Capture One Keystone Correction: How to Fix Perspective Problems in Architectural Photography

Quite often, it is the subtle details that distinguish professional photography from amateur photography, and one of the most important examples is the perspective correction – or “keystone” correction in Capture One. The human eye is very sensitive and even a small degree of skew, tilt or convergence can distort images of buildings and sights.

Whenever we take a picture of an object out of plane, we introduce perspective distortion with standard lenses. This is the effect where the part of the subject further away from us becomes smaller in the scene.

While this can sometimes be useful to give a sense of distance or height, if we want a cleaner frontal shot we only have two options: either using a special tilt / shift lens or correcting it in post-production.

For those without such a specialized lens, Capture One’s Keystone tool can fix things with just a few clicks.

1. Where can I find the Keystone Tool
the Keystone tool can be found in the top menu bar, but remember that there are three versions of the tool (vertical lines only, horizontal lines only, or 4-way keystone correction) that you can find by holding down the mouse button on the tool itself .

(Photo credit: Paul Reiffer)

2. Numerical values
Also, keep in mind that the tool is really just a graphic interpretation of the numbers on the Keystone tab in your tool panel by the side. When you move the anchor points, the tool interprets them into numerical values ​​that are returned to this panel.

(Photo credit: Paul Reiffer)

3. Visual customization
While you can use the sliders in the Toolbox to make adjustments, it’s often easier to use the anchor points and their guides in between so that Capture One does the calculations for you.

(Photo credit: Paul Reiffer)

4. Aspect ratios
The goal is to place the anchor points on a line that should be straight but isn’t (that’s not already right). In the case of only vertical, this means a line that should go straight from top to bottom. For horizontal keystone correction, these are lines that should be perfectly flat and even.

As you drag these points into their respective areas you will be shown (with the connecting lines) what else is being leveled between these points and when you are satisfied click Apply.

If the result seems too “squashed” now, consider using the Aspect Ratio slider to stretch or flatten the image accordingly.

(Photo credit: Paul Reiffer)

5. Check the harvest
she will The correction will cause you to lose some of your wider image through the crop – so it’s worth checking the uncropped version to see what was pulled out of the frame. Also, keep in mind that the default “fix” amount is 80 – not entirely practical for the architecture, which needs to be 100% straight. So it’s worth setting this value back to 100 after you’ve set your anchor points.

(Photo credit: Paul Reiffer)

6. Four-way adjustment
The four-way tool works the same as the horizontal or vertical version, except that it allows an object to be completely transformed in one go.

(Photo credit: Paul Reiffer)

As before, just select 4 points, all of which should be connected in a straight rectangle, and click Apply.

(Photo credit: Paul Reiffer)

When it comes to architectural photography there will always be a need to get things just right in the camera – and for those moments, a tilt / shift lens can be the winning tool.

But for those who rarely need to make minor adjustments, or who don’t capture enough of those images to justify investing in a special lens, the Keystone Correction Tool will help with just a few clicks.


About Capture One

Capture One is an all-in-one tool for non-destructive image cataloging, RAW processing, and editing, and its closest competitor is Adobe Lightroom Classic. In addition to the regular “All Cameras” edition, there are cheaper Nikon, Sony and Fujifilm-specific editions. Capture One is regularly featured in our guide to the best photo editing software thanks to its high quality RAW processing, detailed color control, and layer and mask-based editing.

• Our links below show the pricing for the subscription versions, but you can click through to browse all of the editions and bundles. Capture One is also available for a one-time payment.

Continue reading:

• Best tilt-shift lenses
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