Welcome to the very first episode of Sleeklens’ photography podcast. This is a weekly podcast where we will be talking about everything photography including Photoshop, Lightroom or anything you can think of. It does not matter what style you shoot; we are still going to talk about it in this podcast. We will go with the flow of the podcast, and you can see what to expect going forward and what we will be talking about in the next few podcasts.
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I am going to go through a popular topic which is about Photoshop vs Lightroom, which is a very popular topic when it comes to a lot of beginner photographers out there. Basically, we are going to look at the flow of the podcast going forward. But before then, just a little bit about me as a person. My name is Jordan Younce, a real estate photographer from the United States where I do a lot of real estate stuff. I’ve done a lot of other styles of photography, but I’m kind of concentrating in real estate now. This is a really cool topic and journal to concentrate on now. That just shows you that you can start with one style of photography and then move on to a different one, and in the process, you might find one that you love better than the one you originally planned on starting out with. That’s something you might need to keep in mind. I also do a lot of video content on Sleeklens YouTube channel. You can go to YouTube and search for Sleeklens and you will find a lot of videos to help you with photo editing, shooting or anything you can think about including all about the Sleeklens’ workflows, Photoshop actions, Lightroom Presets and all other stuff and I can help out with that if you need help as well. So be sure to send me anything you want to see in this podcast, any ideas, and I will be happy to help you with that. You can send those to [email protected]. Anything you would like me to help or any questions, just send them my way, and I will be glad to help.
With that out of the way, let’s talk about the podcast going forward. This is going to be a weekly podcast and is eventually going to be moved to a weekly live show on YouTube. If you don’t want to be on a live show or don’t have the time, don’t worry. We are still going to take the audio from there and release it as a podcast. So, even if you subscribe here, you still will be able to get all the episodes so you can follow along with us.
In this weekly podcast, we’re going to talk about news, general topics for the episodes, and recent articles which are posted on Sleeklens.com website, and there is also going to be a featured item of the week. This is going to be some fun little things such as Photoshop actions, Lightroom presets, gear or any kind of a thing you can think of that is photography related.
To show you our appreciation for listening to the podcast, we are also going to offer a coupon code which you can use at the Sleeklens cart. If you add something that you want to pick and then enter the coupon code “sleeklenspodcast”, it’s going to take away 10% off anything on the store. So, make sure to check that out if you’ve been looking forward to buy anything from the site. That is the basic flow of how this podcast is going to be laid out; it’s a really fun podcast and cool environment to have all photographers out there listen to. I did mention that I’ll be talking about a topic on this episode, but this is an introductory topic which is very popular when it comes to beginner photographers out there. This has to do with the program one should use to edit my photos? Should I use Lightroom or should I use Photoshop?
The quick answer to this question is that there is no magic answer, but it depends on the kind of style of photography that you’re shooting and what you want to do with your photos. Both programs have their pros and cons. I’m going to look into that in in-depth. So, let’s go over Photoshop first and start by the pros of using this program.
What one of the main things that Photoshop does but Lightroom cannot do is to use Layers. A layer allows you to put an edit on top of an edit that you can do in Photoshop. This does a non-destructive editing of your files. It also allows you to do tons of stuff more than I can cover in this podcast. Being able to do a lot of stuff on your photo non-destructively is important because you don’t want to mess up with your original file but want to keep it intact and in its original form. Photoshop also has what we call ‘Actions’ and Sleeklens sells a bunch of actions out there to do certain effects to your photos, and these are like presets (if you are familiar with Lightroom). They allow you to take one effect and apply it to your photos with one click and it automatically does all these types of effects to your photo. This allows you to do all kinds of editing. You can do color adjustments, visual effects and other fun stuff with a single click using the actions.
Blending and compositing is another really important Photoshop feature that you can do to your photos. What I mean by this is that, let’s say you’ve gone out for landscape shooting and you have this really amazing scene and you take a picture but realize that the sky maybe just a little boring and you don’t like the way it looks. But earlier on you had taken a really nice sunrise or something similar to that but with a very impactful sky. What you can do is take that sky out of one photo and put it in the other photo and blend them together thus giving you a very to scene by replacing the blurry sky with the better one. Photoshop can do that, but Lightroom cannot get any closer to something like that. That’s kind of an advanced editing technique that Lightroom can’t do. So, Photoshop is another reason for you to use layers as they allow you to do that as well but Lightroom cannot get any closer.
Photoshop also has a ton of tools that you can use. Lightroom has a little bit of what Photoshop has, but the latter can do almost everything. One of the tools that many people like to use and they think they can do the same in Lightroom but they cannot is actually the Liquify tool. A lot of people are familiar with that tool and what that tool does is that it allows you to whoop your photo to make it better looking. What I mean by that is that, let’s say you took a photo of somebody, but they are concerned with the weight or something like that. You can actually slim them down using the Liquify tool. You can take a really cool facial portrait of somebody and enlarge their eyes a little bit to make them appealing. You can do stuff like that. You can make them smile if they weren’t smiling when you took the photo. Photoshop has some really awesome tools and a large variety of things you can do to your photo. So, basically, anything you can imagine is possible to do to your photos using Photoshop. It might take a little bit of time, but you can actually do it in Photoshop.
Even though Photoshop has a lot of high points when it comes to editing photos, there are also many low points or negative aspects that some people cannot get around. One of the major ones is that it has no image management. Once you drag a photo into Photoshop for editing, you have to save it just as you would a doc file. You have to figure out where you want that image to be saved while in Lightroom, you can put them in a catalogue, you can organize them and open them in Lightroom, and your file management is basically Lightroom. But in Photoshop, you have to save the photos in your hard-drive or file structure that you specify, and you can lose files just because you do not know where you are saving them. Thankfully, Lightroom has a better file organization, and that one is a major con when it comes to Photoshop.
The next one is that it has no built-in raw support. You might be asking yourself, why you have been able to edit raw photos in Photoshop before. Well, technically you haven’t but what you have edited your photos in is what we call ‘camera raw’ which is a small separate program from Photoshop. This is not really a big deal because camera raw is updated to edit raw files from almost any camera. However, you are not editing your RAW photos in Photoshop but doing it in camera RAW. So, when editing your RAW photos in camera RAW, you basically need to have all your main adjustments done before you bring them into Photoshop because you are not going to have that leeway to edit your photos later on. You will lose some of the information when they go into Photoshop, and that is kind of a negative thing but again you can edit your RAW photos in Camera RAW but can’t do it in Photoshop.
One of the last negative points with Photoshop is that it’s hard to learn and we all know this. It is a little hard to get accustomed to the Photoshop interface, and if you are not familiar with it and you happen to open a file, it is still going to be overwhelming when you do it in Photoshop. It takes a lot of time to learn Photoshop while in Lightroom, you can almost jump in there and start editing your photos right away. That is one major con of Photoshop.
Next, we look at Lightroom….
One of the main pros if Lightroom is that it does has Built-in RAW support. So, when you import your photos into Lightroom and you keep making adjustments to your files, you are constantly making your edits on that raw file rather than a compressed file format of that raw file or any other type of file and all the edits are non-destructive. Anything you do to your files can automatically be reset and you get back to the way it was when it came off that camera. That’s really important if you are someone who goes back and edits photos regularly because you have that raw file to fall back on.
Like I mentioned in Photoshop, Lightroom has a major file feature and optimization. You can organize your files greatly. I know in my case when I go shooting in a home, I always put them in an individual folder in Lightroom and that way if someone wants to see the files for any particular house I can pull out the specific file where I put the files and export them and send them their way. This is very easy and it is very easy to organize your files in Lightroom.
Again, as I mentioned, Lightroom is very easy to use. You have your modules on the top-right hand side of the Lightroom window and these are self-explanatory. Your library is where you keep all your files, your develop module is where you edit the files, map shows exactly where your photos were taken at if you have GPS location just among many others. It is a very easy file structure or file management window to allow you to edit your files in. the develop module is also very straightforward with the correct labels such as basic adjustments, tone curves, Split toning details and all that stuff. It is very easy to understand and all of them are in one place.
Another major pro when it comes to Lightroom are the presets. Presets are fantastic and you can use them in almost every photo because not only do they allow you to do your edits quickly, which is a major thing when it comes to photographers who put out a lot of work all at once, but you can also apply almost any effect that you can ever think of. For example, if your photo is very much underexposed, you can apply a certain effect to bump up the exposure but it doesn’t mess up with certain highlights of your exposure. It only brightens up certain spots on your image. Sleeklens has a ton of presets which you can use in almost any situation from landscapes to real estate to drone photography, to visual effects and if you want to look at these effects you can visit the site and look up the collections available. Again, presets are fantastic as they give you some ideas on effects you want to apply to your photos. You can also create your own presets if you know there are certain effects you apply in almost every photo thus making it a really awesome feature to have in Lightroom.
Let’s now look at the cons when it comes to Lightroom…
First, Lightroom has no advanced editing tools. What I mean by this is that as we were talking about Photoshop when it comes to compositing and replacing the sky and stuff like that, you can’t do that at all. Basically, you have to go into Photoshop to do that. Let’s say you have a portrait of someone who may have some blemishes or something like that, you have the spot removal tool and you can take those out, you can have the healing tool to help you take that stuff out that way. You can remove some simple stuff from your photo but as far as doing any major adjustments that you might want to do, you must do it in Photoshop.
Again, as mentioned under Photoshop, no “layerability”, meaning you can’t do stackable presets which is mainly what the Sleeklens’ presets are which allows you to stack on top of each other until you have the desired effects. You do not have the ability to do layers in Lightroom and that can be a drawback for some if you really concentrate layer editing.
One of the last cons when it comes to Lightroom is that it’s only for photos. You might be asking, ‘isn’t Photoshop also just for photos?” But actually, this is not the thing. A lot of people don’t know that you can actually edit videos in Photoshop. You can edit your videos as you would an image by opening it in a Camera RAW filter once you import it to Photoshop and edit all the same features, all the same sliders that you are used to in Photoshop. It’s probably not the best video program out there but if you are doing simple video adjustments and are not used to any other video editing software, Photoshop will definitely help enhance the video quality. It also does have a timeline and so you can make that as your video editing suite. However, I would recommend looking for some other type of video editing program. Although you can edit your videos in Photoshop, importing the same into Lightroom doesn’t allow you to do much but you can catalogue it in order to save it but you can’t really view it or edit it. That’s one real drawback for someone who wants to edit or catalogue video because you will have to come up with your own file or structure for that as well.
That is the main topic of this episode and hope you enjoyed it. Just some quick information for beginners out there who are trying to find what editing program is best for them, I personally use Lightroom 99% of the time but there is something we have to dive into Photoshop to kind of fix or correct but for the main part, Lightroom is the main go-to tool when it comes to editing.
Featured item of the week
The featured item for this week is a brand new collection when it comes to Sleeklens’ Lightroom workflows and that is the Visual Noir Collection. This collection is really great and focuses on cinematic film presets effect. If you’ve ever wondered how to get that cinematic effect look on your photos, this collection is probably the one you want to look out for. You can actually go to Sleeklens YouTube channel to see some great videos showing you some really awesome effects that you can apply to your photos using the Visual Noir Collection. To see these effects, just go to Sleeklens.com and checkout the Visual Noir Collection. Just look at the before and after photos for how great results you can get using the effects. Remember to use your coupon code ‘Sleeklenspodcast’ to get 10% off that collection.