A month in Mongolia with an iPad photo workflow

September 19, 2013 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Features 

This summer, for some reason, a friend and I drove a tiny Fiat Panda from London to Mongolia. Though I have a 13″ MacBook Air, I decided to take my iPad with me on the trip instead of a “real” computer. I also took a good amount of photography gear, which meant that the iPad had to support a fairly full photo workflow. This article details how I made it work, and what I found I could and couldn’t do. The good news is that, if you manage your expectations, and grab the right apps, you can run an effective post-production workflow directly from your iPad.

Shooting on the Road, from Gear to Workflow

July 17, 2012 by · 9 Comments
Filed under: Features 

Better gear won’t necessarily make you a better photographer, but having the wrong gear can certainly make it more difficult to get the shots you want. In this 3-hour Lynda.com course you’ll see my entire thought process as I equip and prepare for three different kinds of shoots. Through examples of heavyweight, mid weight, and lightweight shoots, you’ll see how I tackle the problems of choosing shooting gear, power, storage, and post-production equipment. You’ll also see how I strategize methods for carrying all this stuff. Discussing everything from tripods to bags and batteries, this course is ideal for anyone who shoots while traveling, and wants a better plan for selecting the right gear. Click here to get started watching now.

Photoshop Automator Actions 5.0.3 Update

February 17, 2012 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Automator Actions, Features 

The Photoshop Automator Actions v5.0.3 Updater is now available. This package updates delivers numerous bug fixes and tweaks, and adds Lion compatibility. Available for CS4 and CS5, the update is free to all users of both the free and Pro versions of the Photoshop Automator Actions Collection version 5. Updates are available here.

For this updater to work, you must have a copy of the version 5 package installed. (Obviously, you’ll need to install the updater package that matches the version that you have installed, either CS4 or CS5, free or Pro.)

Movie: Resizing Images With Photoshop and Automator

July 29, 2010 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Automator Tutorial Movies 

Performing image resizing in a batch process can be tricky. How do you tell Photoshop to resize when you might have a batch of images of varying orientations and aspect ratios? Because batch resizing requires special consideration, version 5 of the Photoshop Automator Actions, contains four different resizing actions.

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Photoshop/Automator Tutorial Movies

July 27, 2010 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Automator Tutorial Movies 

While the Photoshop Automator Actions ship with a lengthy, detailed, can’t-put-it-down user manual, there are times when an old-fashioned screencast is still an easier way to learn a new piece of software. Assuming that this is one of those times, I have put together the first in a series of movies that detail how to use Automator to drive Photoshop.

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Photoshop Automator Actions v5.0.1

July 27, 2010 by · 69 Comments
Filed under: Automator Actions 

If you routinely find yourself slogging through tedious, repetitve chores in Photoshop, then you should try using Automator to streamline your batch processing chores. Built-in to Mac OS X 10.4 and later, Automator makes it simple to create sophisticated, complex automations. Out-of-the-box, Automator can’t control Adobe Photoshop, but with the addition of this Photoshop Automator Actions collection, you get everything necessary to drive Photoshop using Automator.

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Migrating From Bridge CS4 to CS5

May 2, 2010 by · 13 Comments
Filed under: Features 

While Photoshop tends to get most of the press during major upgrades, Bridge users have a few things to be happy about with the CS5 release. The new Export tab, which bundles Photoshop Image Processor-like functionality right into Bridge; the Mini Bridge which bundles Bridge right into Photoshop; new Batch Rename functionality and new Output features, and other tweaks and modifications make Bridge CS5 a welcome upgrade. Unfortunately, as with Photoshop, Adobe has not seen fit to add any migration features for moving Bridge database information into CS5. However, with a few file copies, it appears that you can move the bulk of your important Bridge data to the new version

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Using Nikon Capture NX2 With Adobe Bridge CS4

October 15, 2009 by · 10 Comments
Filed under: Features 

Frequent visitors to this site know that I’m a big fan of Adobe Bridge CS4. However, if you’re a Nikon user who shoots raw, then you might prefer using Nikon Capture NX for your raw conversions, rather than Adobe Camera Raw. Capture NX is a great program, and, because it’s made by Nikon, does far better with some Nikon raw files than Camera Raw does. However, the workflow tools in NX and NX2 don’t compare to Bridge CS4, but fortunately, there’s an easy way to integrate the two programs.

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Forcing Thumbnails to Rebuild in Bridge CS4

July 10, 2009 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Features 

If you’ve read this, then you already know that I’m a big fan of Adobe Bridge CS4. It has become my default workflow tool, and is now where I begin all of my post-production work. Like any piece of software, Bridge isn’t perfect, and there are some features I’d love to see in Bridge CS5, such as a histogram display within Bridge, the ability to export Collections and Smart Collections. And, like any piece of software, Bridge also has some bugs. One of the ones that bites me from time to time is Bridge’s occasional refusal to render thumbnails for some raw files. I haven’t found any official workaround for this bug (and maybe I’m the only one who’s having it, though I have experienced it on several different machines) but there is a quick and easy fix for the problem.

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Better Workflow with Bridge CS4

February 27, 2009 by · 82 Comments
Filed under: Features 

Photoshop CS4 packs a number of cool new features, from interface changes to the amazing new resizing tools. But unequivocally, the feature that makes this upgrade a no-brainer is Bridge CS4. While it may sounds a little strange to get excited over what has, in the past, been nothing more than a file browser, over the last few months Bridge CS4 has proven to be the workflow tool that I’ve been waiting for for years.

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Nikon Capture NX2

August 20, 2008 by · 4 Comments
Filed under: Reviews 

Capture NX2

Capture NX2 is the eagerly-awaited follow-up to Nikon’s excellent image editing, raw conversion software. While the raw converter only works with Nikon cameras, the editor itself is also compatible with TIFF or JPEG files. Why should you care if you don’t shoot with a Nikon camera? Because Capture NX includes extremeley powerful editing tools wrapped up in a completely non-destructive editing environment.

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Movie: Diptychs, Triptychs, and Contact Sheets

July 27, 2008 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Automator Tutorial Movies 

With version 5 of the Photoshop Automator Actions, creating diptychs, triptychs, and contact sheets is a snap. And combining contact sheet creation with the flexibility of Automator makes really cool automated workflows possible.

For example, you can define workflows that automatically create contact sheets and upload them to clients. All of the details of these three new actions are covered in this tutorial movie.

Diptychs, Triptychs, and Contact Sheets

Download Photoshop for Automator

Movie: Triggering Automator Workflows

July 27, 2008 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Automator Tutorial Movies 

The Photoshop Automator Actions, let you create extremely complex workflows for automating your most complex Photoshop workflow headaches. Once you’ve built a workflow that handles your Photoshop chores, you’ll want to think about what the best way is to launch that workflow.

Automator provides a number of different ways to launch workflows. In this video, you’ll learn the various options that Snow Leopard provides for launching Automator workflows, from Services to Folder Actions, to stand-alone applications.

Triggering Automator Workflows

Download Photoshop for Automator

Movie: Using Open and Render

July 27, 2008 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Automator Tutorial Movies 

If you’re driving Photoshop with the Photoshop Automator Actions, then it’s essential that you understand how the Open and Render actions work.

Open and Render not only allow Automator to work more efficiently when driving Photoshop, they also provide powerful saving options, and the ability to create more complex workflows.

Click to watch Using Open and Render

Download Photoshop for Automator

Movie: Intro to Photoshop & Automator

July 27, 2008 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Automator Tutorial Movies 

To help you get started with the Photoshop for Automator collection of Automator actions, here’s the first in a series of tutorial movies. Using Automator is not hard, and getting oriented is easy enough, as you’ll see in this video.

If you already have some experience with Automator then this video might not have much to offer, so you’ll probably want to move on to this movie.

Click to watch Intro to Photoshop & Automator

Download Photoshop for Automator

Batch Converting DNGs to JPEGs

March 30, 2008 by · 5 Comments
Filed under: Features 
DNG

Reader Bill Baum writes in asking if it’s possible to batch convert DNG files to JPEGs. Bill says that several years ago, he converted several thousand images to DNG, but now wants them as JPEGs to ease the process of working with them in Nikon Capture NX, which doesn’t natively read DNG files. Fortunately, if you have Photoshop CS2 or CS3, you can easily use Bridge to batch process DNG conversions into JPEGs, Photoshop files, or TIFFs.

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Convert Raw to DNG Automator Action

January 10, 2008 by · 28 Comments
Filed under: Automator Actions 

Adobe’s Digital Negative Specification, or DNG format, provides an open standard for the storage of raw camera data. However, since few cameras can store directly into Digital Negative format, if you want to take advantage of DNG, you first need to convert your existing raw files to DNG format using the Adobe DNG Converter. Mac users running OS X 10.4 ("Tiger") or later can ease their conversion tasks using this Automator action, which lets you batch process your DNG conversions, as well as include DNG conversion in a more complex image processing pipeline. This updated version adds Leopard support as well as the ability to convert Sony SR2 files.

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Easier Export from Photoshop

November 6, 2007 by · 5 Comments
Filed under: Features 
Bridge CS3

No matter how good your Photoshop skills are, all that maniacal adjustment, correction, and retouching is irrelevant if you can’t get your images out of your computer. Whether you’re ultimately outputting to print, or as electronic files, Photoshop offers a few hidden features that make file conversion and batch printing much easier. If you do a lot of printing, these features will also help you minimize paper waste when making test prints.

Using the Photoshop Action Pack with Lightroom and Aperture

October 10, 2007 by · 4 Comments
Filed under: Automator Actions 
Automator

If you’re a Mac user who uses Adobe Lightroom, or Apple Aperture and Photoshop, then you might find my Photoshop Action Pack to be a great add-on, as it allows you to add some automated Photoshop functionality to your Lightroom or Aperture workflow. In addition to facilitating more complex post-production workflows, the Action Pack allows you to create a simple procedure that allows you to easily access Photoshop functionality that is not provided in either of those other two programs. From Photoshop filters, to HDR merges, this technique makes it easy to effectively add Photoshop features to either Lightroom or Aperture.

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Should you use Lightroom or Aperture?

June 20, 2007 by · 12 Comments
Filed under: Reviews 

Over on Macworld.com, they‚ just posted my comparison review of Adobe Lightroom and Apple Aperture. Ben and I have been working on the two image-management and editing applications for quite some time, and it’s hard to say which one is the clear winner. Aperture is without a doubt the more polished and mature product: its organizational structure, with “smart” albums and Web galleries, are really hard to beat when you‚Äôre working with lots of different projects. Lightroom doesn’t have that core organizational strength, but it does have a wonderful editing module in Develop, both HTML- and Flash-based Web galleries, and slightly better printing flexibility (although it lacks Aperture’s great book-printing module).

We get asked quite a bit, “Which product should I buy?” but there’s no simple explanation. You can do the same tasks in both programs‚ really is more how you want to work. If you’re the type of person who works on multiple projects at different times, and you want to be able to jump in and out of them without losing your train of thought, Aperture definitely is a better choice. If editing is more important than how you organize your photos‚ you’re willing to be a bit more involved in how you store your images‚ Lightroom might work better for you.

Luckily both Apple and Adobe offer fully functional 30-day demos of both programs. If, after reading the piece, you’re still on the fence, we suggest downloading both programs. Put 100 or 200 images in each and work with them and see how they feel for you. (It’s also a good way to get a sense of how well they will perform on your system‚ it’s hard for us to come up with a clear-cut way to measure performance, given the wide array of Intel and PowerPC systems out there, especially when you factor in video cards, which also affect performance.)

Of course, if you’re a Windows user, you’re pretty much limited to Lightroom, which isn’t a bad thing.


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