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Thread started 03 May 2007 (Thursday) 20:06
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Question for Lightroom users: Do you crop originals or make virtual copies to crop?

 
TMR ­ Design
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May 03, 2007 20:06 |  #1

The subject says it all.

I am now really starting to get a workflow going and develop the presets that I need when using Lightroom. I know that editing is non-destructive and you can always go back but I was just wondering how others work.

In addition to exposure and color settings, one of the first things I do is crop my images. I begin to crop the originals and then realized that unless I go back to the Develop module and reset the crop I can't see the original. So I'm thinking that the best way to work is to first make a virtual copy and then begin the editing process.

Is this what others do? Is there a better way to do this? Is this better done with snapshots?


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EOSAddict
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May 04, 2007 05:57 |  #2

I tend to process, develop then crop last. So I would create a snapshot and crop that.


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In2Photos
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May 04, 2007 07:14 as a reply to  @ EOSAddict's post |  #3

It depends on the purpose of the crop. If I am cropping for a specific size I will most likely do a virtual copy. If the purpose of the crop is to remove something from every image (like a stray branch in a landscape scene or something) then I will crop the original.


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TMR ­ Design
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May 04, 2007 08:11 |  #4

EOSAddict wrote in post #3149656 (external link)
I tend to process, develop then crop last. So I would create a snapshot and crop that.

Thanks Al

In2Photos wrote in post #3149859 (external link)
It depends on the purpose of the crop. If I am cropping for a specific size I will most likely do a virtual copy. If the purpose of the crop is to remove something from every image (like a stray branch in a landscape scene or something) then I will crop the original.

Hi Mike,

Ok, I should have given some more information. I'm doing headshots. I've selected about 25 keepers out of 63 shots. I find that I like to have at least a working crop before I begin processing or developing in wither LR or PS. I want things to flow and be as simple as possible and I like to be able to have, at any time, a reference to the original shot, just as if I was in PS and first duplicated the layer before doing any editing. I played around a bit and found that making virtual copies and them marking them as 'flag as pick' lets me filter and view only my picks, or I can turn off the flag filter and then see the whole folder of originals and virtual copies, and can compare thumb previews or use Compare to look at both in a larger preview.

Does this make sense or am I making extra work for myself? The snapshot works well and I can toggle between 2 versions but can't see them side by side? Can I?


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May 04, 2007 08:18 |  #5

TMR Design wrote in post #3150063 (external link)
Hi Mike,

Ok, I should have given some more information. I'm doing headshots. I've selected about 25 keepers out of 63 shots. I find that I like to have at least a working crop before I begin processing or developing in wither LR or PS. I want things to flow and be as simple as possible and I like to be able to have, at any time, a reference to the original shot, just as if I was in PS and first duplicated the layer before doing any editing. I played around a bit and found that making virtual copies and them marking them as 'flag as pick' lets me filter and view only my picks, or I can turn off the flag filter and then see the whole folder of originals and virtual copies, and can compare thumb previews or use Compare to look at both in a larger preview.

Does this make sense or am I making extra work for myself? The snapshot works well and I can toggle between 2 versions but can't see them side by side? Can I?

It sounds like you have figured out a way that works for you. If I am not mistaken the only way that you can see the snapshot and the final is to use the compare before/after view. Supposedly you can click an arrow to change the history point of the before. I read this on the adobe forums but have not tried it out yet.


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May 04, 2007 10:52 |  #6

Not Lightroom specific, but I always develop the entire photo, and then crop in Photoshop, right before sharpening and printing. This is mainly because one crop won't make 4x6, 5x7 and an 8x10 since they're all different aspect ratios. Cropping last means developing once and leaving all size options open.


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May 04, 2007 10:55 |  #7

Keep original, make copy to work on.


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TMR ­ Design
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May 04, 2007 11:16 |  #8

Scottes wrote in post #3150823 (external link)
Not Lightroom specific, but I always develop the entire photo, and then crop in Photoshop, right before sharpening and printing. This is mainly because one crop won't make 4x6, 5x7 and an 8x10 since they're all different aspect ratios. Cropping last means developing once and leaving all size options open.

Thank you Scottes. That makes very good sense. I wasn't looking at it that way.


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May 04, 2007 11:20 |  #9

Scottes wrote in post #3150823 (external link)
Not Lightroom specific, but I always develop the entire photo, and then crop in Photoshop, right before sharpening and printing. This is mainly because one crop won't make 4x6, 5x7 and an 8x10 since they're all different aspect ratios. Cropping last means developing once and leaving all size options open.

I agree for Photoshop, but with Lightroom having the ability to go back to the original state it is certainly hard to say.

Also, when you crop in Lightroom the histogram now only shows the current pixels (not all pixels of the original) so you can edit levels and curves more accuartely (if something you cropped out would affect your outcome).


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May 04, 2007 11:26 as a reply to  @ In2Photos's post |  #10

Right Mike. This is why I was performing rough crops initially. I'm going to work with it a bit more before I settle into something. I don't print myself but I do want to output crops for carious print sizes.


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May 04, 2007 11:32 |  #11

I generally crop & straighten first on the original in Lightroom to give me a more acurate histogram. Having said that, if I was cropping to fit into a specific format I would create a virtual copy after my original crop.


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May 04, 2007 12:25 |  #12

In2Photos wrote in post #3150951 (external link)
I agree for Photoshop, but with Lightroom having the ability to go back to the original state it is certainly hard to say.

What is "go back to the original state" ?? Does that mean it removes all edits (color changes, etc)? Then it's not a big deal. Or does it mean that it can remove the crop and apply edits to the entire photo? Then I would crop first to get the accurate histogram, since it's not really a crop if it doesn't remove pixels.

In2Photos wrote in post #3150951 (external link)
Also, when you crop in Lightroom the histogram now only shows the current pixels (not all pixels of the original) so you can edit levels and curves more accuartely (if something you cropped out would affect your outcome).

That is nice.

But does the crop actually or effectively remove pixels? Or does it just "highlight" a region so that edits (histogram, etc) are more accurate to that region?


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May 04, 2007 13:05 |  #13

Scottes wrote in post #3151284 (external link)
What is "go back to the original state" ?? Does that mean it removes all edits (color changes, etc)? Then it's not a big deal. Or does it mean that it can remove the crop and apply edits to the entire photo? Then I would crop first to get the accurate histogram, since it's not really a crop if it doesn't remove pixels.

You can clear the crop without altering any edits that you made, just like when using ACR to edit a RAW file.

That is nice.

But does the crop actually or effectively remove pixels? Or does it just "highlight" a region so that edits (histogram, etc) are more accurate to that region?

You don't completely lose the pixels, but the histogram only reflects those left from the crop. If you remove the crop then the histogram would reflect the entire photo again.


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May 06, 2007 20:37 |  #14

Scottes wrote in post #3150823 (external link)
Not Lightroom specific, but I always develop the entire photo, and then crop in Photoshop, right before sharpening and printing. This is mainly because one crop won't make 4x6, 5x7 and an 8x10 since they're all different aspect ratios. Cropping last means developing once and leaving all size options open.

Oooo....wiser words have never been spoken! I wished I learned this ages ago...instead, I've learned the hard way! People ring me and ask for a 5x7 of an image I cropped into 6x4 format ages ago....damn...it still bugs me...how could I be so stoopid?



  
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May 06, 2007 20:42 as a reply to  @ Meaty0's post |  #15

Hi Paul,

Well, if we're smart we learn from our mistakes. I just did that myself. I had posted this originally while in the process of doing my rough crops to begin the editing process thinking I was approaching it logically. NOT SO!

Like you, I am kicking myself but learned a valuable lesson. I should have done all my processing first and then done the crops.

When creating the crops, do you use virtual copies for each crop size? How do you handle the different sizes?


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Question for Lightroom users: Do you crop originals or make virtual copies to crop?
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