30 Days of Photoshop ~ Working Non-Destructively

by Heidi Egerman June. 27, 2019 205 views

In days 2 and 3 of the course, Dave covered the lay of the land, the Photoshop interface, making checklists and setting up your workspace and preferences for your specific work. I was pretty familiar with these topics but did learn a few little tips that will expedite my work.

I did learn a few important things from Day 4's, Working Non-Destructively. The one tip that was most relevant was that working from a Camera Raw file is a very non-destructive way to work. Although I have been shooting in raw and jpg since the first of the year, I have not been using these raw files. Mostly due to lack of knowledge and understanding. I figured that one of these days I would learn how best to use these files. Maybe this is my big chance.

Dave recommends that when you open a raw file the setting should be to 'Open in Photoshop as Smart Object'. This way you can always jump back to the raw file if you need to. He edits most of his work in Adobe Camera Raw and says it is often all he needs. How nice! My real goal us to take great pictures that need little it no editing. Until then...

My Homework

I opened the close-up image of this artichoke in in Adobe Camera Raw and made a few minor edits including adjusting exposure and clarity and removing a blemish with the spot removal tool. The image then opened as a Smart Object in Photoshop. I was able to take it back into Camera Raw to make another adjustment (just for fun) as well as make a few tweaks in Photoshop before saving both the .psd and the .jpg file. The .psd file is huge as you probably know, almost 300MB. I'm not sure how I feel about this. I feel like I would need to be incredibly selective about what I save and what I toss and I know my workflow will definitely need to change. More about this later.

I could not resist another image using the oil paint filter. I started with the raw file, opened as a smart object and applied the filter. More about smart objects in a few days.

Day 5 is the first of two days about 'layers'. I definitely need this information and I'm sure I will learn a lot. Thanks for checking in on this most recent journey of mine.

Join the conversation
There are 6 comments , add yours!
Camellia Staab 1 year, 5 months ago

You know I am reading every word. From you I learned about opening as a "smart object". Majority of the times I open the photos in Lightroom and then if needed I go to Photoshop through Lightroom. Most often is to use the spot removal tool, the one in photoshop is much better than Lr in my opinion. On occasion I will open a photo Photoshop and by pass Lr, for example my husband had captured some photos with his cell phone and  they were DNGs, I didn't want to open in Lr so opened in Photoshop, but I opened them as regular photos and not smart objects therefor any edits done in camera raw could not be tweaked afterwards is what I am understanding from your post. Thanks for sharing your knowledge.

1 year, 5 months ago Edited
Heidi Egerman Replied to Camellia Staab 1 year, 5 months ago

Yes, you are right. 
I actually like the healing brush in Photoshop, but I realized that once I save the image as a smart object from Adobe Camera Raw (ACR) I have to use a layer versus the spot healing brush tool in Photoshop to fix blemishes etc. I'm not quite sure how to do this yet. It was pretty easy to use the spot removal tool in ACR but it works differently. Sheesh. Right now I'm wondering if I should start to become more proficient in ACR and do minor tweaks in PS. Time will tell.dizzy face  I never learned LR, but I think it is very similar to ACR and has many of the same features and functionality.

1 year, 5 months ago Edited
Camellia Staab Replied to Heidi Egerman 1 year, 5 months ago

You are absolutely correct about Lr and ACR being the same and since I have learned how to use Lr and have found a way to somewhat catalog my photographs, I go straight to Lr first and don't even used the bridge.

1 year, 5 months ago Edited
Jay Boggess 1 year, 5 months ago

Thanks for the excellent info & great samples!

1 year, 5 months ago Edited
Heidi Egerman Replied to Jay Boggess 1 year, 5 months ago

You bet Jay.

1 year, 5 months ago Edited
Jay Boggess Replied to Heidi Egerman 1 year, 5 months ago


1 year, 5 months ago Edited
Copyright @Photoblog.com