Adobe Camera Raw 11.4 Crop Orientation
The latest update to Adobe Camera Raw (184.108.40.2063) has re-introduced a workflow problem that Adobe corrected years ago.
When a range of images with mixed orientations (portrait and landscape) are selected and a crop applied to them (or sync with crop selected), they are now all cropped to the same orientation of the first image.
Until this recent update, applying a crop to multiple images respected the orientation of the images - i.e. landscape images were cropped landscape and portrait images were cropped portrait. This makes sense and was a major advancement when introduced years ago but it has now been reverted back.
In my workflow as a professional photographer processing hundreds of images at a time with mixed orientations, the first step I do when processing a set of images in ACR is apply a 2:3 crop (the native aspect ration of the photos) with ‘Constrain to image’ selected to the full area of all images (simply [Ctrl]+[A] to select all and drag a crop around the whole of the first image). This is necessary so that if any manual Transform adjustments are applied to an image, the crop is adjusted to fit the image and no blank areas remain at the edges
A ‘Constrain to image’ crop may not be required for auto transformation corrections as ACR adjusts the scale to constrain to the image but I rarely use them as the AI’s best-guess is more often wrong than right.
I also often apply a crop to all images that covers around 80% of the centre of the images. This is because I will often intentionally shoot around 20% wider than the ideal crop. This allows for more cropping options (for marketing and editorial work), safeguards against a subject suddenly moving out of frame (i.e. when shooting live dance performances), flexibility in perspective corrections, etc. (and is one of the advantages of shooting on high megapixel cameras).
So again, in this workflow, the crop needs to respect the original orientation of the images.
I can think of no workflow situation where cropping all images, landscape and portrait, to the same orientation would be advantageous. Images are shot in different orientations for a reason.
Adobe, please correct this back ASAP.
Or at least give the users an option in the preferences to ‘Respect Orientation when Cropping’.