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In Photoshop Lightroom 3 Essential Training, author Chris Orwig provides a comprehensive look at Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 3, the popular photo-asset management, enhancement, and publishing program. The course covers indispensable techniques such as importing, processing, and organizing images in the Library, correcting and adjusting images in the Develop module, and creating slideshows, web galleries, and print picture packages. In addition to exploring all of Lightroom 3's capabilities, this course is rich with creative tips and expert advice on photographic workflow. Exercise files accompany the course.
An essential Lightroom workflow is really to import the photograph, work on the image, apply some processing settings and whatnot; then go ahead and add a little bit of style in order to really finish the image off inside of Photoshop. So, we think about starting in Lightroom, and then finishing inside of Photoshop. Well, what that looks like is let's say we process this image. We're ready to apply a little bit of style or a creative effect or to finish the photo off; we want to open it up in Photoshop. In order to do that, we press Command+E on a Mac, or Ctrl+E on a PC.
This will, by default, open up the file inside of Photoshop. Now, once inside of Photoshop, what I want to do is simulate a little bit of a Photoshop workflow. I'm not necessarily going to teach Photoshop here. If you feel like you don't know how to use Photoshop very well, I've created a number of different training titles on Photoshop, so you can dig into those. Yet demoing a potential workflow might be something like this. We decide to copy the Background layer. So, I click and drag it to the New layer icon. Then I go up to my Filter pulldown menu and I notice, gosh, interesting, some of my filters are grayed out, in particular, the filter I want to use, Lighting Effects.
Now, why is that? Well, the reason these are grayed out is because this image is 16 Bits/Channel, so I need to convert it to 8 Bits/Channel. Now that being said, you don't always have to convert to 8 Bits/Channel on every image, but in certain scenarios like here, you may need to. So, I wanted to show that in regards to it an essentials workflow. So, what I'll do is I'll navigate to my Image pulldown menu, and I'll select mode, and then convert to 8 Bits/Channel. No big deal, right? Once I've done that, I now navigate to my Filter pulldown menu.
Notice that I have all of these different options, Render, and I'll choose Lighting Effects. This is a really interesting filter that we can apply. It allows us to add a light source here, in this case, an Omni light source. I'm just going to bring that down a little bit and click OK. All right, well once I have applied that filter, we can see the effect - here is my before, and then here is my after - really, just redirecting where the light is. I'll lower the Opacity a bit, too. We get a subtle effect, but something that we can only really do, in this particular way, in Photoshop. Now again, I realize I'm just scratching the surface with Photoshop.
Keep in mind, the sky is the limit, in regards to style and color and effect and finishing off your photographs. Let's just do one more thing here. Let's say we want to work with color bBalance. So we click on that icon, we add some reds, and then we go ahead and add some yellows, and we like this particular look. Here's our overall before, and then after. At this juncture, we're going to save the file: Command+S on a Mac, Ctrl+S on a PC. Once the file has been saved, we'll go ahead and close this document, and then we'll navigate back to Lightroom. All right.
We're back in Lightroom. You can see we have the DNG file, but we also have this new file, which is a TIFF file that we created and worked on inside of Photoshop. Now if you're not seeing these two files right next to each other, maybe an issue that has to do with sorting. You can turn on your sorting options by clicking on this Triangle icon, and then selecting this here, Sorting, so that you can see those options, and then you can sort a number of different ways. In this case, File Name is allowing these images to be right next door to each other, which is really nice.
All right, well, now that I have this "stylized" or "finished" image, where I've done some work in Photoshop, which was unique to Photoshop, let's say that I decide, you know what, I really want to modify one of the layers that I created. Well, how can we then reopen that layer document? Well, all that we need to do is to press the same shortcut. It's Command+E on a Mac, Ctrl+E on a PC. Now, the first two options aren't desirable for us. Those won't give us the layers. But in this essentials workflow, where we're finishing or styling our photographs in Photoshop, we want to choose Edit Original.
This will show all of the different layers and whatnot, and we'll go ahead and click Edit. You'll see in Photoshop that once the file is opened, we now have access to our layers, and here I could say, well, let's say I want to do a different color treatment or whatnot. In this case, I'm not going to do that, but you see that we can make changes here. We would make those changes, save the file by pressing Command+S on a Mac, Ctrl+S on a PC, and then close the file once again and head back to Lightroom. So again, you can kind of get a feel for that rhythm of the workflow, right? In Lightroom, you do all of your organizational work, metadata, keywords, filtering and whatnot.
You do some develop process settings, got a little contrast or color or tone, whatever you need to do. Then you bring that image into Photoshop, in order to add some creative effects, or a little bit of style, or some filters, or really to kind of finish the image off in a unique way. Then once you're done with Photoshop, you come back to Lightroom, and this new image will be saved in that same folder location. It'll live right next door to that original RAW file, and then you have access to that new file as well, if you need to reedit that one.
So, as you can see, this overall essentials workflow is really seamless and fluid as you work between Lightroom and Photoshop, and then back to Lightroom, once again.
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