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Author Topic: Here's my workflow - what are my alternatives (if any) to ACR and LR?  (Read 2917 times)
Dinarius
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« on: November 15, 2013, 12:53:58 PM »
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With the moderator's permission, I'm putting this thread here because I think it will get the most exposure (no pun intended)

My workflow relies on processing multiple images, typically 20-40.

Here's what I like about ACR........

1. Perfect Spot Removal syncing.

2. Clean interface/appearance on the screen.

3. No Import requirement. I load images into a 2013/Client Folder/Dated Job Folder.

What I don't like about ACR 8.2 is....

1. If you adjust the size of the Spot Removal circle, the size of the previous correction is adjusted at the same time. Unless I'm missing something, this is just plain stupid. (It doesn't happen in LR)

2. No Visualize Spots feature - only in Photoshop CC, apparently.

3. No automatic perspective correction - again, only in Photoshop CC, apparently.

What I like about Lightroom 5.

1. The Spot Removal Tool and its Visualize Spots feature.

2. The way you can adjust the sliders by simply hovering the mouse over them.

3. The way they move in increments of 5.

What I dislike about LR.

1. The whole Library BS. I really wish this was optional. I would love to be able to access my files directly from where they are on my HD.

2. The hopeless Spot Removal syncing. Dear Adobe, it simply doesn't work. Wakey, wakey.....!   Wink

Apart from the above, which are critical to my workflow, most features are duplicated between the two programs and behave in a similar manner.

Is there another program I should be considering?

Let's face it, perfect spot removal is critical to any workflow.

Well?

Thanks.

D.

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k bennett
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« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2013, 01:11:58 PM »
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D.,

I agree with your assessments of LR vs Camera Raw, though I admit to using and liking the LR cataloging features for my personal work at home. For use at the studio, I don't need any module other than Develop. I don't know any other app to suggest for this workflow, as I've not used Capture One in many years (since I upgraded from my original Canon 1D cameras, which really needed C1.)

Let's face it, perfect spot removal is critical to any workflow.


Dunno if I would go that far Smiley. I shoot many (or even most) of my images close to wide open, so I don't do a lot of spot removal. The occasional landscape shot at f/11 with some sky can be problematic, but that's just a reminder to clean my sensor. Smiley

Good luck finding the best options for your workflow.
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PhotoEcosse
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« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2013, 02:36:31 PM »
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The cataloguing features are, for me, the strongest part of Lightroom. Back in the days of v.1, that is what drew me in as there was not (as far as I was aware at that time) any other program that allowed the cataloguing, grading, indexing, keywording and ranking of image files in quite such a powerful and elegant manner.

In successive versions, the photo-processing capabilities have been enhanced very considerably and the package now forms the essential hub of all my photo-processing workflow with CS6 and the Nik and Topaz suites of plug-ins being accessed from within Lightroom.

Spot removal? Use it occasionally, but not a big issue.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2013, 02:39:15 PM »
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Hi,

I think you need to realise that the library is the basic idea of Lightroom. The raw conversion engine is the exactly same in LR and ACR, except for user interface bugs. That includes spot removal.

If you don't like the library concept, you will never be happy with Lightroom, because that is the soul of Lightroom.

It seems that you have some obsession about spot removal. You have not considered cleaning your sensor? I do it before each important shoot and check quite often. If I see spots, I clean. Simple as that.

Personally, I love the approach LR takes, it is just fine for me. I actually considered writing a program like Lightroom, but when Lightroom arrived it solved most of my problems. I guess that it would take me something like 300 years to develop my program, so I am happy Adobe did it for me!

Best regards
Erik

With the moderator's permission, I'm putting this thread here because I think it will get the most exposure (no pun intended)

My workflow relies on processing multiple images, typically 20-40.

Here's what I like about ACR........

1. Perfect Spot Removal syncing.

2. Clean interface/appearance on the screen.

3. No Import requirement. I load images into a 2013/Client Folder/Dated Job Folder.

What I don't like about ACR 8.2 is....

1. If you adjust the size of the Spot Removal circle, the size of the previous correction is adjusted at the same time. Unless I'm missing something, this is just plain stupid. (It doesn't happen in LR)

2. No Visualize Spots feature - only in Photoshop CC, apparently.

3. No automatic perspective correction - again, only in Photoshop CC, apparently.

What I like about Lightroom 5.

1. The Spot Removal Tool and its Visualize Spots feature.

2. The way you can adjust the sliders by simply hovering the mouse over them.

3. The way they move in increments of 5.

What I dislike about LR.

1. The whole Library BS. I really wish this was optional. I would love to be able to access my files directly from where they are on my HD.

2. The hopeless Spot Removal syncing. Dear Adobe, it simply doesn't work. Wakey, wakey.....!   Wink

Apart from the above, which are critical to my workflow, most features are duplicated between the two programs and behave in a similar manner.

Is there another program I should be considering?

Let's face it, perfect spot removal is critical to any workflow.

Well?

Thanks.

D.


« Last Edit: November 15, 2013, 02:44:13 PM by ErikKaffehr » Logged

Dinarius
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« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2013, 03:36:10 AM »
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Thanks for the replies. Food for thought.

Almost everything I shoot is f/11 or smaller, so everything shows up!

I think I'll just have to stick with ACR when I need spot syncing - my sensor is cleaned twice yearly by Canon, by the way. It would be useful if Adobe fixed it in LR though. Poor form that it's ignored.

Point taken regarding LR as an image organising tool first and foremost. I'll just have to get my head around that. I'm not a big volume shooter.

On balance, given the better Spot Removal tool features in LR, and the better behaviour of the sliders, I'll probably use it for my own small volume work, and use ACR for my larger volume work.

Question: Does the version of LR that comes with CC contain the auto vertical correction in the lens panel that ACR CC has? Arguably, Adobe's most annoying feature is that the don't simply make LR and ACR the same minus LR's organisation features.

Might Capture One a trial run. Any views?

Thanks.

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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2013, 04:04:50 AM »
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Hi,

ACR and LR are the same engine. Regarding sensor cleaning I use an Artic Butterfly brush, I used one since 2006 (or so). It makes no damage as it is applied without pressure, sometimes I use it daily. The cameras I have don't have problems with oil droplets on the sensor so I don't need wet cleaning.

I also shoot MFDB (P45+) and that one is a dust magnet. So I do some spotting in LR, it works for me. I don't recognise the problem you have, it works for me, I think.

Regarding LR, I would say that the two basic ideas with LR is that it is database based, parametric and non destructive. You don't modify the image, just create actions to do on it the actions are saved in the data base. Whenever you do anything with an image you execute the actions to create a JPEG, TIFF or whatever you need. If this workflow is not advantageous to you, Lightroom may still work, but it may not bee the best tool.

Best regards
Erik


Thanks for the replies. Food for thought.

Almost everything I shoot is f/11 or smaller, so everything shows up!

I think I'll just have to stick with ACR when I need spot syncing - my sensor is cleaned twice yearly by Canon, by the way. It would be useful if Adobe fixed it in LR though. Poor form that it's ignored.

Point taken regarding LR as an image organising tool first and foremost. I'll just have to get my head around that. I'm not a big volume shooter.

On balance, given the better Spot Removal tool features in LR, and the better behaviour of the sliders, I'll probably use it for my own small volume work, and use ACR for my larger volume work.

Question: Does the version of LR that comes with CC contain the auto vertical correction in the lens panel that ACR CC has? Arguably, Adobe's most annoying feature is that the don't simply make LR and ACR the same minus LR's organisation features.

Might Capture One a trial run. Any views?

Thanks.


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Dinarius
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« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2013, 04:14:03 AM »
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Hi Eric,

I also use and Artic Butterfly brush - fantastic tool. I love it. But, obviously only for dry deposits.

Once a wet swab is used, even only one, deposits are invariably left behind (even by Canon!) and these have to be removed by the Spot Removal tool.

The issue of spot removal syncing is definitely there, even on as few as 5 or 6 images. There are threads about this elsewhere.

As I wrote above, I do prefer LR's way of working to ACR. So, I'll probably only use ACR for multiple spot removal corrections.

Thanks for the reply.

D
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2013, 05:17:12 AM »
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Might Capture One a trial run. Any views?

FYI, LCC procedure in CaptureOne Pro 7, and occasional spot removal.

Cheers,
Bart
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stamper
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« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2013, 07:02:27 AM »
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Dinarius stated.

What I dislike about LR.

1. The whole Library BS. I really wish this was optional. I would love to be able to access my files directly from where they are on my HD.

I don't use the Library and only use LR for processing because I like the UI and the extras that ACR doesn't have. My workflow is to browse my hard drive with Faststone viewer - free and powerful - and when I see an image I like I highlight it and press E on my keyboard. All of the contents of the folder is imported but only the one I want is ticked and this is imported and the rest aren't and then I enhance it and save or import to PS. Now some will say I am ignoring the main part of LR but in all honesty life is too short to catalogue all of my images.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2013, 09:03:41 AM »
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Hi,

The way I do it is that I import my pictures in Lightroom and put them into a Year/Mont/Day structure. That is entirely automatic and zero effort. I also date to each file name.

Zero effort...


Best regards
Erik

Dinarius stated.

What I dislike about LR.

1. The whole Library BS. I really wish this was optional. I would love to be able to access my files directly from where they are on my HD.

I don't use the Library and only use LR for processing because I like the UI and the extras that ACR doesn't have. My workflow is to browse my hard drive with Faststone viewer - free and powerful - and when I see an image I like I highlight it and press E on my keyboard. All of the contents of the folder is imported but only the one I want is ticked and this is imported and the rest aren't and then I enhance it and save or import to PS. Now some will say I am ignoring the main part of LR but in all honesty life is too short to catalogue all of my images.
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stamper
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« Reply #10 on: November 17, 2013, 03:05:02 AM »
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I don't see any difference between what you do and transferring you images from a card directly to your hard drive. You don't need LR to do that?
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JRSmit
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« Reply #11 on: November 17, 2013, 03:40:46 AM »
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Cataloging is primarely meant to search and retrieve. Whilst one can do that with a folder structure like yr month and so on, issues will arise like:
Search and retrieve and process a set of imaves that are stored over various folders, in essence a logical collection for a particular output driven purpose.
Another issue is that once an image file is not anymore in its folderstructue, the meaning of that folder structure is gone and all you ha e is its filename.
Another issue is the total  pathlength which will give issues when going from one file system to another. Experience shows that from 128 characters onwards you will hit problems.
 Just to name a few possible advantages of a catloging solugion like lightroom.
.
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ErikKaffehr
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« Reply #12 on: November 17, 2013, 05:25:14 AM »
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Hi,

Yes and now. This is my import rule, could be done manually or by some other tool, and this is what I do in Lightroom, giving me a workable structure with zero effort. Just to say you can effectively use Lightroom cataloguing without any effort. I use some library tools of course, but that is an option.

I don't want to criticise any one's workflow, just saying that it can be done with zero effort.

Best regards
Erik


I don't see any difference between what you do and transferring you images from a card directly to your hard drive. You don't need LR to do that?
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stamper
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« Reply #13 on: November 17, 2013, 05:52:33 AM »
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I have actually named 5000 Tiffs in LR in the recommended manner but because I have nearly 100 GBS of raw images I am not about to tackle that. The other problem I have with cataloguing is when do you do it? Immediately after importing? Do you catalogue and then delete the also rans? I like to look at the imported images om my hard drive and then delete - just like many like to do - a few weeks later after looking at them with "fresh eyes". I see no point in cataloguing an image that will probably be deleted later. That is my quandary. If you catalogue and name your images then it is something you should be diligent about and keep doing it and if you don't it will be a waste of time starting it. I just wonder how many start and give up because they haven't the time or run out of patience?  Roll Eyes
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #14 on: November 17, 2013, 06:34:59 AM »
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"I see no point in cataloguing an image that will probably be deleted later."

Because you use LR to make better decisions about which photos you're going to keep. For example, that may be after comparing similar frames, or seeing how an underexposed image looks after quickly opening up the shadows, or looking for any detail in the highlights. High-volume deadline-driven shooters often do it the way you suggest, culling using apps like PhotoMechanic, but that's because of their unusual time pressure.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2013, 08:17:17 AM by johnbeardy » Logged

k bennett
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« Reply #15 on: November 17, 2013, 08:38:20 AM »
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I see no point in cataloguing an image that will probably be deleted later.

All of my files get renamed, captioned, keyworded, etc., before the first round of editing. This happens in Photo Mechanic, then the photos are imported to Lightroom for processing and, at home, cataloguing. I find it much easier to do this right at the beginning, after downloading the photos from the card. If I wait any time at all, then it never happens and I end up with many gigabytes of photos with no metadata that I might as well not have shot.

This has not always been true, of course. I've been doing it this way at work since I made the switch to digital in late 2000, but at home my personal photos were a mess. I had hundreds of GB of photos with inconsistent filenames, terrible organization, no keywords, etc. The only thing I sort of had going for me was a reasonably careful folder structure, year>month>shoot. So, I installed Lightroom and pointed it at the folder of personal photos, and let it Import all of them in their current location.

I have spent the last couple of years going through that archive of personal photos, carefully keywording, rating, and deleting images. I'm not done yet, of course, but it helps pass the time at home Smiley  I find Lightroom immensely helpful for this process - there is no way I could do this as easily and consistently with other apps, or just browsing through the hard drive in the Finder.

After spending some time working on my backlog, and -- more importantly -- keeping up with metadata on my new photos, I find the organizational power of Lightroom is pretty cool. I have set up numerous Smart Collections, virtual folders of images that meet certain criteria (keyword contains "portfolio" and rating = 5 stars, for example, or keyword contains "daughter's name" and rating = 5 stars.) These make finding photos a breeze, or, anyway, more of a breeze than before.

If your 100GB of images is in some sort of rational folder structure, you could do the same thing: Import all of them into Lightroom (keeping them in their current location), then use the organizational and editing tools in LR to keyword, rate, edit, and then develop your final images. I'm also very happy with the Print module, which is much easier to use than printing directly from Photoshop.

Good luck.
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stamper
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« Reply #16 on: November 17, 2013, 09:05:22 AM »
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If your 100GB of images is in some sort of rational folder structure, you could do the same thing: Import all of them into Lightroom (keeping them in their current location), then use the organizational and editing tools in LR to keyword, rate, edit, and then develop your final images.

Unquote
 
Are you serious? Grin I think I would be dead before I completed that task? And there are the GB'S of images I add every week. Sorry that is for masochists.  Wink

Just done a search of three of my disks. 74,000 nef's and 9,000 cr2 files. I have another 3 external disks unplugged which weren't searched. How long to catalogue that lot? Smiley
« Last Edit: November 17, 2013, 09:29:13 AM by stamper » Logged

john beardsworth
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« Reply #17 on: November 17, 2013, 09:40:26 AM »
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Leave it cataloguing overnight and you're done. But I'm sure you'll find excuses....
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stamper
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« Reply #18 on: November 17, 2013, 10:19:16 AM »
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I think my use of the word cataloguing was wrong it should have been keywording. I have my images in folders with dates, places and the year and that is good enough for me.  Smiley
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john beardsworth
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« Reply #19 on: November 17, 2013, 10:27:30 AM »
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LOL. In that case maybe the best approach is more ad hoc. When you need to find a bunch of shots of bridges or sunsets or whatever, or you attend an event, just zap those pictures with some appropriate keywords and you'll soon find the useful keywording gradually builds up. You don't need to make the size of the overall task into a reason for not doing whatever actually makes sense.
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