Sunday, January 30, 2011

Evaluation of Adobe Lightroom

I sometimes have people ask me what image editing program they should buy. I often recommend that they look first at Adobe's Lightroom and if that doesn't suit their needs then I'd recommend Adobe Photoshop. Lightroom is about 1/3 the cost of Photoshop. I have a lot of photography friends who tell me that they are using Lightroom almost exclusively for their image editing. I'm told that Lightroom is superior to Photoshop in managing a image library. I've got lots of photos and I surely could use help in managing these files, edits, and backups.

So from time to time I look at the latest version of Lightroom. I've downloaded a trial copy and this afternoon when we came in from Parque Juarez where the plant and flower show for Candelaria has just opened I downloaded the files I had shot via Lightroom. I have Scott Kelby's book, Lightroom 3 book for digital photographers and so I have referred to it to do the tasks I wanted to do. I'm trying to keep an open mind until I decide if Lightroom really offers me advantages over the workflow I've developed in Photoshop. The jury is still out.

This was the first image I shot when we walked into Parque Juarez. I like patterns. I converted it to black and white to better show the patterns. I think with a little work it could make a good large print but wouldn't it make a mind-blowing jig-saw puzzle?


Anonymous said...

Miss Billie:

That is the first thing we thought.
That would make an excellent jigsaw!

D&P in Longview, TX

Gary Denness said...

Nice photo. I'm sure I've commented on Lightroom v Photoshop before. There's no doubt that the latter is ultimately more powerful, but I'm minded to think that Photoshop is a product that supplements Lightroom to a certain degree. I have both, but 99% of my photos go through Lightroom without ever seeing Photoshop. As an image management tool, Lightroom wins hands down in my opinion.

Barb said...

Gorgeous photo. At first glance, it reminded me of those pages in the I Spy books.

It would make a phenomenal jigsaw puzzle. I'm a puzzle addict and if I saw this one, I'd buy it in a heartbeat.

Billie said...

Babs and D&P, Glad I wasn't the only one who thought that about the puzzle.

Gary, I was feeling pretty good about Lightroom yesterday until I went to send/save ONE photo for blogspot. All I was finding in Kelby's book was how to make web galleries. It was late and I was tired so I gave up and sent it to PS and then saved it in my folder for web jpgs. I'll tackle that again this afternoon. I'm sure there is a way. Also, already have files set up for Edits or Master files and the jpgs that I use in the blog, pbase, FB etc. I just have to figure out how to integrate that with LR. The Develop module is much like Camera RAW/Bridge in PS.

Tommy Williams said...

Billie: Lightroom has some workflow advantages, but for your style of photography you're unlikely to take advantage of most of them--in other words, you're not a commercial photographer, working an event, or a portrait session, or even in a studio.

Lightroom does give you a not-so-bad digital asset management tool, and I particularly like that it stores all the changes to your RAW file non-destructively, and lets you export directly to sites like Flickr and SmugMug (either with the built-in tools or Jeffrey Friedl's plugins, which I prefer) without needing to have a bunch of intermediate JPEGs lying around.

For your specific case you mentioned needing one photo, you want to go to the File->Export menu and export to your hard drive. There's no "Save" or "Save As" in Lightroom. Instead, you export.

But unless you want the digital asset management features, you might be happier staying with Photoshop. The Lightroom "engine" and the Camera Raw "engine" are exactly the same. Some of the keyboard shortcuts are different and the way you use them varies a bit, but you can get exactly the same result.

Jonna said...

Beautiful photo and I too think it would make a fabulous jig saw puzzle. They will print and cut puzzles at many of the print shops here in Merida, it would fun to have one with your own picture on it.

Barb said...

I adore this picture. I keep coming back to look at it.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your comments on our blog "Travel & Eat with Pat & Pete." We have not tried Rinconcita but will be back for two months next year and it will be at the top of the list. We have been to Firenze twice. Liked the linguine with shrimp but were disappointed with other offerings.

Thanks also for the comments on the photos that don't come anywhere near comparing to your work. Your comments on Lightroom will prompt me to take a look at it.

PS: We must have been fairly close neighbors for the month of January. We rented on Privada San Rafael and will be on Alameda next year.

Billie said...

Yes, when you were on Privada San Rafael we were just a block away on Refuguio Norte. And you will still be close by when you are on Alameda. We'll have to get together when you come back.

The main reason I'm interested in LR is the ability to see any photo I have without connecting a external HD and as a way to track the original file is. I really like the interface of ACR best...because I'm use to it but LR does the same things. I'll just have to adjust to a few different ways of doing things.

I've bookmarked your blog and I'll follow along with your travels this year.

Howard Grill said...

I find that I really use and need both Lightroom and Photoshop for the way I work, but I seem to be a minority in that regard!

Betsy said...

Billie I love this picture - its mesmorizing!

Cynthia said...


I love this image. It's so complex and so beautiful.

Billie said...

Thanks Betsy and Cynthia. When I get my printer back I'll try and make a print and see how it holds up.