What do you wish you knew when you were getting started with Lightroom?

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I'm working on the getting started information for beginners, and perhaps you can help me... it's a little while since I was a beginner!

Stretch your mind way back... when you first got your hands on Lightroom, what did you want to know?

For example, did you need to know how to import existing photos or just new ones? Were you worried about renaming at that stage? What about adding metadata?

And then what did you want to do when you first got your photos into Lightroom? Were you interested in rating the photos, or did you go straight to Develop and play with them?

Did you bother to play with slideshows and prints to start with? Did you try to export?

If you could roll back time and give yourself some tips, what would you tell yourself? What do you wish you knew?

Thanks!
 

wireless200

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I would prefer to have a develop/catalog module or tab in PS. PS does everything LR does to the image but does not have the convenience of the nicely managed catalog. If PS had that, I might not have to use LR at all. Thoughts? I'm fairly well experienced with LR but not as much with PS. One of many things I love about PS are the healing and tone and patching tools. They are much more powerful in PS than LR for my uses.

regards, David

p.s. I do appreciate Victoria's twitter feed. If she posts something it's worth taking a look at.
 
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Hi Tony
I'm very happy with LR, as are most of the people I have introduced to it. I was simply replying to Victoria's thread, which is heavily weighted in terms of library / catalog issues for new users, put together with my experience trying to get new users up and running quickly in LR.
Mike
Fair enough - hopefully the points that we have discussed will help those new users understand a bit of the background as to why Lightroom is designed in the way that it is.

Tony Jay
 
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I came to Lightroom as an advanced PS user, so the Develop Module was easy for me. And I had a pretty good folder/file structure (on a Mac) that worked for me.

But as I've improved the file structure and consolidated things, I couldn't get LR to move things around or create new folders in the way that I wanted. I know I'm supposed to move and create folders and change file locations within LR, but I've never gotten a handle on this. It still confounds me, after 3 years of using the program. I still wish there was a comprehensive explanation of the various file and folder moving scenarios. (I still end-run it by doing it in the finder and pointing LR to the missing pictures, but this has created some unwanted duplicates.)

I wish I'd known more about the right-click options to find lost files or folders. On a Mac with an ordinary mouse, there is no "right click". It's Control-Click, which I rarely use. I wish I'd known more about finding files that had the dreaded ?'s.

I wish I'd known more about which functions you could do in the Filmstrip and which functions you had to do in Grid mode. A list for each would have helped, instead of an instruction buried in text that I couldn't find later. An example is deleting multiple images at once from catalogue or hard drive.

I wish I'd known more about synchronizing settings and metadata. I still don't know how to synchronize keywords!

I wish I'd known to make sure to create a Parent Folder in the finder which would hold all the images. (I actually did have this, but apparently it wasn't enough of a Parent for Lightroom on one occasion.)

I REALLY wish I'd had an understanding of working with multiple computers, merging catalogues at the end of a shoot, or importing one into the other. What gets overridden if one does that?

I continue to wish there had been a more comprehensive explanation of Keywords and Keyword sets and how to organize them, and the differences between them. I have both of Krogh's and LRQ's FAQ books and it's still sketchy. What gets written is "it has to work for you" but understanding exactly what would really work, how complex or exactly what words to chose and how to set up the hierarchy, has been a bear. Unfortunately, the stock photography categories don't help. There's been more written on how to recover shadows in a picture than has been written on the Keyword panel! I have pretty much avoided Keywords as a result of not understanding how to set up the organization in the beginning.

All that said, I probably still wouldn't be able to work in LR at all without Victoria's FAQ book!
 

Spook44

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I am new to LR but not to post-processing. I used apple aperture for several years and I see several parallels. If I knew that LR in the develop module used ARC would have been helpful. The lens and camera panel are awesome.
 
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Interesting! Had you previously used ACR then?
 

LisaMcG

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Just found this thread and wanted to add my 2 cents as a newbie LR user: more information on keywords, metadata and collections please!!! Especially for those of us transferring over to LR. I came to LR hoping for a way to manage my digital assets including 80,000+ photos, 10,000 heritage scanned photos and then a sizable digital scrapbooking stash. I use CS5 and PSE12 to edit my photos but LR to manage and organize them. I have Victoria's FAQ book and her free eBook plus many hours logged into Adobe for help! I understood the database concept and have a EHD for my photos which are organized via year and then by month and shoot day. I had hoped that LR would allow me to group them within LR via collections/keywords so I didn't have to remember that in April of 2012 there was an event!

My problems come in with trying to figure out how to use keywords and collections to the best advantage. When I used PSE's Organizer it had ratings, keywords and it could be arranged in a hierarchy etc... and I had workflow where I imported, tagged, saved information to the metadata and then went about editing. When I started with LR I imported the photos and tried to set up a similar workflow but ran into issues. My keyword tags were imported into LR BUT LR has put all the keyword tags into alphabetical order and skipped any hierarchy that I had.

For example in PSE the tags were like such to delineate each trip (Italy vs Germany) and day (01 vs 02) and who took the photo (mike vs lisa) Each photo under each heading is tagged with the tags above it. So Photo 3 under Italy would be tagged with 01_Lisa, Italy, and Vacation. Additionally each photo is numbered with the date taken and a number so 2010Jun5_001, 2010Jun5_002....

Vacation
Italy
01_Mike
Photo 1, Photo 2, Photo 3.....
01_Lisa
Photo 1, Photo 2, Photo 3....
02_Mike
02_Lisa
Germany
01_Mike
Photo 1, Photo 2....
01_Lisa
Photo 1, Photo 2...
02_Mike
02_Lisa

In LR it now reads like this:
01_Lisa
01_Mike
02_Lisa
02_Mike
Germany
Italy
Vacation

Since each photo under each of those is tagged with Vacation, Italy or Germany and 01_Mike, 02_Mike etc... how come it did not transfer the file tree over into the keywords? I can't find the answer to questions like this anywhere!

I am fearful of playing with the keyword list because I get a dialog box that says if I change something it will apply that change to ALL items with that keyword and I am not sure if the keyword 01_Lisa means that it will change it on ALL those photos for every trip and then I will have every photo I ever took on Day 01_Lisa in one mashup regardless of which trip it was. Will it erase the other keyword tags?? What about the metadata? The dialog box mentions changing the metadata and that concerns me as to what and how it is changed.

So for me the essential questions which need to be answered involve details on transferring keywords and using them appropriately with the collections panel without losing my previous work. I can see that LR has a lot of power but at the moment it is not working for me.

Or possibly this is just my issue and everyone else has had a seamless transition?!
 
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