Lightroom VS Photoshop for editing your weddings

Discussion in 'Wedding and Event' started by kari douma, Apr 29, 2007.

  1. I just purchased Lightroom about 4 weeks ago. I hear so many good things about
    lightroom, and how it will save you time on your editing. So many
    photographers love it... but I haven't gotten there yet. I want to love it,
    but I have a few concerns. Maybe you can help me.

    I shoot RAW, and edit my images in ACR in Photoshop CS2. Currently I edit the
    image by 5 staring the keepers in bridge, and In ACR I adjust WB, exposure,
    shadows, ect. Then I batch rename them in bridge and run them through the image
    processor. Then I have a few actions that I might run on some images. IT IS
    HERE THAT I BACK UP MY IMAGES. So, the majority of my editing is done before I
    back them up. This is where my images are proofed. When the customer orders
    an image, I go back to the original RAW file, and do the retouching. Here is
    where I take care of blemishes, skin softening, teeth whitening, eye
    enhancements, crop to exact size ordered, ect....

    I tried to edit a wedding that I was a guest at (not the photographer) in
    Lightroom, and I ran across some issues. I don't think the actual processing
    time for me was any less (it was probably more because I am still learning the
    program) than for me to it in ACR.

    So, here are my concerns with lightroom...

    1. The information is not applied to the file until you export the image.
    Therefore I can not save my edits to the RAW file like I can with ACR and the
    xmp file. I like to have the RAW file, and the xmp file so I have all my edits
    on the back up DVD's. If I use lightroom, I would save an unedited RAW file,
    and the edited file as a tiff or psd or jpeg. I like having my edits already
    on the RAW file.

    2. Maybe this is minor to some of you, but it is a big deal to me. BATCH
    RENUMBERING. I currently do batch renumbreing in Bridge AFTER I EDIT. The
    reason I do this, is sometimes when I am editing, I opt to toss out an image I
    was originally going to keep. I want to do it on my RAW files, because I
    frequently go back to them after someone orders an image. I want the RAW
    number to match my jpeg numbers, for easy finding of the image. I want this
    renumbered before I back up my images. I can batch renumber my RAW files in
    Lightroom, but they are like this -1, -2, instead of 001, 002. If I don't have
    the 00 infront of the numbers, the proofs get out of order in my proof books
    from my lab and my slide show. they will appear like this -1, -10, -101, -
    11,..... -2, -20, -201, -21. I can add the 000 when I export, but I want it to
    match the RAW files. I tried renaming the files in Bridge after I made my
    edits in lightroom, and it messed everything up becasue it couldn't match the
    edits with the image number (because the image number was changed after the
    fact by a different program.)

    3. I sync my cameras to time, but most of the time by my two cameras, + my
    assistants camera, there can be a difference of a minute or two between
    cameras. So, I hand drag a few key images in place before I batch rename them
    in Bridge. I tried to drag the thumbnails around in Lightroom, and I couldn't
    do it. Maybe there is a way, but I couldn't figure it out. They didn't drag
    into place like in Bridge.

    So, to wrap it all up, her is the summery. I want to love bridge like I hear a
    lot of other photographers do. Here are the things I want bridge to do... and
    maybe it is possible to do if you tell me how. 1)Save a xmp file with the RAW
    file for backup 2)Batch Rename the RAW files with 3 or 4 diget numbers like
    001, 002, 3)Drag thumbnails around before I batch Rename the files.

    Should I just give up on lightroom? Or embrace it for what it is and change my
    habbits on my workflow?
  2. Lightroom does everything you are wanting to do, I think you jsut need a good guide.

    1.) it wil lsave all of your edits, you just have to set up the preferences that way. I use the raw DNG format and the edits are saved i nthe same file "envelope" no more XMP side car files.

    2.) I rename on import. I also add any "batch" keywords there too.

    3.) Under Metadata in the LR menu bar, try using the "Edit Capture Time tool".

    Start with the advice, podcasts and tutorials at and then proceed to "The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Book" by Martin Evening
  3. The pupose of the XMP fils is to be nondestructive, you want the RAW edits embeded into the RAW file doesn't work like that. The xmp is with the RAW file like a second file.

    Batch rename with a custome pr-fix and then the file number - should make matching easier.

    After sorting by capture time, select user order and move images as you want.

    I may have missed some of you points but a jpg file is very robust. I do all my basic RAW edits (tweaks) in lightrooom including the use of presets for BW converisons, sepia, etc. After all the edits are looking like I really wanted them out of the camera (ahemmm), cropped etc. I then batch them all to a large jpg.

    Next I edit the jpgs in PS with actions, touch ups etc. They work much faster and can handle the editing just fine. Unless you are printing some monser size 40X60 print the integrity if jpg will be just fine for normal prints and albums. Seems like you are doing many multiple steps complicating your workflow.
  4. Hi Kari,<p>
    1. Regarding the XMP file, you probably need to go into Preferences->FileManagement
    and check the box that says "Automatically write changes to XMP". Otherwise, I believe
    Lightroom just stores the metadata in it's central database. Once you do that, the
    metadata and develop settings are pretty much compatible with the new ACR 4 in CS3
    Bridge. I actually go between the two depending on what stage of editing/processing I'm
    2. You can completely customize the Batch Renaming feature. There's a drop down menu
    available when you first bring up the Rename dialogue. Clicking it brings up a
    customizable template where you can insert the filename, date, sequence numbers (with
    or w/o leading zeros, etc).<p>
    3. The dragging thumbnails has a wierd quirk to it... You must have the same "Shoot" (or
    folder where your images are located) selected in the left hand pane or Lightroom won't let
    you drag them around. But otherwise it works like you'd expect, and you can then choose
    sort by "User Order" or by date or filename, etc..<p>

    I still use Bridge/ACR, but Lightroom definately gets lots of use in the first stages of
    editing. Good Luck!
  5. I'm haven't tried lightroom but looking at the info I can't figure out what you can you do with it that you can't do with a raw converter, like capture one for example (if you shoot raw)?
  6. You guys are the best!!! Thank you soo much. I have been struggling with these three things. I have watched a lot of tutorials, but none that dealt with these things. I now have all three of these issues resolved! I guess I need more tutorials and books to keep learning. Thanks!
  7. Hi Kari,

    I love LR....

    My work flow is as follows.

    1. Import to LR and external hard drive keeping the original file name. I sort the files by capture time especially if using more than one camera.

    2. Burn a dvd of all originals.

    3. Keepers get 1 star in LR...filter out all but the 1 stars.

    4. WB, exposure, saturation, etc..... get done in LR.

    5. Import finals to CS3 as PSDs in a sub folder called final selections. At this point as I'm going through them again, I may toss some that I thought I might keep initially.

    6. Retouching, artistic manipulations done is cs3.

    7. Batch rename to folder called Finals Renamed.

    8. From there use an action in CS3 to create online proofs as jpgs. And work on finals to send out to lab for proofs. At this point I'll also burn another DVD or the finals, and copy the files to an external HD.
  8. Thanks Michelle, I still have to play around with my workflow to get it right with lightroom. But, now that I have these issues worked out, I will work with it more.
  9. I can recommend the video tutorial on Lightroom put together by Michael Reichmann and Jeff Schewe, which is available from Luminous Landscape. It lasts 4.5 hours and costs $15. Sometimes it is easier to watch someone do it rather than read about it in a book.
  10. Thanks John, actually that is on my list to buy soon. I have to find the time.... hopefully this week I can start watching it.
  11. Has anyone noticed a difference in conrast in the images in Lightroom vs. CS2? My workflow is like Michelle's, except if I want to add CS2 effects, I make a copy in Lightroom and edit it in CS2 before export. Anyway I am noticing images I bring in to CS2 are significantly dull in contrast (this is after I have done intial wb, exposure in LR, and they look fine in LR) Alternately, after I fix them up in CS2 and save them back to LR, the images look too bright in LR. CS2 is the "correct" contrast (I have tested it with prints)so how do I get LR on the same page?
  12. Kari, I think you may need to set your thumbnails to standard or 1:1 in preferences. This reduces the time spent on importing by a chunk. Next, when editing, I create a new library for each wedding. That makes the whole process much faster too.

    Not sure if that helps to expedite things, but it got me going faster.

    Amanda, if your LR is not set to use the same color management as CS, you will see some differences between them. Go to your help menu and search on color management. Play with those ideas and you should find a way to get it looking similar enough to see little difference. I don't remember exactly how I got there, but that was where I began and with a few settings it looked fine. BTW, I use profiles for the proofing view in CS too.
  13. Kari,

    I've used LR and frankly I don't see that it add's any advantage to my workflow over PS. Some of the really great features like the features of the develop module (e.g. highlight recovery) and the ability to edit JPEG's as if they were RAW, are included in ACR 4.0 in PSCS3. On my computer, I think the LR does things slower too. I'm running dual core PC with 3.25 (don't ask) GB of RAM. For me, I'm sticking with CS3.

  14. A lot may depend on what you learned to start with and the habits you've already been used to. We started shooting with RAW and working in Lightroom Beta and then later, when we tried to instead work with Bridge & ACR, it seemed much more time consuming. Now we start import into Lightroom because it seems to have more ability to fine tune. We do all the processing & WB/Exposure adjustments in Lightroom. We also use presets which is a nice feature. Then we export as .jpgs and use Bridge for sorting, batch renumbering, and folder organization. Lastly minor amount of retouching & actions for slideshow and feature images in photoshop.
  15. Amanda, it is funny that you say that. I just printed my first images that were edited in lightroom. The first thing I thought of is that they are dull, lacking contrast and "pop". I first thought they were not sRGB, and maybe that was the problem, but they were.... I'll have to play around like David suggests.
  16. Hi Kari,

    I thought I'd put my workflow into the mix.

    1. First I've changed my settings in the camera to record RGB 1998, not sRGB. This is because it is easy for Lightroom to convert down to sRGB. If you start with sRGB, and need RGB 1998, there would be color loss.

    2. Import all cameras photos into one folder with LR. The photos sort according to date/time.

    3. Highlight all the photos - press the "Tone" icon. This is a very good first step for the initial adjustment. If I have some that are under exposed, this brings the exposure up. Doing this process takes some getting use to as the file is not actually updated until you have it on the screen.

    4. Throw out the bad shots - the no keepers under any circumstance

    5. Highlight the ones I want to keep and process - using color markers

    6. Filter on the color markers

    7. Rename - Insure the rename process is set up for -xx1, xx2, etc

    8. Edit each individual RAW file for re-adjustment

    9. Export to jpeg using a maximum resolution of 4000 and 300 dpi- this give large jpegs- call the folder jpeg-4000

    10. Back up RAW and jpeg-4000 files to second hard drive and DVD

    11. Erase the original CD cards

    12. Work on the jpegs-4000. Everything at this point is in CS2 for fine detail work like converting to B&W with color bleedthru, Sepia, spot exposure increase, removal of exit signs, open up eyes, etc.

    13. Convert to smaller jpeg files in Bridge for printing 4x6 proofs or proofbook using resolution of 2100 and 300dpi.

    Hope this helps.

    Good luck

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