Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Technique Tuesday: Is Lightroom Faster Than Photoshop?

Good Morning Everybody,
Yesterday's announcement of my "Digital WakeUp Call - A New Dawn" tour [link] sure created lots of excitement among our DPT readers - thanks to to all who jumped on board right away. I promise each and everyone of you a jam-packed, information filled, fun evening. I'm looking forward to seeing everyone there.

Is Lightroom Faster Than Photoshop?
A few months ago I re-ran one of my very early tutorials entitled, "Rocky Mountain High" [link]. I loved the tutorial because it showed how I solve the problem we portrait photographers sometimes encounter - dark, variable backgrounds. A couple readers commented wondering if I would have used Lightroom now that's its available.

Well, I decided to revisit the image and test out the hypothesis of whether Lightroom would be faster than Photoshop in this instance. You may notice that the length of the previous Photoshop tutorial runs a few seconds shorter, that's because I've gotten much longer winded these days. Hit the PLAY button below and you be the judge as to which solution gives the best result. You might be surprised.

Hey everybody, I've got to hit the trail. We've got lots of stuff to wrap before we head out to Las Vegas on Sunday for WPPI. I'm presenting a platform program at 8:00 a.m. on Monday. I hope to see many of you there. Anyway, got to go. See ya' tomorrow for Analysis of A Wedding Shoot - Part 987 ;~) -David


  1. David great shot. Lightroom really does change the game.

    I'll still go into Photoshop to run a few of my actions, soften ect for REALLY good shots, but LR does 95%.

    Everything about the LR worksflow is smooth. I can add my effects presets to loads of images, do a few fine tune tweaks, and edit a very few in PS.

    I'm glad your liking and getting so into LR as well as RAW... Gav

  2. David, this was a very nice tutorial indeed. Thank you very much.

    Some time I would really wish to see how do you process 4000 photos from a wedding in a lightroom (importing, sorting out the photos, labelling, basic adjustments, etc.) in other words what is your workflow when handling so huge number of images in lightroom. Thanks!


  3. I have learned so much about working in LR since stumbling upon DigitalProTalk. I look forward to Technique Tuesday every week.

  4. Why all the hoopla about Lightroom 2.0? I can use all the same controls in CS4 and Camera Raw.The cost of CS4 update is $199 and LR 2.0 is $299. Is anyone aware of this? Using the same controls LR 2.0 would not be any faster or better.

  5. Why do you state CS4's upgrade cost and LR2's full price?

  6. I stated the cost of CS4 upgrade because most all photographers already have Photoshop.

  7. David,

    This is my first comment on your blog, I have been a follower for quite some time and I just wanted to say how much you have helped me as a wedding photographer. Your work is great and I really enjoy your tutorials, especially the ones on Kelby Training. I wanted to know if you would ever be willing to share some of your lightroom presets with your viewers? I know Matt Kloskowski does on Lightroom Killer Tips, but I would really like to see what you have from a wedding photographers perspective.

    I am so excited that you are coming to Iowa and I will see you at the conference in Des Moines.

    John Beyer

  8. Thank you, David. This is a great tutorial. I am just learning Lightroom2 and you have helped me so much just in the few tutorials that I have watched.

    I'll be back. :)

  9. I am a CS3 and Camera Raw person myself. Lightroom2 looks like it works great, but then it means having to learn another program. I am still learning so much about CS3 and I am comfortable with it, so for now I will practice my skills there.

  10. To the Anonymous poster saying: "Why all the hoopla about Lightroom 2.0?"

    Ahhh, but Lightroom is sooo much more than just little adjustments, it catalogs and keeps track of your images so much better than Bridge, let along the printing and slideshows, etc, etc. The only way to truly appreciate it, is to use it unfortunately. I didn't get it till I got to know it, now there is no way of going back!

    It's also true that you have the same adjustments available in CS, but the work flow layout of them in Lightroom is easier and faster. Again, the only way you'll realize it though, is by using it.

    (Tip, NAPP members get discounts on Adobe products, hint hint)

  11. Hi David - I return to your site often; your posts offer alot of practical and business guidance - many thanks.

    Picking up the points raised above can you say whether the tools you used for this image are unique to Lightroom? I was under the impression that what both Lightroom and CS4 both used Camera Raw v5 and when I've seen those lightroom controls previously I had assumed they were ACR_v5 tools - is that the case?. As I'm trying to decide whether to buy a CS4 upgrade or Lightroom 2 it would be really helpful to know if I the same tools are available in CS4 - thanks again.

  12. Nice video!
    Please do an Orbis ringflash video. I'd love to see it at work