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By Chris Orwig | Thursday, April 10, 2014

Introducing Lightroom Mobile

lr-mobile-1

Lightroom Mobile is a new iPad app that might just change the way you work on your photos. When I first started using it as a beta-tester a few months ago, I was curious but not convinced. Truth be told, when it comes to new technology I’m a bit of a skeptic; apart from something being new, I want to know if it’s actually going to improve my life. Yet after a few weeks, my skepticism completely dissolved and I now consider Lightroom Mobile to be a game changer for photographers in the best possible way.

For the last seven years, working in Lightroom meant working on a traditional computer (desktop or laptop). But as the photographer’s toolkit expanded to include other devices like mobile phones and tablets, it seemed like Lightroom was missing the boat—that is, until now.

Lightroom Mobile isn’t just another make-your-photos-look-better app. Sure, it does that, but more importantly it extends your Lightroom Desktop workflow in a helpful way. Here’s how it works.

By Jim Heid | Thursday, January 16, 2014

Product Photography - Made in the Shade

Product Photography

Last week, we published a new course called Photographing Clothes and Textiles. The fourth course from photographer Konrad Eek, it’s a detailed look at styling, lighting, and photographing everything from garments to beach towels.

Top-notch textile photography—indeed, top-notch product photography of all kinds—greatly benefits from dedicated lighting gear such as studio strobes or compact flash units. But what if you simply want to take an attractive product shot for an online auction or a webpage?

That’s the topic Ben Long explores in this week’s installment of The Practicing Photographer. Ben joins Konrad Eek for a look at some simple, inexpensive techniques for taking great-looking product shots without any external lighting gear.

By Jim Heid | Thursday, November 21, 2013

Create a High Dynamic Range (HDR) Time-Lapse Movie

Creating a HDR time-lapse movie

In this week’s installment of The Practicing Photographer, Ben Long combines two techniques that involve capturing the world in unique ways—ways that we can’t see with our eyes but that photography lets us bring to life.

One technique is high dynamic range, or HDR, photography. That’s the process of taking multiple shots of a scene, each with a different exposure setting, and then merging them into one photo that captures a broad range of bright and dark tones. Ben describes HDR in detail in his course Shooting and Processing High Dynamic Range Photographs (HDR).

By Jim Heid | Thursday, November 14, 2013

Exploring your photographic themes: The Practicing Photographer

Ben shoots a bike

Whether you call yourself a photo enthusiast or a pro, whether you shoot with a phone or with film, you probably have themes that crop up frequently in your photography. By intent or by accident, certain subjects or themes surface in your photos—whether dogs or rivers or carefully crafted coffee drinks.

Or bicycles. Ben Long likes bikes, and he finds himself photographing them frequently. As he describes in this week’s installment of The Practicing Photographer, he hasn’t yet photographed The Perfect Bicycle shot, but he keeps practicing. And that’s what it’s all about. Maybe one day he’ll find a perfect bike in a perfect setting with perfect light, but in the meantime, he’s refining his eye and building a library of thematic shots—photographic studies of the lines and shapes of bicycles.

By Jan Kabili | Monday, November 04, 2013

5 tips for importing your photos into Adobe Lightroom

1. Organizing before importing Before you start importing photos into Lightroom, it’s a good idea to set up a folder structure for your photos outside of Lightroom. Make a top-level “Lightroom Photos” folder to hold all the photos you’ll eventually import. This top-level folder is important because it will make it easier to move all your photos to a larger drive if necessary in the future. Inside the top-level folder, organize your existing photos into subfolders by shoot date or subject matter. The subfolders will help you locate files in the Folders panel in Lightroom’s Library.

kabili_post1_screenshot1

After organizing your existing photos into a folder structure like this, you can import them all into Lightroom together. Each time you import new photos after a shoot, you’ll have a well-organized folder structure ready to receive them.

By Jim Heid | Thursday, October 24, 2013

Advice for Wildlife Photo Safaris

safari photo

This week on The Practicing Photographer, Ben Long goes where the buffalo roam: to a wildlife reserve in Oklahoma, where he encounters a herd of American buffalo. It isn’t exactly a wildlife safari, but it is a good chance for Ben to talk about the opportunities and limitations of an actual big-game photo safari in an exotic location.

Wildlife photo safaris are hugely popular in locations ranging from Alaska to Kenya to Antarctica. They’re a great way to see exotic critters in their natural habitats. And if you go on a guided safari, you’ll have someone along who’s adept at spotting interesting animals and can share insights on their behavior.

By Jim Heid | Thursday, September 26, 2013

In Search of Photo Opportunities

Ben Long on the road

Any time of year is a good time of year for a road trip, especially one without a specific destination. Pack some camera gear, get in the car, and keep your eyes open.

That’s what Ben Long did in this week’s installment of The Practicing Photographer, and he struck gold—or, more accurately, black and white. As he and a lynda.com crew drove down a two-lane road in rural Oklahoma, Ben noticed a small stand of fire-damaged trees whose trunks had dramatic patterns of black and white.

Time to pull over and remove the lens cap.

By Jim Heid | Thursday, September 12, 2013

Fix exposure problems in a batch of photos: The Practicing Photographer

ben

Explore the Practicing Photographer at lynda.com.

In last week’s installment of The Practicing Photographer, we joined Ben Long at a wildlife preserve, where he photographed buffalo and prairie dogs—and shared some wildlife photography tips along the way.  This week, it’s back to the buffalo—but this time, they’re on Ben’s computer screen. Something went wrong during Ben’s wildlife shoot: A lot of his photos were slightly overexposed and washed out. Camera light meters aren’t perfect, and when they don’t read a scene accurately, exposure problems result.

Fortunately, Adobe Photoshop—and other imaging programs, such as Lightroom, Aperture, and iPhoto—can often fix exposure problems. And if you shoot using your camera’s raw mode, you have that much more adjustment flexibility. That’s because raw mode saves every bit of data that your camera’s sensor recorded. By comparison, when you shoot in JPEG mode, your camera’s internal software—in its zeal to create a compact image file—throws away roughly one-third of the information that the sensor recorded.

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