Working With Camera Raw

Lesson 2 of 8

Basics Panel

 

Working With Camera Raw

Lesson 2 of 8

Basics Panel

 

Lesson Info

Basics Panel

So now to open a RAW file you could work inside of Lightroom and find that image if you wanted and you could right click and open as a RAW file inside of Photoshop. So again, when you see the open, right click, say open as RAW and then you're going to go into Camera RAW. The other thing you can do is if you're in an early version, before like CS6 or CS5, I forget which version it is. When the integration was just automatically there you would right click and choose open in Camera RAW. Now if you're working with a RAW file, we're in Bridge right now which comes with Photoshop. That's what the icon looks like. So if you've never used Bridge it's a great place to get started for organizing images. Now, by default you double click it and it's gonna open inside of Camera RAW inside of Photoshop. So here we are. This is a plugin but it's so much more than plugin. It's almost a program in itself and we've got all these tools. So at the very top it's gonna show you the version. Right now we're...

in 10.3 and this is the latest version. I can tell because you see these little squares there? We'll get to those in a minute but I know this the new version because those were not there before. It will show you what type of camera you're working in and here's our work space. So we've got a set of tools up here and then we've got all these different panels. Now these panels, you would scroll. You go to your develop module in Lightroom and you scroll all the way down. That's what these are. These are all the different tools that you would see in there and these can do a lot of different things. All right so why don't we just start here and the first one we're gonna look at is just the basic adjustments that you would do inside a photo. Let me just cancel out. I want to give something more exciting than that one. Go in here to Bridge. And let's find one that needs a little more work. So why don't we just double click on this one. There we go. This one's looking you know, that's out of camera, straight out of camera. SOOC. And you know what? That needs some work, right? So this is a set of tools so why don't we just start with the basic adjustments first and I'm just gonna walk you through. This is the basic panel. Now 99% of all the things you're gonna do are gonna be done inside the basic panel and you can do a lot. You'll actually be surprised at how much work you can do. There's a lot of other things we can do but for most of the things here it's pretty epic. Now you can see there's a curve there. See that curvature of the lens? So before we even do that, the first step you want to do is go on, to see this thing it looks like lenses? That's what the artist was trying to do. So that's like to me is like the weakest logo in Photoshop but it's supposed to be a lens. That was like one of my first drawings. Okay so anyway no. But those are different pieces of glass and blah, blah, blah, whatever. All right so the thing about this, it has camera profiles built in here. So that means the manufacturer when they make new camera or they make a new lens Adobe gets it, they test it, they put it through some gear, and make a profile to fix the basic problems with it. So for example be like lens distortion, vignette around the edges, where it gets dark around the edges, chromatic aberration, color fringes because like different colored light travels at different frequencies or different wavelengths. And so all these kind of things all go into a profile. So the first thing we want to do is if we enable profile correction, boom. See how that picture looks a lot better already? And it's already seeing okay, we've got a Canon camera. See that? And if you don't see it there you can click and you can choose different manufacturers. Now here's a little thing, I do want to just mention this really quickly because as we upgrade, we're like okay, I have to upgrade because it's not gonna support my camera anymore. That's not true. Adobe does release camera profile. So you might see like you might have an earlier version, maybe Lightroom 6 or whatever, classic by the way. When I say Lightroom let me just be very, very clear, I'm talking about Lightroom Classic. Not Lightroom CC. Because what used to be Lightroom and then just before it graduated to CC it was renamed to classic. So CC is a brand-new application, it's a cloud-based application that enables you to do a lot of things with your photos but it doesn't have all the tools that are inside of Lightroom Classic. And the tools in here mirror the tools inside of Lightroom Classic not Lightroom CC. A lot of these features are in Lightroom CC but not all of them so I just want to make that really clear. Because I hear people, oh I upgraded and all my tools are gone. Because they change the name, it's Lightroom Classic. Anyway so moving on. So all these tools, so if you have an earlier version, they still do updates and those updates are gonna give you profiles for new cameras. So if you buy a new camera like a Sony A 7 III and it's not supported in here, check for the download, check for the update, and the update will have that camera profile if it's not there yet eventually it will be there so sometimes the profiles are in there right on launch of a new camera. And sometimes you might have to wait a little bit for the profile to be built because I don't know if you've ever tried to get a brand new camera, not always easy to get when they first come out. Anyway so those are the camera profiles in there and then we can go for the lenses. So I'm using a 1740, it knows my lens and you know it's got that already. So how does it know that? Real simple, the metadata. So when you're shooting in RAW all the metadata from the camera and the lenses in there. Adobe knows that and then you click that profile and you can see there before and after. See how it just straightens it up and it makes things look a little bit better. If it doesn't do it enough you can use a distortion correction here. See that and you can force it more. So sometimes a wide angle lens like I'm shooting here we'll get that distortion. So if you see that problem do it, if not don't even worry about it. All right so let's go in here and now we've got these adjustments. We've got exposure, contrast, highlight, shadow, whites, and blacks. Forget the ones at the bottom right now. Let's just focus on these ones here and if we go up a little bit you'll see there's another set. So these are broken into different groups. The first one's white balance. That affects our color. Then we've got the exposure settings. These ones here, this is our brightness in our darkness. And then these ones will enhance it, clarity, vibrance, so we'll talk about those. So I guess the first thing we really should do I said we're gonna start with exposure but let's not. The first one we need to start with is color temperature because obviously this is off. This is too cool. And cool means it's more towards the blues, warm means it's more towards yellows. I'm not gonna get into theory about color temperature. I'm sure that's a different topic for another day. So if we click here we can warm it up by moving it to the yellows and see how it starts to look better, brings out the colors. Will go near in the blues. So we could move their temperature slider or the other thing we could do is under white balance. See where it says custom and we've got all those settings right there. All these settings here are the same settings that were on your camera. So when you shoot your camera you've got sunny, cloudy, blah, blah, blah. The great thing about a RAW file is if you shoot in RAW, those settings are not baked in. So if you pick the wrong setting on your camera, no big deal. You can change it here. If you shot with a JPEG you're stuck with what it's shot. I mean, we can change it with the sliders but you can't choose a different color setting at this point, a color profile. So what we're got here is we think well maybe it's more cloudy. Yeah, it's not bad. We can go through here, shade. Oh, shade looks good. And you can try the different ones and so this just basically gives you that color balance. I actually kind of like shade I think it's better and if you want to look at it before and after just hit the P key. P is before and after so you can see we haven't done a lot. All we've done is just applied the correction and we just chose the right color temperature or color setting and now it's looking better. Now once you're in that setting, it doesn't mean you can't tweak these manually, you can. And a lot of the time I will apply that first, I'll apply the setting and then for things like studio shots, sometimes with models I like to warm it up a little bit. Warming up the skin makes it look more pleasant. So you know you can use your eyeballs to do that. The other thing is I don't know if you ever used like an X-rite passport color checker, things like that. Those are really great. Particularly if you're in a studio environment. This is an outdoor shot but this applies to everything. So if you're in a studio or outdoors and color is really important like maybe you're doing a product shot or something like that then you just want to make sure you've got that gray card in there or you've got that color checker in there And that way you can make sure you match a perfect gray point. And also works really good with with JPEGs. So let me show you an example is if I grab this eyedropper up here. This is the color eyedropper and I move this over an area that I know is gray. And in this picture I don't really know, I can guess and I can click on the rocks or maybe this water would be white. So you're looking for white or gray. And if I click on that water, see what that does? That's gonna set that to a neutral color and it's going to shift the colors. Or maybe we think this is gray. See when we click there and notice how by choosing these different gray points, it's color balancing the image. See that? So this is really good when color is really accurate. Make sure you shoot an area of gray that you know like your gray card, 18% gray. And then just click on that and you'll get it an exact color correction. Otherwise just go into here and we're just gonna choose shade for now. Which is the closest we can get to it but I feel like I might want to warm it up a little bit. All right, so that's color. All right, just move down now. The other thing, notice you get the temperature in tint. Temperatures the warmth and the tint is when you get certain types of light. Fluorescent lights and things like that or mixed lighting that effect and you can clean that up. Okay so let's go to this next section. This is where we're gonna be working the most of the time. Exposure, contrast, highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks. A lot of these kind of sound the same, don't they? Like forget about contrast for now. So this is what I do is I immediately just don't even worry about contrast at this point. What we want to do is set our overall brightness. So we want to start the exposure and say where's our image? Do we want it to be darker, like don't even worry about the clouds. Don't worry about anything. We're just looking for the overall brightness of that photo and I think there, it's a little bit more pleasing. So when I shot this it was a little bit underexposed. Now I under expose it on purpose because I wanted to preserve the details in the sky. And a lot of time we'll do that but we can bring some of that back. Okay so as I said we're gonna go down here, we're gonna skip contrast at the moment. Now we've got four more sliders. We've got highlights, shadows, whites, and blacks. Well what's the difference between shadows and highlights and whites and blacks? Do you guys know? All right so think of these two here as recovery sliders. So the highlight and the shadow are recovery sliders. So that means that we want to recover detail. Now histograms, you guys know how the histograms work? There's a histogram up there, it's in the top. And if you click on these little areas, they'll show areas of clipping, see that? So see how this is the highlights, shadows. So notice when I clicked on it, you can also just roll over it but we're gonna click on there and notice that red is showing that we've clipped those highlights, which means we lost the detail because we brightened it up a little bit, we lost the detail on that part of the photo. So now it's forced to pure white, there's no detail, no color information. So highlights will recover that and this is great for sky so I'm just gonna pull the highlights back, look at that. When you pull it back it recovers all the detail in the highlight areas. So areas that are blown out, it can recover those as long as they're on a sensor. Make sure that you properly expose your photographs. That's something you can't fix. There's a lot of things you can fix them Photoshop the one thing you can't is clipping. If you have overexposed or you under exposed, you can't save it. Camera RAW has an incredible amount of dynamic range meaning can capture a lot of detail in the highlights and shadows. You know a lot of cameras now 13 stops, even some cameras are up to 15 stops of dynamic range which is ridiculous. So it can capture that detail but you just got to make sure it's on the sensor. If your settings are too high, you can't. So the only things you can't fix later in Camera RAW is your exposure, like mechanical things. Your aperture, how big that is. Your shutter speed. And you're exposure by the way is your aperture, how big it is and ISO. Those three things and your lens that you apply, those things you can't change. Everything else you can. All right so now that we've recovered our highlights, it goes to say shadows does the same thing. So if I open up shadows it opens up detail, see that? So now here's the thing, a lot of the time, a lot of people like to start by cranking highlights and shadows all the way either side, which was fine because what that's doing is it's showing you the maximum amount of dynamic range inside that photograph. But it can look a little fake if you get a little carried away with it. I find I can get pretty aggressive with the highlights but the shadows, you don't want to get too aggressive with because then it starts to look like a fake HDR. So let's pull it back a little bit to a more pleasing amount. About there. Still aggressive but we're showing that detail and if we look at this before and after. It's bringing out a lot more detail. Okay so highlights and shadows recover, well what the whites and blacks do? Well, in a way highlights and shadows recover your information, your detail. The whites and the blacks recover your photograph. So when you do this it can look washed out, it can look unnatural and then what happens is the blacks, I usually go to the blacks next, are gonna give you that body back. When it starts to look too washed out the blacks, see that, make it look like a photograph again. So it doesn't look like a dirty window. Pull it back here and that'll give you the foundation. So you don't always have to adjust all the sliders by the way. So just making that very clear. And then what does whites do? Well whites do, when you have recovered your highlights and things start to look milky and you want it to look crisp and clean again, bringing up your whites can do that. See that? See how that surf is looking a lot cleaner. So you don't have to get as aggressive as I did there but I'm gonna push these sliders a little bit more then I normally would just so you can see what's happening on the screen. So I'll be a little aggressive with my adjustments today if that's okay with you guys because then it makes it clear what's happening. Okay so that's essentially what they've done. Okay so now we've set those, so why did I not move the contrast slider? Does anyone know why I didn't move the contrast? Because I'll tell you why. Because now we've kind of set our overall balance and things are kind of looking a little bit more like they should, the contrast is like a flavor slider so to speak. So if I take the contrast and I lower it down, see what it does? Is it produces a lot more dynamic range in the photograph. Like you can see more details in the highlights and the shadows but what happens is it washes it out and if we go high we get this really nice high contrast, very punchy photograph but we're losing details in the shadows and the highlights. So it's kind of like a flavor. If you like it where it is that's fine but you want to make it a little more punchy, you increase it, you wanna make it a little softer, you go a little to the left. And so that's what I use the contrast slider for. So here we've got a moody soft kind of a thing and in there we've got more punchy. So a contrast slider essentially does the same thing as the whites and blacks. So a lot of the time I don't do a lot of contrast because I can set it in the whites and blacks separately. So contrast lets us do that. Okay, let's move down. Then we've got this next set down here. We've got clarity, dehaze, so what do these do? Well let's talk about clarity and dehaze. Now one of the things you might have noticed if you haven't opened up Camera RAW or you haven't opened up Lightroom in a little while is dehaze is now here. It's now right inside the main panel, it used to be way down at the bottom hidden in the effects. So dehaze is good and I love this. It gets rid of haze so if you've got a foggy photograph, you slide up the dehaze and see how it just cuts through it? We don't really have fog in here but you want to add fog go to left. And you can add it. But I find that dehaze is great for clouds and water look at this. Just increase it a little bit and boom, look what it's doing there. It just giving us more detail, more definition, in our clouds up here and in our water. So the clarity is a little bit different. What clarity does, let me reset the dehaze but anyway, double click on any of these it'll reset them. So if we increase the clarity, what it does is it increases mid-tone contrast or it gives the appearance of the thing being sharper. The photo. If we go to the left it makes it look softer, see that? So clarity is kind of good for that and see how that looks? But notice how dehaze looks different. See it has a slightly different feel and what that's really designed for, as I said, is getting rid of fog. So sometimes I like to put a little clarity. I'm not really huge, it's funny once I first started using this I started using clarity a lot on everything because it was new and exciting and it made the photo look so sharp. But I think the more you start to use it, after a while you'll probably find that you'll use it a little bit less or at least be more tasteful with it. Because if you remember just a couple of years ago there was like that real high contrast crunchy grungy look and that's what the clarity does. And everybody was like taking clarity and pushing it up to here. You've all seen that look, right? So I like to maybe use a little bit but not a lot and I like to put a little dehaze if I've got those clouds because see what it does? It just looks amazing. Might have to change two things. When you use the dehaze you usually have to brighten it up a little bit because it does make it darker. And you might have to adjust the color temperature a little bit which is what I'm gonna do there. Just to compensate. That's one of the few that you need to compensate for as soon as you use it. It's also a balancing act, as you start to move some sliders you might have to move other ones to kind of make up for what you're doing. Okay, the last two things and then we're going to get on to the real cool sexy features, is vibrance and saturation. So what really is the difference between vibrance and saturation? Well, I like to say the saturation is, I won't use any names but it's more clown. It's not you know, you've got the fashion sense of a clown and vibrance is more you know, Devil Wears Prada. More like we're applying this with some style. What do I mean by that? Well, saturation is an old slide, I'm not saying all clowns are old. But what I'm saying saturation just makes things, increases color across the board. So we get like this and you know, it's what I'm saying, it looks like a clown's outfit. Or we go to the left, we take it away and then there's no color. So all it's doing is adjusting the amount of color and that's it, it's not intelligent. It doesn't do anything other than that. Vibrance is a newer setting and it's more intelligent. So what it does is it looks at a photograph and says you know what, these areas are already saturated so I don't think we should add as much saturation to these areas because what it does is it clips the colors. So it kind of avoids that. It looks at areas with less saturation and adds more color to those areas. So it actually balances it and then it has another thing that it does too, is it looks for skin tones and when it sees skin tones, it tries not to add too much saturation to the skin tone so that people don't all look like they're sunburned. So if we do the vibrance, look here, see what I'm saying? Notice how those clouds are getting much more colorful but not necessarily some of the more colorful parts in the foreground as much. See that? So you can kind of see how it works like that. So a lot of the time when it just comes to that I prefer vibrance over saturation. And sometimes I'll even reduce the saturation a little bit and pump up the vibrance and it can give an nice look and at the same time, let me double click these. You can increase the saturation and decrease the vibrance and it'll give you some interesting effects as well. So that's kind of some of the things you can do with that. So that is just the basic panel inside of Camera RAW so before I move on to the next thing does anyone have any questions about that because we're not going to be talking about those basic sliders anymore. Yeah. So is there advantage to using Camera RAW over using Lightroom? Yes. If you are using Lightroom and you're not doing a lot of compositing or you're not working with different layers and things like that, then I would just stay in Lightroom. But if you're working inside of Photoshop because we can open Camera RAW as a filter, we can apply that to individual layers. So you can apply it on different layers and do different things like that. Also if we're working with Smart Objects and then there's another thing that we're not going to go into today, is video. Photoshop supports video, I did a whole course on CreativeLive. I think Jim was moderating that, right? Yep. So I did a whole day on that and one of the things you can do a video inside of Photoshop, you can actually adjust that in the Camera RAW filter and do all your color correction in there. So it's a pretty powerful tool.

Class Description

The Camera Raw filter in Adobe® Photoshop® is so versatile and effective, it practically makes the other adjustments obsolete. Colin Smith will teach you the basics of enhancing your photo’s saturation, clarity, contrast and more, as well as how to use more sophisticated features like split toning and HSL to achieve perfect tones and beautiful colors. You’ll also learn how to use the Adjustment Brush, Radial, Gradient, Color Range and Auto Mask tools to apply your adjustments with pinpoint precision. This class will change the way that you edit your images in Adobe Photoshop forever.


SOFTWARE USED:

Adobe Photoshop CC 2018

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