Photog Friday: Learning to Love Lightroom

Happy Friday!!

This week I want to talk about one of the biggest leaps I made as a photographer – learning to use Lightroom.  One of my girlfriends sent me a couple of shots for a few editing tips and I thought I’d share those tips with all of you.

I hear a lot of moms say they need to buy Photoshop but can’t because its too expensive – needing Photoshop is a myth. I don’t have Photoshop, don’t know how to use it, and I think I get by just fine without it! All the editing I do is in Adobe’s Lightroom. It’s a non-destructive way to edit your shots in a easier to use format … and costs a LOT less! Seems to me you can really mess up your shot in Photoshop if you don’t know what you’re doing. Work smarter, not harder mommies!

But I’m not going to lie, the 1st couple of weeks after buying Lightroom, I was overwhelmed to tears. But I quickly refused to let my purchase be a waste of money. I searched the internet for tutorials and before I knew it Lightroom & I were BFFs! I’m a huge fan and my shots very rarely get pulled up in any other program. Every once in a while I have an edit I need to do in GIMP (a free Photoshop like program) but we’ll go over that another day.

Let’s talk little about Lightroom. First of all, it uses sliding tools to make changes – love that! It makes things so easy to adjust, re-adjust, or start over. Here’s what that looks like:

But rather than just singing more praises … let’s look at some shots edited in Lightroom!

Before:

Photographs courtesy of Ali Rineheart Photography

After:

In this shot I made the following changes: increased exposure +.05, increased brightness +65, increased contrast +25, bumped the vibrance +64, and increased the saturation +6. I also brightened and whiten the eyes. When I more these adjustments it created a weird green/yellow cast on the girls hair – no problem in LR! I just pulled the yellow slider down -52 and done! It didn’t take me very long and you can see a big difference. And in Lightroom if I find that I’m making a lot of the same changes to my shots, I can save those edits in a “preset” so next time all I have to do is hit 1 button and all the edits are recreated!

Before:

Photographs courtesy of Ali Rineheart Photography

After:

Love, love, love this shot! In this shot I made the following changes: increased exposure +.29, increased brightness +20, and increased contrast +46. And again, I also brightened and whiten the eyes.

You can see what a difference you can make to your photos mommies! I still have LOTS to learn and by NO means think my edits are perfect, I just edit til I like the shot better. If you want to try it out, you can also download a trial version of Lightroom from Adobe’s website! There are TONS of free tutorials on YouTube … so go do it!

Email me with any questions. You can also comment here if you have any feedback – I love comments!

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6 thoughts on “Photog Friday: Learning to Love Lightroom

  1. LOVE IT! Thank you! You did an amazing job Barbie still cant believe I took those photos! Candid ones are the best! You are my Inspiration! :)

    • Sure! Next Friday I’ll go over what I do to brighten them, there may be a better way but seems to be working for me. thanks! LOVE ALL THE COMMENTS!! Its nice to know people are actually reading my posts :)

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