This is a guest post by filmmaker Mathieu LE LAY on his latest film American Loneliness.

Since I started adventuring and filming into the wild, I had the dream to hit the American road on my own, backpacking into some of the most inspiring natural areas of the United States. I planned this trip lately.

American Loneliness, my new 52 minutes documentary film, is coming out this summer 2014. It tells my solitary journey into one of the most attractive areas on the planet : the American West. The road trip consisted of a six week adventure backpacking through Colorado, Wyoming, Montana and Washington. From snowstorms in Yellowstone to the Wild Pacific coast, this is a quest for freedom and the great outdoors.

Just me, my audiovisual equipments, a film project in mind and I made this escape into the vastness of the Northwestern US. This project was a real necessity for me, being back to basics, and it has to be a lonely adventure to be able to deeply feel nature while exploring the unknown. Like my last short peace Keep Exploring, I was the only one to shoot in this filming adventure until I met on my road the filmmaker Kier Atherton from Montana who helped me to shoot some footage in Glacier National Park. I also chose for this film to shoot intimate interviews and tried to capture as many authentic moments as I could.

The film does not only tell a road trip. It also tries to highlight human relationships with our natural environment, what we feel immersed into the wilderness, how we deal with such a powerful nature, how we struggle, and how we interact with the wildlife. I made extraordinary meetings with animals during the adventure : coyotes, otters, mooses, mountain goats, bighorn sheeps, bisons, wolves.

From a technical point of view, I was filming again with a Canon 5D Mark II. I always change and chose my own presets when filming and here for this movie I wanted a vintage picture style to film the road in America.

IMG_6797_PSP_©_1600px

About Canon lenses, I was very limited to shoot the wildlife. The biggest zoom was with the 70-200mm f/4 IS. I kept with me on this shooting some of my favorite Canon lenses such as 16-35mm f/2.8, 35mm f/2 IS, 24-105mm f/4 IS. I also used a steadicam Glidecam HD 2000 to follow Kier Atherton while walking. For the travelling movements, my sponsor Lovinpix lent me a Konova K1 which is really light and strong.

I only had a very small and light tripod from Sirui, the Tripod Sirui T-025X. I have at least 7 Canon batteries. At very low temperatures (-25°C), I had to keep them warm inside my sleeping bag. Otherwise, they discharge too quickly. A good way to recharge batteries when traveling is to get a car battery adapter.

When you backpack on your own, you have to make choices depending on the weight you’ll carry. You also have to consider all the backpacking equipments for camping and cooking into the wild. I would say that 25kg would be a maximum but I reached 30kg while backpacking in the Rocky mountains on this project which was quite exhausting and damaged my shoulders for a little while. The other national parks I had the chance to explore were Grand Teton National Park, Yellowstone National Park, Glacier National Park and Olympic National Park with the wild Pacific coast.

IMG_1090_PSP_II_©_1600px

About the soundtracks, I had the chance to collaborate with great musical artists such as Michel de Jong from Arafúra, Magnus Birgersson from Solar Fields and Hammock, ambient/post-rock band from Tennessee.

I hope this film will inspire people to go and explore the american wilderness. American Loneliness will be soon available in HD digital download. You can follow my Facebook page to stay in touch and my website.

I am now preparing a new documentary shoot in the Southwestern of the US (California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona) which will be focused on the Ghost towns and their remaining inhabitants.

The post Making of American Loneliness appeared first on DSLR Video Shooter.

All credit is given to author DSLR Video ShooterCaleb Pike

tbay_3990OWC, known to manufacture affordable Mac hardware, just announced that they managed to break the speed record for affordable external thunderbolt RAID storage.

Especially filmmakers and editors have been waiting for affordable and fast thunderbolt based storage solutions, a few of which we’ve finally seen hitting the market last year.
Just a few months ago OWC introduced the Thunderbay IV which is a 4-drive external RAID storage device with a thunderbolt 2 connection.

It is available in configurations from 4TB up to 16TB and also offered as a diskless enclosure that goes for $429.

Mac Pro’s 6 Thunderbolt 2 ports boost speed

Several of the OWC drives can be chained together using a combination of the two Thunderbolt 2 ports it has. However the great speeds described can be achieved using a Mac Pro that sports 6 separate thunderbolt connections. This is how OWC achieved speeds of nearly 4,000MB/s.

The benchmark testing showed 3,990MB/s read and 3,802MB/s write speeds, running an HDD array of 3x 12TB OWC Thunderbay IV drives. They achieved similar numbers running SSD drives.

TBHDD

The 12TB OWC Thunderbay IV drives used cost $939 each, making this the most affordable ultra-fast storage solution available.

OWC says:
The Mac Pro has a total of six Thunderbolt 2 ports connecting to three separate Thunderbolt 2 busses, with two ports to each bus. We connected one ThunderBay 4 to one of the two ports available for each bus to get the maximum performance. Those three ThunderBay 4 enclosures were made into a single RAID-0 array using the built-in software RAID-0 in OS X. We then fired up the benchmarking tools and watched in awe at the performance the ThunderBay 4 enclosures achieved.

This combination of performance and storage comes at a fraction of the price of rack-based storage.
The ThunderBay IV enclosures generally got very good reviews. Other, less affordable, but proven solutions include the new G-technology external RAID drives and the Promise Pegasus RAID, both of which are now also compatible with Apple’s new Thunderbolt 2 standard.

image via macsales

The post OWC Thunderbay IV RAID drives break speed and price record: 36TB at 4000MB/s for under $3K appeared first on cinema5D.

All credit is given to author cinema5D » NewsSebastian Wöber

Now that the Birdycam has started shipping, i’m hearing a few questions and comments about tuning the PID settings to work better with a lightweight camera. I myself found the system oscillating when my setup was too light weight. Here’s a video showing you a few simple settings you can change to get it working better.

Now just from experience I know what to sort of look for, but there’s no exact magic number. All I could tell was that I needed to reduce my PID settings and those are numbers that seemed to work. In fact I tested my 12-35mm F/2.8 OIS with my new profile and it still worked just fine.

After making changes to your system you should take it out and use it as you normally would, and then decide if you need to make further changes. Always make changes to one area at a time instead of making large blanket changes across every tab. Most importantly always make a backup or document your prior settings before you make any changes. If you have any other questions, you can leave a comment below.

All credit is given to author CheesyCamEmm

Joey Shanks sent me a video a couple weeks showing me how he rented a Casio EX-F1 for $100 and was able to get some pretty cool slow motion shots over the course of the week. While the resolution isn’t the best, you can still get some pretty great results. I think this footage would definitely work for a lot of documentaries where 300-1200FPS are needed. Check out Joey’s video to see some budget slow motion footage:

Thanks to Joey for the share.

The post Super Slow Motion on a Budget appeared first on DSLR Video Shooter.

All credit is given to author DSLR Video ShooterCaleb Pike

Final product image
What You'll Be Creating

Introduction

Back in the days of film cameras, macro (or micro) photography referred to an image magnification that was 1:1 or greater in relation to the 35mm film frame.

With the rise of digital cameras of varying sensor sizes, this measurement is almost obsolete.  Today, most of compact cameras, bridge cameras and DSLRs (entry level to intermediate) will have a macro mode, depicted by a flower.

Macro function on a compact camera
The macro function on a compact camera

 This will allow you to focus a little bit closer than the usual minimum distance and also tell your camera to select a wide aperture to keep the background out of focus. If you’re using a full frame dSLR then you’ll probably want to shoot in Aperture priority mode (A) so you can control your light and depth of field.

Close-up and macro photography is achievable in many ways, even without a dedicated macro lens. In this tutorial, I’ll go through some of the most popular macro-photography lenses and methods for close-up photography.

Technique 1: A Dedicated Macro Lens

A specialised macro lens can range in price from a couple of hundred pounds to thousands of pounds. The length of macro lenses vary too, so think about what subject matter you want to shoot before you decide. A longer focal length will allow you a greater focussing distance, so if you want to shoot insects, for example, you’d need to choose a longer lens.

Tamron 90mm 11

Macro lenses have something called flat-field focus. A traditional lens will curve, resulting in the subject being sharp in the middle and then less so towards the edges. Flat-field lenses are sharp right through, from focal point to edges, which is an advantage over using a regular lens for macro.

Macro lenses are usually quite fast (large maximum aperture) which is great as you’ll need lots of light when photographing a subject up close. This creates an incredibly narrow depth of field though, meaning you’ll have less in focus than you might like.

Be sure to get a macro lens that will work with your DSLR body. Some lenses are for smaller sensors. Some lenses don’t have internal motors, so if your body doesn't have one and you won't be able to auto focus. Having said that, when doing close-up stuff I always manual focus as AF is often too slow and inacurate when there’s a lack of light and a narrow depth of field.

 

Technique 2: Extension tubes

Extension tubes are my favourite way to do macro without a specialised lens. You can buy different makes and sizes of tubes; I have a set of Kenko ones that look like this:

Kenko extension tubes
Kenko extension tubes

They cost around £99 but cheaper options are available. Be aware that some don’t have metal contacts inside, so they won’t ‘talk’ to your camera or auto focus. You can use all three or any combination of sizes together:

Kenko extension tubes apart
Kenko extension tubes, separated

Extension tubes screw between the camera body and lens, creating some distance and turning an ‘ordinary’ lens into one capable of close focus. I've found this particularly works well with my 135mm f/2 because of both the length and it being a fast lens; but I've tried it with a telephoto and with the macro lens and all produce very pleasing results.

The trade-off with extension tubes is a loss of light.  This can be as much as a couple of f-stops, so again this will having a bearing on which lens produces the best results. Try and use lenses that stop down to at least f/2.8 for real close up work.

The great thing about extension tubes is that they’re designed to fit the camera in the same way as all your lenses, so you’ll be able try all your lenses and see which works best. Be aware that the more of the extension tubes you use and the bigger the lens, the heavier your camera will be to lift and keep steady if you’re shooting hand-held.

Kenko extension tubes attached to camera body and 135mm f2 lens
Kenko extension tubes attached to D800 and Nikon 135mm f/2

Also, as mentioned earlier, when using a regular lens it’s unlikely you’ll have the benefit of flat-field focus as the lens will most likely curve. When working with narrow depth of field though, this is less important and probably not noticeable.

Reversing ring

 A reversing ring for Nikon and 52mm thread size
A 52mm thread size reversing ring

This method is probably the cheapest way to get macro results. You can use a reversing ring, which mounts a normal lens onto your camera backwards, allowing you to focus closer to a subject. The results are vastly different from a dedicated macro lens but can create a very nice effect. Reversing rings work well with prime lenses (a fixed focal length): a decent used 50mm can be picked up very cheaply and the ring itself is less than £10. Make sure you get the correct size ring for the lens you want to use and always be aware that the rear optic will be exposed so be careful not to bump or scratch it.

50mm lens reverse mounted on camera body using reversing ring
50mm lens mounted on to D800 using reversing ring

Results

As a quick comparison, I chose this Kodak Instamatic as my subject:

Instamatic 300 our test subject

I took all of the pictures on ‘auto (or P)’ so that the only variable is the subject. I sat less than a foot away from the table, moving only my upper body with the camera back or forwards depending on what the focal length of the method would allow. The pictures are handheld and, as I said, not necessarily set to the best settings, so if they’re not tack sharp, it’s a reflection on the method, not the equipment, but it’s the best way to show you the results. These were all taken with a Nikon D800.

Macro lens: Tamron 90mm

Tamron 90mm 11
Results with Tamron 90mm

Sharp results but you have to lean right into the subject to get a close focus, potentially blocking your own light.

Extension tubes – Kenko three tube set: 12mm, 20mm and 36mm

As these can be used with just about any lens depending on fit, the two examples I’ve chosen are a 50mm as they’re quite common and cheap to pick up and a 135mm which has a longer focal length.

50mm f18 with no tubes attached
Results with 50mm lens and no extension tubes
This is the closest you can focus with the lens as it is. Here it is when you add the three Kenko tubes:
50mm with all three Kenko extension tubes attached
Results with 50mm lens and extension tubes attached

As you can see there’s quite a difference. With this lens being a f/1.8, it really compensates for any loss of light using the tubes. Again, you have to be fairly close, but not as close as with the Tamron.

Now the 135mm f/2:
Nikon 135mm f2 with no extension tubes attached
Results with 135mm lens and no extension tubes

Sat in the same place as for the other examples, I had to lean quite far back to get this one with it being a longer focal length. Now we add the tubes:

Nikon 135mm f2 plus all 3 Kenko extension tubes
Results with 135mm lens plus extension tubes

Again, a huge difference. Not quite as close as the 50mm, but I was able to be much further back with my upper body. This is a must if photographing insects or small animals, for example.

Reversing ring and 50mm f/1.8

I only have a reversing ring that fits this lens but you can get them for almost any thread size.

Nikon 50mm f18 mounted backwards with a reversing ring
Results with 50mm lens mounted backwards onto the camera with a reversing ring

As you can see, the results with the 50mm mounted backwards aren’t as close as with the tubes. The image was much darker through the viewfinder so it’s harder to see your focus. With the camera not being connected to the lens either, you’d have to monitor your own aperture and focus.

Conclusion

As I've mentioned, the methods in this tutorial aren't the only methods of capturing macro, but they are the ones I've used most often and had consistently good results with.

My macro lens is one of my favourite lenses, it’s tack sharp, fast and also makes a great portrait lens. It’s the lens I use for nearly all of my macro work, although the extension tubes are racing for that joint first position.

The benefit of the extension tubes is that you can use them with your other lenses, great for those who don’t want to invest in a specialised lens.  You can also use them independent of one another for different results. You can get cheaper ones than the ones I've mentioned and you can get some stunning results with them.

In my opinion, reversing rings aren't worth wasting your time (or money) on. Yes, they’re cheap but the results can be unpredictable and you risk your lens by exposing the rear element.

If you’re really into your macro, buy a specialist lens and it will open up a whole new world to you. If you just want to give macro a go or want macro on a tighter budget, try the tubes.





All credit is given to author Tuts+ PhotographyMarie Gardiner

Final product image
What You'll Be Creating

Introduction

Back in the days of film cameras, macro (or micro) photography referred to an image magnification that was 1:1 or greater in relation to the 35mm film frame.

With the rise of digital cameras of varying sensor sizes, this measurement is almost obsolete.  Today, most of compact cameras, bridge cameras and DSLRs (entry level to intermediate) will have a macro mode, depicted by a flower.

Macro function on a compact camera
The macro function on a compact camera

 This will allow you to focus a little bit closer than the usual minimum distance and also tell your camera to select a wide aperture to keep the background out of focus. If you’re using a full frame dSLR then you’ll probably want to shoot in Aperture priority mode (A) so you can control your light and depth of field.

Close-up and macro photography is achievable in many ways, even without a dedicated macro lens. In this tutorial, I’ll go through some of the most popular macro-photography lenses and methods for close-up photography.

Technique 1: A Dedicated Macro Lens

A specialised macro lens can range in price from a couple of hundred pounds to thousands of pounds. The length of macro lenses vary too, so think about what subject matter you want to shoot before you decide. A longer focal length will allow you a greater focussing distance, so if you want to shoot insects, for example, you’d need to choose a longer lens.

Tamron 90mm 11

Macro lenses have something called flat-field focus. A traditional lens will curve, resulting in the subject being sharp in the middle and then less so towards the edges. Flat-field lenses are sharp right through, from focal point to edges, which is an advantage over using a regular lens for macro.

Macro lenses are usually quite fast (large maximum aperture) which is great as you’ll need lots of light when photographing a subject up close. This creates an incredibly narrow depth of field though, meaning you’ll have less in focus than you might like.

Be sure to get a macro lens that will work with your DSLR body. Some lenses are for smaller sensors. Some lenses don’t have internal motors, so if your body doesn't have one and you won't be able to auto focus. Having said that, when doing close-up stuff I always manual focus as AF is often too slow and inacurate when there’s a lack of light and a narrow depth of field.

 

Technique 2: Extension tubes

Extension tubes are my favourite way to do macro without a specialised lens. You can buy different makes and sizes of tubes; I have a set of Kenko ones that look like this:

Kenko extension tubes
Kenko extension tubes

They cost around £99 but cheaper options are available. Be aware that some don’t have metal contacts inside, so they won’t ‘talk’ to your camera or auto focus. You can use all three or any combination of sizes together:

Kenko extension tubes apart
Kenko extension tubes, separated

Extension tubes screw between the camera body and lens, creating some distance and turning an ‘ordinary’ lens into one capable of close focus. I've found this particularly works well with my 135mm f/2 because of both the length and it being a fast lens; but I've tried it with a telephoto and with the macro lens and all produce very pleasing results.

The trade-off with extension tubes is a loss of light.  This can be as much as a couple of f-stops, so again this will having a bearing on which lens produces the best results. Try and use lenses that stop down to at least f/2.8 for real close up work.

The great thing about extension tubes is that they’re designed to fit the camera in the same way as all your lenses, so you’ll be able try all your lenses and see which works best. Be aware that the more of the extension tubes you use and the bigger the lens, the heavier your camera will be to lift and keep steady if you’re shooting hand-held.

Kenko extension tubes attached to camera body and 135mm f2 lens
Kenko extension tubes attached to D800 and Nikon 135mm f/2

Also, as mentioned earlier, when using a regular lens it’s unlikely you’ll have the benefit of flat-field focus as the lens will most likely curve. When working with narrow depth of field though, this is less important and probably not noticeable.

Reversing ring

 A reversing ring for Nikon and 52mm thread size
A 52mm thread size reversing ring

This method is probably the cheapest way to get macro results. You can use a reversing ring, which mounts a normal lens onto your camera backwards, allowing you to focus closer to a subject. The results are vastly different from a dedicated macro lens but can create a very nice effect. Reversing rings work well with prime lenses (a fixed focal length): a decent used 50mm can be picked up very cheaply and the ring itself is less than £10. Make sure you get the correct size ring for the lens you want to use and always be aware that the rear optic will be exposed so be careful not to bump or scratch it.

50mm lens reverse mounted on camera body using reversing ring
50mm lens mounted on to D800 using reversing ring

Results

As a quick comparison, I chose this Kodak Instamatic as my subject:

Instamatic 300 our test subject

I took all of the pictures on ‘auto (or P)’ so that the only variable is the subject. I sat less than a foot away from the table, moving only my upper body with the camera back or forwards depending on what the focal length of the method would allow. The pictures are handheld and, as I said, not necessarily set to the best settings, so if they’re not tack sharp, it’s a reflection on the method, not the equipment, but it’s the best way to show you the results. These were all taken with a Nikon D800.

Macro lens: Tamron 90mm

Tamron 90mm 11
Results with Tamron 90mm

Sharp results but you have to lean right into the subject to get a close focus, potentially blocking your own light.

Extension tubes – Kenko three tube set: 12mm, 20mm and 36mm

As these can be used with just about any lens depending on fit, the two examples I’ve chosen are a 50mm as they’re quite common and cheap to pick up and a 135mm which has a longer focal length.

50mm f18 with no tubes attached
Results with 50mm lens and no extension tubes
This is the closest you can focus with the lens as it is. Here it is when you add the three Kenko tubes:
50mm with all three Kenko extension tubes attached
Results with 50mm lens and extension tubes attached

As you can see there’s quite a difference. With this lens being a f/1.8, it really compensates for any loss of light using the tubes. Again, you have to be fairly close, but not as close as with the Tamron.

Now the 135mm f/2:
Nikon 135mm f2 with no extension tubes attached
Results with 135mm lens and no extension tubes

Sat in the same place as for the other examples, I had to lean quite far back to get this one with it being a longer focal length. Now we add the tubes:

Nikon 135mm f2 plus all 3 Kenko extension tubes
Results with 135mm lens plus extension tubes

Again, a huge difference. Not quite as close as the 50mm, but I was able to be much further back with my upper body. This is a must if photographing insects or small animals, for example.

Reversing ring and 50mm f/1.8

I only have a reversing ring that fits this lens but you can get them for almost any thread size.

Nikon 50mm f18 mounted backwards with a reversing ring
Results with 50mm lens mounted backwards onto the camera with a reversing ring

As you can see, the results with the 50mm mounted backwards aren’t as close as with the tubes. The image was much darker through the viewfinder so it’s harder to see your focus. With the camera not being connected to the lens either, you’d have to monitor your own aperture and focus.

Conclusion

As I've mentioned, the methods in this tutorial aren't the only methods of capturing macro, but they are the ones I've used most often and had consistently good results with.

My macro lens is one of my favourite lenses, it’s tack sharp, fast and also makes a great portrait lens. It’s the lens I use for nearly all of my macro work, although the extension tubes are racing for that joint first position.

The benefit of the extension tubes is that you can use them with your other lenses, great for those who don’t want to invest in a specialised lens.  You can also use them independent of one another for different results. You can get cheaper ones than the ones I've mentioned and you can get some stunning results with them.

In my opinion, reversing rings aren't worth wasting your time (or money) on. Yes, they’re cheap but the results can be unpredictable and you risk your lens by exposing the rear element.

If you’re really into your macro, buy a specialist lens and it will open up a whole new world to you. If you just want to give macro a go or want macro on a tighter budget, try the tubes.





All credit is given to author Tuts+ PhotographyMarie Gardiner

Yesterday I met up with SatoStudios to check out the new DJI Ronin Gimbal, so I decided to bring out the Varavon Birdycam as well to shoot a few BTS clips. This footage is shot with a GH4 camera and although I find this footage to be incredibly smooth, I believe that I will have to tune up some of the PID settings to get best results on this super lightweight setup.

What you see in the video is still using the existing profile that was shipped with the unit, but it may be time to dig a little deeper. Since the Varavon uses the same Alexmos 32 bit software as the other gimbals, I can create my own custom settings. [BTW, you should not attempt this unless you know what you are doing].


varavon birdycam pre-order
find-price-button Varavon BirdyCam 3 Axis Gimbal Stabilizer

All credit is given to author CheesyCamEmm

vice-shooters-rig

Great video done by VICE DP’s Jake Burghart and Jerry Ricciotti showing us their custom rigs. While they use C300 cameras, a lot of this rigging could be applied to other cameras.

What do you think of their setup? What modifications have you made to your rig? Or do you stick to standard rig kits from manufacturers?

Vimeo Description:

VICE on HBO takes you deep into the world’s biggest political and cultural clashes. To capture the hair-raising stories you see on screen, VICE Media’s Director of Photography Jake Burghart and Segment DP Jerry Ricciotti are no strangers to shooting in extreme conditions — and need reliable gear to keep up with their immersive documentary shooting style. Find out why Jake and Jerry turn to the Canon EOS C300, XF105, XF305, and 5D Mark III to get the job done and learn how they configure their cameras while shooting in hostile environments. Then, check out their work by watching VICE on HBO, Fridays at 11PM.

[Via Rob]

The post Video: Custom Rigs Used by VICE Shooters appeared first on DSLR Video Shooter.

All credit is given to author DSLR Video ShooterCaleb Pike

For many photographers, Adobe's Lightroom software is a one stop shop for editing images. Sometimes, however, you will need to work with your edits outside of Lightroom. In this case, photographers are sometimes stuck between worlds, wanting to preserve the Lightroom edit and yet also work in other programs. In this article, you'll learn how to make a quick change to ensure your Lightroom edits can be used with other software, such as Adobe Photoshop and Bridge.

The Background on Lightroom Catalogs

Adobe Lightroom is a non-destructive editing suite. This means that while moving the sliders and applying edits, your original image files are untouched and safe. Instead of writing changes to the original file, Lightroom stores data about the file in a database, which Adobe calls a "catalog." As you're applying edits to your images within Lightroom, those edits are being saved in the catalog. Because of this, you can make an unlimited amount of changes and never lose the quality of the original images.

image file displayed in Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop looks different in each program
At left is an image edit I've made progress on in Lightroom. However, when opening the original image in Photoshop, it appears unchanged. This is because the edit is stored within the Lightroom catalog, and no changes are applied until the export of the image. In this tutorial, you'll learn how to add metadata to your images so that the edits can be used outside of Lightroom as well.

Although your adjustments are shown as previews in Lightroom, an export must be performed to create a finished file. When starting an export, Lightroom ensures that the original image can be found. Edit information is pulled from the catalog and is combined with the original image file to produce a finished product. Throughout this process, the original image file remains untouched and all edits are stored in the catalog.

The strength of this system is also its shortcoming. Because catalogs are specific to Lightroom, your work can only be viewed in Lightroom by default. Catalogs are also succeptible to corruption and data loss. If you want to use your edits with other software or backup your work, you'll need to tell Lightroom to save copies of its metadata outside the catalog.

Enable External Metadata

The good news is that using your Lightroom edits with other software is easy. Saving the metadata for the edit will allow other pieces of software, such as Bridge, to seamlessly access information like keywords, descriptions, and image corrections.

Lightroom writes external metadata differently depending on file type. If the original image file is a RAW image, the metadata will be written as an XMP "sidecar" file. This tiny text file sits on your storage disk next to your original image. For JPEG and other standardized image formats, the metadata is saved to the original file, meaning that a limited set of the metadata is embedded (although not the edit itself) in the file.

XMP sidecar files sit next to RAW images
After enabling XMP sidecar files, they'll show next to the RAW images in the image's folder. These are the files that allow other pieces of Adobe software to use the edit data.

Create XMP Sidecar Files Manually 

To save the metadata for an image you've already edited, enter the Library module and select the image or images you want to save the metadata for. Choose "metadata" on the application menu and "Save metadata to file." Remember that you can select a single image from the filmstrip, or a range of images by holding shift on the keyboard and selecting the first and last image in a series.

dialogue to manually save metadata file
If you've already edited a photo and need to save the metadata manually later, you can find the option in the Library module. On the "metadata" menu at the top of the application, choose "Save metadata to file."

Create XMP Sidecar Files Automatically

If you want to save metadata for all images, you'll have to change the Catalog Settings. On Windows, you'll find this under Edit > Catalog Settings, while the same option can be found on Lightroom > Catalog Settings on Mac. On either platform, choose the "metadata" tab and ensure that "Automatically Write changes to XMP" is selected. When this is turned on, Lightroom will automatically create and save the metadata for your edits.

switch on automatic XMP sidecar files
To enable metadata to be autosaved in the future, choose the Catalog Settings and tick the "automatically write changes into XMP" box.
After enabling the saving of metadata, the edit that I applied to the image in Lightroom is available in Adobe Camera RAW when opening in Photoshop.

In addition to compatibility with other Adobe apps, enabling metadata saving is a good backup step beyond the catalog system. Having the metadata stored separately from your catalog is an additional form of backing up your edit information.

Managing XMP Edits

If you make changes to an image outside of Lightroom, applications such as Photoshop will write the changes made to the metadata. Therefore, the next time you work with it in Lightroom, you'll want to adopt those changes applied by the other software.

After returning to that same image in Lightroom, you'll notice a small icon over the thumbnail on the filmstrip. Upon clicking it, Lightroom presents two options: "Import Settings from Disk" and "Overwrite Settings." Choosing "Import Settings from Disk" will adopt the edits applied in another application, while "Overwrite Settings" will revert to the earlier metadata edit that's stored in the Lightroom catalog.

Import Setting from Disk to apply external changes
When metadata is edited with other applications, Lightroom will conflict on versions of the edit. In this case, I've applied additional edits to the image in Photoshop. After clicking the icon in the upper right hand corner of the image preview, Lightroom will ask if I want to import settings from disk and use the Photoshop changes, or "overwrite settings" and revert to the earlier edit.

Wrapping Up

Enabling XMP is a quick and easy step to ensure that your edits are available outside of Adobe Lightroom. Adding external metadata to your image files is a quick and easy step for increasing the flexibility of your workflow and the dependability of your catalog.

All credit is given to author Tuts+ PhotographyAndrew Childress

I’ve been a Canon L Series lens shooter for a long time now. The optics are great and they work well with all my camera needs. That said, some lenses perform better than others and I’ve always wondered how they compare to each other. SLR Lounge has done an amazing job of painstakingly going through all the main focal lengths between primes and zooms and comparing the results. I found this test to be very useful in finalizing the purchasing decision on a few lenses I’ve been iffy about. Take a look at their intro below and check out the YouTube playlist here and all the articles here.

All credit is given to author NextWaveDVTony Reale