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Join photographer and author Chris Orwig in Photoshop Lightroom 4 Essentials: Organizing and Sharing with the Library Module, as he explores the interface of this popular image-management program and shows how to use its Library module to organize and manage a photo library. The course covers importing both still images and video; shooting in tethered-capture mode; organizing and rating images with flags, stars, labels, and location tags; and working with collections. The course also details how to export, email, and share photos, and introduces the Lightroom 4 video-editing features, as well as its ability to work together with the full editing power of Photoshop. Exercise files are included with the course.
Before we dive into working with Lightroom, I thought it would be helpful to step back for just a couple of minutes and ask ourself this question, at its core, what is Lightroom? I mean, what is Lightroom really all about? One of the things I should point out is that this and the next few movies, they're designed for those of you who are new to Lightroom. If you've been using Lightroom for a while, feel free to skip ahead. All right! Well, back to our question, what is Lightroom? Well, here I've created a couple of graphics to begin to think about what this tool actually is.
For starters, it's a pro-photographic tool. Now, if you stop to think about this for a second, it's really important. If a tool is at a professional level, what it means is that it's really strong; it can help the person be efficient, effective, and creative in a distinct way. Now, what this doesn't mean is that this tool can't be used by amateurs. It can be used by anyone, yet it's a really good, it's a high quality tool. And what this tool is made up of is three things, at least in my mind.
First off, it's an image processor. It allows us to enhance and correct our photographs. And then there is this database layer. What this is all about is that Lightroom allows us to organize our images in a unique way, and it remembers things about our file location, about changes we've made to our photographs, etcetera. Lightroom is also really about output, whether that's designing a custom book, or making a print, or creating a web gallery. At its essence, Lightroom is this pro-photographic tool that's made up of these three things; it's an image processor, there's a database element, then there's also output.
Now, if we step back for a second, one of the things that you'll realize is that Lightroom is made up of these different modules. While there are these core features or core values, we can accomplish these different types of things in Lightroom by entering different modules, and I want to talk a little bit about those modules, the first one being the Library Module. Now, the Library Module, that's where we're going to do all of our organizational work. That's where we'll rate, rank, sort and filter our photographs. We'll also add some metadata and do other things here.
The next module we'll be working with is the Develop Module. Now, this is where the fun really takes places. This is where we develop, where we enhance, where we correct our photographs. And then we have a whole other group of modules that I want to look at in one batch, let's talk about these. Well, the Map Module, that gives us the ability to organize and access our images in a distinct way based on tying into Google Maps. We can also design custom books, which we can then send to be printed at places like Blurb.
We can work on printing our photographs from our desktop printer or from an online printing service. We can also create web galleries or slideshows. So as you can see, there are these different modules, and I've created this graphic this way to kind of illustrate that there are these core values, and then from these core values or functions we have these modules. We enter a module to do something, like the Library Module to organize, or the Develop to enhance and correct. And each of these modules, they kind of stand alone, they almost are self-contained, yet at the same time they are very interconnected.
Now, one of the reasons why Lightroom is such a popular application is because of this whole concept of workflow. In other words, you don't just enter into one module and do that and that work is disconnected from the other modules, rather Lightroom helps us work through our photographic process. It gives us this framework for working on our images, which works in a really distinct way. All right! Well, now that we've been introduced to what Lightroom is at its core, let's take a look at Lightroom from a photographic workflow perspective, and let's do that in the next movie.
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