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digital vs film photography
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Aug 2, 2021 11:29:17   #
Jack 13088 Loc: Central NY
 
CHG_CANON wrote:
When you become a RAW photographer, you become the decision maker for these considerations in post processing, where many had been decided by the camera for the JPEG:

1. Sharpening
2. Noise Reduction
3. Color Saturation
4. Exposure adjustments, general
5. Contrast, general
6. Highlights and shadows
7. White Balance
8. Lens corrections
9. Color space
10. Pixel resolution for target image share platforms
11. Disk storage (for the larger files)
12. Image file back-up strategy (for those larger files)

You don't have to understand all these issues, but when you do, you'll be much more successful as a RAW photographer. A RAW file is God's way of telling us how hard it is to be a camera.
When you become a RAW photographer, you become the... (show quote)


We should also add that 1, 2, 7, 8 and 9 are irreversible operations which means you can’t go back should you not like the result.

However, modern cameras do and excellent job if you are not up to the task do it yourself processing. Raw is not a magic bullet. You may find that initially it is difficult to beat or even match the camera. But eventually persistence will pay off.

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Aug 2, 2021 11:49:26   #
DirtFarmer Loc: Way too close to New York City
 
Jack 13088 wrote:
We should also add that 1, 2, 7, 8 and 9 are irreversible operations which means you can’t go back should you not like the result.

However, modern cameras do and excellent job if you are not up to the task do it yourself processing. Raw is not a magic bullet. You may find that initially it is difficult to beat or even match the camera. But eventually persistence will pay off.


If you are using a parametric editor (such as Lightroom) or adjustment layers in Photoshop, 1 (sharpening), 2 (noise reduction), 7 (white balance), and 8 (lens corrections) are fully reversible. 9 (color space) can be changed on re-export.

I should also note that CHG_CANON's #12 (Image file back-up strategy (for those larger files)) should be for all files, not just the larger files.

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Aug 2, 2021 11:55:14   #
lamiaceae Loc: San Luis Obispo County, CA
 
julian.gang wrote:
I remember back when I was in college that in film photography you had 2 options when you could correct photos! You could do it in camera or you could do it in the darkroom. I always felt it was better in the darkroom, this is because I'm pretty much a klutz when it comes to fiddling with the controls of the camera. I take it for granted this is also the case with digital photography. I guess what I'm asking is Lightroom the better choice over RAW photography as with Lightroom you have the choice of correcting after the fact along with the ability of creating a digital negative?...Julian
I remember back when I was in college that in film... (show quote)


Raw with Photoshop.

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Aug 2, 2021 13:21:27   #
reverand
 
Excellent advice from CHG_CANON. In looking at various online videos, learning about how to use Lightroom and Photoshop, I've often come away with the feeling that Photoshop is often used to fix photographs that were screwed up in the first place. It's best to try to get things right at the outset, which will minimize the need for adjustments later on (although small adjustments, like spotting, burning and dodging, are inevitable).

I will add one small thing. I've always shot, and printed, full-frame. However, if you're doing architecture of any sort, you'll probably be correcting the verticals in Lightroom. That being the case, it's best to frame your image, then back up and allow little extra at the edges. In other words, for architecture, full-frame plus, so that you can correct the verticals in Lightroom, which will inevitably crop off some of the edges.

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Aug 2, 2021 13:27:30   #
Urnst Loc: Brownsville, Texas
 
CHG_CANON wrote:
In the ideal world, you do as much 'up front' in the camera so as to (a) maximize the potential of the digital image for editing and (b) minimize the work-effort later in post processing.

What does maximize mean?

1. Get the subject in focus, sharp focus.
2. Position the subject within the frame where you visual the final composition.
3. Shoot at the appropriate shutter speed and / or utilize IS / VR support to eliminate motion blur of the subject or you holding the camera, as appropriate to the composition. Use a tripod when needed.
4. Minimize the need to level the image later and / or crop to remove unwanted elements from the frame.
5. Minimize the digital noise in the image by exposing to the right.
6. Take as many versions as needed to assure you have one that maximizes the potential. Don't get home and wish you'd taken more or tried some different setting.
7a. Shoot in RAW to maximize your edit options.
7b. If shooting in JPEG, assure you have the large / fine JPEG setting. Consider if a custom WB (even the camera 'scene' options) is a better match to your light vs AUTO-WB.

In your digital editor, then pick the 1 (or 2ish) that exemplify why you attempted this image and edit that one / few to completion. Do as much, or as little, as needed to complete the image. The seven items above seek to minimize the effort later, hopefully keeping your entire edit effort within the Lightroom workspace.
In the ideal world, you do as much 'up front' in t... (show quote)


well said!

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Aug 2, 2021 13:34:46   #
petrochemist Loc: UK
 
julian.gang wrote:
I remember back when I was in college that in film photography you had 2 options when you could correct photos! You could do it in camera or you could do it in the darkroom. I always felt it was better in the darkroom, this is because I'm pretty much a klutz when it comes to fiddling with the controls of the camera. I take it for granted this is also the case with digital photography. I guess what I'm asking is Lightroom the better choice over RAW photography as with Lightroom you have the choice of correcting after the fact along with the ability of creating a digital negative?...Julian
I remember back when I was in college that in film... (show quote)


There was never an option to correct many of the camera settings in the darkroom. If it's out of focus. mistimed, has too little DOF completely wrong exposure etc no level of skill in the darkroom could make up for that.
Moderate adjustment of tones, dodging/burning, selective blurring, & colour correction could be achieved for prints, the options for slides are very much reduced.

The controls in digital photography are much greater but good results still require the initial capture to be reasonable.
RAW is the digital negative whilst lightroom is one of the options for processing it. (the equivalent of an exposed film & the darkroom)
Lightroom may (I'm not sure I've never used it) be able to process JPEGs but it's designed to handle RAW.
RAW can't be used without some sort of processing unless your limiting yourself to looking at the embedded JPEG thumbnail - much worse than simple shooting JPEG.

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Aug 2, 2021 13:38:38   #
jackm1943 Loc: Omaha, Nebraska
 
billnikon wrote:
I can do much more with photoshop than I could ever do in the darkroom. Plus, it is much safer, I have lost my early shooting buddies to cancer contributed to the chemicals we breathed in.
I now shoot RAW, used to be just a Jpeg shooter, but you can teach an old dog new tricks. And now it's RAW and photoshop. I can do a 100 times more now in Photoshop than I could even hope for in the darkroom.
Good luck and keep on shooting until the end.


👍👍👍 I've mentioned before on UHH that learning how to do real unsharp masking in the darkroom is probably the main reason I stopped shooting film. You can no longer be satisfied without sharpening once you know how but it doubles or triples the work and time in the darkroom. Then, along came Photoshop...

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Aug 2, 2021 20:46:12   #
mundy-F2 Loc: Chicago suburban area
 
julian.gang wrote:
I remember back when I was in college that in film photography you had 2 options when you could correct photos! You could do it in camera or you could do it in the darkroom. I always felt it was better in the darkroom, this is because I'm pretty much a klutz when it comes to fiddling with the controls of the camera. I take it for granted this is also the case with digital photography. I guess what I'm asking is Lightroom the better choice over RAW photography as with Lightroom you have the choice of correcting after the fact along with the ability of creating a digital negative?...Julian
I remember back when I was in college that in film... (show quote)


Since I only shoot film, it is imparative to get the best shot in the camera first. I do not think this changes in digital.
Mundy

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Aug 2, 2021 20:47:50   #
mundy-F2 Loc: Chicago suburban area
 
burkphoto wrote:
Julian, I think you may be a bit confused or misled about the roles of raw capture and Lightroom post-processing.

Raw capture is saving all the information from the digital sensor, with no processing. That's opposed to the camera processing the raw data into a JPEG, according to your menu choices.

With raw files, you always work on your computer with every last bit of what the camera recorded. With JPEGs, the bit depth has been truncated the moment after exposure to 8-bits-per-pixel (instead of 12 or 14). That severely limits the tonal range of the file. And the JPEG compression is lossy, so some data has been thrown away by compression, as well. You won't notice it right away, but each time you save a JPEG on top of itself, you throw away more data.

Where you see the difference is with very underexposed, overexposed, or poorly white-balanced images. Raw files can be stretched quite a bit to correct these errors, much like a negative could be in the film era. JPEGs are more like slide film.

Lightroom is the digital equivalent of a darkroom. It is a parametric editor, a database of image proxies and data, a print engine, an export tool, and a lot more. It is the central hub of a pro's software, ready to send files to Photoshop or various plug-ins and other applications. It's the central repository for finished image files, and the creator of multiple files for multiple uses of the same image.

Lightroom is designed to work with raw files, but it will edit TIFF, JPEG, PSD, and some other formats, too. Whatever you "store" in Lightroom isn't the original file, however. That remains intact. Lightroom displays a proxy image, and works on a copy of the original. To get an image out of Lightroom is to Export a copy, or Print, or send to Web, or make a Book... You get the idea. It is a "non-destructive" editor that leaves your originals alone.

Raw files from your camera are like latent images on undeveloped film. There's one important difference, though. You can edit and re-edit a raw file as many times as you like, and start every time with the original, unaltered data. That's like being able to develop the same film image in an infinite number of ways.
Julian, I think you may be a bit confused or misle... (show quote)


Good explaination Bill.
Mundy

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Aug 2, 2021 20:50:11   #
mundy-F2 Loc: Chicago suburban area
 
CHG_CANON wrote:
In the ideal world, you do as much 'up front' in the camera so as to (a) maximize the potential of the digital image for editing and (b) minimize the work-effort later in post processing.

What does maximize mean?

1. Get the subject in focus, sharp focus.
2. Position the subject within the frame where you visual the final composition.
3. Shoot at the appropriate shutter speed and / or utilize IS / VR support to eliminate motion blur of the subject or you holding the camera, as appropriate to the composition. Use a tripod when needed.
4. Minimize the need to level the image later and / or crop to remove unwanted elements from the frame.
5. Minimize the digital noise in the image by exposing to the right.
6. Take as many versions as needed to assure you have one that maximizes the potential. Don't get home and wish you'd taken more or tried some different setting.
7a. Shoot in RAW to maximize your edit options.
7b. If shooting in JPEG, assure you have the large / fine JPEG setting. Consider if a custom WB (even the camera 'scene' options) is a better match to your light vs AUTO-WB.

In your digital editor, then pick the 1 (or 2ish) that exemplify why you attempted this image and edit that one / few to completion. Do as much, or as little, as needed to complete the image. The seven items above seek to minimize the effort later, hopefully keeping your entire edit effort within the Lightroom workspace.
In the ideal world, you do as much 'up front' in t... (show quote)


Good points.
Mundy

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Aug 2, 2021 21:16:15   #
rmalarz Loc: Tempe, Arizona
 
I agree with your approach. However, the get it right in camera is quite open to interpretation.

I complement you film only. I shoot both. But, the approach is the same but 180 degrees different.
-Bob
mundy-F2 wrote:
Since I only shoot film, it is imparative to get the best shot in the camera first. I do not think this changes in digital.
Mundy

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Aug 2, 2021 21:50:30   #
Jack 13088 Loc: Central NY
 
DirtFarmer wrote:
If you are using a parametric editor (such as Lightroom) or adjustment layers in Photoshop, 1 (sharpening), 2 (noise reduction), 7 (white balance), and 8 (lens corrections) are fully reversible. 9 (color space) can be changed on re-export.

I should also note that CHG_CANON's #12 (Image file back-up strategy (for those larger files)) should be for all files, not just the larger files.


Ok, I didn’t state my point clearly. Not unusual.

If those steps are done by the camera you can not redo them from the resulting camera output. You can go back to the original raw in post only if you have the file.

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Aug 2, 2021 22:12:55   #
Bobspez Loc: Southern NJ, USA
 
Just two points. I always shoot jpg and raw. That way I can look at the jpgs and see if the any picture is worth processing in raw. Most of my shots aren't. If I get 10% keepers, I'm doing well. But without film I haven't lost any money when I hit the delete button.
Second point, I have used Photoshop for years to process raw files. There are all the tools on sliders to process any image. I've never had the need to use layers, even though I learned them and then forgot about them. I process every picture I plan to keep. Processing improves anything I can get out of a digital camera with stills or video.

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Aug 3, 2021 02:46:47   #
Focus in Texas
 
Lucian wrote:
Well if you were taught correctly back in college, about photography, you would have learned that there is only one way to make a correct photo and that is always... in the camera. Post processing is to help finish off what you might not have been able to do in camera, or alter what was available to you when you took the photo. Post processing is never to help correct what you should have done in camera, in the first place.

Please remember that contrary to popular belief, Dodging and Burning in post, are NOT steps to take care of mistakes God made, in establishing good tonal relationships.
Well if you were taught correctly back in college,... (show quote)


Ansel is rolling over in his grave. Every photo he made was tweaked in the darkroom. Ever hear of the "zone" system?

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Aug 3, 2021 07:44:48   #
DirtFarmer Loc: Way too close to New York City
 
Jack 13088 wrote:
…If those steps are done by the camera you can not redo them from the resulting camera output. You can go back to the original raw in post only if you have the file.



A good reason to shoot raw and preserve the original files.

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