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Soft proofing in Lightroom and other raw processing applications

From: Color Management Fundamentals

Video: Soft proofing in Lightroom and other raw processing applications

Let's take a look at Soft Proofing in Lightroom. This is something relatively new to Lightroom, it showed up in Version 4. And everything we do here would be similar to other RAW image editing applications, such as Aperture, Capture One, et cetera. You might notice something new down below the image when you're in the develop module in Lightroom, you see a Soft Proofing button. So let's go ahead and click this. We've got our image edited, it's ready to go. We click on Soft Proofing and as I turn that on and off, already there's a change in the image. That means it's using a paper profile to show us the effect.

Soft proofing in Lightroom and other raw processing applications

Let's take a look at Soft Proofing in Lightroom. This is something relatively new to Lightroom, it showed up in Version 4. And everything we do here would be similar to other RAW image editing applications, such as Aperture, Capture One, et cetera. You might notice something new down below the image when you're in the develop module in Lightroom, you see a Soft Proofing button. So let's go ahead and click this. We've got our image edited, it's ready to go. We click on Soft Proofing and as I turn that on and off, already there's a change in the image. That means it's using a paper profile to show us the effect.

So up in the right-hand corner here, you see under Profile, it's got one of the papers we've been using, the ILFORD Gold Cotton Texture. Now, what I'm going to do first is I'm going to create what's called a Proof Copy. It's sort of a virtual copy of the print that will then make any adjustments you make to that image specifically for that printer profile. Now right here, notice we've got our two rendering intents, the other two that we saw in PhotoShop are gone. We just have Relative and Perceptual. And you can quickly click back and forth to see the difference. Now in this particular image, Relative keeps much more of the deep shadows, so I do like that much better.

And that's the beauty of being able to see this because you might choose another paper, and see that Perceptual works better. In fact, let's just try Gold Fiber Silk and we see Relative versus Perceptual. Strangely enough in this case, Perceptual gives us deeper shadows, so for Gold Fiber Silk, that's the rendering intent we'd probably choose. Let's go back to our Gold Cotton Texture, because since this is a matte paper, we've lost some of the density of our dark colors that we might want to adjust. Now you might have noticed something when we chose the profile for Gold Fiber Silk that some red appeared. Let's go ahead and bring that back.

So we've got some red up here, well let me show you where that's happening in the Cotton Textured. Up on the top of the histogram in the Soft Proofing window, there are two buttons here. One for Monitor Gamut. Now this is more distressing than helpful probably. All of this blue is showing you colors that are in the image that your monitor can't accurately show you. They're beyond the gamut of an SRGB monitor. It's just really kind of a warning, there's nothing you can do about it, so I'm not sure what use it serves. On the other hand, this is the Gamut Warning for the particular paper.

It's the destination Gamut Warning. This is handy to know if we have a lot of color moving. So again, as we look between Relative and Perceptual, we can see for this particular paper, we're not seeing any colors that are severely out of gamut. So we did decide we like Relative better. But again, as we turn Soft Proofing on and off, we see that with this paper we've lost a little bit of contrast and density. So since we're working on this proof copy, we can scroll down and make adjustments to it. So maybe we want to increase the blacks a little bit, just to bring some of that depth back, maybe add a little bit more contrast.

And just kind of get the image the way you want it to look for this particular paper. And that's the beauty of having this virtual copies because it is not changing our original file. It is just for our copy. Now, if you have a new paper, notice I only have a handful of printer profiles in here along with two of the standard color spaces. If you click on Other, it will show you all of the profiles that you have currently loaded. So if you wanted to add another profile, for example, if I'm going to print on Gallery Prestige Fine Art Texture, that's what all these letters mean, for a Canon IPF6350.

If I just hit OK, then that shows up in my list. And that's really as simple as it is. Now this image is ready to be printed. We've got it ready to go, we made an adjustment specifically for this paper. And we've decided that Relative rendering intent was the choice. Now let's take a look at another image that might present us with some other problems. So we'll let this load, and let's go ahead and do a Soft Proofing on this image. And what I'm going to do is, I'm going to cause a problem.

This might not happen all the time, but let's go ahead. I'm going to click on the Gamut Warning. And because I have the saturation pushed up so far, you can notice up in this corner here, let's zoom up. That we've got some red starting to show up in the blue sky. What that means is this blue has become too intense, too saturated, for this particular paper to print it. In fact, let's try the Gold Fiber Silk again and see what it does, and since this paper is a pearl surface stock, it's a glossier stock, it has a little bit more color gamut range, so much less color is out of gamut.

But again, for our Fine Art Matte paper, there is a little bit less gamut and it's also gotten a little bit lighter. So, what can you do for something like this? Well, here's something really handy. Let me go ahead and scroll down under HSL, which means hue saturation luminance. And this little tool right here is the Targeted Adjustment tool. If I click on this, let's deal with saturation. If I click in the red area, and drag down, you can see it disappears. So what we just done, you can see, there's adding saturation to it.

Just click and drag down, and it's de-saturating just that tone. But you don't need to get rid of all the little bit of red. It's not that big a deal. If you have that much, I'd leave it alone. But now, we've brought down the saturation of that one little piece that had gone out of gamut, and taken better control. Now we look at the rest of the image, and we see that we've also lost some saturation in this foreground. So let's go ahead and do one other thing, I'm going to get the Graduated Filter, bring it up across here, and we'll add a local contrast, and bring up the clarity to further define this grass in the foreground.

And then hit Done. You can make all of these changes and these adjustments in your Proof window and see how the image is going to print before you do that. And the beauty is you do this for each of your papers and have multiple copies because they're not really copies. They're virtual copies and you can have as many as you like if you're going to print the same image in different places. That's one of the beauties of doing Soft Proofing in Lightroom, because also you're doing this to the RAW file and never actually affecting your image. Makes it really easy and it's a great place to print from.

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This video is part of

Image for Color Management Fundamentals
Color Management Fundamentals

29 video lessons · 9246 viewers

Joe Brady
Author

 
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  1. 2m 46s
    1. Welcome
      1m 16s
    2. Using the exercise files
      1m 30s
  2. 15m 33s
    1. Understanding color spaces
      6m 0s
    2. Ensuring that you have the best possible image at capture
      4m 25s
    3. Understanding tools required for color management
      5m 8s
  3. 8m 6s
    1. Exploring what happens without color management
      3m 6s
    2. Understanding the basics of color workflow for photographers
      1m 48s
    3. Understanding the basics of color workflow for design and the web
      3m 12s
  4. 9m 43s
    1. Setting up a digital camera for the best image file
      3m 56s
    2. Exploring the benefits of custom camera profiles
      5m 47s
  5. 16m 7s
    1. Choosing a monitor, the window to the digital world
      2m 28s
    2. Understanding why you can't trust your eyes
      2m 31s
    3. Calibrating a display using ColorMunki Display
      6m 42s
    4. Calibrating a display using i1Pro 2
      4m 26s
  6. 9m 31s
    1. Understanding and choosing color settings in Photoshop
      3m 26s
    2. Understanding color workflow in raw applications, including Lightroom, Aperture, and Capture NX
      2m 50s
    3. Setting color standards for the Adobe Creative Suite
      3m 15s
  7. 54m 15s
    1. Choosing the best printer
      4m 37s
    2. Exploring the benefits of custom printer profiles
      3m 29s
    3. Comparing factory printer profiles to real-world printer profiles
      5m 31s
    4. Creating a printer profile with ColorMunki Photo
      5m 45s
    5. Creating a printer profile with i1Pro
      5m 13s
    6. Understanding color gamut and rendering intents
      3m 20s
    7. Soft proofing images in Photoshop
      6m 18s
    8. Getting prints that match the image in the soft proof
      3m 4s
    9. Soft proofing for lab printing and for the web
      3m 41s
    10. Soft proofing in Lightroom and other raw processing applications
      6m 16s
    11. Choosing the right fine-art paper
      7m 1s
  8. 2m 44s
    1. Next steps
      2m 44s

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