RAW+JPEG Disconnect

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Today’s Question: Somehow I must have messed with my camera settings, because when I shot some photos yesterday, I noticed in Lightroom that for each image I had RAW plus JPEG. I couldn’t figure out how to delete only the JPEGs. The nub of the problem is that in Lightroom only the RAW capture is visible. I finally did the unthinkable. I deleted the JPEGs from the operating system, and it worked just fine. How do you find the JPEGs in LR and how do you get rid of them?

Tim’s Quick Answer: In this case, deleting the JPEG images from the operating system was actually your only option, because they were not being managed in Lightroom. Your settings are such that Lightroom only imported the raw captures. The JPEG captures will have been copied to the same location, but not imported into your Lightroom catalog.

More Detail: By default, Lightroom will only import the raw capture for a RAW+JPEG set. The JPEG images will still be copied to the same folder location as the raw captures, but only the raw captures will actually be imported into your catalog. The idea is that the JPEG files are superfluous in the context of a Lightroom-based workflow.

So, since the JPEG images in this case are not being managed by Lightroom, you can safely remove the JPEG images from the hard drive through your operating system without any impact on your Lightroom catalog. Of course, you’ll want to exercise caution to make sure you are only deleting JPEG images that have a corresponding raw capture (they will have the same base filename), but that is relatively straightforward to watch for.

If you wanted to import the JPEG images along with the raw captures, you could turn on the “Treat JPEG files next to raw files as separate photos” checkbox on the General tab of the Preferences dialog in Lightroom. This would cause both the raw and the JPEG images to be imported into Lightroom if you import a set of photos captured with the RAW+JPEG option in the camera. In that case you could certainly filter by camera model and file format to remove the JPEG images without affecting the raw captures.

And, of course, you can turn off the RAW+JPEG feature so you are only capturing in the raw capture format, so that you don’t have this confusion in the future.

Settings versus Preferences

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Today’s Question: I don’t understand why the various settings in Lightroom’s Catalog Settings dialog couldn’t just be put in the Preferences dialog. Is there some reason these options need to be separated?

Tim’s Quick Answer: There is actually a very important distinction between the Preferences and Catalog Settings dialogs in Lightroom Classic CC. The Preferences settings apply to the entirety of your Lightroom installation, while the Catalog Settings only relate to the catalog that is currently open. In other words, you can have different settings for each catalog in Lightroom through the Catalog Settings dialog.

More Detail: While I certainly can’t address the internal decision-making at Adobe as it relates to Lightroom, I can say that I very much appreciate that these two dialogs are separate, since there is a very important distinction between them.

As noted above, the settings in the Preferences dialog apply to the local Lightroom installation. That means that no matter which catalog you open, the settings in Preferences will apply equally.

By contrast, the settings found in the Catalog Settings dialog only apply to the current catalog. It is therefore possible to have different settings for different catalogs, if you use more than one catalog in your workflow.

Of course, this also means you could create an issue where you change the settings for one catalog in the Catalog Settings dialog, but then don’t make the same changes for any other catalogs you’re using.

So, any changes made in the Preferences dialog will apply universally to your Lightroom installation. Changes made in the Catalog Settings dialog will only affect the current catalog, so you will need to open each of your catalogs and update the settings if you want those changes to apply to more than just the current catalog.

Transparency Error

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Today’s Question: Sometimes when I have worked in the Book Module [in Lightroom Classic CC] I get a message just before I send my work to Blurb. It says “Some photos in the book have transparency. The transparent area will show as opaque in your book”. When I go to each photo referenced, I cannot see anything that renders the photos defective and I am not even sure I know what transparency even means. Can you help me understand this issue and is it something I should be concerned with?

Tim’s Quick Answer: You can think of “transparency” in this context as areas of a photo that don’t have any pixels, or that has pixels that are hidden. Because Lightroom does not support transparency, that will translate to areas of the image that are white, which generally would not be a problem. In other words, in most cases you can simply ignore this message, though you can test the output first with a PDF document.

More Detail: While Lightroom does not support image transparency directly, it does support image formats that can contain transparency. A common use of transparency is to place a graphic against a background. For example, you might have a round logo you want to place against a textured background. Instead of having that round logo appear on top of a white rectangle, which in turn is placed on the textured background, transparency enables you to avoid the visible white rectangle.

You can create transparency in Photoshop in a variety of ways, such as through the use of a layer mask. In this case, I suspect you have some layered TIFF images in Lightroom that contain some degree of transparency that doesn’t actually result in any area that doesn’t include pixels. Lightroom can’t tell, however, whether the transparency might create a problem for your book, to the alert is given anytime an image included in a book project includes transparency.

You can test the result by first creating a PDF document for your book. At the bottom of the left panel in the Book module you can click the “Export Book to PDF” in order to render a PDF version of your book. You can then review that document to make sure the images with transparency appear correctly. For example, you would want to make sure that an image was not cropped to create edges that are not at right angles, because that could result in a warped appearance on the printed page.

If the PDF looks good, you can ignore the error and proceed with production of your book. If you want to avoid the error altogether, you could create your book with JPEG (or flattened) copies of your images. But again, in most cases the error is not an issue and can be ignored after you’ve reviewed a PDF copy of the book.

Auto Adjustment on Import

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Today’s Question: I have discovered that in the Develop mode the first thing that I do is to click on the Auto button. While Auto is usually not perfect it is a great beginning and seems to lessen the adjustments that I have to make. Is there a way to apply the Auto setting in the Develop mode to all of the new files upon importing?

Tim’s Quick Answer: You can indeed apply the Auto adjustment to all images during import into Lightroom by including the “Auto Settings” option for the preset you’ll apply during import.

More Detail: The presets you create in the Develop module can be applied directly within the Develop module, or during import. Those presets can also include only selected adjustments, so that you’re not completely replacing all of the default adjustments for images to which you apply a preset.

To create a new preset I recommend first selecting an image in the Develop module to which you have not yet applied any adjustments. You could even click the “Reset” button at the bottom of the right panel in the Develop module to make sure you’re creating your preset based on the default set of adjustments.

Next, refine any of the adjustments you’d like to include as part of the preset you’ll create. There’s no need to apply the Auto adjustment at this stage, and of course there’s no reason to actually adjust the Tone and Presence adjustments that are refined by the Auto adjustment.

After setting the adjustments as you’d like them to be included in the preset, click the plus button (+) to the right of the Presets header on the left panel, and choose “Create Preset” from the popup menu.

In the New Develop Preset dialog enter a meaningful name for the preset in the Preset Name field at the top of the dialog. Note that you’ll later be selecting this preset by name, so a descriptive name is best. You can also select which Group (folder) you’d like to save the preset in.

You can then click the “Check None” button at the bottom-left of the New Develop Preset dialog so that none of the adjustments are active (other than the Process Version option, which should always be left on for presets). Then turn on the Auto Settings checkbox near the top of the dialog, along with the checkboxes for any other adjustments you’d like to include in the preset.

When you’re finished selecting the adjustments you’d like to include in the preset, click the Create button to save the preset and close the New Develop Preset dialog.

With the preset created, you can then select it from the Develop Settings popup in the Apply During Import section of the right panel in the Import dialog. The Auto Settings option will cause each image to be analyzed and adjusted with the Auto adjustment individually, while other adjustments saved with the preset will be applied with the same settings for all photos to which the preset is applied.

TV versus Monitor

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Today’s Question: I can get a nice 32-inch, 4K, name-brand monitor for about $600. I can get a 40-inch, 4K, name-brand television for $300. Why should I buy the monitor rather than the TV?

Tim’s Quick Answer: In general, a television can provide an equivalent viewing experience compared to a computer monitor. There are a handful of features to check for, but provided the TV has adequate specifications, you can most certainly use a TV in place of a computer monitor.

More Detail: A television is obviously virtually identical to a computer monitor in terms of the core feature of presenting an image on the screen. The primary difference is the intended use, which in turn impacts some of the commonly available features.

For example, a TV will often support different input options compared to a computer monitor. You will therefore want to confirm that any TV you purchase supports and input that your computer also supports. Many computers, for example, support an HDMI connection, which is supported by virtually all TVs and many computer monitors.

Another potential issue is the lag time for a TV compared to a computer monitor. Lag time can create a delayed presentation or poor playback in some situations, but this is mostly an issue for advanced games as opposed to typical photo or video applications. Most newer TVs don’t have a major issue with lag, and many include an option to turn off processing so the lag goes away. If possible, I would opt for a TV that includes the option to turn off processing for this purpose.

Finally, a higher refresh rate can be helpful, although this is also primarily an issue for games and not generally significant for photo or video applications. That said, many TVs are limited to a 60 Hertz refresh rate, compared to a 120 Hertz refresh rate that is common for monitors. If possible, I would opt for a TV with a 120 Hertz refresh rate.

In general there are not significant concerns with using a TV in place of a computer monitor. As a general rule, if you opt for a high-quality TV, you’ll have an excellent experience with a potentially larger display at a smaller price compared to a dedicated computer display.

Unwanted Text

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Today’s Question: When I am in Photoshop and select the Type tool I am getting “Lorum  Ipsum “ text. How do I turn this off? It is most prominent when I choose the type tool and then click and drag on the image to create a box within which to type.

Tim’s Quick Answer: This “Lorem Ipsum” text is the new “placeholder text” feature added with a recent update to Photoshop. You can turn it off on the Type page of the Preferences dialog.

More Detail: Graphic designers and others to create page layouts often need to create the overall look of a page before the text for that page has actually been finalized. In those cases, it is common to add “fake” text so that the overall typography and page layout can be reviewed. For decades the “Lorem Ipsum” text has been in wide use for this purpose.

With a recent update, Photoshop now defaults to including the “Lorem Ipsum” text whenever you add a text layer. This could be done by clicking in a document with the Type tool, or clicking and dragging to create a text box. In the case of the latter, you’ll generally have more of the “Lorem Ipsum” text included in the new text box.

If you prefer to turn off this feature, you can do so in the Preferences dialog. Start by going to the menu and choosing Photoshop > Preferences > Type on the Macintosh version of Photoshop, or Edit > Preferences > Type on the Windows version. Then, on the Type page of the Preferences dialog, turn off the “Fill new type layers with placeholder text” checkbox near the bottom of the “Type” section within this page of the Preferences dialog.

After turning off this checkbox and clicking the OK button to apply the change and close the Preferences dialog, you will no longer see the “Lorem Ipsum” placeholder text when you add a new text layer to a document in Photoshop.

Alternative Lens Caps

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Today’s Question: On my long zoom lenses, the hoods are large and long, making it cumbersome to remove regular lens caps. Do you know of any common items that can serve as a lens hood cover, so there’s no need to have the lens cap when using hoods?

Tim’s Quick Answer: Two options that I think are worth looking at as a replacement lens cap for longer lenses are the LensCoat Hoodie Lens Caps and the Don Zeck Lens Cap.

More Detail: For long lenses it can certainly be a challenge to make use of the standard lens cap, especially if you keep the lens hood attached to your lens (either in the shooting position or reversed).  I have found a couple of options over the years that provide unique alternatives to the standard lens cap for longer lenses (and even for some shorter lenses).

One solution is the Hoodie Lens Cap from LensCoat. Many of you may be familiar with LensCoat for their namesake product, which is a series of neoprene bands that fit around your lenses to provide a number of benefits. They also produce neoprene lens covers for a variety of lenses, which can be used with the lens hood attached in either position. You can find the LensCoat Hoodie Lens Caps on their website here:

http://www.lenscoat.com/hoodie-lens-caps-c-5.html

In addition, some time ago I was introduced to the unique Don Zeck Lens Cap. You will find caps that are compatible with a variety of Canon and Nikon telephoto lenses, and which can be used with or without the lens hood attached. The unique (and patented) design slides inside the shape of the lens, rather than wrapping around the outside of the lens or hood. You can get more information on the Don Zeck Lens Cap website here:

http://donzecklenscap.com/

These are just a couple of options I know about. If any readers know of other great options for alternative lens caps for telephoto lenses, please let me know.

Recovering Deleted Photos

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Today’s Question: Accidentally formatted a 16 MB CF card that had (many) photos. I immediately withdrew card and have not done anything with it since. Is there a way to read that card without damage to the photos?

Tim’s Quick Answer: As long as a “normal” format was performed for the card, there are a wide variety of software tools that can be used to recover photos. For example, SanDisk recommends RescuePro software for photo recovery, which includes the ability to recover photos that have been deleted (including when a card is formatted).

More Detail: In most cases when you delete a photo from a media card, or even format that media card, the data for your photos isn’t actually removed from the card. Instead, the table of contents for the card is updated to indicate that the space occupied by those files is free. Until you write new data to the card, the “deleted” data can generally still be recovered.

There are a variety of software tools available for data recovery in this type of situation. One that is recommended by SanDisk is RescuePro. You can find the Macintosh version by following this link:

http://www.lc-tech.com/mac/rescuepro-standard-and-rescuepro-deluxe/

The Windows version of RescuePro can be found here:

https://www.lc-tech.com/pc/sandisk-rescuepro-and-rescuepro-deluxe/

With software such as RescuePro, the card you’re having an issue with can be scanned for photos that can be recovered.

Some cameras provide a “secure” option for formatting a card, which involves overwriting the card with empty data to ensure that data on the card cannot be recovered with software such as RescuePro. If that type of format was performed, the data on the card generally can’t be recovered.

However, most cameras use a more basic format option that will still enable you to recover the photos that were “deleted” by the format operation. The key is to use software such as RescuePro before any other data is written to the card.

Recovery Challenge

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Today’s Question: Your question [about missing photos in Lightroom after upgrading to a larger hard drive] was timely. I had a portable hard drive failure and some data was not recoverable. I now need to redirect Lightroom to the hard drive backup copy. Unfortunately, I don’t recall the exact name of the drive that crashed. Is that stored in the Lightroom information on my MacBook Pro? Your answer said renaming the new drive to the exact name of the old drive was required.

Tim’s Quick Answer: The name (or drive letter) for your storage devices is indeed available within Lightroom Classic CC. You’ll find the name (or letter) for each drive on the header above the folder list for each drive in the Folders section of the left panel in the Library module.

More Detail: As noted in a previous answer, if you are upgrading to a larger hard drive (or recovering from a backup due to a failed drive), the transition can be very easy if you simply ensure that the new hard drive has the same file and folder structure, as well as the name for the drive.

For Windows users, that drive “name” is a drive letter. For Macintosh users the drive name is actually a name, generally referred to as a volume label.

Within Lightroom you can find this information in the Folders section of the left panel in the Library module. For each storage device (such as an external hard drive) that is being used to store photos that are managed by your Lightroom catalog, you will see a header bar for the drive above the list of folders stored on that drive.

Windows users will see the drive letter in that location, such as “D:” for a hard drive that has been assigned the letter D. Macintosh users will see the name of the drive, which can consist of letters and numbers. So, for example, a Macintosh user might have named an external hard drive “Photos”.

The information found for the hard drive in the Folders section of the left panel in the Library module can then be used to inform how you approach the process of assigning a drive letter or name to the drive in order to recover your photos with minimal disruption.

As a reminder, you can view the answer about actually changing the drive letter or name for a hard drive in the previous Ask Tim Grey eNewsletter here:

http://asktimgrey.com/2018/11/23/storage-confusion/

Color Mismatch

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Today’s Question: When I modify a photo in Lightroom using “Develop” and then go back to “Library” it changes the adjustments like a preset is being automatically applied. I have not been able to turn this off. Any suggestions?

Tim’s Quick Answer: While there are differences in how the preview images are rendered by Lightroom for the Library versus Develop modules, in most cases if there is a significant change in appearance it is caused by an incorrect display profile configuration. This can generally be resolved with excellent results by calibrating your monitor display.

More Detail: The preview in Lightroom’s Develop module is the most accurate preview, because it is rendered in real time based on the original capture combined with the adjustment settings you have applied. In the other modules a JPEG preview is generated and stored in a preview cache, in order to speed up display performance.

In some cases there will be minor differences in the previews from these modules. However, with a calibrated display my experience is that there is no visible difference between the modules. This underscores the importance of display calibration, even in this modern era of digital photography. In fact, I’ve published a blog post about how it seems photographers have forgotten about display calibration (and how to best solve this issue), which you can find on the GreyLearning Blog here:

http://greylearningblog.com/a-forgotten-skill-among-photographers/

As noted in the article linked above, if you calibrate your monitor display you can expect a more accurate appearance for your photos, and an improved workflow from the perspective of color management.

In the context of Lightroom specifically, I have found that calibrating the display will result in preview images in both the Library and Develop modules that are generally a nearly perfect match.

Thus, the first step is display calibration, and as part of that process confirming that an accurate profile is set as the default profile for your display. Fortunately, this latter task is one that most software for display calibration will manage for you automatically.