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Photoshop CS4 for Photographers is an essential course for any digital photographer who wants to master the software's vast array of image enhancement techniques. Professional photographer and instructor Chris Orwig uses his own compelling images to demonstrate how the power of Photoshop can make photographers more passionate about their work. He covers many aspects of the application, such as working with RAW images, using curves and levels, making images snap, and enhancing bland photographs by converting them to black and white. Exercise files accompany this course.
In the next few movies, we will be working from the folder 11 Camera_raw, and then the subfolder Resources. Now initially what I want to do is talk about your Camera Raw Preferences. You can open up your Camera Raw Preferences by navigating to the Adobe Bridge CS4 pulldown menu and choosing Camera Raw Preferences. Now believe it not, they are actually isn't a preference here that we are going change. Yet I want to talk about a couple of more important or essential preference. Now first one is Save Image Settings in Sidecar.XMP files versus Camera Database. Now which one is best? The Sidecar XMP is best. You know that's a little text file, which says, hey, display these pixels in this way. The reason why you want to have it in that Sidecar file is because then that file will travel with your Raw file, it will simplify your overall workflow.
Now the next preference is a little bit more complicated. Apply Sharpening to All Images or Preview Images only. And it's a little bit complicated and it's a little bit debated, but let me try to distill the debate for you. Apply Sharpening to All Images basically says, actually apply the sharpening. Apply the Sharpening to the Preview says, don't apply the sharpening, but just show me what it looks like so I'm not thinking this image as really that soft and I can see that, yeah, it's pretty sharp. Now why would you choose one option over the other? It has to do with capture and has to it output sharpening. Now there are those who say you only want to sharpen right before output. In that case, let's just see the preview of the sharpening, not the actual sharpening, a preview of it and you know what? I'll do my sharpening at the final step of my workflow. On the other hand, there are those like myself who say you know what? The camera sharpening is so good and it's so subtle, I want to actually apply some of that sharpening to my captured file initially, and then I'm going to work on the file, and also apply some sharpening for my output sharpening as well. So I'm going to go ahead and leave that to All Images. Now the preferences for default and Camera Raw and DNG File Handling, we are going to leave those all as is.
Another important conversation has to do with JPEG and TIFF file handling. Now there are three options here. We can either disable the JPEG or the TIFF support, and what that means is we would not be able to open up TIFFs and JPEGs with Adobe Camera Raw. Now why would you choose this? I don't know. Because in my opinion there is certain things you can only do with Camera Raw, you can't do anywhere else. So you definitely want to have that flexibility. But if you know you are never, ever going to open up JPEGs or TIFFs, with Camera Raw, select Disable JPEG support. On the other hand, the default setting is Automatically open JPEGs with settings. What this means is, it says if you have applied Camera Raw settings to JPEG, then remember that and open that up with Camera Raw.
Now the last option says you know what? I don't really care if this image has ever been processed with Camera Raw, open it up. So for the JPEG or TIFF, we want that bad boy opened up in Camera Raw every time. Now in my opinion the best option is the middle option. Because what this option says is, you know what? sometimes, yeah, I'll open up my JPEGs and TIFFs in Camera Raw, but not all the time. But sometimes I will. And I'll show you a few shortcuts which can help you figure out how you can open up your files even more successfully. So let's leave this one on the default setting, Automatically open JPEGs with settings. Now because we have finished our Camera Raw Preference conversation with file handling, and how we can open different files, probably it would be pretty good to talk about how we can actually open files and what are some of the shortcuts and different techniques we can use for opening our files in Camera Raw and we will talk about that in the next movie.
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