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In this movie I'll show you how to straighten, crop, and correct for Geometric Distortions inside Camera Raw. Now Camera Raw's Straightening Crop tool is pretty straightforward, you'll figure them out quickly enough. But there are times where no matter how much you try to straighten an image, it still looks crooked, either because of Lens Distortion or because there's just enough perspective in the shot to mess it up. And this image is a case in point, San Simeon pool.dng is a famous swimming pool from the William Randolph Hearst's Estate.
Appeared in all kinds of movies, I shot it at high noon, so there's a terrific amount of contrast. So the first thing I did was cool it down by establishing some basic settings here, and I went ahead and saved out those settings as a snapshot. You can access that snapshot from the Snapshots panel or you can click on the flyout menu icon, and then choose Apply Snapshot and then ACR7 conversion. And that will go ahead and temper the contrast and take some of the heat out of the shot. Now we want to straighten it and I'll do so using the Straighten tool. Now this is a pretty good tool. It's not as good as Photoshop's Straighten tool, frankly, because you just have one shot at it.
That is to say, you can't draw the line and then edit it. And it's not very obvious where the hotspot of the cursor is, it's actually in the lower-left corner. So I'll start at this location here and then drag to the right side of the base of these steps, and that ends up automatically creating a crop boundary, as well as switching you to the Crop tool. Now from this point on you can modify the crop boundaries, just as you can inside the Photoshop, but you're seeing the image crooked and the image remains crooked until you switch to a different tool.
Now if you want to change the Aspect Ratio of your crop boundary, you can click and hold on the Crop tool like so, and choose one of these items or you can dial in the Custom ratio as well. And you can also get to those very same controls by right-clicking inside of the crop boundary. And notice among these options is Show Overlay, and that'll go ahead and bring up those gridlines that represent the rule of thirds. And notice by the way as you adjust your crop boundary you can move it inward, but you can't move it out beyond the edge of the image.
So in other words, Camera Raw insists upon clipping some of the image away. Now assuming you like what you have, and I'm just fine with it, go ahead and press the Z key to switch back to your default Zoom tool and then the image will appear upright. Problem is it doesn't really appear upright in all portions of the image, so in other words this architectural item in the background looks just fine, but these lines in the foreground are not plumb, that is P-L-U-M-B, perpendicular, instead they're set at angles and that's because the shot has some perspective in it.
And that's where we need to correct for Geometric Distortion. And there are two ways to pull that off. One is automatically, and one is manually, so let me show you an automatic method for starters. I'll go ahead and switch over to this image New York.dng and this is a photograph that comes to us from Chris Orwig, a fellow trainer here at lynda.com. And notice that it does have some barrel distortion associated with it. So you can see this horizontal line up here at the top of the image bend upward in the center, whereas, it should be absolutely horizontal.
All right, let's start off by correcting the image. I'll click on the flyout menu icon, choose Apply Snapshot and then choose ACR7 conversion and we end up with this brighter version of the scene, and then I'll switch over a few panels to Lens Corrections, and by default you should see the Profile tab active. Go ahead and turn on Enable Lens Profile Corrections and that's all there is to it. Camera Raw immediately recognizes that this is a Canon EOS 5D and it also recognizes the lens as well, and so it corrects not only for the distortion inside of the image, but for the vignetting as well.
So if I turn off the Preview checkbox for a moment, you can see that the image bulges outward once again, so we've got some barrel distortion associated with the scene, and we've got some obvious dark vignetting around the perimeter. Whereas, if I turn that Preview checkbox back on, all of that goes away, we now have a straight horizontal line across the top of the image. It looks to match the angle of the top of the preview as well, so everything appears to be exactly as it should be. However, if it doesn't go far enough or it goes too far, then you can adjust the slider values here.
Right now they're both set to a correction amount of 100% apiece, but if you want less correction, then you would go ahead and dial this value down and that's going to bring back some of that barrel distortion. If you want more correction, then you can dial this value up and we're going to get some pin-cushioning going on here. So now the line is bending slightly downward. In the case of this image however, I found that 100% for both values work splendidly. The problem is Camera Raw doesn't know what to do with all images.
For example, if I switch back to San Simeon pool and I turn on Enable Lens Profile Corrections, even though it recognizes this image was shot with a Olympus E-30, it doesn't have the slightest idea what to do with this image, and in fact, if I go ahead and click on the Make setting here, Olympus is not even listed in the menu. What that means is I'm going to have to correct this image manually, which actually turns out to be a fair amount of fun, as we'll see in the next movie.
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