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All About Photo Editors

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In this episode Liam Douglas talks about the 5 most popular photo editors on the market.
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well, as you can see, Photoshop is pretty complex and there's just a lot to it. Now, you probably understand why Photoshop can be so hard to learn and master with all of those items just within the camera, raw utility. Once you make any selection here and you're ready to dive into Photoshop itself, you'll click the open button at the very bottom of the adjustment panel and your photo will open within Photoshop. Once you're in the main Photoshop window, you have tons and tons of more tools, we're working with your photo, there are layers masks, a plethora of selection and editing tools down the left hand edge of the Photoshop editing window and tons more in the file menu across the top. You also have another adjustment panel on the right hand side of the main Photoshop workspace and that window will actually show you your masks and panels as you create them. Now, I'm not going to go through all of the tools in Photoshop, it would take hours if not days to do that and I don't want your eyes to glaze over. Hopefully I can get a guest on the show at some point soon who's an actual expert on Photoshop and they can help explain all that it can do. I'm gonna see if I can possibly get Greg Ben's he makes a great add on for Photoshop and he's a real expert at the Photoshop software. So it would be nice if I can get him on the show, I'm going to reach out to him and see if I can because I know a lot of you out there have questions about Photoshop and I want to try to address those in another episode as best I can. Now in the show notes, I have a screenshot of what the Photoshop workspace looks like along with what adobe camera raw looks like. So if you look at the screenshots, you'll get a pretty good idea of why it takes a lot of time to become profession in Photoshop. Now, as far as pricing you're in luck As Adobe now does subscription-based pricing and you can get both Photoshop and the next program that I'm going to talk about adobe lightroom for just $10 a month. That is significant As back in the day when I first started using Adobe Photoshop, it was $800 plus to buy a copy of that software. That's no lie. The last thing I want to mention about Photoshop Is that you can only edit one image at a time. You can open multiple images at once in Photoshop but each loads into their own separate editing workspace window. Now, one more thing to keep in mind is that Photoshop is known as a destructive editor. In other words, when you edit in Photoshop, you are permanently changing your original raw file. So keep that in mind. Okay, the next program I want to talk about is Adobe Lightroom. Now, Lightroom is quite a bit different from Photoshop but it can do some of the same things with the same tools. Lightroom is mainly a photo database program and when you launch it for the first time, it'll ask you to create a catalog which is what Lightroom calls its databases. I recommend creating a main catalog for that particular calendar years such as master 2021 or 2022 et cetera. But if you are say a wedding photographer, then you might want to create separate catalogs for each wedding you shoot so you can keep them separated and name the catalog after the wedding. The images are for such as Todd and mary smith or whatever the case may be. Now, once you have your catalog created you can then import your actual raw files using the import button on the bottom left hand side of the main catalog window. You then browse to your hard drive where the photos you want to work on are stored and select the folder, that folder that the photos are actually sitting in the raw files. Now, during the import process, you can add items to your raw files such as development settings, metadata and keywords to tag the images with such as Todd and Mary Smith Wedding Saturday, January 31, 2022 for example. Now there is also a file handling on import option and both of these options will be found in the import panel on the right hand side of the actual import window. Once you have done all you need to do here, just click the import button on the bottom of the import panel and it'll start bringing the images into the main lightroom workspace window which is known as the library module here. Your images will all be available in a multi tile view. You'll get basically thumbnail previews and at the bottom will be a small thumbnail preview that runs across the bottom of the editing window that they call the filmstrip view. Now, if you click on a single image in the filmstrip panel, it will be highlighted in the main tile window. Now, if you double click it in the film strip, it will open that single image in the library module. Window, Lightroom has tons of options and capabilities from working on your images, but it's not as overwhelming as Photoshop. Lightroom breaks things down into modules which are found at the upper right hand side of the main window and they appear as follows library module, which is where you do. You're importing the develop module where you have some of your editing tools and sliders, then you have the map because Lightroom can handle gps, geo tagging information and show it to you on the map. You have the book module where you can make printable books, slide show, print and a web module. Now again, I'm not going to deep dive into all these modules as it would take too much time. But other than the library module. The other main one I wanted to talk about is the develop module. This module in Lightroom has all the same options as the adobe camera Raw window does you have all the same sets of sliders? The hissed a gram at the top, but Lightroom adds a few extra categories, such as transform lens correction. Lightroom also has some basic editing tools, such as the crop tool, a spot removal tool, the red eye correction tool, the gradient tool, the radio filter tool and an adjustment brush. Now, aside from being more minimal compared to Photoshop light rooms, other big advantage is the ability to keep your images organized and the fact that Lightroom is a non destructive editor. All the changes you make to your images and Lightroom are saved in a separate xml file and applied to the raw file when you export them leaving your original raw file itself untouched. Now you'll see the changes in Lightroom as you make them. But all it's doing is showing you your raw file and then doing an overlay showing you the changes you made from that xml sidecar file, That's what they called now because of its simplicity in comparison to Photoshop and its organizational abilities. Lightroom is a super popular editor with photographers and it comes as part of the adobe Photoshop Photoshop subscription are I'm sorry, the adobe photography subscription plan for $10 a month. Now In recent years, Adobe has created two versions of lightroom. Lightroom CC and Lightroom Classic CC. The C. C stands for Creative cloud. Now, the big difference between the two is Lightroom CC is fully cloud based. You're not actually technically installing the software on your computer, you're doing, you're editing and all that stuff in the cloud and I'm not a big fan of that. I prefer to use Lightroom Classic because it's a standalone program and it's what I've used for a long, long time. So back in the day, if you had to buy a standalone copy of lightroom, the cost was upwards of $150 to buy that software. But now It's $10 a month And paired with Adobe Photoshop. So you get both programs for $10 which is $120 a year and you get all of the most recent updates because you're on a subscription model. So every time they release a new version of Photoshop or Lightroom, you get that upgrade automatically for no extra charge, which is extremely nice. Okay, The third program I wanted to talk to talk about in this episode is capture one pro now capture one And it's soft software that was created by a company called Phase one and they are a company that makes medium format cameras now capture one is not limited to only being used for the raw files for the Phase One cameras, it is a universal program and can process the Raw files from all major camera brains. Phase one does make streamlined versions of their software specifically for Sony Fuji Film and Nikon cameras but I personally by the universal version so I can use it for both my Canon and my fujifilm Raw files now capture one is very similar to Adobe lightroom and that you create a catalog or database of your images and then import them into capture one for editing. Once your images are in capture one, you have a similar catalog view as to what you would have in lightroom but the quote filmstrip runs down the right hand side of the viewing window. The various modules are on the left hand side of the main workspace window and they include library exposure evaluation, lens correction, basic adjustments, styles, navigator presets and then informational tab Now capture one is also like lightroom and that it is a nondestructive editor. All of your changes are saved as what they call recipes. So when you export you export the modified version of your image instead of the raw file or you can say Export the original raw file untouched. So you can do either one Now, as I mentioned a moment ago, Capture one is very similar to lightroom and can do almost all of the same things that Lightroom can do with three major exceptions. It cannot sink Gps, metadata from 1, 1 raw file to another which is a huge pet peeve of mine and I cannot do panorama stitching or HDR emerging yet and capture one. Now the good news is with capture one pro 22 which releases sometime in December of 2021. It will gain the panorama stitching and HDR merge capabilities. But as far as I know, still will not have the GPS metadata sinking functionality. And that really bugs the crap out of me to be honest because uh my G F X 50 R doesn't have built in Gps Fuji doesn't make an add on GPS module. They want you to pair of their G F X cameras or their X series cameras with the app on your smartphone and do geo tagging that way. But as you heard me mentioned in other episodes, it's not a convenient way to do things because you not only have to keep your phone sync to the camera, but every time you go to a new location, you've got to tell the app on your phone to manually re sync with the satellites and get the new location and then tell it to sink that location to the camera. It's just too much of a pain in the butt. So that's why I really wish Fujii would add GPS metadata functionality Natively in their cameras. Just, you know, if nothing else give us a firmware update that modifies the communication stack so you can use an external third party GPS unit that's mounted on the camera like Canon offers and I think Nikon does, I'm not sure if Sony does, but I know Canon and Nikon do. All right, but I'm gonna take a short break right here and then I'll be right back. We hope you're enjoying this edition of the Lien photography podcast. The best way to support the show is to subscribe an apple podcast, google podcasts or anywhere else that you get your podcast. If you want to leave comments or suggestions for future episodes, you can call or text the show at area code 470 to 948191. And you can email the show at liam liam photography podcast dot com. You can find the show notes and links at liam photography podcast dot com. And you can tweet the show at liam photo A T L. Using the hashtag liam photo podcast and now back to the show and we're back. Okay, so continuing on with capture one. Another reason to consider capture one is that they have a very close relationship with both fuji film and Sony and as such. Their software, in my opinion does a much better job of handling and rendering fujifilm and Sony's raw files versus lightroom. You can also, as I mentioned before by the Fujifilm, Sony or Nikon only camera specific versions of capture one for a considerably lower price than the universal version that I use. Now capture one offers to pricing options for their software. You can get a subscription like you can with adobe products which cost $20 a month. Or you can pre pay for the whole year Or you can get a perpetual license key for $199 for the Fujifilm Sony or Nikon specific versions Or 2 99 for the universal version. Now I know that sounds like it's a lot of money But if you already have a version of capture one then you can save quite a bit by paying the upgrade price, which for the universal version is 199 and they'll frequently have sales where you can get it for as low as like 149 or 159. And you can also check the rumor sites that I normally get the news and rumors from because they usually have their own codes that will give you a discount as well. Now I personally have been using both Lightroom and capture one for quite a few years now. And to be honest I prefer capture one. If they get to the point where they add the GPS metadata sinking functionality that I really need. Then I could finally dump lightroom and Photoshop and only use capture one as it stands right now. I still have to use lightroom at least any time I want to sing GPS data as I mentioned before. My G F X 50 R. Doesn't have native GPS capabilities. So when I'm outshooting with that camera, I either take one of my Canon cameras along with its GPS unit mounted on it. Or I use my iphone to get the GPS data. And then later I import both sets of files into the Lightroom and I can sink over the GPS metadata from the iphone or the Canon raw files to the fuji ones and then put the fuji raw files into capture one. I know it's a lot of work and that's why I really wish capture one would add the metadata sinking capability to their software when they do that. I'll be really happy. Okay, The fourth program I wanted to talk about in this episode is called on one photo Raw. Now this is a great photo editing program and it actually combines a lot of the capabilities of both Photoshop and Lightroom into a single image editor. Photo Raul is also a nondestructive editor. So it preserves your original raw files Now like lightroom and capture one. Once you import your raw files into a catalog, you can make all the edits you want without losing your original raw file data, even when you create layers are masking, which is something you can do in Photoshop that on one can do as well. Now, like both capture one and Lightroom, you can add keywords and tags to your images as you import them to help keep your images organized and easier to manage and find. Photo Raul has all of its catalog options down the left hand side of the main editing window and it has the layers and other editing options down the right hand side of the main window. Now, also like capture one in lightroom, you can apply custom made editing presets to give your images a specific look. Or of course you can do all of the editing yourself with the fact that on one photo Raul combines the power of both Photoshop and Lightroom in a single image editor. There are a good number of photographers that love this software and use it every day as part of their workflow. It makes things so much easier when you have both the capabilities of both programs in a single program and you don't have to switch back and forth when using layers or masks on your images. When using Lightroom, you can choose the option to make edits to your images in Photoshop if you need layers and masking or other Photoshop specific edits, but it then launches Photoshop and when you're done you have to save the changes back into Lightroom for exporting, which is more work and a little more hassle. Now, one last thing I should mention before wrapping up this episode by talking about the last photo editor in this list is the fact that Lightroom Capture one and on one photo Raul are all able to do what's known as tethered capture, which means you can hook your camera up to your computer and then launch any of these editors and you can live shoot or capture images by using the tethered capture controls in the software. A very large number of studio photographers love having this option as once the shot is taken, the image shows up immediately and in the editing software so that a client can see it right away and edits can happen on the fly. Using tethered capture, you can also adjust the settings on your camera using the software, so you don't need to move back and forth between the camera and the computer, which is very convenient. Now on one photo Raul is available as either a subscription for $90 paid annually or $99 for a perpetual license Or $79 if you're an existing customer and you're upgrading a perpetual license from a previous version. So as you can see all of these editors are fairly comparable as far as price and capabilities. But wrapping up, I want to talk about the 5th photo editor in this episode and this is the newest kid on the block. And the program is called loom in our Ai. Now Loom in our Ai is made by a company called Skylar um software and it's a newer photo editor that hasn't been around nearly as long as the others but has made massive strides in capabilities over the years, Skylar um has added most, all of the major functionality to their software that the others have. It can do cataloging like lightroom capture one and on one photo raw and it can do layers and masking as well. Like Photoshop. Now an additional option that makes loom in our Ai very handy and powerful to have as part of your workflow is its ability to be used as a plug in for lightroom Photoshop and apple photos. So if you want to have more powerful editing capabilities without all the messy hassle of learning everything there is in Photoshop, you can shortcut by using loom in our AI as a plug in. Now besides having the catalog functionality like Lightroom capture one in photo. Raw lumen are also has presets or as they call them templates which allow you to make quick and easy edits to your raw files lumen are AI also keeps your original raw file safe. It is a non destructive photo editor which is always nice. Skyler um has won numerous awards over the last several years for being the most innovative photo editor on the market. And Skylar um is always adding new features and functionality. One of their biggest advancements. Was there sky replacement sub module. Anyone who's been shooting for any amount of time knows that mother nature doesn't always cooperate and give us beautiful skies for our landscape or travel photos with aluminum AI you can quickly and easily replace the dull, dreary sky in your images with a beautiful, colorful sky instead, you can add a nice blue sky with white fluffy clouds or colorful sunrise or sunset to your images. And even they even give you the option of adding in Milky Way skies to really make your images look fantastic. Now women are AI comes with quite a few free sky replacement templates that and you can buy even more sky packs with the click of a button in the sky replacement sub panel. But sky replacement and all of the other manual editing options are located under the edit tab at the top of the main photo window. Once in the edit section of the software you have tons of capabilities, most of which are similar to the ones you would find in Photoshop but a bit easier to learn and manage with all of the power that skylar um has added aluminum over the years. And now with this latest version aluminum ai you have most all of the same capabilities you're doing on one photo raw where you basically have the combined power of both lightroom and Photoshop in a single program. Now, as far as pricing is concerned, luminary is by far the least expensive as you can buy a perpetual license for only $79. And as of this episode You can get it for 47 with a sale that are currently running If you want it for two computers, you can get it for $59 on sale or $99 for its regular price. Sky Long does have a new photo editor coming later this winter called lumen are Neo which will be completely separate from lumen our Ai. But they say they're not discontinuing loom in our Ai, they're just gonna have to different programs for you to choose from. Now. It's my understanding because I am a skyline affiliates and such and beta test for them as well. Um, lumen are Neo is going to be a more complex and powerful photo editor. Probably similar to Photoshop for those professionals that really need specific edit capabilities and tweaking capabilities that the standard loom in our AI doesn't give you. So wrapping up this episode, we talked about five of the most popular photo editing programs that are on the market today. Now I know there's many others out there, But these are the five most popular as well as the ones I've personally used myself. Now. At the bottom of the show notes for this episode, you can find links to all of these programs on their websites and all of them offer a free trial period so you can try them all And then decide which one would best suit your needs. And then buy from there. All right. That is wrapping up the editing software I wanted to talk about in the 200th episode. Remember to check out the Lien photography podcast facebook group. It is a private group and you must answer a security question to join which is the name of the host of the show myself liam and I've also opened it up to allow you to give the name of a previous guest on the show to show that you are a listener. Once you were in the group, you are free to post your own original work. I'm also the advent of the fujifilm G FX 50. Our group which is the largest group for the 50 are on facebook. If you own or plan to own the 50 are, you can request to join that group but you do have to answer to security questions to join that group. You can find my work at liam photography dot net and follow me on instagram facebook and twitter at liam photo A T L. If you like abandoned buildings in history, you can find my projects at forgotten pieces of Georgia dot com and forgotten pieces of pennsylvania dot com. Alright, that's gonna wrap everything up for episode 200 of the liam photography podcast. I want to thank all of my listeners once again for subscribing rating and reviewing in apple podcast stitcher, Spotify, verbal and anywhere else you might be getting your podcast. And I also wanted to give a thank you once again to both surgery Mellie and skip cohen for both being on the show in the last couple of weeks, they were wonderful guests. They gave us a lot of information for my listeners and I truly appreciate both of them giving me some of their time to come on the show. Now if you did enjoy those episodes, the good news is both surge and skips that they'd be more than happy to be a guest on the show again. So I may have them both back again in 2022, skip has a lot of stuff he'd like to talk about as far as blogging on your photography site and cleaning up your photography site to make it as appealing as possible to perspective clients. And sarah Joey's has great new things to talk about, whether it's some new training program he's just released or a meat a meet up and shoot with other photographers. He's doing one of those right now um in paris because he's back over there for a little while, but we'll definitely have him back on the show. Now. I also wanted to let you know that Brett Burger um is coming on that week in November nine. He's gonna be on the show to talk about printing your photos yourself. And then we also have Ellie Cat or Ellie Ringo. Uh she's coming on the show the week of the 15th to talk about her trip to Greenland and all the exciting new stuff she's got going on and the week after that is gonna be a sit down with levi sim who is a super famous portrait and corporate headshot photographer. He's gonna come on the show and talk about portrait headshot photography as well as his steve jobs project. And I won't give you any more on that than that. You'll have to tune into that episode to find out more. All right, I will see you all again on thursday.