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In Photoshop CS5 for Photographers: Camera Raw 6, Chris Orwig provides in-depth training on Camera Raw 6, the CS5 component that enables photographers to open and manipulate images in non-destructive and now even more efficient ways. This course covers the benefits of the raw processing, which makes it possible to more precisely control an image's appearance—exposure, shadow and highlight detail, color balance, sharpness, and more—including new workflow procedures and technical concepts and issues. Learn the entire Camera Raw workflow, from opening and resizing, toning and cropping, to sharpening and saving. Exercise files are included with the course.
Many times when we use the Crop tool we're using it to correct our photographs, or to enhance or improve the overall composition, yet there are times when you can use a Crop tool just to have a little bit of fun, and that's what we're going to do here, simply to get creative with our cropping. And here we have this portrait of Russell Brown. He is a Senior Creative Director at Adobe, and if I've learned anything from Russell about creativity it is that creativity should be something that you have so much fun doing. And when we work on images, we always need to remind yourself to bring back in some of this fun.
All right. Well, let's start off by doing something normal. Then we'll get a creative here. Let me go ahead and select the Crop tool by clicking on it, and I'll hold down the Command Key or the Ctrl Key. I'll click and drag across something that should be straight. That will then give me a new crop area, press Enter or Return. Now at this point I think the photograph is good. It stands alone, it works well, but let's say that we want to have a little bit more fun with our cropping. What we can do is press the C Key in order to reactivate our Crop tool. What I am interested in doing here is perhaps changing my Crop Ratio.
I'll do so by right-clicking or Ctrl+ clicking, now I want to do is choose one to one, and then I'm going to go ahead and make this smaller by holding the Shift Key and clicking and dragging in, and then I'm going to rotate this, and I can rotate this really significantly. You can see how far I'm going with different Crop. Once I have a new Crop area, I can press Enter or Return and here you can see we have just a completely different emotion in the image, and for that matter a completely different photograph. Well to make further changes, press the C Key, reactivate the Crop tool.
I'm going to hold down the Shift key, and then I want to bring this in perhaps a little bit tighter around here and reposition that a touch more there, press Enter or Return and again, just a little bit more subtle effect of something we did previously. So as you can see, you can kind of go back and forth between pressing the C Key, between rotating one way or another, pressing Enter or Return and getting a feel for how this image might look when it was cropped different ways. And one of the things that I found in regards to doing this is it can really teach you a lot about composition.
You know a lot of times what I'll do is I'll crop my images, get a little creative with it say something like this. nothing really big, but then when I go back and shoot the next time it kind of informs the way that I shoot. It makes me think gosh, I wish it would have taken one more frame where I had tilted my camera a little bit, or I wish I would have taken a frame where I would have recomposed and cropped out this particular aspect of the image. So don't underestimate the power of cropping in Camera Raw. Yes, it's a functional tool, and yes we can use it to make corrections, but also spend some time really having some fun getting creative with this tool, because I think this tool, more than many of the other tools, can really help you improve your overall photographic composition, and in turn this has a potential to really help you grow as a photographer.
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