BetterPhoto Q&A
Category: New Questions

Photography Question 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
 

Raw Conversions


If anyone can explain what is going on with this I will be so happy. This happens frequently but to keep it simple I will just use one example. I shot a toddler on white seemless, two lights on the background, one main with a soft box and a fill on an umbrella. the jpeg file looked fine and is what I worked with, however I shot raw and have not figured out the raw converter in Pscs2. I have opened the jpeg image in photoshop and on top of that opened the raw image. they look very different, with the jpeg looking fine and the raw looking mudddy and well "raw". anyway, I also opened the raw in an external raw converter program I have called "digital photo professional". I believe it is by Cannon. The raw image there looks fine, like the jpeg I am seeing in photoshop. why do the two raw images look so different?


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3/14/2007 7:02:42 PM

 
Suzanne Colson
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/31/2006
  When you open the image in CS2 are all the auto boxes checked? If they are this is PS doing it's best at picking the best settings for your photo. Uncheck all these boxes. Once you have done that you can save these as default settings. On the right hand side next to the settings dropdown is a right arrow. Click on this and choose save settings. Hope this helps.


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3/14/2007 7:25:11 PM

 
W.   
Hi Michelle,

that sounds as if your PSCS2 hasn't got a plug-in for converting RAW files. Get Adobe Camera RAW, a.k.a. ACR for CS2 (I've got CS1).

Have fun!


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3/14/2007 7:44:21 PM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Thank you. How would I know if I don't have the image converter, I assumed it came with the program. I checked for trhe auto boxes Susanne and don't see any, I just get a big box with my photo and the options to change exposure, temp ect... on the side. Is that the raw converter?


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3/14/2007 7:57:46 PM

 
Suzanne Colson
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/31/2006
  Sounds like the raw converter to me. Right above each one of the sliders (exposures, shadows, brightness, contrast) should be a checkbox that says auto??

I just tried to check what version I have and can't determine. I checked Adobe's sight and the website lists version 3.7 as the latest. Don't know if this will do the trick or not.

Check out the link below.

http://www.adobe.com/products/photoshop/cameraraw.html


Good luck...


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3/14/2007 8:16:58 PM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
 
 
 
thanks, it says it is part of pscs2 so I guess I have it and that is what I am looking at, it just looks wierd. when I look at the raw image anywhere else on the computer it looks ok, maybe a bit grainy if underexposed but ok. in photoshop it looks really bad. this is the jpeg, sharped a bit in pscs2.


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3/14/2007 8:22:22 PM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
 
 
 
photo post try 2


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3/14/2007 8:24:32 PM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Susanne, thank you, you were exactly right. once I turned off all of he auto boxes it looked right to me. wow and I have been trying to process with those on.


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3/14/2007 8:29:12 PM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  i also notice that I can do the minor changes then save it to reopen it in pscs2 as a jpeg or tiff OR I can open it as the raw image in pscs2 and do all revisions outside of the converters window. which way is best?


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3/14/2007 8:32:32 PM

 
W.   
Saving as a JPG means you throw away data. If you continue working on that image, you're working on an incomplete data set. But of course working on a complete data set, the RAW file, gets better results.

Use both workflows on an image and see with your own eyes what, and how much difference it makes to your final image.


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3/15/2007 2:20:42 AM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  I shoot Raw + Jpeg to be safe. You find that sometimes the JPEG image to be better. That will come with time, just like film. It is something you can't teach.


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3/15/2007 2:32:56 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  So, I of course do some photoshop to all photos like crop and sharpen, I want to do as little as possible as I do many photos daily and proof between 40 and 60 for each customer to choose from. I guess I should work on the raw file though and just really learn how to do that so I have more info to work with. what about the grain I see in raw images, guess I need a lesson on raw conversion. i'll work on two and post them here for opinions later today.


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3/15/2007 3:19:03 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
 
 
 
Here is an image, one worked from the raw and one worked from the jpeg. Which do you guys think looks best?


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3/15/2007 4:47:14 AM

 
Suzanne Colson
BetterPhoto Member Since: 7/31/2006
  I like image 2, but I an not a good judge. I have my husband look at some of my photos and he points out things that I never notice.

As for raw vs. jpeg I have had much better luck with raw overall. (Once I realized the auto thing too...) I shoot exclusively raw now. I still have a lot to learn, but I got some good info from the following book:

Adboe Camera Raw Studio Skills. If you check out Amazon.com you can be used for almost nothing.


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3/15/2007 5:38:41 AM

 
W.   
From those 2, I like #1 best.
BUT I'm faaar from sure about that because it's very hard to notice a difference, if any.
AND those are only 600x400. Hardly a 'judgable' size.

Good luck!


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3/15/2007 5:48:12 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  I am just trying to do the test that you mentioned because you said it was so easy to see with your own eyes. You sound condesending to me when you comment WS. I assume we are all here to learn not be judged. I'm not sure if that is your intention but your comments like "little" equation and "hardly" a judgable size are offensive.


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3/15/2007 5:57:11 AM

 
W.   
Well, if you consider words like 'little' and 'hardly' derogatory that's fine. It's an opinion. YOUR opinion.

You could, however, also take them literally instead of reading al sorts of UN-implied connotations in them!

About the 'little' formula:
that formula is a little one. A short one. A simple one. You would know that it is a little formula if you compare it with most other formulas. Which are often big, long, complicated, or whatever you want to call it.

About 'hardly' judgable:
are you going to tell me with a straight face that 600x400 images are ideal for judging image quality . . . ?

PUH-LEASE!


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3/15/2007 6:10:19 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  It's just your tone and not just on this one. I do think that people can pull the photos off this and resize them so they would be more judgeable. I don't think that we can put them up here really big. I do want the opionions of others so this is the way I put them up. Also I can see a difference.


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3/15/2007 6:27:51 AM

 
W.   
"I do think that people can pull the photos off this and resize them so they would be more judgeable."

You really think that upsizing an image from 600x400 results in better image quality? How? Where is that upsized image getting its extra data from then?
Please teach us how to do that. That's a great trick . . .


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3/15/2007 6:37:37 AM

 
Lavone Vannoy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/11/2006
  "W.S."

I would LOVE to "see" your work (other than the "cat" photo in your BP Gallery). Do you have a WEBSITE to show us your professional work?

Since you do everything from RAW...I am dying to see your WORK! :)

You DO sound condescending. It isn't necessary to talk that way here when people who post questions for genuine help get feedback and comments from a person with a poor attitude.

If I have misread anything in your intentions please forgive me, but you don't sound very nice in your comments.

BETTER PHOTO upload:
image size allowed 500x750px OR 750x500px MAX.

I can see a great difference in the two photos. The top one has better flesh tones as well as more detail (and seems a little sharper). The second looks more saturated in the clothing.



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3/15/2007 6:44:42 AM

 
W.   
"Do you have a WEBSITE to show us your professional work?"

No.

"I can see a great difference in the two photos."

I rest my case.


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3/15/2007 6:49:32 AM

 
Lavone Vannoy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/11/2006
  THE JPEG IS THE ONE ONE THE "TOP" THAT IS THE ONE I LIKE BETTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

THE BETTER "QUALITY"

It's sad that we can't see your work :(
Do you have a Photosite or other area that you post your work???


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3/15/2007 6:54:20 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  I think I like the jpeg better too. I am sure that is because I don't know the best way to work up raw images, but I will learn it soon. You are very critical and I am sure the other bp members don't appreciate your feedback much either.


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3/15/2007 6:57:39 AM

 
W.   
"Do you have a Photosite or other area that you post your work?"

No.
I do commissioned work. Projects that are sold inclusive and complete with the copyrights to them. So once I've delivered the photos are not mine anymore to do with as I please. Like posting them on a website.
Some of my clients have very active legal departments I don't like to mess with.


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3/15/2007 7:02:24 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Funny


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3/15/2007 7:04:59 AM

 
Lavone Vannoy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/11/2006
  FOLMBO!!!!!!!!!! :D
THAT my friend, is completely hilarious!!!!!


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3/15/2007 7:09:14 AM

 
W.   
Getting sued is not nearly as hilarious, Lavone. But I guess you must have been there.


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3/15/2007 7:32:51 AM

 
Lavone Vannoy
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/11/2006
  You know what...I've never been sued...but I DO have my work where prospective clients can view it (hence a professional photographer).

It is sad that one person can ruin a wonderful forum for everyone else who is here to get genuine HELP AND ADVICE not a poor attitude FROM YOU!!! YOUR comments are a waste of my time!!! And they clutter a perfectly good thread!!!!! Don't bother commenting on MY Q&A's as they WILL be ignored and a waste of YOUR time!!!!


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3/15/2007 7:46:29 AM

 
W.   
Hey!
Do I hear someone saying something about a 'poor attitude'?

LOL! :-)))


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3/15/2007 7:50:19 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Since you seem to be a regular responder on the forums here at BP I can only assume that your goal is to help others. (otherwise it's a wierd way of getting your kicks). That being said I am here to learn so if you can demonstrate any of what you say by showing us, as this is a photography site, please do. Surely you have an associate you could photograph to make your points.


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3/15/2007 7:51:27 AM

 
W.   
No. That is NOT the way to make that point, as you have just demonstrated yourself by posting 2 photos that we can only see – AFTER another round of heavy compression (by BP) – as 600x400 images.

"I am just trying to do the test that you mentioned because you said it was so easy to see with your own eyes."

Indeed it is. YOU can see the difference on your OWN screen. OTHER people can NOT see that difference after you've uploaded them (and BP compressed/mangled them seriously) on THEIR screen!


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3/15/2007 8:08:01 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Ok, thanks for all of you HELPFUL advice, I am finished communicating with you. Maybe others respond better to your comments, but I doubt it.


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3/15/2007 8:11:12 AM

 
W.   
You're welcome, Michelle.
Do you always get mad when someone tells you something you don't like to hear?

Ronnie Reagan said it succinctly:
if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

Good luck!


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3/15/2007 8:33:59 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  It has nothing to do with hearing what I don't want to hear, as I asked a question, it is your attitude that is questionable, and your lack of doing anything other than talking. In doing what you suggested I still like the jpeg better, in several cases. I will get my info from someone polite.


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3/15/2007 10:14:05 AM

 
Samuel Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/21/2004
  number 1 looked like a slight crop from number 2.maybe a bit lighter.
I did watch this for a while.laughter aside,i think you girls made the right decision.sam


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3/15/2007 8:42:20 PM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Thanks Sam, I think I even lost my focus on my original question. Anyway the top (image 2) was the jpeg image slightly modified in pscs2 (crop, unsharp mask, slight guassian blur on skin)

The second was worked up from the raw version. It was a pretty good exposure to start with so the raw was not that hard to work up but I still like the one that came out of my camera the jpeg better. I am thinking this is due to my lack of knowledge about how to work up a raw image.


I am trying to figure out the advantage of working on the raw image when the jpeg looks just fine. I am not yet able to get my raw images to look as good as the jpeg. I shoot Raw+ just incase my white balance or exposure is in need of a fix but generally work up the jpeg that came from the camera. My goal is to shoot all raw.


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3/15/2007 9:05:23 PM

 
Samuel Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/21/2004
  i am a sheep in wolfs clothing in this thread michelle.i guess my bad.my post although sincere was not to miss the next generation.
I know no photo program,i shoot film.did I play you and lavone?no.my heart is photography.
but,am I disheartened?flood effect,gaussion blur.liars/disimformation.i say yes.but has my skill level suffered?yes.not capture.
sam


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3/15/2007 10:28:34 PM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Absolutely Sam, I agree. My goal in the threads that you may have read lately (that have been crazy) is to take the photo and expose it so well that I don't need to do any photo shop. However I may be wrong but I think that the majority of digital shooters do postprocessing in photoshop. I find that even if the image is exposed properly it benefits from some sharpening and I also crop the image there. Of course too all my cliets ask if I can remove the "blemish" here or there etc.....

anyway photography is also my passion, sometimes drives me crazy and I would love to talk to you about it. thanks for the comments.


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3/16/2007 7:51:40 AM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  Thread title should be "Raw Confesions"


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3/16/2007 8:11:28 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Amazing that you responded DereK, heard about you yesterday and was looking at your gallery this morning. Love the first wave picture. wow.


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3/16/2007 8:15:19 AM

 
Samuel Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/21/2004
  ah slick,such a chameleon.
michelle I believe you met mister rude.got all the answers,yet not yours.hmmm.
but I am not sure I can help you with your query.


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3/16/2007 7:19:25 PM

 
Samuel Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/21/2004
  ah slick,such a chameleon.
michelle I believe you met mister rude.got all the answers,yet not yours.hmmm.
but I am not sure I can help you with your query.


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3/16/2007 7:19:26 PM

 
Samuel Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/21/2004
  ah slick,such a chameleon.
michelle I believe you met mister rude.got all the answers,yet not yours.hmmm.
but I am not sure I can help you with your query.
studio work,no.
any photo program,no.
settings and natural light,yeah.the medium I use i'm familar with.
but I will give an opinion,and if you think mine is a benefit to you,sure.
might be an autistic reality,sam


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3/16/2007 7:34:42 PM

 
Samuel Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/21/2004
  crazy enter button,my bad.


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3/16/2007 7:43:36 PM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  Thanks Michelle. If you look closely on the left side of the shot, you can see where my trigger handle touched the water and rose up the wave. These waves were really small and I kept on trying over and over till I had enough to choose from. Although, I would have liked the tube rounder, this is the best one where the lip all fell at once.

Sam there are no crazy buttons, just crazy people.


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3/17/2007 1:23:00 AM

 
Raymond H. Kemp
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/2/2004
  Derek, trigger handle on the left side of a Nikon Aquatech waterhousing? The shutter release is located on the right side near top. On the Nikon Auqatech housing you can option a pistol grip release which is located on the bottom of the housing. The housing support handle is on the left.


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3/17/2007 7:03:23 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Derek, I tried to send you a personal email but it bounced back. Do you have an email address that I can use to send you a personal message?


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3/17/2007 7:05:21 AM

 
Raymond H. Kemp
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/2/2004
  Michelle,

I can see you are in search of some comments on the aspects of JPG vs RAW and maybe with some of my experience I can share that with you.

One, I shot film as a photojournalist for nearly 30 years before switching to all digital several years ago. Back then everywhere I went I could be seen with a Minolta flash meter around my neck and always sticking it up in the air to get my light readings for my Nikons. A lot of us film guys back then knew accurate exposure was of paramount importance for we did not have time to spend in the lab trying to fix mistakes.

I shoot for a couple local newspapers and several magazines published out of California and for the most part I do not have the time to post process my images from RAW. Now don’t get me wrong, I do use RAW and it has it’s place in my line of work, but for the most part getting the exposure right the first time saves me a lot of post processing in Photoshop and therefore the JPG’s need little to no post processing before going to my editors.

Now for some of my more critical work, such as the models I shoot for some of my catalog work, I do shoot RAW. But even then I find myself making very slight adjustments. I may bump the color temperature a bit, but to my surprise, that’s all the was needed as far as the RAW conversion process was concerned. But keep in mind, I tether my camera to my laptop and take several test shots (which helps the model loosen up as well) to correctly dial in my exposure, depth of field, etc. It’s been my experience that the more accurate you get the exposure the first time the less “clean up” you need in post processing and you will always get a better final print ever with post processing.

I see a lot of posts here on BP preaching to always use RAW and that is good in many cases. But I also have learned that a lot of people who get into digital do not know how to properly expose a photograph period and therefore have a huge dependence on post processing to bail them out.

They can’t even read a histogram and that is absolutely one of the best exposure tools you have right under your chin! I always leave my defaults set to display histogram when I chimp my shots. I could give a rat’s ass about composition for I already know how I composed the shot! So at a quick glance at my histogram I can tell immediately what adjustments I need.

RAW and JPG? Use either of them when your work demands it! If your pleased with the results of your work, then that’s what really counts, right?

Ray



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3/17/2007 8:04:23 AM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Thanks Ray, that was very helpful information and I really appreciate you taking the time to respond. I will pay more attention to my histogram, because to be honest I usually don't. I learn something every day. I do meter excessively and am usually happy with the exposure. Thanks again.


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3/17/2007 9:55:01 AM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  Ray I said left side of the shot, not left side of the camera. The grip touched the water and rose up the wave.

Michelle you can't write me an email. I had it blocked. Last time I made it available I got over 200 emails a day, no thanks.


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3/17/2007 12:05:22 PM

 
Raymond H. Kemp
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/2/2004
  Okay, Derek, now you're using some double talk here. You said the "trigger handle" hit the wave on the left of the image, which means if it is on the left side of the image then something on the left side of the camera as you hold it hit the wave. Now you back peddle and say the grip (which is on the left) hit the wave and rose up.

Now you claim your email is blocked. Come on Derek, you've been such a phony here in the past, how can anyone really believe you?


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3/17/2007 1:39:15 PM

 
Samuel Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/21/2004
  thanks for helping michelle out there ray.
oh,and now I don't have to do a search on a rats anatomy.
i liked it,sam


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3/17/2007 5:48:32 PM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  jibberish my friend you say patatoe I say patatow. The waves were small, I was standing on the bottom my hand holding the heavy camera and housing touched the base of the wave and rose up the face on the left side of the shot which bummed me out, but it still was a nice shot. If you knew anything about watershots you would have got it straight of the bat. Believe what you want, the same way I believe that you have all these shoots for clients.


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3/17/2007 10:39:31 PM

 
Michelle B. Prince
BetterPhoto Member Since: 9/16/2004
  Derek, why in the world would you get 200 emails? Have you had more photos up in the past that people were asking about? do you have another photo website anywhere?


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3/18/2007 5:26:34 AM

 
Who Me? 
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/19/2007
  Some were good some were bad. Lets just say I know how to stir the bee hive. Some thought it was funny, others thought it serious. I had so many emails from this site and the other two I frequent that it was hard to weed out the junk. I have a website, but that is for clients only. I have slideshows on my blog and the bandwidth is limited for every month, so the less window shoppers the better.


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3/18/2007 11:22:50 AM

 
W.   
OK, here's an experiment. Especially for Michelle. It's a 2 foot Falabella horse in the evening sun. Shot at RAW+.

Here are the two images, side-by-side, cropped from 8mp files.
On the left the JPG 'SOOC' (originally 4,1MB), on the right the JPG from the edited RAW file (originally 11,5MB). It's a screenshot of both, obviously, vastly scaled down to fit the 750pixels width, and terribly compressed (to 1:9) to comply with BP's upload limitations.
And whatever BP has subsequently done to it is anybody's guess.

Still, imo, there is great dynamic difference. Even under all the above constraints.


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3/19/2007 11:09:03 AM

 
W.   
 
  JPG SOOC<–>JPG fr RAW  .jpg
JPG SOOC<–>JPG fr RAW .jpg
© W.
Miscellaneous Does...
 
 

And here's the image too . . .

;–P


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3/19/2007 11:10:34 AM

 
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