11  lIGHTROOM  tips for beginners

Photography goals

1. Develop a consistent workflow

A consistent and repeatable workflow is the single most important factor for both efficiency and developing a consistent and noticeable style.

2. Don't be afraid to Pick Favorites

Be critical of your own work. Hold yourself to a high standard. When you review your images, don’t be afraid to get rid of a lot of the images. Don’t worry, you don’t have to delete them in Lightroom, just use the “Pick” and “Reject” flags.

3. Use (High-Quality) presets

Presets can be a great learning tool fo beginners if they are used correctly. Most well designed presets will allow you to get a certain look on your photos with a single click.

4. Start with white balance

White balance is the first thing I do on almost every image. By ensuring that you start with a correct white balance, you will have a much easier time with your edits moving forward.

5. Learn to work with color

Color grading is something that beginners often forget about. Generally, when someone refers to color grading, they mean using color to create an artistic “look” to the image. This is a little different from white balance which is more about establishing the baseline of the “true” color of the image.

6. recover highlights and shadows

In almost every image I take, I end up raising the luminosity of the shadows and lowering the luminosity of the highlights. This recovers detail that may otherwise be hidden. 

7. don't forget sharpening

Even the best digital cameras produce files with a bit of sharpness lost. That’s just a product of the way digital sensors work. So if you’re not doing any sharpening in Lightroom on the RAW files, you’re giving up some of the quality of the image unnecessarily.

8. sync your edits

If you are shooting a lot of images in the same lighting, learn to use Lightroom‘s sync edits functionality. Doing that can literally save you HOURS of unnecessary work.

9. do local edits last

Do all the necessary global edits first so you can use the sync function to sync those global edits across similar images.  Local adjustments almost never work very well with syncing.

10 Learn to dodge & Burn

Use dodging to bring attention to areas of the image that you want the viewer to focus on (such as the eyes of a person). Use burning to minimize attention on areas that are unimportant (such as the background of a portrait).

11. Keep it simple

Keeping your process simple and repeatable will have long term benefits on both the efficiency of your time spent and the quality of your final products.

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