Processing RAW images in Photoshop

Visual Voyager Forums Techniques Processing RAW images in Photoshop

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    When I first used a digital camera, it was a point-and-shoot that only shot JPEGs. It was only 2 megapixels. When I moved up to a DSLR, I decided to try shooting RAW. I bought Photoshop CS2, and a book called Real World Camera RAW by Bruce Fraser

    This book takes a simple, step-by-step approach to processing RAW files. I won’t claim I follow his approach every time, but I always start with the basics he laid down:

    • set the colour temperature
    • set the black point
    • set the white point

    Oh, and always working in 16 bits per channel.

    As I moved from camera to camera, I was forced to buy more recent versions of Photoshop, partly to get a version of Adobe Camera RAW that supported my camera (yeah, I resented that, too). There were versions of this book released for each version: CS3, CS4, CS5. I bought the next version of the book, because I was switching environments (Windows XP to Mac), and learned what was different (and improved).

    How did you get started working with RAW files, and are there any resources you found especially helpful?


    i am in process of making some images for Video Animation Company but I can’t open raw/cr2 images in cs3 images in photoshop cs3. It pops up a message saying “Could not complete your request because it is not a valid Photoshop document.” Any suggestions?


    CS3 is a very old version of Photoshop (around 2007). If your CR2 files come from a camera more recent than those supported by the RAW file processor in CS3, then you won’t be able to read them directly. You may be able to convert them to DNG and process them that way (I don’t remember if CS3 supported DNG). Other than that, you will need to look for a more recent version of Photoshop, or use a different program to read the images.

    Generally speaking, each version of Photoshop only processes the RAW files of cameras released before the next version. So if you are trying to process images from a camera that became generally available in 2015, you need to be using a version of Photoshop from 2015 or later.

    If you are trying to do this without spending money, you could consider using GIMP – it’s an open source photo processing suite.

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