A simple tip for one-stop photo editing

by | Digital Photography Tips, Scrapbooking Supplies | 7 comments

If you are a Photoshop or Photoshop Elements user (and have one of the latest versions), then there is a fantastic photo editing secret just begging you to dig for it! It is so fantastic, I’m busting at the seams to share it with you. But, let me back up and explain something first.

You may have read about the benefits of shooting your photos in RAW format, most important being complete control of your image in post production. Basically you are handed everything the camera sees, instead of a condensed “best guess”. However, not all cameras have this option (especially point & shoots) and the files can be several times as large, hogging precious memory card space.

When you try to open a photo that is in a RAW file format (i.e. your camera’s native RAW format) using Photoshop or PSE, it will open using the amazing default plug-in called Adobe Camera RAW. Whether you open more or multiple photos, with ACR (as its called) you can make a whole suite of adjustments (white balance, contrast, brightness etc.) from one single control panel of sliders. This greatly expedites processing.

Now here’s the secret tip – JPEGs and TIFFs can be opened with ACR too! While you are not retaining the full spectrum of image information as with a RAW file, you are able to leverage the intuitive and efficient editing capabilities of Adobe Camera RAW. So here’s how:

  1. Open your Adobe software
  2. Go to “File” > “Open”
  3. Select the image you wish to open in ACR
  4. Look for the “Format” drop-down
  5. Select “Camera RAW” and click “Open”

It’s that easy! For more beginner reading on RAW, visit this great series at Adobe Press.

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  1. Christine

    Now THAT is really awesome! And something I didn’t know! I’ll have to try it out. The interface looks a lot like Adobe Lightroom, with the sliders.

    Christine’s last blog post..A Little Sunshine Coming Your Way

  2. Jennifer

    Reading about the differences between using Adobe Camera RAW and Lightroom for editing made me decide that buying Lightroom was maybe not worth it, for now. The presets still have me drooling though, because Photoshop actions are well, so… manual.

    I’m still figuring out how to leverage Bridge as the center of my workflow – lots more to read and learn.

  3. A Canuck

    You can open in RAW from Bridge in CS4 with the the following shortcut: . Every little bit helps to speed up the time I spend editing photos!

  4. A Canuck

    Okay, so the program left out the shortcut above! Hit the control key, and the r key at the same time… 🙂

    • Jennifer

      I so wish that shortcut worked in PSE… maybe the next version!

  5. Larry

    Awesome photo editing tips for beginner! Loving how you demonstrate it.


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