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Practical PhotoshopPractical Photoshop

Practical Photoshop January 2019

Practical Photoshop is the world’s premier Photoshop magazine, a monthly guide to the best Photoshop techniques, tips and tricks. Inside each issue you’ll find an array of inspirational tutorials and accompanying video lessons that will help you master Adobe’s collection of industry standard photo-editing software. What’s more, there’s a selection of amazing images from the world’s best Photoshop creatives, free downloadable content, and a beginner’s guide to the basics. If you love photography and you want to learn more about digital imaging, then Practical Photoshop will help you to unleash your creative potential.

Country:
United Kingdom
Language:
English
Publisher:
Future Publishing Ltd
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$21.28
13 Issues

IN THIS ISSUE

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rule 1: make the switch

The raw workflow begins with a choice: the decision to switch from JPEG to raw quality on your camera. This is a big step. It’s a commitment to your photography; a pledge to spend more time perfecting your photos in post; and an undertaking to increase your file storage. But the decision brings big benefits. Your camera’s raw format has a higher dynamic range, which means it has a greater headroom for editing and makes it easier to recover under- or overexposed details. It also means you can choose a white balance after the fact, with no loss in quality. With these benefits comes a slightly elongated workflow. You can’t simply open the raw image into Photoshop immediately or send it off into the wider world. First, you need to process the…

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rule 2: choose your editor

So you’ve switched to shooting raw – what’s next? Those with an Adobe Photography Plan subscription have two main choices. You can either import the raw file into Lightroom, or you can begin editing it with Photoshop’s Camera Raw plugin. Both options offer almost identical raw editing tools, with the Camera Raw panels closely matching those found in the Lightroom Develop Module. Lightroom also brings lots of organizational features and presentation tools, while Camera Raw links closely with Photoshop and its huge array of image-editing tools. If you’re interested in creating a fully organized, keyworded and structured image library, Lightroom is definitely the way to go – but it complicates the process slightly because you must import the file. If you simply want to get at a raw file quickly, it’s…

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rule 3: understand what can and can’t be done

Raw files can’t be altered. In essence, all you can do with the impenetrable file is copy it from your memory card to your hard drive. Your computer can’t generate new raws or save existing images in raw format: only your camera can. You can’t overwrite a raw file with an updated version, or accidentally resize it, or make it black and white. In fact, you can’t do anything to the file itself. It’s the raw data recorded by your camera, and there’s nothing you can do to that original data. This might sound like a problem, but it’s actually a big benefit. It means your original file is always preserved and untouched. Some refer to raws as digital negatives, and it’s a good analogy. Like an archive of pristinely preserved…

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rule 4: manage your storage

Just like an archive of negative film, you’ll need to come up with a robust storage solution for your raws – with backups in at least two places. This brings us to one of the drawbacks of shooting raw, and perhaps the only reason you might ever choose to shoot JPEG. All the extra data contained in a raw file comes at a price, and that price is extra storage. They are typically three or four times larger than equivalent JPEGs, so naturally they’ll take up more space on your drive (and your memory card). So if you’re making the switch to raw for the first time, it might also be time to think about your storage workflow. When you first download your raws from your memory card, be sure to back…

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rule 5: embrace parametric editing

So if raw files are impenetrable, how do you edit them? In essence, you don’t. Rather, you view them, then make changes to that view. When you edit a raw photo in Lightroom or Camera Raw, you are not altering the pixels: you are simply changing its appearance within the application. It’s like adding filters on top of the photo. This is called parametric editing. It means that, unlike many of the pixel-altering tools in Photoshop, you’re instead applying a set of parameters to the image. Your raw image as it appears in Lightroom or Camera Raw is essentially a preview of the image. Any changes that you’ve made are only committed if you choose to export or save the file in another format, like a JPEG or a TIFF. The great thing…

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rule 6: secure the sidecar

Because your edits sit apart from the raw file, things can occasionally go wrong and the two can become separated. Usually this occurs when the raw file is moved somewhere separate to the XMP file, or if one is renamed independently of the other. So ensure that whatever happens to the raw file also happens to the XMP. Alternatively, if you convert your raw to Adobe’s non-proprietary DNG format, the XMP is stored within the file rather than as a sidecar. In Lightroom, problems usually arise when a file is moved from one place on your drive to another, because Lightroom loses track of it. So if you ever need to move a file – perhaps to store it on an external drive – then be sure to do it using the…

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