Digital Photography - Edit Jpegs in Adobe Camera Raw- Page 25
Non-Destructive Editing

I shoot almost everything in Raw format. I do shoot jpegs in certain situations. My wife and I added an addition to our house and I documented the addition in jpegs. When I take photos of our families at family gatherings, I also shoot jpegs. I don't see the reason to shoot raw files and fill up more hard drive space. I am often asked by photographers if they should shoot raw or not. That is a personal choice. I have some very good friends who are underwater photographers who don't shoot raw and I agree with their choice. Raw is not right for everyone. It takes a lot more time to process files. First, I weed out all the unacceptable images, then open each raw file in Adobe Camera Raw, make changes and then close each file until I caption them in IMatch. After all the files in one folder have been captioned, I run each file through Adobe Photoshop and save each as a Tiff file. The original raws are saved on one hard drive (which backs up to two additional backup drives) and the Tiff files are saved on another (actually two now) and each of those drives backs up onto two additional drives. That is a total of nine hard drives just for photos. I do want to point out something neat to those of you who shoot jpegs. You can edit your jpeg in Adobe Camera Raw and save it and not have the image change from the original but have the settings that you applied in Camera Raw saved with the jpeg. You can open the jpeg in camera raw later and revert to its original state or change the settings completely. Think of the jpeg as an original file that you can go back and edit in the future. This will only work if you edit the file in Photoshop and save the file as a Tiff file or as a jpeg with a different name. If you save the Photoshop edited file (not Camera Raw edited file) in the same folder and with the same name as your original jpeg, all the Camera Raw settings will be lost.

Think of it as a work flow:

Jpeg To Raw Work Flow 1

Open the original Jpeg in Adobe Camera Raw. Make your changes and either choose the button "Done" or "Open Image". If you choose "Done", the jpeg image will close and the Adobe Camera Raw settings will be saved. The next time that you open that image, it should automatically open in Adobe Camera Raw and those same settings should be there. If you are pleased with the settings, you can click on the "Open Image" button and the image will open in Photoshop CS, CS2, CS3 or Elements. Do whatever editing that you want to do there and then save the file as a Tiff file or as a jpeg with a different name. If your original jpeg is named nik0226.jpg, you could save it as nik0226p.jpg and you will effectively have an original jpeg (with the Camera Raw settings - nik0226.jpg) and a finished jpeg - nik0226p.jpg. The value of this is that you can go back to your original jpeg and edit it again anytime in the future. If you save your finished jpeg in the same folder as the original with the same name, it will write over the file and you will not be able to go back to the beginning and reedit the file.

Jpeg To Raw Workflow 2

In Adobe Bridge or in Full Edition in Photoshop Elements, right click on the image and choose "Open in Camera Raw".

Jpeg to Raw Workflow 3

Here is the original open in Adobe Camera Raw. Note that it is quite underexposed. Now is the time to make some changes.

Jpeg to Raw Workflow 4

I increased the exposure by +1.85. This made the photo look much better.

Jpeg to Raw Work Flow 5

I also increased the brightness by +25 and the contrast by +25.

Jpeg to Raw Work Flow 6

When all changes are made, click on the "Done" or "Open Image". For now, I am going to choose "Done". The image closes and I am back to my original image location.

Jpeg to Raw Flow 7

I double clicked on the image and opened it again. You can see that the three places that I changed are still changed.

Jpeg to Raw Work Flow 8

I reversed the original changes that I made in Camera Raw. I reset the Exposure to "0", the brightness to "0" and the contrast to "0" and the picture looks just like it did when we started. I clicked on "Done" and the jpeg was back to its original state. You could not do this in Photoshop CS, CS2, CS3 or Elements. Think of your jpeg as a pseudo-raw file when you edit it in Adobe Camera Raw.

If you have never tried Camera Raw before with your jpegs, you should. The people who I have showed this to really have gotten to love it. Good luck in your travels in underwater photography. Make sure that you check out My Blog for additional information about computers, SCUBA diving and underwater photography.