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Thread: Using Lightroom, PS CS5, and Nik HDR as smart object workflow

  1. #1
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    Using Lightroom, PS CS5, and Nik HDR as smart object workflow

    Hi-

    I'm interested in using Nik HDR Efex Pro 2 as a smart object in Photoshop, but starting my selection in Lightroom. As far as I can tell, this hasn't been addressed in this forum. What I'm trying to do is to select my images in Lightroom, use "edit in" to get them over to PS, convert them to smart objects, and then be able to use the Nik HDR Efex Pro 2 to blend into the final image. Once finishing with the Nik work, I'd return to PS, but be able to go back to the Nik to adjust the HDR work since it would be a smart filter in PS. Once I finished with the work in PS, I'd save the file as a psd or tif and then import that back to LR.

    The trouble I'm having is figuring out how to get to Nik as a smart object in PS. LR allows me to select multiple images and merge to Photoshop HDR or to export from LR to merge directly to Nik, but I don't see a way to go through PS as a smart object and get to Nik.

    With the other Nik software, you are moving only a single file and so you can go to PS from LR and then make the resulting layer a smart object. Maybe it's impossible to do what I'm trying. If so, I'd be interested in learning another way that allows me to adjust the HDR work I did in Nik without having to make multiple saves from PS.

    New to this forum, I hope this is clear. Many thanks for any help.

    Bob

  2. #2
    DanK's Avatar
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    Re: Using Lightroom, PS CS5, and Nik HDR as smart object workflow

    Bob,

    You'll see that the context menu in LR has HDR Efex under "export". that's because it has to create a TIF that merges the images. Do that, and then once you have the merged TIF file, tell LR to edit the TIF in PS. It will open as a layer. Once it is open in PS, you can convert the layer to a smart object. On a PC, you can right-click the layer to get this option, or you can go to the layers menu. Then you can apply additional Nik filters as smart filters.

    Dan

  3. #3
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    Re: Using Lightroom, PS CS5, and Nik HDR as smart object workflow

    Hi Dan,

    Thanks. This approach works well. I had experimented a bit further and found that an alternative to the export approach was to Edit In>Open as Smart Objects in PS. There's an extra step involved, but I won't go into detail, because although I was able to use HDR Effex Pro 2 as a smart filter, this method seems problematic in being able to add the other Nik apps to the same layer. With your method, this worked fine.

    I appreciate your help very much.

    Bob

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