Chroma Key Lab Using CSV Data
What CSV data is for
Chroma Key Lab 2 can use CSV data to customize the compositions on a per image basis. CSV functions include the following.
- auto replace text
- auto scale text
- specify a background (overrides the default choice)
- specify the output file name (overrides the default naming)
- run photoshop actions on the composition
CSV files are typically setup in a spreadsheet program such as Excel on Windows or Numbers on Mac. There is also a really good free office suite called Libre Office that contains a spreadsheet program called Calc. That is what we use for creating CSV data. You can download Libre Offic at https://www.libreoffice.org/.
CSV Image Data Example
Basic CSV Layout
Important: The spreadsheet must be saved in .csv file format
Also, the layout must be as follows….
Column 1 – Must contain the source image names. The file extension is optional. It will work either way.
Row 1 – This is the header row. It contains the “commands” for Chroma Key lab to use (layer names, resize methods, etc.). These DO NOT need to be in any specific order.
Data Section – This is everything from below row 1 and right of column A. This contains the data the Chroma Key Lab will use.
Only use the columns you need – For example, if you are only replacing text in one layer with no resizing, the you only need the image name column and 1 text layer column.
Image Processing List
You have the choice whether to process all image in the source folder or only images contained in the CSV.
If you only want to process images that are in the CSV file then enter “only” into cell A1.
If you want to process all images in the source folder then leave cell A1 blank. In this case, it will process all image but only those contain in the CSV will get text replacement. Here is an example of where this option is useful: You may have a default template assigned in the Chroma Key Lab which doesn’t have text. All images will process with that template unless the CSV file overrides it. You can then have certain images contained in the CSV that get a different template which has text and uses text replacement.
Auto Text Replacement
To auto replace text…
Add a column header for each layer you want to replace text. You can replace text in a few or as many layers as you want.
The column header name must match the name in your PSD file (it is case sensitive). The example on the right is just an example, you don’t need to use the same layer names as the example.
In the data section, add the text that will be replaced for each image in each layer.
Text Replacement Spreadsheet format
Auto Text Scaling
To auto scale text…
Add a header starting with “resize-” followed by the Layer Name that will be auto scaled. In the data section, add the scaling method of X, Y or A. The scaling methods are as follows.
X – Scales horizontal
Y – Scales vertical
A – Scales angled – Note: This will not add an angle to you text. Use this is you text is already at an angle. Chroma Key Lab will automatically determine the angle of the text so it can scale appropriately.
Text Scaling Spreadsheet format
Additional CSV Customizing Options
Additional CSV Header Codes-
Note: The cell data is case sensitive. The headers are not case sensitive.
New File Name – This will use a custom file name to use when saving the final image. If the cell is empty then it defaults to the naming that was selected in the Chroma Key Lab user interface.
Team File Name – This is used for memory mate automation. See Memory Mate set up tutorial here.
Preset – This will use a custom EZ Green Screen extraction preset. If the cell is blank then it will use the preset that was selected in the Chroma Key Lab user interface or the default values if no selection was made in Chroma Key Lab.
BG File Name – This will use the background or PSD template in the cell. The background file must be in the same folder that was selected in the Chroma Key Lab user interface. If the cell is blank then it will use the background selected in the Chroma Key Lab user interface.
Pre Action 1 (and 2,3 etc.) – Use this to run a Photoshop action on the file before it is extracted. You can run up to 10 actions. They run in sequential order. The column names will be Pre Action 1, Pre Action, 2, up to a max of 10. In the cell data put the name of the Action Set and the Action seperated by the “|” character (the one on the \ key above the enter key).
Post Action 1 (and 2,3 etc.) – This is set up the exact same way as the pre actions except the header read as Post Action 1, Post Action 2, etc. The actions run after the template has been completed but before it is flattened and saved.
Addidtional column items