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Save multiple crop settings for a single image?

Apr 30, 2012 8:42 PM

Let me start by describing my needs. I need to generate proofs for my shoots. I'd like to export images with different aspect ratios for target devices, ie iPad, Android phone, 16:9 TV, etc. What would be really great is if I can select a named "crop setting" in the export window and generate JPGs based on the chosen setting. I've searched all over the place, all seem to talk about presets, virtual copies, etc, which really doesn't address what I want.

 

Fundamentally I'd like to be able to save a handful of crop settings (unique crops but with common names) for each image. I will create the crops manually as I have to pick the position and size for each carefully. For example, on a 4000x6000 image I have these crop settings (for a fairly small area of the image):

 

1. iPad [settings: top-left coordinate (500,500), ratio 4:3, width2000]

2. Android [settings: top-left coordinate (500,400), ratio 8:5, width 2400]

3. HDTV [settings: top-left coordinate(500,450), ratio 16:9, width 2200]

 

As you can see each crop is different becasue I want to be precise about how the cropped outputs look. Then at export time, I want to be able to multi-select a bunch of images and pick say "iPad" crop setting to create the JPGs in a batch.

 

Does anyone know if this is doable? Is there a custom plugin outside of Lightroom that can handle this?

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 30, 2012 8:47 PM   in reply to bmsramya@gmail.com

    You cannot specify crop settings in the export dialog. However, you can create as many virtual copies of the image as you need, then you can crop each one to a different aspect ratio. Then, all you need to do is export the virtual copies. This will create image files for each of those copies.  And you can create as many custom crop ratio settings as you need.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 30, 2012 8:57 PM   in reply to bmsramya@gmail.com

    Have you tried creating snapshots using different crop settings? That would put everything into the one file. As far as the clutter is concerned, you can always stack the copies. Sorry, I'm out of ideas. Maybe someone else will help.  OK,maybe just one more idea. IF you went the virtual copy route you could always auto-sync them all with the master copy, and all adjustments would be applied to all images at once.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 30, 2012 9:29 PM   in reply to bmsramya@gmail.com

    bob6876879 wrote:

     

    two problems with virtual copies:

     

    1. when a virtual copy is created, it branches off so any subsequent adjustment made to one copy is not applied to the other copies. I'd still like to make edits to the master and have it propagate to copies if possible

     

    2. having multiple virtual copies of the same image is a huge clutter on the user interface

     

    Point 1, simply adjust your master then Sync Settings to the VC's without chaging crop (part of the subset of syncing).

     

    Point 2, as said, Stacks

     

    As far as getting traction for a new feature, not likely in your use case, it's an edge case and since VCs were designed for this sort of thing, unlikely to happen.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 30, 2012 9:33 PM   in reply to Jeff Schewe

    Bob,

     

     

    Sounds like it's time for YOU to create your own plug-in.

     
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    Apr 30, 2012 10:10 PM   in reply to JimHess

    JimHess wrote:

     

    Sounds like it's time for YOU to create your own plug-in.

     

    Waste of time...better spent learning how to use the current functionality correctly for his workflow.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 1, 2012 3:35 AM   in reply to bmsramya@gmail.com

    For online images, use Lr/Mogrify to crop the exported files after export.

    For exporting offline images (or more rapid export of online images): PreviewExporter (also supports cropping via "mogrification").

     

    This way, you don't have to do multiple steps - the crop settings are stored in export presets.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 2, 2012 11:51 AM   in reply to bmsramya@gmail.com

    OP, I can only say that you have my sympathy. I have been searching for exactly the same and found no solution.

     

    Creating and managing virtual copies of each and every photo just to be able to store different crop output setting for each photo is in my eyes a very cumbersome workaround.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 2, 2012 7:05 PM   in reply to Allan_Olesen

    Lr/Mogrify does exactly what you want - why not just use it?

     

    Don't get me wrong, I think native develop presets that could be applied upon export, especially relative presets and crop support, is a great idea. But until then...

     

    Cheers,

    Rob

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 2, 2012 8:14 PM   in reply to Rob Cole

    Rob,

     

    I don't think Lr/Mogrify solve the problem here. Yes it can crop, but you have to feed it with width, height, x and y parameters. The problem everyone agrees here is that LR does not save so called "crop settings". So there's nothing about cropping can be fed into ImageMagik via your plugin.

     

    Thanks

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 2, 2012 10:22 PM   in reply to Yooabo

    Well, I've never used Lr/Mogrify (it's not my plugin) - I assumed it works the same as PreviewExporter which allows you to save crop settings for mogrification in an export preset. Granted, you need to come up with the numbers to use...

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 11, 2012 4:37 PM   in reply to bmsramya@gmail.com

    A couple of ideas: first, you could record a Photoshop action which produces your desired crop / aspect / resampling, and then set it up as a "droplet" so that it can be selected in the postprocessing options area of the Export dialog. Then save a series of Export presets, each one selecting the appropriate droplet action.

     

    Or, you could set up (and save as print preset) a Print layout whereby  the image is fitted (to fill) into a suitably shaped image cell on a suitably sized page. Then "print to JPG" using the desired output pixel dimensions etc. This gets you a preview with the option to "slide" the image suitably to finetune composition - although that is not stored permanently and would get overridden when calling up a different print preset thereafter.

     

    LR/Mogrify has already been mentioned, and should serve AFAIK; I assume you'd settle on a main LR crop aspect from which the other formats are to be extracted in a standard manner.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 31, 2012 4:11 PM   in reply to Rob Cole

    Rob Cole wrote:

     

    Lr/Mogrify does exactly what you want - why not just use it?

     

     

    Sorry for taking so long to reply.

     

    The OP is looking for a solution which makes it possible to do crops where the crop area is manually optimized for the contents of each photo. Not a one-size-fits-all-crops solution.

     

    I understand his need because I am struggling with exactly the same problem. If I have a set of 3:2 photos and want a 16:9 version of each photo, I can't just crop all photos 5/64 from the top and 5/64 from the bottom and expect a good result. In some cases I have to crop bottom only. In other cases I have to crop top only. And in other cases where the 3:2 image was already cropped from a larger image, I may get the best result from keeping the crop height and extending the crop width.

     

    What is really needed to accomplish this in an efficient manner is a way of making different crop adjustments for 3:2, 16:9 etc. inside Lightroom with Lightroom's crop tool and then have Lightroom remember the corresponding crop settings when doing an export to a given aspect ratio.

     

    I have stumbled upon Jeffrey Friedl's "Crop for iPad" plugin which does accomplish some of this. With this plugin, the user can add keywords to each photo to tell the plugin how the photo should be cropped when exported to iPad. But there is still not "graphical" interaction so the user can preview the result of the crop inside Lightroom - and extending crop area outside the original crop is out of the question since the iPad crop is done after export.

     

    I am tempted to write a plugin myself to get the behaviour I want. But that would require an ability to set crop rectangles through the SDK. According to this post on another forum, this was not possible in January 2012. Has the situation changed since then?

     

    Edit:

    Just noticed that you have very recently (inspired by this thread?) made a new plugin which controls the Lightroom crop tool through xmp files. I guess that answers my question: Situation has not changed since January.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 1, 2012 1:57 AM   in reply to Allan_Olesen

    Look up my Syncomatic and try its Sync Stacks command. It syncs Develop settings, but in their wisdom Adobe haven't included crop in the adjustments exposed to the SDK. So, by fortune rather than by design, Syncomatic will sync adjustments without overwriting the crop.

     
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    Aug 1, 2012 2:14 PM   in reply to john beardsworth

    OK. So with your tool I would be able to make virtual copies, apply different crops to each virtual copy, make develop changes to the master copy in each set and then syncronize all masters to all their virtual copies without affecting their crop settings.

     

    Well, if I choose the virtual copy approach, that sounds like something which could work. But for now, I will try to avoid those virtual copies. Thanks anyway.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 1, 2012 2:22 PM   in reply to Allan_Olesen

    Allan_Olesen wrote:

     

    Rob Cole wrote:

     

    Lr/Mogrify does exactly what you want - why not just use it?

     

     

    [...]

     

    Edit:

    Just noticed that you have very recently (inspired by this thread?) made a new plugin which controls the Lightroom crop tool through xmp files. I guess that answers my question: Situation has not changed since January.

    I have played a bit with your new crop plugin, and it is really nice. I like the way it tries to preserve the total area and the centre coordinates of the old crop when you crop to a new aspect ratio.

     

    Now, if this plugin could just remember a set of 3:2, 16:9 and 4:5 crop coordinates for each image and recall those crops on request, it would be a fantastic tool, both for me and for the OP (I think).

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 1, 2012 2:47 PM   in reply to Allan_Olesen

    Allan_Olesen wrote:

     

    I have played a bit with your new crop plugin, and it is really nice.

    Thanks .

     

     

     

    Allan_Olesen wrote:

     

    I like the way it tries to preserve the total area and the centre coordinates of the old crop when you crop to a new aspect ratio.

    Me too. I hope Adobe does this native next rev.

     

     

     

    Allan_Olesen wrote:

     

    Now, if this plugin could just remember a set of 3:2, 16:9 and 4:5 crop coordinates for each image and recall those crops on request, it would be a fantastic tool, both for me and for the OP (I think).

    I'll consider it - thanks for the idea.

     

     

    Rob

     
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