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Colin Devroe

Photographer. Podcaster. Blogger. Reverse Engineer.

Jack Baty gives up on Lightroom

Jack Baty:

I’m here to tell you that I can not make it work for me. There’s too much overhead in having to decide what to add to a synced collection and when. And where to keep any synced originals? Do I do that in both apps? And so on. I seem to end up with duplicates for no reason I can fathom. I’m constantly moving images from the automatic synced folders to their proper place in the filesystem. It often feels like the worst of both worlds. I’ve seen people do it. I’ve watched the videos and read the blog posts. I’ve tried, but nope, it’s all too finicky for me.

I hit a similar corner with Lightroom Classic when I was trying to make it work for me. As an app, photo editor, and manager it is very good. But it is tied to Adobe CC which for me, is a long term deal breaker. And I could not figure out the best way to manage my files for some reason.

I’ve been slowly piecing together my own solution, as you all may know that read this blog on the regular, but it isn’t something I can really share with anyone else.

My current workflow consists of a script or two on my Mac to move files from my digital cameras, film scans, drones, and other devices into their appropriate places and backups and cloud services, combined with two libraries in Photos for Mac* (one for personal photos, one for hobby projects) where the libraries are on my hard drive and the original files are on external storage.

It is working fairly well. But I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. For instance, to edit a photo I have to jump through a fiery hoop or two in order to not end up with a bunch of duplicates. I don’t know how to solve this problem yet but I plan on doing so.

Back to Jack. I’m with him. Some of these apps, especially those he mentions, are almost paralyzing in their commitment levels and features. I just wish all of this photo management was so much easier.

* which I have some issues with.

Adobe’s Photography app updates

Big updates across all apps and services from Adobe coinciding with their 99u event. Notably, Creative Cloud went from 100GB to 1TB with no additional cost. I wish Apple would do something like that.

Here is a list of the updates to their photography apps. I really like this Versions feature in Lightroom – I just wish it was built for Lightroom Classic.

Experiment fearlessly with your edits. Create different edit treatments on the same image. It’s great for when you want a B&W version and a color version, for example, or when you want a variety of different crops for publishing to different social media sites.

Export Presets

I have several export workflows in Lightroom Classic for use on my web site, on Instagram, etc. Mostly the differences are the size of the images (e.g. uploading a huge image to Instagram does no good, but uploading one to Flickr is great). However, I’d love to have multiple crops of the same image readily available for print and social.

I doubt Lightroom Classic will continue to get as much attention as Lightroom itself. This is why I’m thinking of building my own photo management app for the Mac but I’m terrified of the rabbit hole I’d be jumping in.