Saturday, 2 February 2008

Starting to use Adobe Lightroom

I am a keen amateur photographer with a day job, although I sometimes use my photography skills in the day job to shoot images for press releases etc.

At the end of 2007 I decided that it was time to look at my digital photo workflow, largely because I bought a Canon G9 planning to use RAW files and found that my exisiting workflow would not work with it as the RAW converters I used did not support the G9.

I use Canon 30D and 10D DSLRS along with the G9.

My colour managed workflow was to take RAW photos, download them to my PC (running under Windows XP SP2) using Downloader Pro, then I viewed them and made initial decisions on what to delete and what to work on using Breezbrowser Pro (both these excellent pieces of software are developed by Breeze Systems). I kept track of what I had where by using a pretty organised file structure; renaming files and moving them about within Breezebrowser. I did my RAW conversions in Capture One LE, Photoshop CS to work on the images, printing to an Espon 4800 Pro inkjet printer through Qimage (a truly excellent package once you get to know it).

I had dabbled with early beta versions of Lightroom, but was not too impressed. I had also tried out various cataloging packages, but had not liked them enough to use either.

By the end of 2007, however, I felt that the press was saying that Lightroom had improved enough to be worth another look and so I downloaded the 30 day trial version from Adobe to try out as my Christmas project. I also had a look at Bibble as a RAW converter and tried out the Canon software that came with the G9 - neither of them really did what I wanted.

So this blog over the next few weeks is aimed at sharing my experience of coming up to speed with Lightroom and using it effectively. Along the way I will share experience with the G9 as I get to know it and the Epson 4800, which is an excellent printer when it works, but in my experience frustratingly and expensively prone to nozzle clogging at unexpected moments.

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