I originally started using Lightroom three years ago. Back then, I didn’t really have a reliable photo management workflow or image management system. I used free tools like Google Picasa to manage my library, and jumped between Photoshop and Capture NX for my editing. But as my photography got more serious, I realized that I need to invest in a professional workflow to match.
The two top contenders at the time were Adobe Lightroom and Apple Aperture. Both tools were very similar and covered what I was looking for in a tool to support my new workflow. What initially attracted me to Lightroom over other tools like Aperture was Lightroom’s tight integration with Photoshop. At the time, I was still heavily dependent on Photoshop for the majority of my editing and, while the features of both Lightroom and Aperture were powerful tools, neither was equipped to be a full replacement of Photoshop. Lightroom’s integration seemed more natural, most likely because it also came from Adobe.
Shortly after I started using Lightroom, their next major upgrade, Lightroom 3, was released. It added a number of features that I felt were missing, and my workflow shifted dramatically. Instead of using Lightroom 25% of the time and Photoshop 75% of the time, I found myself using Lightroom 75% of the time. I could import, either from the physical media or through tethering, manage, tag, review and rank, and do basic edits inside of Lightroom. Noise reduction, skin softening, and image sharpening could now be professionally done in Lightroom, as well, and I only needed to go in to Photoshop for heavier edits.
When Lightroom 4 came out, my workflow shifted to be almost exclusively in Lightroom. If Lightroom 3 was about the addition of features, Lightroom 4 was about refining those features and improving the technology behind them. While the results of the editing capabilities of previous Lightroom versions were excellent, Lightroom 4 was even better and, as a result, 99% of what I do with my images is done in Lightroom.
Along the way, I’ve learned a lot about Lightroom, and how to make the most of it in my photography workflow. This website is dedicated to sharing what I have learned, and what I continue to learn as I dive deeper in to this amazing tool.