Photoshop Tutorial – Lightroom, Camera Raw and Photoshop
This video is available Free for Everyone.
Running Time: 7 minutes
Many people wonder what the differences are, between Camera Raw, Photoshop, and Lightroom. To be clear, each one serves a very different function in your Post-Production Workflow.
Lightroom is a database that displays your images as thumbnails so that you can organize them into collections, tag them with metadata, and easily export batches out for web, slideshows or print. Lightroom and Camera Raw are both raw processors. Camera Raw is built into Photoshop and allows for quick raw processing. Lastly, Photoshop is a powerful image editing software used to handle the small details.
Lightroom – lets you do corrections and adjustments to raw images individually or as batches. Its main advantage is its ability to catalogue images into folders along with metadata and other comments for archiving. You can also export all your photos out at the same time after you’ve made your changes.
Camera Raw – may lack the cataloguing and export functionality, but its simple interface still makes it a favorite especially among beginners. If you don’t really need to work with too many batches or you just need to edit one photo at a time, Camera Raw works best because it’s extremely easy to use and it has a seamless transition into Photoshop. Soon, you will also learn about its powerful functionality when attached to a Smart Object.
Now keep in mind that Lightroom and Camera Raw are both raw processors and they still lack functionality when it comes to photo editing. Once you’re happy with your raw image, you can now edit it in Photoshop, which lets you make more complex changes to your pictures.
Photoshop – This incredibly powerful tool gives you total control over a wide range of effects, masks, color adjustments, and practically anything you can think of. Naturally, the intricacies of Photoshop make it more complicated to use as opposed to the quick and easy raw processors, but it goes into so much detail with every photo.
When you drag and drop a raw image into Photoshop, it automatically opens the image up in the built-in Camera Raw. As mentioned in the previous tutorials, Camera Raw allows you to easily edit the tones and colors of your raw image simply by using the sliders that adjust the contrast, shadows, tint, and other what-have-yous. After editing your image to your liking, you can choose to either save the image as a JPEG and TIFF or open the image up in Photoshop, which we’ll go into detail later.
If you’re working with batch photos that have roughly the same lighting and effects, you can also open them up as a batch in Camera Raw. As with wedding photos or school yearbook pictures where you want to apply the same effects to all images, you can select all your raw photos and “Synchronise”. This allows you to apply the same changes and adjustments to all the photos at once. While you can do batch editing, it has limited functionality.
The thing with Camera Raw though is that after you’re done with these changes and you exit Camera Raw, you don’t really have the option of exporting your pictures, or organizing your batch photos into catalogued archives. It doesn’t remember any of your actions either.
Once you open your image in Photoshop, you can now make more complex adjustments to your photo, as well as keep a history of your changes should you change your mind at any time. While there are a lot more effects to choose from, Photoshop only allows you to edit one photo at a time. Still, you can go into so much detail with every picture and have the freedom to do practically anything you want to do with your image.
We mentioned the problem with Camera Raw’s limited batch actions and its inability to catalogue and export images. For this, Adobe Lightroom saves the day. Lightroom allows you to handle multiple folders of photos in a much more professional way. Because Lightroom also works as a DAM (Digital Asset Management) system, its “Library” tab lets you organize your multiple photos into folders, sections, color codes, keywords, and other cataloguing functions. Under its “Develop” tab, you can open up a raw image and edit it much like you can in Camera Raw. Here, you can apply presets to your raw image or adjust the saturation, tones, curves, and many other sliders.
Another advantage of Lightroom over Camera Raw as a raw processor is its various export functions. In Lightroom, once you’re done with your changes, you can export your photos as a book, slideshow, print, or web. You can basically choose how you want to set the output of your photos, which you can’t do with Camera Raw.
To Sum It All Up
You essentially need a good raw processor and an amazing photo editor to do what you need to do. You can opt to be more professional with Lightroom’s specialized functionalities, but ultimately, Camera Raw and Photoshop have everything you need to perfect the art of retouching.
It may take years to completely master the ins and outs of Photoshop, but this is why we’re here to help. Just keep going through the rest of our tutorials and you’ll be surprised to see that Photoshop Perfection can be a breeze.
To learn more about our complete 2 Hour Photoshop Class that this video comes from, simply go to Portraits, Camera Raw, and Smart Objects. Change the way you work on your portraits. It’s Free. Enjoy.
This Adobe Photoshop Tutorial answers the question: How to use Lightroom and Camera Raw? If you would like to learn more about Photo Enhancement from a Professional Retoucher, I offer Adobe Photoshop Classes. Please contact me today, and I will be able to add you to the schedule too. If you would just like to watch online videos, The Art of Retouching Studio offers many Photoshop Tutorials for Beginners and Advanced users.