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What is Adobe Camera Raw?

From: Photoshop CS6 for Photographers: Camera Raw 7

Video: What is Adobe Camera Raw?

In photographic circles, Adobe Camera Raw has become quite a hot and popular topic. There's so much excitement about raw capture and raw processing. Yet sometimes some of this is a little bit mysterious, it's a little bit confusing. So, what I want to begin to do here is to distill things a bit and the first thing that we need to do is take a look at two terms: Raw Capture and Raw Processing. For starters, Raw Capture has to do with how we're actually capturing the image on camera. On the other hand, Raw Processing is all about using Adobe Camera Raw.

What is Adobe Camera Raw?

In photographic circles, Adobe Camera Raw has become quite a hot and popular topic. There's so much excitement about raw capture and raw processing. Yet sometimes some of this is a little bit mysterious, it's a little bit confusing. So, what I want to begin to do here is to distill things a bit and the first thing that we need to do is take a look at two terms: Raw Capture and Raw Processing. For starters, Raw Capture has to do with how we're actually capturing the image on camera. On the other hand, Raw Processing is all about using Adobe Camera Raw.

Well, let's define these even further starting off with Raw Capture. Whenever you capture an image with a digital camera, the image is captured on the sensor and if you're capturing in JPEG mode that information goes through a whole sequence of steps here; Bayer Interpolation, White Balance, Contrast, so on, compression and then we get the JPEG. On the other hand, we can capture file in its raw format. In other words the information simply comes straight off the sensor and we have all of this raw data. So in this scenario, we're talking about Raw Capture.

Now in contrast, when we talk about Adobe Camera Raw, we're talking about something completely different. This has to do with how we process an image in software which is called Adobe Camera Raw. So, one of things that happens when we're using Adobe Camera Raw is that we have these actual pixels, we have image information. Well, we then apply a set of instructions to these actual pixels and the instructions are actually kind of interesting, they're simply a laundry list of information, which describe how we want this image to be displayed whether the crop or the color. And so what happens then is the set of instructions displays an image in a particular way.

Now the nice thing about Adobe Camera Raw is that working in this context, it's completely non-destructive. In other words, no pixels are harmed, no pixels are affected, we're not actually pushing pixels per say. Rather, we have pixels that we're applying some instructions to, which then in turn display the image perhaps in a different way. This in turn gives us a lot of flexibility and we can always undo whatever we've done. This can also really speed up our overall workflow, because if you think about it, with Adobe Camera Raw there's no render time, because you're not actually doing something to pixels, rather you're simply changing the set of instructions.

So again, this can result in a different format and here you can see I have yet another version of this image. The other thing that's kind of interesting about Adobe Camera Raw is that we can process images, whether the RAW, DNG, TIFF or JPEG in this format, so we're not limited to just working on files that were captured in the Raw format rather we can use these different types of formats. All right, well if we had to distill this how we would do that. Well, think of Adobe Camera Raw as a way to non-destructively edit and work on your photographs and what it does for use is it helps things to be a little bit more flexible, because you can always undo whatever you've done. It also will really speed up your overall workflow, because, while working in camera there is no render time there is really no save time and so it speeds things up by leaps and bounds.

And then lastly, I like to think of Adobe Camera Raw as a really creative space. It's not just functional, but it can help you come up with some really creative ways to process images and it's because of these reasons and more, as you'll soon discover, that Adobe Camera Raw really has become one of the most premiere and prominent tools of our time.

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This video is part of

Image for Photoshop CS6 for Photographers: Camera Raw 7
Photoshop CS6 for Photographers: Camera Raw 7

117 video lessons · 12100 viewers

Chris Orwig
Author

 
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  1. 9m 3s
    1. Welcome
      1m 2s
    2. Should I use Camera Raw or Photoshop?
      3m 22s
    3. What is Adobe Camera Raw?
      3m 45s
    4. Using the exercise files
      54s
  2. 21m 13s
    1. An overview of Bridge and Bridge preferences
      3m 19s
    2. Setting Camera Raw preferences
      3m 9s
    3. Exploring RAW vs. JPEG or TIFF files
      4m 3s
    4. Choosing a native raw file or a digital negative (DNG)
      4m 25s
    5. Converting or saving to the DNG format
      6m 17s
  3. 29m 36s
    1. Project overview: cover photo shoot
      1m 33s
    2. Auto-toning and correcting white balance
      2m 19s
    3. Cropping and composing
      3m 21s
    4. Enhancing color and tone
      2m 44s
    5. Removing distractions
      3m 58s
    6. Sharpening and noise reduction
      2m 59s
    7. Converting to black and white
      2m 11s
    8. Adding a vignette
      1m 45s
    9. Making a localized correction
      2m 53s
    10. Creating snapshots of memorable looks
      2m 1s
    11. Re-editing camera raw settings
      1m 38s
    12. Working with multiple adjustments
      2m 14s
  4. 15m 2s
    1. Navigating the interface and the toolbar
      2m 15s
    2. Exploring image-adjustment tabs and panels
      1m 32s
    3. Using the histogram
      5m 12s
    4. Previewing the before and after of different adjustments
      2m 43s
    5. Working with multiple files
      3m 20s
  5. 29m 28s
    1. Opening raw files in Bridge
      4m 35s
    2. Opening JPEGs and TIFFs in Bridge
      4m 43s
    3. How to open a photo in Photoshop and skip Camera Raw
      1m 47s
    4. Accessing Camera Raw from Mini Bridge
      3m 9s
    5. Resizing in Camera Raw with workflow options
      6m 35s
    6. Opening an image as a Smart Object
      3m 3s
    7. Saving from Camera Raw
      3m 17s
    8. Creating a duplicate file
      2m 19s
  6. 11m 19s
    1. Recomposing with the Crop tool
      2m 58s
    2. Clarifying your voice by cropping
      3m 20s
    3. Straightening and cropping
      2m 54s
    4. Cropping creatively
      2m 7s
  7. 9m 9s
    1. Improving color balance
      4m 21s
    2. Color correcting with white balance cards
      1m 48s
    3. Using the White Balance tool and controls
      3m 0s
  8. 18m 32s
    1. Deconstructing the basic adjustments
      3m 33s
    2. Correcting overexposure
      2m 52s
    3. Correcting underexposure
      3m 13s
    4. Making exposure enhancements
      2m 52s
    5. Recovering highlight and shadow detail
      3m 38s
    6. A speed tip for making basic adjustments
      2m 24s
  9. 14m 14s
    1. Demystifying Clarity
      2m 36s
    2. Increasing Clarity
      3m 52s
    3. Understanding Vibrance and Saturation
      1m 50s
    4. Improving color with Vibrance
      3m 52s
    5. Making creative color adjustments
      2m 4s
  10. 11m 48s
    1. Learning about the parametric and point-tone curves
      4m 4s
    2. Using the parametric-tone curve
      2m 19s
    3. Using the point-tone curve
      3m 22s
    4. Creating a unique color look with the point-tone curve
      2m 3s
  11. 15m 38s
    1. Introducing the Spot Removal tool
      3m 42s
    2. Removing distracting background elements
      3m 12s
    3. Removing blemishes on a face
      3m 29s
    4. Removing dust on the lens or the camera sensor
      2m 58s
    5. Removing red-eye
      2m 17s
  12. 51m 20s
    1. Introducing the Adjustment Brush
      6m 18s
    2. Correcting exposure
      6m 23s
    3. Working with Auto Mask
      4m 16s
    4. Changing the background color
      4m 30s
    5. Changing the color temperature
      3m 15s
    6. Making multiple color and tone adjustments
      5m 47s
    7. Enhancing the color, tone, and sharpness of the eyes
      5m 11s
    8. Whitening teeth
      3m 20s
    9. Brightening shadows and darkening highlights
      2m 51s
    10. Creating a black-and-white effect
      5m 36s
    11. Removing moiré patterns
      2m 19s
    12. Creating Adjustment Brush presets
      1m 34s
  13. 10m 0s
    1. Enhancing the foreground and background of an image with the Graduated Filter tool
      4m 7s
    2. Reducing exposure with the Graduated Filter tool
      3m 0s
    3. Exploring creative effects with the Graduated Filter tool
      2m 53s
  14. 13m 23s
    1. Exploring noise reduction
      3m 27s
    2. Applying input sharpening
      4m 9s
    3. Using the Basic and Detail panels together
      3m 33s
    4. Edge sharpening an architectural photograph
      2m 14s
  15. 12m 53s
    1. Introducing HSL
      2m 8s
    2. Enhancing color and tone
      2m 7s
    3. Using the Basic and HSL panels together
      2m 24s
    4. Removing colors with HSL
      3m 1s
    5. Making color changes
      3m 13s
  16. 21m 57s
    1. Using the black-and-white controls
      1m 44s
    2. Exploring simple black-and-white conversion
      6m 17s
    3. Using multiple panels to create a black-and-white image
      6m 17s
    4. Creating a dramatic black-and-white landscape
      7m 39s
  17. 11m 1s
    1. Exploring traditional black-and-white toning
      3m 19s
    2. Adding split toning to color photographs
      3m 49s
    3. Creative toning of a color photo
      3m 53s
  18. 16m 49s
    1. Removing extreme distortion with a lens profile
      2m 2s
    2. Working with the manual Lens Correction controls
      2m 33s
    3. Improving a portrait with lens corrections
      3m 26s
    4. Adding a darkening vignette effect
      1m 28s
    5. Combining lens corrections with creative cropping
      3m 35s
    6. Adding distortion for a creative effect
      2m 29s
    7. Correcting chromatic aberration and defringing
      1m 16s
  19. 15m 10s
    1. Understanding the effects controls
      7m 8s
    2. Adding film grain and darkening edges
      3m 56s
    3. Cropping and brightening edges
      2m 32s
    4. Creating a defined edge
      1m 34s
  20. 9m 29s
    1. Introducing the Camera Calibration panel
      3m 41s
    2. Creative color with the Camera Calibration controls
      3m 25s
    3. Exploring camera calibration resources
      2m 23s
  21. 5m 14s
    1. Introducing presets
      3m 19s
    2. Exploring free and fun ACR presets
      1m 55s
  22. 10m 19s
    1. Quick raw processing of multiple files
      2m 21s
    2. Applying raw processing in Bridge
      2m 34s
    3. Recording an action
      3m 37s
    4. Batch processing multiple images
      1m 47s
  23. 7m 52s
    1. A creative color mini-project
      5m 12s
    2. Using Camera Raw controls in a non-traditional way
      2m 40s
  24. 6m 24s
    1. Additional resources
      1m 25s
    2. Camera Raw and Lightroom
      4m 19s
    3. Goodbye
      40s

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