settings but it didn't. It wants me to do it again. (chuckles) It's probably because it was a smart object, we'll see here. So I'll just go into the split tone and we'll just redo it, it's not that big of a deal. We'll just add a little bit of that greenish color, come over here and add a little bit of that magenta color and drop that saturation a little bit. Press 'Ok'. So now, because it's a smart object now, we have the ability to go back into it and adjust any of the settings that we would have from Adobe Camera Raw. They pop on over back into that Adobe Camera Raw as a filter. If I were to try and press 'Shift' and click on 'Ok', it's not gonna open up as a smart object. That's what I'm tryna get across here is that the only time you come into Photoshop as a smart object from Camera Raw is if you're working on a RAW file and bringing that into Photoshop. With the capability of smart objects and filters now, we still have access to the mask as we did before. And one of the things we also have the capability for is 'Blend if' and all of our layer styles. So we aren't just stuck with this filter now with this crazy split tone effect on it. If we go into our blend modes, we can change this to something like 'soft light', 'hard light', 'overlay', or 'color'. Maybe we don't want it to bring its luminance data when it comes over. We just want it to bring its color, which is that split tone color. We could go and come down to color and only apply the colors that are happening with that split tone to our image and allow the luminance values that are underneath to show through. Again, 'blend if' still applies here as well. If we double click inside this filter, move this over, so we're protecting the shadow areas, 'alt' or 'option', and we can blend that in. So you're not just stuck with what you get out of Adobe Camera Raw, you can start blending that effect into the image. And this is where you start incorporating all the things that we've talked about so far. We've talked about a lotta stuff in Photoshop here, we've talked about layers, we've talked about blend modes, we talked about opacity, we talked about blend if. Now we're talking about filters and smart objects and we're just stacking all this stuff together to create these effects with these filters.
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Software Used: Adobe Photosho® CC 2018