Feb 252010
 

While I know a fair amount about Lightroom, I am always picking up more from my fellow bloggers.  Here’s a quick but useful shortcut  from Sean McCormack over at Lightroom-Blog.com:  To see your image and nothing but your image, type Shift-Ctl-F on the PC, or Shift-Cmd-F on the Mac.  This will hide the surrounding panels, menu bars, tool bars and system task bars, and your image will be displayed as close to full-screen-size as possible .  While in this view, you can use your left and right arrow keys to scroll to other images.  This shortcut works in all modules, and your other module shortcut keys will continue to work, such as 0-5 for stars and P for Pick/X for Reject in the Library module.     Hit Shift-Ctl/Cmd-F again to exit this mode.

If you are going to be viewing your images full size on the screen like this, you should set your preferences so that your standard-size image previews are screen-size.  Go to Lightroom (Mac) or Edit (PC) > Catalog Settings > File Handling, and set the Standard Preview Size to be as close as possible to the width or your monitor’s resolution.  Check your system display properties to find out what this is.  (PC for other than W7: right-click on your desktop, choose Properties>Settings>Advanced, and note the resolution.  For W7, right click on the desktop and choose Screen Resolution.)  For Mac, System Preferences, Display.

Wondering what other blogs to follow?  Start with those in my Links section at the bottom of this page.

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Feb 082010
 

I used the image below in a  a post on exposure a few months back.  A reader asked me to show how I developed the image, so I have produced a video showing my technique.  Click HERE to view it.

To develop this image, I use the Basics, Tone Curve and HSL panels, as well as the spot removal tool, adjustment brush and graduated filter.

I hope you find the video useful.

Unworked Image

Worked Image

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Jan 292010
 

Curves isn’t exactly intuitive, so Adobe lately has been introducing tools to make it more accessible.  As I mentioned in my “Introduction to Curves” post, the sliders available underneath the curve in Lightroom (and Camera Raw) to adjust brightness of Highlights, Lights, Darks and Shadows are one example of this.   Another example is the targeted adjustment tool, which allows you to select tones you want to brighten or darken by clicking on those tones in your image and dragging up to brighten or down to darken. The tool detects the brightness of the tones underneath where you click, and adjusts those tones throughout your image.    Click on the tool to activate it, then click and drag in your image.   PS or LR will modify (i.e. bend)  the curve to reflect your instruction.    In Photoshop, first create a new Curves adjustment layer (Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Curves.)  Then in the adjustment panel   the tool is the hand with the double arrow:

Photoshop Curves Targetted Adjustment Tool

In Lightroom, it is the small bulls-eye symbol in the Tone Curve Panel: Continue reading »

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Jan 072010
 

Sometimes your mouse is a zoom tool, sometimes it isn’t.  Sometimes you have easy acess to your navigator panel, sometimes you don’t.   You can always, however, use “Ctl/CmdCtl/Cmd +” and “Ctl/Cmd -” for zooming in and out.

These work in every view (Grid, Loupe, Compare, Survey) in the Library module and in every mode in the Develop module — even when you are using tools such as the adjustment brush or spot removal tool.  They work in Camera Raw and Photoshop as well.   (True, they don’t work in the output modules in Lightroom, but zooming is not available at all there.)

The first time you apply “Ctl/Cmd +”, the image goes from Fit to Fill, then to 1:1, then to the last  zoom ratio you have set in your navigator panel (e.g. 2:1).   “Ctl/Cmd -” zooms out in the same steps.

Finally, when you are zoomed in, if you hold down the space bar, the cursor becomes the hand tool, so you can click and drag to move around in your image.  Again, this works everywhere in Lightroom and also in Photoshop.

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Jan 042010
 

This is one of the most common questions asked by Lightroom users.  You import your images, see the thumbnails appear, but if you wait a few seconds you notice that the thumbnails change.  The changes can be to tone, contrast, or color.  What gives?

When we photograph with a digital camera, even if we shoot raw files, our camera creates a small JPEG file — this is what we see on the camera LCD screen.  Unlike a raw file, this file is interpreted — it has our camera manufacturer’s interpretation of color applied, as well as any JPEG settings set on your camera — color space, contrast, saturation, noise reduction, sharpening, etc.  None of these settings are applied to your raw files, but they are to the preview JPEGs. Continue reading »

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Dec 182009
 

I do free two-hour Lightroom demonstrations here in Seattle, and towards the end of these, a question I often get is:  how do I get my iPhoto images into Lightroom?  I take this as as a good sign — I figure that what they have seen of Lightroom from my demo has convinced them to move to it.     I’m not a Mac user, so rather than write my own post on how to get iPhoto images into Lightroom, I will refer you to Gene McCullagh over at lightroomsecrets.com:

Click here for all but Snow Leopard

Click here for Snow Leopard (a much easier process)

As Gene says, make sure you that in the Lightroom import dialog, you Copy and Add to Catalog, choosing a different folder to copy the images into.  Once you have the images in Lightroom, you can use the Folders panel to reorganize them into meaningful folders.   To create new folders, right-click on the folder they will live in and select Create Folder Inside…   To move images from one folder to another, click on the first folder, select the images in the grid, and click on the thumbnail of one and drag to the new folder.   To move folders, click and drag them within the Folders panel.  Note that all this reorganization is happening on your hard drive, not just within Lightroom.

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