As much as I love the program now, learning how to use it didn't come without some nudging. Even before I thought about starting a photography business, I knew a lot of industry photographers -- okay, let's face it, almost all industry photographers -- use Lightroom for post processing. My initial reaction to this was good for them. I'm not one to blindly jump on the bandwagon, so it took some serious convincing for me to really understand why Lightroom is such a valuable tool. Here's why I love it:
Before using Lightroom, I used Photoshop to process all of my images. Because Photoshop doesn't have the database functions Lightroom has, this meant going through photos one by one and jotting down the individual file name on any photo I felt was worth keeping on a piece of paper. Then I had to open each individual file in Photoshop and make my adjustments. Depending upon the number of photos and my availability, editing a single shoot in Photoshop took me between one and two weeks. Lightroom offers a number of functions that completely streamline this process, making it much less cumbersome. The difference is like night and day!
In addition to its time-saving features, Lightroom allows me to be consistent from one photo to the next when editing for exposure, color, tone, and saturation. These things can be done in Photoshop, but Lightroom makes the process incredibly easy.
Pre and post-processing organization
One of Lightroom's best features is its ability to organize photos. A lot of photographers swoon about it's pre-processing organizational capabilities, but my favorite is the kind of organization Lightroom allows you to do post-processing. In one fell swoop, I can resize, name, tag, and save all images from a single shoot!