How Plugins and Actions Interact


Adobe® Photoshop® and Lightroom® Plugins 101


Lesson Info

How Plugins and Actions Interact

What is the difference between a preset and a plug in and an action they want no preset plug in and inaction will inaction is is specific to photo shop I believe a preset is a preset is something that you actually work through a set of commands in a particular piece of software and you save it out as a preset whereas a plug in is a a separate piece of software correct that's right? So you have on and it's important understand those three things so a preset is resident inside of whatever program, so for instance you're gonna have pre sets in rad labs you can have preset alien skin software you can have preset inside of photos show are inside of light room and you have presets and photo shop so like the brushes if you're in photo shop and you have all the different brush settings, those air presets their brush presets so you click on it and it just changes a bunch of sliders to be a certain size brush with a certain amount of feathering and a certain texture on it or whatever, right? And...

then you go to town and do what you're going to do inside of light room you have presets that will control, you know, whatthe sliders in the developed module doing what the key word is you know set is going to be but it's all all of it all a preset does is take available things and shift them shift dials or change uh, file naming conventions or things like that but it's not doing anything tricky, it's just taking things that are available commands and moving them into a specific position it's all a preset is doing and they're inside of programs, so they exist within it. When you press it, it doesn't have to do any major computations. It just says, ok, now exposure is going to be it, you know, plus one or whatever that's it that's all has today, so they're little tiny things a an action is very different, so if you go to photo shop and action is something that compiles on itself, so it's literally is like a little program inside of photo shop, and when you click on it, it could take the image it can analyze the image and look for the dark areas and then it can, you know, feather the selection than it makes, and then it can on ly affect that. Then once it's done that, it can then flatten the image and then it could do something else to it, and so it kind of builds on cell on on top of itself so it's a very complicated, time based process where it takes a photo from square one two finish right and so that's a very different animal than a preset so a lot of people say, well, can I can I take the things that I'm doing inside a photo shop in an action say I have, you know, a favorite ca botha action and I want to take that and I want to put it inside of light room in a preset so that I don't ever have to go to photo shop again and the answer is maybe probably not because if the action is just something simple and all it's doing is creating a black and white image with some contrast to it yeah, you can do that but then why did you have it is an action in the first place? Why would you go to photo shop for that anyway? Right it's kind of a wasted action but if it's an action that does as much is usually kevin cobb ota's stuff does two photographs then no, you can't because it's doing stuff over time so you can't create an action that does all of that stuff over time in a simple precept that just is moving sliders it just can't be done now that doesn't mean you can't control the action from light room you can do that and we'll talk about that a little bit later once tomorrow we'll talk a lot about photo shop and actions and controlling photoshopped from from light room and and kind of we'll talk about that tomorrow s o tomorrow's really photo shop and plug in centric whereas today is more light room and pre set with a little plug in type stuff so um so you can control photo shop and its actions from light room but you cannot replicate an action that's complicated inside of light from it just can't be done okay, now, what is a plug in the plug in in the middle that is its own program? So if you are using a plug in, say, whether it's you know rad labs or whether it's nick software whether it's on one software no matter who it is that you're using that is its own program aa lot of them have been designed to look a lot like white room and the ones that have designed themselves toe look a lot like white room recognize that light room did it right like really did a good job with what they created and so they've made it's kind of funny because if you the a lot of these plug in makers also make their plug in connect to, uh aperture and so you're working an aperture and if you click on you know I want to work in mixed software from aperture and you go suddenly you're in a light room based experience and it's so it's like, you know, like they're all oh I guess this was really a better environment you know, because they're taking you to the light room environment you know, I I just thought of that that's pretty funny you know, you it kind of gives you an idea which is the better environment you know? So apple I wish you'd done it right but anyway so you're inside of light room and you click on I want to edit this inside of nick software and that takes you to something that looks like you're still in lightning because it's such a good environment now some of the plug ins out there have tried to mimic white room and not done a great job at it it's still a little clunking quite is good but at least they're trying but nick has done a great job at just replicating a light room experience it really looks like you're in light room but it just says nick software on it and they've done a really good job of that so a plug in is something that opens up on its own and works on the photo which means that the photo goes from light room to the plug in software gets delivered there so I have a schematic that I want to talk about so let's go in here and we're going to go to my schematic and when you get a chance can you define schematic because I know you're giving away with purchase presets including schematics and instructions. This is a schematic, thank you, I am so we are going to go over this schematic right now and it's important for you to understand the workflow of plug ins, because when you're working, you have light room here and light room is, um, the hub on which you're working right, and and then everything emanates from there, so here's the plug in see it's, a different program over here and then here's photo shop over here, it's a completely different program, and all three of these programs are working together to create a photograph, so we start here in light room and in light room. Our goal is to finish the file as far as it can be finished, as much adjustments is could be done to get that image tio is normalize this possible and maybe even a little bit of, you know, style to it, but as far as we can go, don't ever think, well, I'm going to get it to this point, and then I'll take it photo shopped to do a little bit more contrast adjustments and stuff like that because once you go into photo shop for once, you go into a plug in, you're no longer working on a raw file and raw files are the best filed working because they're the let least damaging so we do is much as we can in light room in adjustment wise before we send it out, because once we send it out of the light room environment, we're no longer in a raw situation, and so we're going to start damaging the file every time we start working in a plug in or in photo shop. Okay, presets on the other hand, inside of light room are working on that raw file, so you can do as much presets as you like, and you can do as much adjustments as you like. You can horse around till the cows come home in light room, and you will do the least amount of damage to the file. Then when you send it out, you start damaging the file a lot faster. So what you want is to send out a file from light room that has the most amount of information in it, and so we call that a tiff sixteen bit pro photo rgb file. You can also send out a psd as well, either tip for a psd is fine, however. Most of the plug ins universally work with tips, and some of them don't work with p s d s so if you're running a plug in workflow, you need to sait tiff, tiff is going to be the file you're sending out you're not going to be sending out a a psd file because some of these aren't going to accept it so so so you're going to send out from light room to photo shop and to your plug ins a tiff sixteen bit pro forma rgb and for those who we don't know what sixteen bit means you've got a bet or sixteen minute ajay peg is eight bit and if you start adjusting a j peg eight bits you'll see banding in the skies so you'll see the sky scarce stair step you know it's like blue and then it's light blue and there's a line that's because it's eight bit because it doesn't have can't differentiate between dark blue mid blue light blue it can on ly different shape between dark blue and light blue you know and so it drops between their okay so what you want to do then is you want to send out the best file possible in a sixteen bit file is better then a innate bet okay it's just got more death to it's got more information andan pro photo rgb is the biggest color space that you can work and it's the closest color space that you have to raw so ross kind of its own thing it doesn't have a color space because it's just raw but pro photo rgb color space has the most amount of colors available it's kind of like a big crayon box so you have the eight crown box and then you have one hundred twenty eight crayon box so pro photo rgb is one hundred twenty eight crayon box and the eight crayon boxes like s rgb which you have to goto srg be when it comes to the web or to print but you don't necessarily have to state you don't want to edit in it you want to add it in the best color space possible so that's why we choose a tiff sixteen bit pro photo rgb but notice on my little light room schematic here on this workflow schematic we've got it says in the light room areas is metadata it's important before you leave light room with a file that you have installed all the metadata that you want to install? Okay, so key words because if you if you keyword before you send it out photoshopped than the photo shop document gets the keywords baked inside of it but if you send out the photo shop document before now you've got one five you've got two files without key words on it now you have two key word to files instead of one file so my my work flow is to always key word and to put any meta data information into the photos before they go out to edit before they go to photo shop or to a plug in okay so key word first then start sending him out and it doesn't mean that you have two key word intensely and spend hours on key wording. I'm just saying, get get the medic data that you want in your files in it before you start shipping stuff out and creating copies, because the copies will take all that data with them. So you want you want it in there so that you can have both of them searchable because it would it would suck tohave all your raw, really searchable, and then all the psd is not because the psd is the final work that's the one that you really worked on, or your tip file is the one you really worked on, and you did all this, so all you could find is the unretouched images instead of the reattached images. So just put your medic data into the file before you send it out, then it's a matter of where you want to go so you can take your image directly to a plug in so you can see up here we're going from the plug in or from light room, making a tiff and going to the plug in, and then the plug in will work on it and send it back, or I can go the opposite direction, and I can go to photo shop and aiken retouch the file. And then I can either send it right back to light room or I could from life from photo shop, I consented to the same plug in, so I can take it from photo shop, and I can run it up to this plug in and then the plug in saves it and sends it back to photo shop and then photo shop sends it back light room, so there's a lot of different ways that you can go about getting your final image and it's still ran through the plug in, but it ran either directly from light room or it can run from photo shop, which he ran from light rooms. He ran from light room to voter shop to the plug in back to photo shop and then delight right? And there are advantages to both ways of doing it. We'll talk about our advantages for working and photoshopped tomorrow a cz well, but then notice everything comes back to light room. So when you work on a photoshopped document or a plug in, you always come backto light room and then from light room you go to additional things. So you, once you've taken something to a plug in and worked on it, it comes back to light room, because light room is the best place to look at your imagery. And once you've done that, then you can do other things to it like, for instance, I could run everything through a bunch of plug ins and do all the retouching and stuff like that so let's, for instance, one of the plug ins will talk about tomorrow is image nomics portraiture, great portraiture plugging right it's fantastic, it does a great job, so I may re touch something and photoshopped with portraiture, but then it's going to come back in the light room and light room is where I'll do the cropping after I've done the retouching, you do not crop an image before you do the retouching because you may want the full image some other time and you don't have to go back and retouched the photo again because you cropped it before and now you need a longer crop so you always do your cropping after it comes back to light room light room is where you crop and you crop after it's gone out and come back so you never crop before you send out the psd ukrop after the only exception to that is if you're straightening something so I alway I'll straighten something inside of light room before it goes out to a photoshopped document as long is just a small straighten because I know I'm never gonna want the unstrapped inversion, but I keep it if it's a four by six photo then I keep it in that four by six ratio just straighten the crop and then send it now okay, so that's why I have here once you come backto light room, then you go to light room plus, which would be light room plus other things, so for instance, you could go do some retouching inside of photo shop using the plug in portraiture comeback to photo shop save it backto light room and then when you're in light room you could turn it black and white, so now you have the original don't turn into black and white light room and then go retouch it, retouch it in color, send it back to light room and then you can make a color version a black and white version a cpi aversion and all of them were virtual. You don't even have to have the extra space for that one photo you've one color vitton a version of the image and then you start making black and white versions cropped versions anything you want inside of light room because it's all nondestructive at that point so you get what we're doing here is we're doing is much non destruction destructive work as we can in light room, then we send it out to places where we can't get something done inside a light room we send it out photoshopped to do what we can't do like retouching or plug in work that's just too complicated to do inside of light room and then when we come back we go back to nondestructive editing cropping black and white all that kind of stuff right? Then once that's done, we can then export it to our heart's content via plug ins and presets and published services and all those kind of things and send it out to various various places. So you notice then after we've done are cropping and light room, we come through presets and plug ins and published services which will then export to these different ideas. So for instance, if I'm sending it out to the web I can send it to as a j peg eighty five quality srg b I can send that out to my live book site which is going out to the web or aiken send one hundred quality s r g b j peg over the photo shelter or smugmug and if I send it to smugmug I can then from their post it to my social media and it will take care of the conversion right the thing I the thing I love about smugmug is it is actually taking the full j peg and then it processes like five or six different versions of that of that file, so then if I or a client wants to share it, it shares the appropriate size and can addle logos and stuff to it and share it out so one hub instead of having to make two different copies you can make one so that's kind of a nice feature to smuggling and there and there and then the other feature both too smug mcgahn photo shelter is that if you are uploading a full size j peg that full size j peg is a final copy so you have a copy somewhere else it's a it's an external copy it's an offsite backup and its goes to the web to show people on the web and it can then be connected over the white house custom color where all the prints can be done. Both both photo sha are both photo shelter and smugmug will both attached a white house custom color so you can print I think the best lab I love white house custom color fantastic prints and so they can make the prince for the clients or for me and it can all be ordered from photo shelters smugmug so and then obviously that going to the client and then the other thing that you can do a send a tiff sixteen bit pro photo so you could export that full glorious sixteen bit tiff and you can send that up to a drop box you can send it to adobe creative cloud where you would sink your files so if I'm working with a with a client on an image I can send that to my creative cloud or to drop box and then they can connect to that and they can pull it down they can work on it they could open it up and work on the tiff and then save it back so we can work back and forth through those types of cloud services on dh then the the one advantage photo shelter has over smugmug is that they'll accept a psd are tiff so you can deliver full tiffs to your clients photo shelter was kind of built on a more commercial idea and so more commercial photographers use it so they have the ability to also deal with real big awesome like full on files not just j pegs so they're they're they're much more commercial type of situation and so you could send it photo shelter and photo shelter than khun deliver that to people you can you're gonna have pay for it to like you could if you wanted to run your own little stock agency you could post all your files they would be serving up j pegs to the clients and then when the client bought it they could download the tiff so or the ps steve said or the psd so you could have a layered psd and saying you could buy this layered psd it would deliver the latest layered psd to him and they could use whatever layers they wanted so photo shelters a really good place for delivering those types of files but of course there are probably hundreds or thousands of photographers commercial photographers they're also using smugmug for their own science forever doing all that absolutely yes my mug that nothing wrong with smuggling either smug looks fantastic in fact, it has some advantages his photo shelter doesn't have like for instance, we're going to talk on saturday friday about published services and smug mugs published service I was telling ryan this small smug mugs published services is out of this world cool out of this world cool like aiken post an event from light room and never even go to smugmug I can choose which pricing catalog I want to use oh from light room and just it'll just post it and then I could just send the link to the client and then while the clients looking at their images I could be like oh, you know what? I should have adjusted that image a little differently and I could just change it and it'll change it on smugmug I mean it's just it's cool it is one of the coolest public services I've ever seen so they have some real advantages to I don't want to get to a far off topic but have you dug into their the new smugmug that just launched yeah in fact the photo contest that we're running is all being done through the news smugmug so when you upload that photo there's a little drag box that's smugmug and then all your photos they're going to be seen on the new smugmug interface so yeah the whole thing is the whole photo contest is inside of smug look ok so yeah so everybody will get a chance to play around with it but it's it's really quite cool it's it's drag and drop kind of stuff is it you know occasionally where you you know the dragon drop is weird and you have to like play with it but it's you know for designing aside it's pretty simple so I should get my entry and tonight yes okay this is a schematic that you should burn into your brain as to how you operate when it comes to working with plug ins and photo shop in light room how it all works you have to stand like him as long as possible you need your meta data inside of your files before it leaves it needs to go out as the biggest best file possible so a tiff pro photo rgb said eckstine bit and then once it's out you do what's necessary out there and then come back and allow light room to do additional things to it like cropping changing it to black and white all that kind of stuff can be done back inside of light room on dh then when you're exporting it that's when you're going to choose what? File type you want to send it to whether it's going to be a big file type for a commercial you know use or whether it's going to be high quality j peg or just a little web copy or something so that is the basic schematic for your plug in workflow I'm all right now um with all that in mind then let's talk about a couple of the a couple of the presets that I kind of want to go over some basic little presets that are important to us in the work flow on I just want to show him to you because they're kind of out of the way in there places where you don't usually think of him and so I want you to know that they're there we won't spend too much time on them because they're just little things we'll spend a lot more time on developed presets and curves and stuff like that after lunch but this this is where we first run into presets is on the import dialog box so inside the import dialog box one of the first presets that you're going to see is your meditative pretty sets so you're going to create meta data presets that allow you to toggle on copyright information model release information all of that kind of stuff before you ever bring the photo in that way every photo has is much metadata in a cz possible right from the beginning so I'm gonna if I click on this meditated drop down menu on by goto edit presets I can then tell it to save whatever presets I like and this is all the metadata I can put in there anything from keywords publishing information I can do video information aiken dio model release information so right here we've got model release information so if you have standard situations where you know okay this was a photo shoot I know I have a model release on it well then you should have a metadata precept for your copyright with model release and one for copyright without model release so that that way you were able to search for images that have model releases thie other thing that you should put in is your contact information so if you want people to be able to email you or get to your website or if you want to make sure that people know that this is a copyrighted image put your copy right in there so it would be two thousand thirteen comma jared platt news so that would be the copyright information and if you push this little copyrighted status here then when someone opens it and photoshopped the window will say circle c on it so someone would know this is copyrighted and if that image goes to a printer the printer will see copyrighted information on it so if they throw in the dislike me like oh that's copyrighted it's clear to them they don't even have to guess there like no this says it's copyrighted you know so put that on all of your work then you can put basic information but you want to create as many of these types of presets as a cz possible because you don't ever want to have to into that information in after the fact and you never want to be in a situation where you you put something on the web that doesn't have that information in it a lot of people I may be a lot of people haven't heard about this I stayed pretty adept on it but there was a point about two years ago where congress was trying to pass a law that would allow it to be easier for people to steal your image is basically it was an orphan work thing and they it's a it's a weird term but they call an orphan work something where I'm trying to find someone who doesn't have a copy like I can't find the copyright. We've got this photo that I really like and I want to use it but I can't find you and so I only have to make a certain amount of effort and then I can go all well it's it's an orphan work I have no idea who it is and then I can use it on bus billboards on whatever I can sell coat cocoa cola with it I can do whatever I want right? And I wouldn't have to pay you because it's an orphan work and then if you came back and said, hey that's mine then I would have to start paying you from that point but I wouldn't have to pay you damages for everything else and I could just stop using the image things like that is just really bad situation and they were trying to make that easier so never allow your stuff to become a new orphan work because if it's attached to the file itself always then no one can just claim oh, I tried but I couldn't find him you know they have to your information is there your website is in the photograph your photographs is copyright has the copyright data on it and if you can prove to the judge that your workflow includes copyright always going out, then you could probably prove that they stripped the meta data themselves so that they could lie and then they're going to get in trouble right? So if your workflow includes that and you can show the judge I always do this nothing goes out of my studio without this information on it, this guy clearly stripped it, then you've got a case and now people can't be stealing your work so on the other the other place that you'll find a preset is the developed presets themselves are all available here inside the import dialog box, so when we start talking today about presets, presets become invaluable on the way in, as well as while you're inside the develop module. The reason they're so valuable is that aiken take a preset and tell it to do certain things to the images on the way in, and it will nearly finish the files so the files will be close to what I want them to be right from the beginning without me ever doing anything to them. Um and so that's important. So if I wanted all of them, I remember I did a wedding where I did everything in black and white the whole wedding, and I didn't want to be tempted to keep anything in color because I had already said, I'm going to do this in black and white, and so I literally on import. I put black and white of clarity on the file so that every image that came in was a really rich, black and white before I ever even saw it, and I had turned the picture style on the camera to black and white, so I couldn't see it in color on the back. So I never saw the images and color and I and I still to this day I have not looked at him and color I don't want to see him in color because I wanted to do it in black and white and I didn't want to be tempted t have to change them to color because I might have, you know, like taking pictures of flowers you know, in black and white it's a different thing, you know, it's not it's, not common to do that, so I didn't want to be tempted, you know, there's a lot of general questions coming through jared, but I know it's aa lot of stuff that's going to be stuff we're going to be covering, you know, throughout three day but carrying did ask about something from a little bit of a while ago having to do with do you create the library folder in your apple workflow and put all those folders inside it or did you can you just show again where you had all your folders at the fact they were not in an apple library there in right in light room? Are we talking about pre three says preset folder yeah s o light room makes the folder itself okay light room okay determines where it goes you don't get to choose that and that's why when you go to light room preferences show the preset folder light room determines where it's going to be now there is one way to determine where it's going to be if you tell it to store the presets this little button right to the left here if you say store presets with this catalog it will put the light room folder right next to the catalog but the problem with doing that's not a good idea because if you do that then every time you make a new catalog you have to then make a new precept folder for that catalog because it's looking writes so each catalog has its own set of presets and each catalog is different has different presets and so then you have to keep copying that light room preset ful there over and over and over again into each catalog in orderto have the same pre cents and then if like ten jobs down the road you add some presets it's adding it to that job but not to the other ones and so then when you go back to your other job you like odd thing and I don't have the presets for that last and then you gotta go over here it's it's a nightmare the only reason they that's good ideas if if you're taking a job and sending it off and you want someone to have access to all your presets then that's a valuable idea but otherwise is not a good idea so but that so light room chooses where this folder is going to go, so when I click on show the light on preset folder it's showing me where it is and that folder like light room in mac chooses to put it in the library at locations, support adobe light room and then there's all the presets, and then right above that again is the camera rob presets where light, light room and photoshopped both put presets four camera wrong. So so those all it's it's totally based on what light room where, where it wants it, what we have to do that is work within that structure, and I've added an extra couple folders in here into that structure, but that's me just adding stuff, right? And fortunately I tested it out because I didn't know if light room would start deleting stuff I was putting in there, but it doesn't. So I put a folder in their light room doesn't touch it just like I'm just deals with all the folders it knows about if it there's another folder in there, it doesn't know about it just doesn't pay attention to it, but if I went to create it, light room wouldn't create that folder I had to put it there and the only folder that specific to that is this published services that I put there great, but I chose to put it there because light room always knows where that folder is, because it created it. Okay, perfect. Rebecca marie has a question when adding meta data and key words on import she be careful as to how many key words you use? Yes. So when you're adding key words on if you make a meditate a preset um I don't put keywords in those unless I always knew that this pre set is going to be did like, for instance, if I always did weddings at the royal palm's hotel, I could create a preset that does adds my copyright and all my metadata and presets about the royal palms to it so I wouldn't have to retype those, but generally I just use that on import dialog box here. So there's, right here in the import dialog box right here is a key word spot, so I just type in the things that are common to all the images. So if it's a wedding, I could put wedding arizona, phoenix, royal palm you know those things, but I'm not gonna put bride groom flowers because that's not common to all the images. If I'm shooting a corporate job, then I can put in, you know, commercial collateral I can put in you know, the name of the company I can put scottsdale or wherever it was shot. I can put that kind of stuff in. But I'm not going to put in things like, you know, woman, man, because I don't know what's in the shot, that I'll cure that later. So and and for that kind of stuff, the here on creative live, the ultimate light room workflow course, has a whole. I think we spent an hour and a half on key wording.

Class Description

Want to know how to tailor Adobe® Photoshop® and Lightroom® to make them even more powerful? Join creativeLIVE instructor Jared Platt for a three-day introduction to the plugins that will change the way you use Adobe’s seminal programs.

Jared will guide you through a wide variety of plugins as he explains why and how to use each one. You’ll learn about building a workflow that incorporates plugins, saving you time and money in the post-production process. Jared will also cover ways to synchronize and implement plugins on multiple computers. You’ll also explore the built-in tools in Lightroom® and Adobe® Photoshop® for creating and implementing your own plugins.

By the end of this course, you’ll be ready to harness the power of plugins and take your image editing skills to new heights.

Software Used: Adobe Photoshop CC 14.0, Adobe Lightroom 5