So, I’m not going to lie. The folks from Adobe sent me Lightroom last year and it wasn’t an instant love connection. I tried it. There were some cool features that I liked. But, I didn’t really get how to fit it into my workflow. From the beginning I’ve used Bridge. It’s not a perfect system. But, it works for me. Except for when I get those annoying errors that make it shut down. That makes me angry.
Like I said in the last post, on Day 2 we headed to the Adobe offices to get our learn on with Julieanne Kost, the Adobe evangelist. And she really lives up to the hype. We only had 4 hours, but I wish we would have had a full day. There’s SO much that Lightroom can do that 4 hours wasn’t nearly enough time to cover it all. But, at least we got the basics. And the great thing is that Julieanne has a TON of videos up online that teach you how to use and get the most out of Lightroom. It’s such an awesome resource! You can view them all here. My only complaint is that they should give Julieanne more freedom to be funny on the videos because she’s seriously hilarious in person! And if you ever have the opportunity to hear Julieanne speak, take advantage of it. She’s awesome!
My first favorite thing about Lightroom is how easy it is to get organized. The option to keyword your images so you can search and sort easier is awesome and super useful! I would suggest starting out with this video, which explains how to organize everything in Lightroom. SO easy!
Another great time saving feature is the ability to be able to share your images on the web without ever leaving Lightroom. So, if you use Flickr to share your images you can do it all from Lightroom. No need to even open Photoshop. So easy! Watch this video to see how to do this. And watch this video to see how to email images from Lightroom.
One of my favorite things about Lightroom that you can’t really do as easily in Photoshop is it’s awesome white balance. Now, I shoot in JPEG for all of my everyday and portrait images. For weddings I shoot in RAW plus large JPEG, but I outsource my RAW files. If you shoot in RAW you will have a lot more control in Lightroom over editing your images. But, it still does a great job on my JPEGS. This image was taken at night in the hotel room with horrible fluorescent lighting. I didn’t have a flash with me so I bumped my ISO up to 1250 and knew I could fix it later.
I can open up the image in Lightroom and fix it. First, I will try the auto white balance.
It does an okay job, but looks a little blah to me. Next, I will try the eye dropper tool to find a neutral area and see if that works better. I’m going to use the envelope in the purse because I know that is white.
That looks much better to me! I’m just going to brighten it a little bit and and a little tint to it and it looks good to me!
Another favorite feature of mine is the Lens Correction tool. It comes in handy when shooting really wide. Here’s the before:
And the after:
It’s such a subtle difference (look at the bottom corners). But, Lightroom makes it so easy to change. You just select which lens you used and it does it all for you. Easy peazy!
The last thing I want to talk about is Lightrooms noise reduction. It’s AMAZING!
This wedding was shot in a VERY dark church where we could use no flash. I fell in love with this shot from the couple exiting, but it’s incredibely dark and incredibly noisy.
*** Shot with Canon 5D, 50 1.2
F 2.0, 1/125, ISO 1600
Zoomed in a little closer and you can see how bad it really is.
But, thanks to Lightroom’s noise reduction and a little black and white conversion it’s totally salvagable! Even when I got it back from the company I outsource my RAW files to it looked really bad! Glad I had Lightroom to fix it!
*** This file was a RAW file so it was much easier to correct than a JPEG would have been. Like I said, I shoot all my wedding in RAW and Large JPEG.
It’s just so obvious that Lightroom was created for photographers while Photoshop and Bridge weren’t created specifically for us. It really is an amazing program once you figure out everything it can do!
And that’s why I’m so excited to give one of you the opportunity to win your very own copy of Lightroom! Yeah! To enter leave a comment below saying why you need Lightroom. For an extra entry, go like Lightroom on Facebook and leave a separate comment that you did so. You’ll be happy you did. They always give great tips! This contest will go until Thursday at midnight PST. Winner will be announced on Friday. Thanks to the Adobe peeps for sponsoring this contest and good luck!