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01-22-2011, 01:25 PM   #1
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Photoshop question

can anyoneone tell me what post processing is?

01-22-2011, 01:38 PM   #2
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Given this is a question in the Beginner's Q&A section, it should just be considered the manipulation done to a photo after it has been taken by the camera. There are a number of debates on the forum that complicate the matter and refer to some of the camera processing being part of the post-processing (PP) phenomenon, but don't worry too much about this.

Basically, whatever you do to an image on Photoshop, or any other computer software package, is PP.

Image processing: Definition from Answers.com
01-22-2011, 01:50 PM   #3
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doh! thanks
01-22-2011, 02:56 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
Given this is a question in the Beginner's Q&A section, it should just be considered the manipulation done to a photo after it has been taken by the camera. There are a number of debates on the forum that complicate the matter and refer to some of the camera processing being part of the post-processing (PP) phenomenon, but don't worry too much about this.

Basically, whatever you do to an image on Photoshop, or any other computer software package, is PP.

Image processing: Definition from Answers.com
Very well explained regarding the nuances of the definition of PP, where some in-camera functions are considered PP, because our cameras are like mini-computers.

For example, Four:

Taking an in- camera HDR shot involves PP, although the camera is doing it on the fly. It's altering the originally captured and true data to give you something totally else.

01-22-2011, 03:31 PM   #5
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Everything that happens within any digital camera to produce a usable image is PP, whether or not purists will admit that. The camera reads the sensor's raw data, and either saves it as a RAW / PEF / DNG file, or renders it (depending on the camera) as a JPG or TIF or GIF or AVI or other file. That rendering happens by processing the raw data according to your settings and the design engineers' software. That processing happens after you've hit the shutter, so by definition it is PP.

At the user level, PP is what happens to produce a usable image after the data is removed from the camera. RAW data is like a latent image on exposed film -- it needs to be developed before it can otherwise be used. Any JPG settings you've used on the camera are carried-over as defaults for RAW development, but those are easy to override, just as film can be souped in various ways to produce a desired image. In RAW development we often adjust white balance / colour temperature, contrast, sensitivity, saturation, sharpness -- and then we produce a JPG or TIF file, which may be further processed / edited, according to our needs and desires. That's when we start shooping the image!

Preparing an image for display requires some degree of PP. It may be as simple as cropping and/or resizing, as elaborate as removing artifacts and/or adding/deleting picture elements, or anywhere in-between, depending on what you want a final image to look like. Pressing the shutter is not the end of the picture-making process -- it's just a midpoint, between planning and presentation. Everything before a shutter-snap is preparation; everything after a shutter-snap is post-processing. That's the reality of photography.

PS: More image file formats exist than just JPG and the RAWs. Using only JPGs produced by the camera is fine if snapshots are all you need. Other photographic applications require more detail, more data, data that is thrown away when a JPG is produced. Here's a fun project: See what formats an image editor (PhotoShop, PaintShopPro, GIMP, whatever) will read and write. Shoot an image in RAW format. Develop it with various settings, and save each version as a TIF file, which doesn't suffer the lossy compression of JPG files. Now, in the editor, save those as other image formats. See how those formats can be used.

Last edited by RioRico; 01-22-2011 at 03:40 PM.
01-22-2011, 08:19 PM   #6
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Photoshop is amazing. I have CS5 and it definitely takes a lot of patience and practice but when after you learn how to use it, it is just as important to photography as the camera.
01-24-2011, 09:18 AM   #7
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I found learning CS4 Extended was a bigger curve than actually learning to shoot a DSLR
01-24-2011, 11:53 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Squier Quote
I found learning CS4 Extended was a bigger curve than actually learning to shoot a DSLR
Very true, but once you do learn it, it can be almost as valuable as the camera itself. A truly amazing program.

01-25-2011, 12:01 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Squier Quote
I found learning CS4 Extended was a bigger curve than actually learning to shoot a DSLR
That's why I prefere LightRoom, this app. is really made for the photographer as it actually is the successor of the Dark Room . PS is more versatile but more complex and conceived for more than just photography, actually I find PS a little overkill VS LightRoom seen in the light of truly PP photo's.
01-25-2011, 04:04 AM   #10
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There are tools though that PS offers quite useful for the photographer that LR does not. Nevertheless much of what can be done on PS can also be done in LR, albeit in different ways.
01-26-2011, 12:01 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
There are tools though that PS offers quite useful for the photographer that LR does not. Nevertheless much of what can be done on PS can also be done in LR, albeit in different ways.
And exactly these "different ways" are more intuitive to 'operate', making them 'handy'. It's like in the flown days when printing negatives was done in the dark and 'interventions' made 'from the belly', on the spot and after carefully observing the negative as projected by the enlarger, remembering the pre-visualization when shooting.
Oh, I am getting nostalgic here....

Actually, nothing has really changed

Last edited by philippe; 01-26-2011 at 09:18 AM.
01-26-2011, 05:22 AM   #12
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Photoshop is very useful. There are times that you can save a photo that you screwed up in the camera after the fact or, for that matter, turn an average photo into a great photo with selective burning, dodging, etc.

I used to think that the difference between skilled photographers and hobbyists was how skilled they were in photoshop. However, what I have come to realize is that professionals do their best to get things right in the camera, to minimize the amount of post processing that is necessary on any given image.

I personalize use Photoshop Elements 7 (I think they are on version 9 now) and it works well, although if you buy a program like this, you had better plan on buying a "how to" book to go with it, so that you can figure out how to use the various features it offers.
01-26-2011, 10:22 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by philippe Quote
That's why I prefere LightRoom, this app. is really made for the photographer as it actually is the successor of the Dark Room . PS is more versatile but more complex and conceived for more than just photography, actually I find PS a little overkill VS LightRoom seen in the light of truly PP photo's.
Something that I think we take for granted, but which beginners might not understand is that PhotoShop and Lightroom are both made by Adobe. Lightroom isn't so much a competitor for PhotoShop as it is the manufacturer whittling down PhotoShop to the pure photography functions and making those functions more intuitive.
01-26-2011, 04:35 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Squier Quote
I found learning CS4 Extended was a bigger curve than actually learning to shoot a DSLR
I thought that with CS3 Extended, perhaps I won't upgrade for a while then.
01-26-2011, 04:57 PM   #15
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Well i would think CS4 ext has a couple of added features, like they do with any upgrade/new version, so my guess is that you'd be ok if you've been using CS3 ext.

Also you might able to use a better / upgraded version of ACR

Last edited by Squier; 01-26-2011 at 05:33 PM.
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