Photoshop: Backup to (optionally) reenter some commands with prior state

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  • Updated 7 years ago
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I think that PhotoShop should have a backup command in addition to c-z and c-a-z. The idea is to "reenter" commands such as "curves" whose whole effect can be represented by a small amount of data (the coordinates of the points the user added to the curve for curves"). When the command is resumed, you are put in the state where you exited the command. You have a choice, in the current implementation, of either starting from scratch or performing the same command several times in a row. I think this idea of reentering a command would simplify my workflow and make it easier to conceptulize what I am doing.
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Jeff Barnett

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Posted 7 years ago

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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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Given your example of Curves, how much do use Adjustment Layers? That at least covers the adjustment example.
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Jeff Barnett

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I don't use the layers facility at all. I pretty much use Shop to do the kind of things I used to do in the darkroom a zillion years ago. I generally used Shop to improve what I've shot, not to invent pictures. I used curves as an example. Some other commands that would benefit from the same sort of treatment: brightness/contrast, levels, exposure, vibrance, hue/saturation, color balance, plus a lot more. It is typical to do something after these commands, spot a problem, and want to go back to the command and make a minor tweak. Consider, for example, doing a color balance then deciding you got it a little bit wrong. You want to tweak the original dialogue. Doing a color balance on top a color balance may not work so well: you might have pushed a pixel value beyond 0 or 256 or blown precision in some other way. If you decide to redo the command it becomes necessary to REMEMBER what you did and nearly reproduce it. There may be sneaks to redo some of the commands but, conceptually, what you really want is to reenter the command and continue doing what you where doing with some new knowledge. I was trying to post this idea in the "feature request" forum. I have no ides where this actually ended up.
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Chris Cox

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You're describing exactly what adjustment layers are for. You don't have to remember - it's all there, ready to be readusted.
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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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Try these tutorials and let us know if this is what you are looking for.
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Jeff Barnett

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I looked at the tutorials and read the help topic. Thanks for the pointers. The described capabilities seem to be (more than) what I'm looking for. I will need to read more about adjustment layers. Several important questions were raised: When I save, are these layers compressed in the save file? Are they comprised within Shop? If not, how do I compress them? How do I mix commands other than those in adjustment layers into the flow?

My mental model of the process was viewing the work flow as a stack where I could work on the top element, discard the top element (and reenter the one below), or create a new top element. The adjustment layers seem more flexible, if I understand correctly, in that I can reenter any adjustment layer, not just the top one. That is quite powerful. If I remember, there is some such capability with the c-z like operations. Time for me to do some more reading.

Thanks
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Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

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The Adjustment Layers are stored in a layered file format, such as a PSD or TIFF file. The file format stores all the adjustment layers and settings so you can edit them the next time you edit the file. You make compressed derivatives by choosing 'File>Save As...' and selecting a compressed, flat file format such as JPEG.