One of the nicest things about Photoshop is that you can already do much editing … even before you start Photoshop!
If, in fact, if you shoot in RAW (and I confirm once again, it should almost always shoot in RAW!), Before Photoshop starts Camera RAW, which is not only a tool to import, but a program of real ” RAW development“.
His instruments exactly replicate those of the Development section of Lightroom, so you can realize how much we can do at this stage t!
In its latest versions, then, camera RAW is a real Phostoshop plugin, that you can apply several times, and also to selections and specific levels.
Let’s see, now, my simple workflow processing overall image.
The first phase is the correction of errors and defects.
First, I delete what I need with the Spot Removal tool, although, in fact, prefer the Clone Stamp and the Patch of Photoshop.
The I apply Lens correction, manually if need it.
That done, if necessary, use the Dehaze tool.
Then I “pump” the shadows and increase a bit the Clarity.
I do not modify the curves, operation that prefer to do in Photoshop, and do not increase the sharpness, which I always apply in Photoshop, using Unsharp Mask (it is the last stage of my workflow).
Sometimes, then, apply local interventions by the Adjustment Brush or radial filter, although, in general, prefer the pairing Google Nik Collection + Photoshop’s Brush.
Still, I do not use for the crop cutter in Camera Raw, preferring again the Photoshop’s tool.
At this point, the general workflow is finished: with a few minutes with Camera Raw I have already brought forward a lot, avoiding many tedious tasks in Photoshop.
Obviously all you can do with Camera Raw and plugins like Google Nik collection can also be achieved with an excellent knowledge of the Photoshop tools.
Plugins (and Camera Raw can also be considered as one of them) are born but to simplify our lives: if we have fun with photography, or if you pay your bills with it, use them with tranquility, we’re not interested in proving to be “black Photoshop’s belts”!