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In this advanced workshop Tim Grey delves into some of the finer points of creating top-quality output of your digital images. First, get an introduction to color management, which is absolutely crucial to maintaining consistent colors throughout your workflow. Tim then takes an in-depth look at the topic of sharpening—when and how to do it, as well as when not to—and covers some advanced sharpening techniques. He also offers tips for printing your photos, exploring both the relevant settings in Adobe Photoshop and those you're likely to find in your printer driver. Finally, he discusses troubleshooting suboptimal output—i.e., when something goes wrong, figuring out what happened and how to fix it. If you spend a lot of time optimizing your images, this workshop will help you make sure all that effort is reflected in the quality of your output.
One of the things that's important to keep in mind as you're working with your images in Photoshop, is that just because you see a color in your photo doesn't mean you can actually reproduce that color, in print for example. And in fact, many times it's possible to adjust an image in Photoshop to produce a color that you can't even see on your monitor. At the moment, I have my color settings established, so that Adobe RGB is my working space. That's a reasonably large color space, and it means that I can apply a wide variety of adjustments.
And my monitor can probably show me most, if not all of the colors contained within the image. If however, I was working in the Pro Photo RGB space for example, then it's quite possible that I could create colors in the image, that I can't even see on the monitor regardless of my color space. It's also possible that I could produce colors that are visible on my monitor, or perhaps not, and that cannot be printed. As an extreme example, let's assume that we're working with this image, but my printer is a black and white printer. I can still work on this image, I can still produce a wide variety of colors, but when I send the image to the printer, it will produce a black and white result.
Of course, most of us are sending images to color printers. But still, the color printer can not necessarily produce as wide a color gamut as you're able to achieve in your image. That's especially applicable if you're working in a very large color space such as Pro Photo RGB. But it can be an issue in any color space. There's not a lot you can do to compensate for this. Obviously all of us would like to have a printer that's able to produce any color we could possibly imagine but we're just not to that point in terms of printer technology.
The key is to be aware that there are limitations. Your monitor can only produce a certain range of colors. The colors you can produce in Photoshop are limited by your working space. And of course your printer can only produce a particular variety of colors. And that range of colors for the printer actually depends on the particular paper for example that you're using to print. The point is to be aware that there are differences between how we work on our images in Photoshop and the various devices that are used to present a photo. With that information in mind I think you'll better understand the overall color management workflow.
And you'll also have more realistic expectations as you work with your images and share them in a variety of ways.
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