What I Learned About Lightroom at Joe McNally’s Workshop
Do you have something that you really want to learn in Lightroom? Great. Hold that thought in your head right now (we’ll come back to it in just a moment).
While I was down in St. Lucia, teaching my Lightroom session at Joe’s workshop, I had to smile a number of times because I realized how much different teaching Lightroom is from teaching Photoshop. I think the reason is; Lightroom is just so much easier, that the questions I can answer in one quick sentence have a bigger impact for Lightroom users than they do when people ask their questions about Photoshop.
Here’s what I mean:
When I do a Photoshop seminar, people often come up to me before class and ask really broad questions like, “Are you going to teach us Curves today?” or “Are we going to discuss Color Management?” or “Are you going to go over Selective Color?” But in Lightroom, since it’s so much easier and intuitive, the questions are much more likely to be little things that people are stuck on, because the big things are pretty easy. Usually, they just want to know how to do one certain thing—-like does a particular shortcut exist for what they want to do, or is there a fast way to do a particular task, and once they learn it, it’s like it made their whole month. You can see it on their face (and then you can see it on mine). :)
I see it again and again. I saw it for four days at my Savannah Workshop last month, and I saw it a half dozen times in my class in St. Lucia, and when people got their answer, they were so genuinely happy—-because that was “that one little thing” that was driving them crazy.
I remember one question where the guy didn’t like using the Gradient Filter tool in Lightroom 2 because he couldn’t get it to draw in the straight line from top to bottom—it always rotated left or right on him as he dragged it, and was there any possible way to make it go straight? There is. I told him to hold the Shift key before he dragged. He tried it right there on the spot, and he just got the biggest grin on his face. So did I. Now, he’ll actually start using that feature, and I think that’s really cool.
Things like this happened again and again in the past few months, and I love being able to help out with stuff like that. I don’t always have the answer, or sometimes the answer is “Sorry, there’s no way to do that,” but more often than not; it can be done, it’s just not real obvious (like flipping the crop ratio from horizontal to vertical—-you guys who follow me on Twitter know what I’m talkin’ about).
Now, back to that thought you’re holding
If your “thing” is something like that, today I invite you to post your question as a comment here on my blog, and if I know the answer, I’ll post a reply with it. Someone else might beat me to it (it’s a work-day for me, so I’ll be pretty busy), but I’ll be checking in quite a bit during the day, and if I can help open a new door, or a new feature, or just make something easier for you today, I’ll do my best (by the way; this offer’s only good today; Tuesday, July 14th).
Don’t forget; don’t ask big broad questions, like “What’s your workflow for portraiture?” or any question that starts with “Is there a way to write a script that….” But if you’ve got something like, “Is there a way to keep the White Balance tool from snapping back to it’s holder each time I use it? (another question from the past few workshops), then I’ll try and tackle those (by the way—there is; just click on the White Balance tool, then in the Toolbar below the main Preview area in the center of the screen, turn off the checkbox for “Auto Dismiss” as seen below).