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In this course, photographer and scanning expert Taz Tally describes how to use the LaserSoft Imaging SilverFast software to scan photos, line art, film negatives, and other printed documents, while getting the highest quality scans possible from your scanner. The course begins with an overview of SilverFast, then takes a task-oriented look at the SilverFast automatic and manual scanning modes, showing numerous scanning projects from start to finish. The course also explores a variety of specialized scanning topics, such as removing color casts and scratches, High Dynamic Range (HDR) scanning, and wet scanning.
In this segment, I'd like to show you a little bit about the various scanning workflows that are available to you in SilverFast. When you first launch SilverFast, this is the interface that you see. And this is the full manual mode. There are two other modes. There is Automatic and Semiautomatic, and I would like to show you all three workflows. So let's start with the Automatic workflow. And to get to the Automatic workflow, you click up here where it says WorkflowPilot. We go to WorkflowPilot, the first thing you see is, wow! This is a lot simpler interface, and you might be encouraged to use this interface because of the simplicity--and there's some advantages to it. But ultimately, I think I want you to move towards using the Manual workflow--little bit more on that later.
In the Automatic workflow, basically use this by answering a couple of questions that SilverFast poses to you. Over here, on the left-hand side, you'll see it says Source and Task. This is basically input and output, where you choose the type of input. In this case we'll choose Photo and then the Task or output. How do we intend to use this? And we're going to choose Color and then Intensity, and I'll get into more of these choices little bit later on in the course. This is just to show you how the workflow works at this point. Then you select your Bit Depth that you see here. You just take the basic Default Bit Depth, and then you click the Start button. And then what SilverFast does is it does a quick overview scan so that you can see the image that you're about to adjust and capture with your scanner.
And regardless of which workflow you're working in, you're going to set your frame as you see me do here, over in the Frame Section. You just select which portion of the image you want the SilverFast program to capture, and then you click Continue and it does an automatic correction--as you can see here, increasing Saturation, Brightness and Contrast. And then click again and it moves you through the Histogram, the Selective Color Correction. And then you click on File, in which you can name your image and place it, and then you just click Continue and it performs the scan.
That's the fully automated method. And based upon what Source and Task input and output you have selected here, SilverFast will select a set of tools that will automatically apply. So that's the fully automated method. You let SilverFast make all of the decisions. In the Semi-automated method, it's just a little bit of a variation on this. And let's just step our way back here to Resolution. When you get to the Resolution step in the Fully-automated method, you can have some control over your resolution. For instance, you choose 1200, 2400 and 4800--more on that in the next movie.
And then as you move forward--for instance, when you go to the Histogram you can make some adjustments over here in the dialog box. For instance, you can adjust overall brightness by adjusting the midtone. The challenge here is you really don't know how much adjustment you're supposed to make, because there's no other feedback. You just have to do it visually. But still, it's some adjustment control. Then when you click Continue, you can go to Selective Color Correction. Again, you have some adjustment of this tool. For instance, I can de-saturate the image and take it all the way down to grayscale if I want to, as you can see over here.
So, again, there's some manual control or semi-manual control over this. And then you just proceed on with the file and the scan. So that's the Fully-automated and then Semi- automated methods, in which you get some control. Now the full Manual method--that's the original interface we saw--we have all these different tools from which you make all your basic selections here, and then you just proceed from left to right. You do your pre-scan, your correction, but at each one of these steps, the tools that you have access to--for instance the Histogram tool, the same one we saw before--but instead of just having the Histogram tool, we have something called, for instance, the Densitometer, known in Photoshop as the Info tool, which allows us to numerically evaluate our image and help us make choices.
So we have lots more control over each one of these tools. And as we step through, we can make corrections in each one of these, Global Color Correction, Selective Color Correction, and we have, again, the Info panel to help us make our decisions about how we're going to adjust our tools. In addition to that, we have all these advanced tools down here. Now I've realized and understand that it's a little bit intimidating to have all these tools, but hopefully by the time you're done with this course, you'll know how, when, and where to use these tools. You don't have to use all of these tools on every image. So there are the three basic workflows: Automated, Semi-automated, and Full Manual.
I think you can see very clearly there's a lot more control and, therefore, a predictability when you work in Manual mode. In the next movie, which is kind of a companion to this one, I would like to dig in just a little bit deeper and talk about the advantages and disadvantages of working in these three basic modes.
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