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Old Jun 28, 2007, 4:07 PM   #1
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At the time I purchased my K10D & with no previous experience in digital photography, I allowed the salesman in my local brick-and-mortar store to sell me Adobe Photoshop Lightroom as my primary photo editing software..The salesman explained to me that since I wanted to try & get the image as close to my vision of what the image should be before editing the image, then Lightroom would probably be a better choice than Photoshop CS3..Time will tell, I guess..

Since I seem to be experiencing a larger than normal learning curve when it comes to switching to digital, I have only today gotten around to installing the software for Lightroom & the SanDisk card reader..I also downloaded the update to Lightroom Version 1.1..

Since I am a member of the genus ComputerStupidicusIgnoramuss I went looking foradditional help in understanding Lightroom..I found-- The Digital Photographers Guide to Adobe Lightroom by John Beardsworth, which seems to explain thingsin a simpler, easier to understand manner..The book will arrive tomorrow from Amazon..

Is there anyone on this forum who is using Adobe Photoshop Lightroom to manage their digital images??..

If so, how has Lightroom changed the way you work??..

Do you shoot in RAW or JPEG??..

Would you be willing to write out an example of the workflow that you use in a typical situation starting with transfering the data from the memory card to the finished image??..

Also, I have given some thought to the need for backup, but have not acted on it yet..

What method, or methods, are you using to backup your images??..Internal or external hard drive??..CD, DVD, or other??..

How often do you backup??..

Lightroom has the capability to do a backup at the same time as you are importing the images onto the computer from the memory card..Does anyone else do this??..

Any suggestions as to a backup medium that I might want to consider??..

Since I have zero experience at this any help will be greatly appreciated!!..

Thanks, Bruce

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Old Jun 28, 2007, 6:05 PM   #2
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Hi Bruce

Sorry, no help here on Lightroom. I do have it, and i have played with it. But i just cannot get the Hang of it. My image processor of choice is Photo Shop Elements 5.
Btw Adobe products generally have a higher Learning Curve.

I would say that I shoot about 60% Raw and 40% JPEG. Mostly raw for the Shots that i really want and Jpeg for Snap Shots.

On the subject of Backing up. Heres my work flow. Pictures are Copied To My PC and left on My card. I them immediately back them up to my EXT HD. I then do my post processing and when i am Done, I Back them up to a DVD and My EXT HD, Over writing the original set. After i am Sure that all is well, then i format my SD card.
So now i have the finished images on my PC HD, ext HD and DVD.

Hope this helps Some


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Old Jun 28, 2007, 9:01 PM   #3
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Hey Bruce!

Yes, I use Lightroom 1.1 as my primary photo organizer, and RAW converter. Once you get deep into the program, and when I say deep, I mean like digging to China deep, it will change the way you work forever.

That's a lot of questions you asked, but I can explain my basic workflow.

After importing my photos, I have a keybord shortcut that hides all the panels, and lets me see my captures fullscreen. Using the keyboard arrow keys to navigate from one photo to the other, I go through each one, clicking on it to see it at 100%, and using the following keybord shortcuts for each print;
"X" = rejected
"P" = Pick
Next, I use the shortcut Ctrl+Backspace, to delete all the photos I marked rejected.

After that, I add all my copyright info via Metadata.

Once that's done, I'll start adding/assigning Keywords to each print, so for example, I'll select all the photo's of birds, and then either assign them to the keyword "birds", or if I already have that keyword, you can just drag n drop them on the word itself.
One of the great things with Lightroom's keywords is that you can have Parent and Child keywords. So, for example, I can click on the Parent "Animals" and see all of my shots of animals, but then you can expand the folder view and see all the Child Keywords, like Birds, Cats, etc, and then click on those too only see the shots of birds, cats, etc.

Ok, back to the workflow. The next thing I do is go back to the first shot, and then hit "R" that will bring me to the croping tool. I hide the left and right panel, and keep the thumbnails at the bottom, and crop, click on next thumbnail, crop...until I've gone throught them all.

After that, I return to the first shot again, open the panel on the rightside, click on "BASIC", and adjust the white ballance for the first shot. Once that's done, I'll Shift-click to select the range of photos that are under the same lighting conditions, and then click the big "Sync" Button at the bottom. When the popup screen comes up, I click the "Check None" button at the bottom, and then click only on the White Ballance button to select it, and hit OK. Now I'll go through each of those shots to make sure the white ballance is ok. Then I'll repeat this process for each set of shots that were shot under the same light.

After that, it's more going through each shot, and making exposure adjustments, sharpening, etc for each individual shot. There are often times where many photos will need about the same exposure adjustment, and again using the Sync button, you can adjust only one photo, then select the others, and syncronize the adjustments. After that you can check them out one-by-one to see if any fine tuning is needed.

Well, that's a simplified version of my workflow, but I hope it helps out. Feel free to PM me if you want to get deeper into it.
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Old Jun 28, 2007, 11:53 PM   #4
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I use Lightroom all the time, but I'm not sure I would agree that it is a better choice than CS3. It's more limited in scope than CS3, so should be easier to learn, but there are some things I use all the time that it doesn't do (resize is one). I almost always shoot raw, though LR works with both raw and jpg files.

For some reason I've been finding that it runs quite slow when you have lots of photos in the database, so I try to limit how many are imported at one time. It might be my computer or it might be that I'm getting too many files/fragmented hard-drive (I'll worry about that some other time). Because of this, what I usually do is use Windows Explorer to copy the files from the card to an external hard drive, then import them into Lightroom as a separate step (it IS more convenient to have Lightroom do this, but my computer bogs down too much). Then I quickly look through the photos and delete any that are obvious screw-ups. After that I'll go through them using the develop tools to adjust contrast, etc. I LOVE the crop/rotate tool - sure helps line up the horizon lines! I've tried to use the batch processing options, but it always seems like each picture has a unique problem, so I tend to do each picture separately. Then I export the product to another folder as a tiff file, and open in CS2 to resize, compress, and sharpen, then save as jpg.

I don't use Lightroom for back-up. I just wait until I have a DVD's worth of photos and use the DVD writer that came with my computer to burn a DVD. Since it's no great loss if a DVD gets corrupted and my pictures are lost, I then delete the original files from the external hard drive. I leave the tiff files there because it's a big hard drive, and they are handy if I want to use them again. The jpg files will be on the DVD, then eventually deleted from the hard drive when I get around to it (not very often now).

I do use Lightroom to print a contact sheet for the DVD. That seems to work for me - I leave the file with the original file number, the DVDs are chronological, and I have a notebook of contact sheets with thumbnails of the photos (think I used 6x8 photos per page)on the DVD so I can find the original file easily. The contact sheet function in CS2 takes forever to set-up. LR's printing function is easier to use than CS2, too.

While I've only played with it once or twice, it's kind-of fun to put together a slide show, then export it to pdf format so you can play it for other people. That's not a function I'll use much, but its fun to play with.

Adobe's website has a number of tutorials on Lightroom. I really liked their videos - I watched them several times. I also broke down and joined NAPP, who's website also has a number of video tutorials (along with a subscription to both Photoshop User and Darkroom, which is specifically for LR). It seems to me that CS3 has all the functions of Lightroom built in, but it's a whole lot more expensive. So for right now, I'll stick to LR and CS2.
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Old Jun 30, 2007, 7:06 PM   #5
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Thanks you to Phil, Harriet, & attaboy for your replies..

Very helpful..

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Old Jul 2, 2007, 4:21 PM   #6
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I think that you are rather jumping in at the deep end in trying to run, well almost leap, before you have started to walk - hope I don't sound too patronising.

RAW conversion is, IMHO, a black art. Let me point out that with my *istDS, JPEGs straight out of the camera are a tad soft - deliberately so, so that post processing can introduce the required element which, if added by the 'in camera' processing, couldn't be undone.

I tinkered around with RAW, downloaded as many RAW converters as I could muster, & compared them with each other. They included Adobe ACR, SilkyPix, Bibble, latterly Lightroom, and a few others that have long been binned. The bottom line was that none really were that straight forward. I didn't want to spend ages tweaking over a hundred shots in a single take - I wanted something that produced better JPEgs - and gave up.

I revisited the RAW conversion process at some later stage and, after a similar comparison, found that the software shipped with the camera - Pentax PhotoLab v2 - actually did what I wanted. OK it tends to over saturate but it does produce good looking JPEGs (or TIFFs) which allows the shots to be easily viewed & fine tuned with something different, if required.

So, getting to the point, may I suggest that as a starter, you use Pentax Photolab at the version which supports your camera - v2 doesn't. This will produce RAW converted images that will look reasonably OK and allow you to develop your expertise which can be applied to Lightroom as time progresses.
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Old Jul 3, 2007, 4:42 AM   #7
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Lightroom is a work of genius for simplifying workflow and correction, whether for JPEGs or RAW.
I convert all my.PEF files to DNG as a matter of habit, but beyond that Attaboy's description of the his workflow seems the best.
I've tried Silkypix/Pentax Lab etc. CS2, Elements, and all I *really* need is contained in Lightroom. Seriously brilliant.
I still use Irfanview (never under-rate the humble Irfanview for quick editing, batch conversion, and resizing tasks!) for quick tasks, but my time spent making my photos look better has been much more efficient since I got Lightroom.
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