Elements has two main editing environments for RAW pix: can I switch back and forth between them?

New Here ,
Apr 15, 2021 Apr 15, 2021

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[1] When I open a RAW photo with Elements the first thing I see is a nice panel of controls on the right side of the screen that I will call PANEL A, shown in the screenshot below --

PANEL A.JPG

To close this workspace, I click a little button marked OPEN (right side of screen bottom) which saves the picture with any changes made with the controls on the right side of the screen, and then opens up a new set of controls, shown in the screen shot below, which I will call PANEL B

PANEL B.jpg

 

QUESTION:  Is there a way to revert to PANEL A while in the PANEL B environment ?  

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 15, 2021 Apr 15, 2021

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The short answer is I don't know of any way that could be done.  Your screenshot shows that you have opened a raw file from your Canon camera into the Adobe Camera Raw editor (Panel A).   After editing the raw file in ACR, you have three options: 

  1. Open the file, in which case the edited file is sent to the Photoshop Elements (PSE) Editor (Panel B).  It is then converted into the PSD format for further editing and saving to various formats e.g. jpeg, tiff or PSD.  If you further edit the file in the PSE Editor, your new edits will not be saved to your raw file, but must be saved in a different format.  If you close the file without saving it, the edits you originally made in the ACR will be saved (in a sidecar file that gets added to the directory where the raw file is located).
  2. Click the Done button.  The edits to your raw file will be saved in a sidecar file.  (No changes are actually made to the raw file itself.)  You can always revert to the original condition of the raw file.  If you are using the Organizer, the changes will be reflected in the raw file thumbnail.
  3. You can also click the Cancel button in the ACR in which case the editor will close and no changes will be made to your original raw file (or saved in a sidecar file).

 

So, now I have to ask why you want to use the workflow suggested by your question.  Perhaps we can suggest something else.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 15, 2021 Apr 15, 2021

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I guess I should add that the full Photoshop CC has an Adobe Camera Raw filter.  This would essentially do what you want to do.  You open the file in the main Photoshop Editor and you can then apply the ACR filter which opens up most features of the ACR editor.  You can switch between the two interfaces without closing or saving the file first.

 

The ACR filter does not exist as a feature in Elements (although I wish that it did).  I also seriously doubt whether it will ever become a feature of Elements.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 16, 2021 Apr 16, 2021

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Hi @boblite2 

That question is linked with your other post:

https://community.adobe.com/t5/photoshop-elements/when-i-open-a-raw-file-i-get-a-nice-interface-can-...

 

In short, there are two different kinds of digital editors to manage photo processing. The 'pixel' editors and the 'parametric' editors. The first kind is the most common and works on changing the pixels values while parametric editors don't change the original pixel values but record the commands you want to apply to the original values (original plus 'recipe').

Pixel editors: Photoshop and Photoshop Elements, parametric editor: Lightroom. Pixel editors with additional parametric editing: Photoshop and Elements together with the Adobe Camera Raw plugin.

It would require a whole book to describe their respective advantages, but it's clear that having the choice as you are asking is the best solution.

Keep in mind that parametric editing was first the solution to edit 'raw' file photo formats, which are not image formats and in which you can't change the original 'as shot' pixel values. Then the advantages of parametric editing bcame obvious and they were offered not only to raw files but also on jpegs and other image formats (see Jeff's answer).

The normal workflow is to process first parametrically. A number of edits can't be made easily that way, so the result is transmitted to the normal pixel editor. Once that has been done, you can't go back to the original picture (raw files can't be changed), so your only solution is to save the file you have edited parametrically then changed the pixels to a NEW image file (jpeg, tiff, psd...) which you can open parametrically.

 

Now, back to Elements.

You have a file edited in the ACR (Adobe Camera Raw) plugin, then 'Opened' in the pixel editor. You have already done a number of pixel changes: layers, masks, filters etc. You would like to go back to some features of ACR without losing the present state of your editing, with the layers. There is an additional add-on for Elements, the very affordable Elements+ set of scripts, which offers two ways to use the ACR while editing in the pixel editor: the 'open in ACR' function and the way to apply some ACR edits without quitting your session. Those available ACR functions even let you use missing ACR commands in the limited PSE version, such as lens correction, HSL...

 

https://elementsplus.net/help/en/edit-in-acr.htm

https://elementsplus.net/help/en/raw-corrections.htm

 

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