Use Lightroom because it is a non-destructive, importing, cataloging, processing, exporting, and sharing software designed as an all-inclusive platform specifically for photographers who need photo and video imaging control. It is completely integrated with most of Adobe’s additional software packages specifically, but not exclusively limited to/with Photoshop. Phew! With those two statements alone you can already begin to understand the power of this program. It allows me, the stand alone photographer, to run a photography business without the need for an army of other people managing my office and images for success. Thus, I realize more of the profits while I attempt to work less, unlike many of those whom I compete against.
Yes, Lightroom is a fairly easy software to begin to utilize, but it is the nuances that truly make this platform amazing for the single photographer. Once successfully setup, you can edit, organize, master, and export hundreds of images within minutes. Maybe not minutes, but REALLY fast. So what makes this single piece of software so indispensable?
Photoshop/Bridge vs. Lightroom
I know there are tons of you out there still on this Photoshop/Bridge kick for working on your images. You are probably into mastering all of your work in Photoshop as well, after making some basic adjustments in Adobe Camera Raw. One. Single. Image. At. A. Time. You are probably sorting those images that you create through Bridge too. Three separate software packages, two of which are natively built into Lightroom.
I have to say that Bridge may be one of the most counter-intuitive software platforms on the planet for adding any kind of metadata to your images. In addition, the functioning is slower than a turtle. Photoshop isn’t any better when it comes to adding metadata although it definitely runs much faster. In Lightroom it is as easy as tabbing through a series of blanks. In addition, you can build presets that allow you to add repetitive meta with the click of a dropdown menu.
Now I want you to open Lightroom and check out the Develop Module, then open Adobe Camera Raw in Photoshop. We are loosing that same simplicity in these two comparisons as well. In Lightroom you follow the functionality down a column and in ACR there is this icon to dropdown deal that has layout here and all over there – more power to you if that works for your brain.
Now I am not going to sit here and say it’s all bad. Photoshop accesses your computer’s main and graphics processors so that it runs really fast in almost all situations. Lightroom accesses just the main processor, so if you have an old machine, you are probably plagued with slooooowwwwwwnessssss. I am hearing that will change with the next upgrade to Lightroom.
I now use Photoshop about 1% percent of the time and only for very specific functions. It would need to be a task like a macro stack of different focused point images or for building a giant panoramic image for print. I don’t even make adjustments in PS anymore thanks to how functional Lightroom has become with current versions.
RAW + JPEG
I also know that many of you are still shooting RAW + JPEG in camera. Why I ask? From what you are telling me in my classes is that you need something for a quick export to the web. If you are using Lightroom, you already have that quick export functionality and you can even create presets to speed up that process as well. And who exports anything, anywhere, without processing it? Yes, I have the answer to that question as well.
If you are shooting the game between the Packers and the Seahawks for the Oregonian and they are going to produce a web story on the “Thrill of Victory and the Agony of Defeat” that needs to launch immediately after the game and you have five minutes to get your editor the images, then you shoot RAW + JPEG. And if not, save yourself some card and hard disk space by just shooting RAW. Or you can keep fumbling through Bridge and opening everything in Photoshop and continue to make more work for yourself.
Apple is actually the company who started the whole concept of a non-destructive digital asset management software platform when they introduced Aperture. In October of 2014, they announced that they are ceasing continuance of that platform. I started using Aperture with its first release. It was a major reason for my switch from film to digital. When Adobe released Lightroom, I switched over to it because of the integration with Photoshop, yes I wasn’t always so outspoken against this Photoshop thing. So now what do you do if you are completely invested in Aperture because you can bet Aperture 3 will stop working at some point as Apple continues to update their operating system?
Never fear my friends, there is a Plug-in for that and it is included with the most current 5.7 update that Adobe released for Lightroom. All you have to do is head to: File>Plug-in Extras>And choose your Aperture Import scenario.
If you are still convinced that the Photoshop direction is the way for you, imagine how cool it would be if you had an unlimited rolling history of the adjustments you performed on an image, that never disappeared. Because that is how it works in Lightroom. When leave your photo for another photo or quit the software entirely, those history states stay until you delete them.
Yes, yes, I know snapshots are part of Photoshop as well. Yes they work the same way. You are essentially taking a quick image of a current history state to revert back to at any point, but again they don’t disappear when you close your photo or quit Lightroom like the do in Photoshop…(continued exclusively for newsletter subscribers – see below)
Those are five points as to why you need to be working in Lightroom, NOW. For additional content and five more points on why you need Lightroom as your primary photo editing application, YOU WILL NEED TO SIGNUP FOR OUR NEWSLETTER to get the link and password to our NEW & EXCLUSIVE subscriber content area (if you are already a subscriber you will have the access password in our next email). 2015 marks the year where we have begun building FREE private online content for those who put an emphasis on their photography and want to grow with us.
Now, if you want start using Lightroom because of my amazing sales skills and have no idea where to start, we can help there as well, just HEAD TO OUR STORE TO PURCHASE AND DOWNLOAD THE DIGIT IMAGE, an online tutorial kit, designed to teach you some of the many nuances of utilizing Adobe Photoshop Lightroom for your daily image processing needs.