Lightroom or Photoshop

I get asked what RAW editor do I use whenever I’m out shooting with a group of photographers.

My answer, of course, is it depends. And then I get asked: “Depends on what?” Then the answer gets complicated.

If you’re shooting lots and lots of images, especially if you’re shooting commercially many pros recommend Lightroom 3. I love it for my commercial work. It’s quick and easy and never changes my original images. It’s also a really cool database so I never have issues finding my images.

I do used Photoshop (but rarely) but wedding photographers especially like Photoshop as along with secondary editing programs (many of which are available for Lightroom) there’s nothing that can’t be done. But at $900 it should be good.

For my personal work editing Nikon files I used Capture NX2 which is Nikon’s proprietary editor for its NEF Raw files (It’s made by NIK and will work with NIK’s Colour Efex Pro 3 filters. Cool.)

But what about when I’m shooting with my new Olympus E-PL 2 in RAW? Lightroom 3 has yet to add the E-PL 2 to it’s RAW capabilities so the work-around is to shoot in RAW and save as TIFFS (which are huge files) and work on them in Lightroom or even NX2.

But when it comes to the E-PL 2, I am tending towards shooting JPGs. The images right out of the camera are stunning and I use….wait for it…IPhoto to do the JPG editing. Quick and dirty and works like a dream.

Here’s a link to Michael Frye Photography where Michael talks about his thoughts on the Lightroom or Photoshop question. Michael is an amazing landscape photographer who is a very popular teacher as well as an author of many photography books.


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