The Double RAW Conversion

Following on from my previous post on investing in Calvin Hollywood’s training DVD [Click Here] I have been spending alot of time going through the techniques and trying a number of them out on my photographs.  One of the techniques I have learnt from Calvin Hollywood is the Double RAW conversion.   So what is the Double RAW Conversion?  It is a non-destructive way of editing an image within Adobe Bridge and getting more detail and contrast out of your images.

It is really easy and I shall explain how you can achieve it in a few easy to follow steps –

Step 1
The first thing to do is to open your image in Adobe Camera RAW

Step 2
Whilst holding the SHIFT key down you will notice that in teh bottom right hand side where you have your commands, the task of OPEN IMAGE changes to OPEN OBJECT.  Click OPEN OBJECT and you will be taken to Photoshop.  What you will notice straight away is that the small image icon in your layers pallette has a small rectangle in there.  This shows that it is now a SMART OBJECT.

Step 3
Go to LAYER and find SMART OBJECTS which when highlighted will give you the option of NEW SMART OBJECT VIA COPY.  You cannot just copy this layer by pressing CMND/Cntrl J.  Alternatively, you can right click your mouse/pen and open a COPY of your smart object.

Step 4
When you have your new copy layer this is where the creativity begins.  Highlight the new layer which you have created.  When you have highlighted it double click the small picture within the layer.  You will find yourself back in Adobe Bridge.  Here you can begin your adjustments.

This is what I do:

White balance
Fill Light (70-80)
Blacks (80-90)
Clarity (50)

You may notice that the image is quite saturated, so go to the SATURATION slider and reduce it until it looks less saturated.  If you want you can also reduce the saturation fully to -100 if you wanted a black and white image.

Step 5
When you are back in Photoshop change your blend mode.  In my opinion I find that a good starting point is SOFT LIGHT.  However, if you have not experimented much with the different blend modes then select NORMAL and go through them one by one, as each blend mode does something different to the outcome of your image.

Image 1
RAW image converted to jpeg – no adjustments

Image 2
Double RAW conversion then converted to jpeg

Thanks for reading and please let me know what you think!


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Calvin Hollywood