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Gaps when snap to cell

JaneB

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LR 5.7 for Mac

I've created a patchwork layout: 3 x 3 square images, butted together using 'Snap to Cell'. I exported this as a JPEG and sent it to the guy who does my printing, but he's pointed out that when viewed at 200% there are hairline gaps between some cell edges. Not all - some of them have butted perfectly. I've tried pushing the affected cells closer together, but they insist they're 'snapped'.

Is there any way round this, without risking the alignment of my layout? If not, I guess I'll just use as is and trust the hairlines won't be obvious. The print will be 30 x 30 cm, and is for an exhibition where it'll be offered for sale - so perfection would be preferable.

I realize I could add obvious borders via a page background colour - this is what I've done with two similar layouts before - but in this case I'd really like the pictures to work against each other.
 

Gnits

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It may not be the long term answer but will putting a suitable coloured stroke border around the images help?
 

JaneB

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I'm afraid that would have the same result as shrinking the cells so the background colour shows round them, as I've done before. I'd really like the colours of the images to but against each other for this print.
 

Gnits

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I understand .... will watch here to see if anyone else has a solution .....
 
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For one that big/important... in all honesty, I'd do it in Photoshop, where you can zoom in and have greater control.
 

JaneB

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I've found a workaround (I use Photoshop so rarely now that it'd take half a day to remember how to use it, I think). One attempt failed (switching 'snap to cell' off and making the cells 1mm larger - this both created more gaps and threw the alignment off). In the end, I just switched the page background colour to black, since my printer advised me that would be the least visible colour against the images I was using. Thus any hairlines are black, and hopefully won't be noticeable. (Switching page background colour off didn't help, by the way.)

I'm giving up on patchwork collages! And, alas, I can see that I will need to re-master Photoshop when I do want to combine images.
 

Gnits

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You can create a template in Ps..... so that in future you only have to change the images. Use SmartObjects as your images.
You will find a lot of tutorials on this. Once you have created your template it will be easy to re-use going forward.

I use InDesign for when I want to layout images on a page (often combined with Javascript to automate the process), but not everyone has InDesign. I am also about to look for alternatives to InDesign as the interface so unintuitive and clumsy for people who do not use InDesign every day.

A pity to give up on something you are happy creating, just because the software becomes a short term barrier.
 

JaneB

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Thanks for this, Gnits. I think I need to get to grips with Photoshop for collaging, and this sounds encouraging - I didn't realize PS supported templates. I do have InDesign, but I'm on CS 5.5, and fear I'll lose it when I'm eventually forced to go to CC - I really can't afford to pay the high rent for my rare usage. Although perhaps I should assume I'll hire InDesign occasionally, alongside the photography package. I just don't trust Adobe any more - who knows how they'll next move the goalposts.
 

Gnits

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I agonised over buying Ps a long time ago. Sometime later I bough the CS suite, which included InDesign and Illustrator. Within a year of buying CS, Adobe launched the Creative Cloud. I have only purchased Lr/PS CC and not the entire suite. The old version of InDesign I have will work for me for the foreseeable future without the need to pay a subscription for it.

You can easily create a template in InDesign with your 3x3 matrix and then drag your images onto it. That is probably the quickest and easiest way forward right now. In due course you can figure out how to create templates in Ps...(which is useful for all sorts of things).

For example ...this is the result of an Indesign template I have for placing a title under an image as well as other metadata bottom left & bottom right in smaller fonts. Apologies for the blurry quality ... it is only a screen grab. Later versions of InDesign allow you to place metadata on the page ...but not sure which. I hate repeating the same manual effort if I cam going to re-use on any type of semi regular basis.

upload_2017-5-2_12-14-38.png
 

JaneB

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Very Ansel Adams! Looks great. I'm a bit wary of using InDesign to generate prints, since there are extra gremlins in there. I know I've worked it out, and written myself instructions, but the colour management thing is a little tricky as I remember. Anyway, I'm going to see what my printer does with the solution I've sent him. I'm highly unlikely to sell the print (it's for a group show of the local artists' network I belong to, and in my experience, photographs sell only very rarely round here).

My other option in future is to stick to the standalone LR and buy PS Elements; but I'd really miss having a good layout program. I used InDesign to create an ebook I sell from my website, for example: 25,000 words of text and 300 images. Not a project I could do in Lightroom. I'm not a fan of Adobe re Creative Cloud - I've always bought their software legitimately, and feel abandoned by them. Wish they'd come up with an all-round solution for photographers - they must know we need layout software, and not all of us are earning significantly - or at all - from our work. We just have a passion to do it as well as we can.
 

Gnits

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I'm a bit wary of using InDesign to generate prints, since there are extra gremlins in there. I know I've worked it out, and written myself instructions, but the colour management thing is a little tricky as I remember.
Yes.... you are spot on.... The trick is to create suitable PDF files with a pre-set that does what you want in terms of image compression and colour management settings.

I have lost a lot of respect for Adobe over the last few years.... in reality ... they do not appear to understand a photographers workflow or how to properly integrate their own products. The Import change feature/fiasco in Lr is a simple example. I have done a lot with scripts which should be a native part of their apps. At some stage I will explore the Affinity apps but not enough spare time right now. As an ex CIO I will always respect the licensing terms relating to software use, as I have spent millions of dollars buying software for various organisations.

I regard InDesign as almost obsolete.... mostly a GUI issue ... but needs a lot of TLC.

While I initially objected to the CC model, the revised Lr/PS package is good value. I would recommend that you try to use the full version of PS rather than Elements if you can. Adobe do not advertise that Elements only supports 8 bit images, with the exception of the Raw Conversion tool.

The combination of Lr/PS means that you can easily manage the Colour Management issues.

If you have a specific query I am more than happy to try and help ... you can mail me directly at m @ ttobrien.com (with no spaces).

I keep hoping that the next generation of Adobe products will be of value to their existing customers and not a lot of new flashy features aimed at new customers (I accept there is a valid balance to be found here).
 

JaneB

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Looks like we're on the same page: fingers crossed for our future software options. Thanks for all your help - this forum is always a good place to come.
 
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