Tell us About Your Post Production Workflow

0Comments

At dPS headquarters this week we were discussing our post production workflows, tools and the things we’d like to know more about post production.

So we thought it might be a good discussion starter too.

What one thing about post processing photos do you wish you understood better?

Answering this will help us as we create more tutorials and articles on the topic.

Also:

What is your preferred post processing platform?

Is it….

  • Photoshop
  • Lightroom
  • Aperture
  • Picasa
  • iPhoto
  • Gimp
  • Your camera’s bundled software
  • Something else (or some combination of the above)
  • Or Perhaps you don’t really do post processing

Looking forward to hearing about the tools you use!

Read more from our category

Darren Rowse is the editor and founder of Digital Photography School and SnapnDeals. He lives in Melbourne Australia and is also the editor of the ProBlogger Blog Tips. Follow him on Instagram, on Twitter at @digitalPS or on Google+.

  • Javaslinger

    Lightroom for everything… I might take 5% into Photoshop and I use a variety of Nik Software plugins as well…

  • Lina

    I use Lightroom for managing my photos, and to do initial white balance, color, etc adjustments. I shoot in RAW, so it’s easy 🙂

    If I need to process my pictures further, I take them into Photoshop.

    I rarely reimport them into Lightroom though. I feel like that would mess up the organization of my photos in Lightroom… Do you then have the same image twice in Lightroom, once as the original, and once as processed in Photoshop?

    As for things I want to learn about… I still haven’t figured out the best backup strategy I think.

    I have a NAS that holds most of my calendar but because of speed issues during processing, I keep a small catalog on my local computer. So I frequently run into issues where I manually copy that small catalogue over to the NAS… it’s a mess =P

  • Lightroom 95%, Photoshop 5%.

  • iamunique127

    I need to understand Curves and Layers better.
    I use Aperture 3 for 99% of my workflow.
    The other 1% is TopazLabs plug-ins in Aperture 3 and Pixelmator for Layers.

  • I use Adobe Camera Raw and Photoshop CS3. More and more lately my goal is to clean edit my photos and make them look real, though I do like to dabble in some “fine art photography” effects with textures and more creative applications of adjustment layers.

    The more I learn about photography, the more it helps my post-processing as I know what to change in my RAW files to correct the mistakes I made when I click the shutter.

    I’ve educated myself a lot this year in both regards and I’m very happy with my ability to clean edit images. I want to continue to absorb all I can and continue learning so I can get better!

  • My previous post seemed to not appear! The shorthand repeat is that Lightzone sits at the centre of my Linux-centred workflow (full details here http://berbmit.deviantart.com). Lightzone is great!

  • Amy H

    Photoshop, but am curious about Lightroom.

  • John Nuss

    I make an initial pass thru my raw files using FastStone Image Viewer, deleting all the throwaways and
    making a list of those deserving post editing. I put my list entries into Photo Shop Elements, first in the
    ACR module, and finally in detail edit. I save the final edited image as a jpeg into a separate sub folder.
    As a backup, I copy the raw files and jpegs onto an external hard disc.

  • John Nuss

    I make an initial pass thru my raw files using FastStone Image Viewer, deleting all the throwaways and
    making a list of those deserving post editing. I put my list entries into Photo Shop Elements, first in the
    ACR module, and finally in detail edit. I save the final edited image as a jpeg into a separate sub folder.
    As a backup, I copy the raw files and jpegs onto an external hard disc.

  • I am like Celesta, I use Photoshop for all my editing except quickly resizing. Its just easier in Picasa.

    I would Love to have and learn Lightroom. maybe someday. 🙂

  • Tomi

    I shoot RAW, with Nikon D90. I use Capture NX2 to correct WB, exposure, etc. – if neccessary.
    For some final retouches or special effects I use PS Elements 9.
    I still have to learn how to isolate an object from the photo, with PSE9.

  • happyspace

    I’m fairly new to photography and haven’t done any post-processing (except resizing, cropping and brightness on PhotoScape and standard Windows applications).

    I’d love a rundown on what post-processing tools are out there and some kind of recommendation on the type of photographer a particular software is suited to / recommendations according to how you plan to use your photos (such as the type of photos suitable for blowing up on canvas/ photobooks etc) / cost effectiveness in relation to the type of photog you are and similar questions.

    I’d also love some kind of checklist to go through with post-processing as well, perhaps modified to (again) the type of photographer you are (ie. perhaps some steps are not as important for family snaps as they might be for commercial work).

    Finally, I would be really interested in the kind of computer setup recommended for post-processing as I’m looking to upgrade my computer but I’m stuck on what I might need when/if I buy post-processing software.

  • robbiow

    Another aperture 3 user. i upload RAW, then try to work through a few photos each day. i’m an amateur but have read up on lots of the aperture – but I’d love to learn about the optimal workflow in terms of order of adjustments, when to use what etc. I find metadata management is also a challenge. I think a general overview on workflow itself, library management, metadata, adjustments would be helpful. You could then make reference to which apps have functionality at each phase, related tips etc. Going RAW was possibly the most useful decision i ever made in terms of post processing.

  • Peter L

    I always dump all photos (100% RAW) into Lightroom 3.4. There is sooo much you can do to tweak those shots in there.
    PS 5 I use for special photos or projects.
    I also use Photomatix for HDR and Auto PanaPro for panoramas.

    But 98% Lightroom

  • Paul

    DDP+PS

  • Mike

    I primarily use lightroom. 99% of my photos edits are done with lightroom. For more detailed post processing, i use photoshop

  • Mustafa Sazak

    I use Aperture to find the perfect color tones and adjust the exposure; Photoshop to remove the unwanted things from the photo, futher processing like masking etc..

  • Mustafa Sazak

    I use Aperture to find the perfect color tones and adjust the exposure; Photoshop to remove the unwanted things from the photo, futher processing like masking etc..

  • Susan van der Walt

    Hi,

    I am still trying to figure the whole workflow thing out. I have just recently acquired Photoshop Elements 9 and love doing photo editing with it. I haven’t figured the Organizer out yet, so currently I still prefer Picasa.

  • joe

    I’m working with RAW (DNG) files. I import them to Lightroom where I adjust exposure, color, crop etc.
    Somtimes I use Paint Shop Pro to remove dust, specks, unwanted objects etc.

  • Much thanks to John Nuss’ comment above, for alerting me to the FastStone Image Viewer — it’s free, can also work in Linux (under Wine), reads RAW, and is great as a quick viewer of the uploads off my camera to pre-filter the discards etc. Lightzone remains my software of choice for working on images, but this was a nice find. Thanks.

  • Pete Spencer

    I don’t take many pictures with my digital cameras as I use film mainly, but scan it and process the pictures on the computer, so, after the image is created

    it is completely a digital process.

    Before I scan a processed film, I create an entry for it in my master Excel spreadsheet, giving it a sequential number. The spreadsheet contains data for the

    film; camera, film type and approximate contents. There are other columns which I tick off as post processing proceeds. Then I create a folder, on a

    dedicated drive, for the scans. The folder is a copy of a template which contains the following sub-folders:
    01_Download
    03_RotatedAndCropped
    05_Spotted
    07_Fixed
    09_JPEG
    11_Video (in case there is this type of stuff on one of the digital cameras)

    I scan the film into the 01_Download folder in TIFF format using an Epson V700 and Epson Scan using these settings:
    35mm colour 4800 dpi 24 bit colour
    35mm mono 4800 dpi 16 bit greyscale
    120 colour 3200 dpi 24 bit colour
    120 mono 3200 dpi 16 bit greyscale

    I usually use auto exposure and I rarely use Digital ICE or any other scanner enhancements. If the film is medium format mono I often have to set the

    exposures manually for each frame. The individual frames are auto numbered _001 etc. After scanning, the film’s folder is copied to a backup

    drive,.

    Using Photoshop, the frames are then rotated, cropped and spotted. Sometimes I save the rotated/cropped version temporarily in the 03_ folder but mainly the

    frames are saved, after spotting, in the 05_Spotted folder. The film’s folder is again copied to the backup drive (a lot of work might have gone into it).

    The final stage is to review the spotted frames and fix them, for example adjust colour balance, levels, curves. Then they are saved to the 07_Fixed folder

    as flattened TIFF files and also to the JPEG folder in that high quality JPEG format.

    Finally:
    The newly created fixed and JPEG folders are copied to the backup drive. Subsequently the film’s folder (download, spotted, fixed and JPEG) will be backed up

    to DVD, with a copy of the master spreadsheet, and the network files will be deleted.
    The JPEG folder is renamed to identify it as belonging to the numbered film and the folder is copied to the network gallery folder and to a backup copy of

    the gallery folder.

    Once a month or maybe a couple of months, the gallery folders are copied to another external drive, with the Excel spreadsheet, which someone else keeps for

    me.

    The film negatives, or positives, are filed in sleeves which are identified by the film’s number.

    For digital stuff, the film number is assigned when the files are downloaded from the camera.

    I had a few false starts when I bought my first film scanner and I disciovered by experience that it is musch better to adopt a rather pedantic style than

    leave things to chance. In between processing my recent oictures I have digitised all my father’s negatives and slides as well as my own. Although post

    processing is ongong I should think that amounts to about 35,000 images. It wouldn’t have been possible without a systematic approach.

  • Mark

    Wow, so few Post-production haters. All I can say about that is,”If you shoot digital, the camera is doing the PP for you and you have no control.” Take a shot in RAW and convert to JPG without any fixes and you will see how much your camera is doing for you!!!!

    I shoot wildlife and use RAW+JPG(highest available). I move the SD card to reader and move to PC then integrate into my filing system. While reviewing the ones I want to work on, I decide if the JPG is good or if I need to drop back to the RAW file and start from scratch. RAWs get worked in Canon DPP and then converted to JPG. All JPGs get worked in GIMP for final output.

    Some GIMP workflows could be helpful. I will show mine if you will show yours!!! I have really shortened my workflow in GIMP with some great filters over the past year.

    PS if you use Canon DPP and it is not up to version 3.9.2.0 you are working way too hard. This upgrade from the web was VASTLY better than the version on disk with my XSi.

  • Barb Herman

    LR3 for almost all of the processing, and into Photoshop to finish off for anything major – eg removal of telephone lines etc.

  • Katie S

    I have CS4 and am fairly new to photography so am unsure about post-processing. Up till now I have been fumbling my way through it but I’d love to know if there a standard “must-do” list?

  • i shoot in raw.
    1. load it in lightroom.
    2. run some basic wb correction.
    3. write the tags, description and other stuff so to embed on the exported file.
    4. export in dng and jpg.
    5. i use aperture for my collection and for sorting.
    6. finally photoshop for major treatment.

    i guess its a bit messy but it works for me.

  • Ray Dosh

    I use LR3 with the Nik plugins. Occasionally, I’ll go into PS Elements 9 w/OnOne Photo Essentials 3. I still like to use Capture NX2 (basically, I’m still comparing workflows; may add Photoshop to the mix). I shoot entirely in Raw but have stayed with NEF, so far. Haven’t tried DNG.

  • Workflow
    1. Colour Balance
    2. Exposure
    3. Saturation
    4. Brightness and Contrast
    5. Crop and Compose
    6. Sharpen the Image
    7. Noise Reduction
    8. Metadata

    Not all steps done every time. Just what is needed, if any.

    Use Paint Shop Pro X2 for processing, ACDSee to re-order and re-name files, and Nikon ViewNX to view, select/delete work.

    I would like to know more about how the order of each processing step impacts the next step. In other words, what order should the processing be done in for best results? If there is no “best” way then what are the considerations to be made?

  • Bob Melnyk

    I use both Lightroom 3 and CS5… currently taking a Lightroom 3 course but still lean towards CS5 as my preference..

  • Bob Melnyk

    I use both Lightroom 3 and CS5… currently taking a Lightroom 3 course but still lean towards CS5 as my preference..

  • Bob Melnyk

    I use both Lightroom 3 and CS5… currently taking a Lightroom 3 course but still lean towards CS5 as my preference..

  • Bob Melnyk

    I use both Lightroom 3 and CS5… currently taking a Lightroom 3 course but still lean towards CS5 as my preference..

  • Peter

    95% Lightroom. Canon Zoombrowser for Panoramas and Photoshop for occassional cloning.

  • ACDSee PRO 4 for 95% of post work (organization and quick exposure edits) and PhotoShop Elements for touching up blemishes.

  • I’m a noob, hobby photographer.

    I use The GIMP for postprocessing, and don’t know/do much about postprocessing.
    I have currently started using the following workflow:

    1. Open in The GIMP
    2. Save as .xcf (GIMP native format, but sometimes I just save as JPEG)
    3. Colours > Levels > Auto (Sometimes replaced by Colours > Auto > White Balance)
    I don’t understand this completely but the results are good enough for me
    4. Colours > Auto > Colour Enhance
    5. Crop
    6. Save
    7. Scale Image to 900 X 600 or close
    8. Add Transparent Layer
    9. Add watermark(s) (This is saved as a separate PNG file with transparent bakground)
    10. Save as JPEG

    I use the watermarked images to upload on the page.

    Advice/Suggestions/Constructive Criticism is welcome and expected.

  • Jim McAnlis

    I know there is considerable controversy over the use of post-processing (i use PhotoShop by-the-way) and I struggled with it for a long time. After years of film photography, I was distressed by the concept that I could point the camera in any old direction and sort it all out later. Further, as the years advanced, I found that I could no longer climb over the rocks too well, get down into those crevices, shoot low, shoot high, generally get into those places and positions that yield the unusual and not-too-often seen shots. And, yes, I was no longer quite as keen to get out for first and last light to get those lovely dawns and sunset shots. So, I put my nice little digital camera down and thought my photography days were over. . .Not for long.
    I soon realized that Photography is an art-form as well as a science. That I could take a lot of stock photos when it suited then piece them together into a beautiful scene the way I wanted it. I no longer had to search for that perfect scene. I could create ghost trains in old disused stations, yachts where I wanted them, animals in the right places and background weather, sunsets and dawns to create atmospheres.
    There’s nothing artificial about what I produce – the trees aren’t upside-down for effect, rivers don’t run uphill because they look good that way, and the sky isn’t a delicate shade of green because I like it that way. It’s all real photographs composited into a natural scene which expresses what, if I haven’t actually seen it, I could have seen.
    Photography is now and adventure for me – an expression of what I love if not so much what I see – or, perhaps, what I would love to see.

  • Hello, just wanted to say, I liked this article. It was inspiring.
    Keep on posting!

  • Enrique

    I do processing in PS

  • Vicky

    Open the image in Photoshop
    As I shoot RAW it will open up in Camera Raw
    Lens and Perspective correction
    Adjust curves to S shape (strong contrast)
    Make the necessary adjustments
    Selective adjustment if necessary

    Boost some clarity and reduce saturation
    Sharpen

    Open in Photoshop
    Auto adjust everything as needed (tone, contrast, colour, brightness, curves, levels)Highlights/shadows adjustment
    Convert to B/W using Nik Silver efex if needed.

  • Bob H

    Load RAWS from SD card to my NAS
    Import to Lightroom with Auto Tone and (usually) medium contrast curve
    Automatic lens distortion and chromatic aberration correction
    Adjust perspective and distortion if necessary
    Crop
    Apply Punch filter where necessary, but often reduce vibrance
    Adjust exposure, highlights and shadows

Some Older Comments

  • Melodee June 13, 2013 01:32 pm

    Hello, just wanted to say, I liked this article. It was inspiring.
    Keep on posting!

  • Jim McAnlis February 8, 2012 03:08 am

    I know there is considerable controversy over the use of post-processing (i use PhotoShop by-the-way) and I struggled with it for a long time. After years of film photography, I was distressed by the concept that I could point the camera in any old direction and sort it all out later. Further, as the years advanced, I found that I could no longer climb over the rocks too well, get down into those crevices, shoot low, shoot high, generally get into those places and positions that yield the unusual and not-too-often seen shots. And, yes, I was no longer quite as keen to get out for first and last light to get those lovely dawns and sunset shots. So, I put my nice little digital camera down and thought my photography days were over. . .Not for long.
    I soon realized that Photography is an art-form as well as a science. That I could take a lot of stock photos when it suited then piece them together into a beautiful scene the way I wanted it. I no longer had to search for that perfect scene. I could create ghost trains in old disused stations, yachts where I wanted them, animals in the right places and background weather, sunsets and dawns to create atmospheres.
    There's nothing artificial about what I produce - the trees aren't upside-down for effect, rivers don't run uphill because they look good that way, and the sky isn't a delicate shade of green because I like it that way. It's all real photographs composited into a natural scene which expresses what, if I haven't actually seen it, I could have seen.
    Photography is now and adventure for me - an expression of what I love if not so much what I see - or, perhaps, what I would love to see.

  • Jeet October 6, 2011 08:40 pm

    I'm a noob, hobby photographer.

    I use The GIMP for postprocessing, and don't know/do much about postprocessing.
    I have currently started using the following workflow:

    1. Open in The GIMP
    2. Save as .xcf (GIMP native format, but sometimes I just save as JPEG)
    3. Colours > Levels > Auto (Sometimes replaced by Colours > Auto > White Balance)
    I don't understand this completely but the results are good enough for me
    4. Colours > Auto > Colour Enhance
    5. Crop
    6. Save
    7. Scale Image to 900 X 600 or close
    8. Add Transparent Layer
    9. Add watermark(s) (This is saved as a separate PNG file with transparent bakground)
    10. Save as JPEG

    I use the watermarked images to upload on the page.

    Advice/Suggestions/Constructive Criticism is welcome and expected.

  • Rene May 31, 2011 07:03 am

    ACDSee PRO 4 for 95% of post work (organization and quick exposure edits) and PhotoShop Elements for touching up blemishes.

  • Peter May 22, 2011 04:54 pm

    95% Lightroom. Canon Zoombrowser for Panoramas and Photoshop for occassional cloning.

  • Bob Melnyk May 18, 2011 08:47 am

    I use both Lightroom 3 and CS5... currently taking a Lightroom 3 course but still lean towards CS5 as my preference..

  • Bob Melnyk May 18, 2011 08:47 am

    I use both Lightroom 3 and CS5... currently taking a Lightroom 3 course but still lean towards CS5 as my preference..

  • Bob Melnyk May 18, 2011 08:46 am

    I use both Lightroom 3 and CS5... currently taking a Lightroom 3 course but still lean towards CS5 as my preference..

  • Bob Melnyk May 18, 2011 08:46 am

    I use both Lightroom 3 and CS5... currently taking a Lightroom 3 course but still lean towards CS5 as my preference..

  • Bill Pearl May 18, 2011 01:33 am

    Workflow
    1. Colour Balance
    2. Exposure
    3. Saturation
    4. Brightness and Contrast
    5. Crop and Compose
    6. Sharpen the Image
    7. Noise Reduction
    8. Metadata

    Not all steps done every time. Just what is needed, if any.

    Use Paint Shop Pro X2 for processing, ACDSee to re-order and re-name files, and Nikon ViewNX to view, select/delete work.

    I would like to know more about how the order of each processing step impacts the next step. In other words, what order should the processing be done in for best results? If there is no "best" way then what are the considerations to be made?

  • Ray Dosh May 16, 2011 11:46 am

    I use LR3 with the Nik plugins. Occasionally, I'll go into PS Elements 9 w/OnOne Photo Essentials 3. I still like to use Capture NX2 (basically, I'm still comparing workflows; may add Photoshop to the mix). I shoot entirely in Raw but have stayed with NEF, so far. Haven't tried DNG.

  • kenji punzalan May 16, 2011 04:59 am

    i shoot in raw.
    1. load it in lightroom.
    2. run some basic wb correction.
    3. write the tags, description and other stuff so to embed on the exported file.
    4. export in dng and jpg.
    5. i use aperture for my collection and for sorting.
    6. finally photoshop for major treatment.

    i guess its a bit messy but it works for me.

  • Katie S May 14, 2011 04:53 pm

    I have CS4 and am fairly new to photography so am unsure about post-processing. Up till now I have been fumbling my way through it but I'd love to know if there a standard "must-do" list?

  • Barb Herman May 14, 2011 01:28 pm

    LR3 for almost all of the processing, and into Photoshop to finish off for anything major - eg removal of telephone lines etc.

  • Mark May 14, 2011 06:26 am

    Wow, so few Post-production haters. All I can say about that is,"If you shoot digital, the camera is doing the PP for you and you have no control." Take a shot in RAW and convert to JPG without any fixes and you will see how much your camera is doing for you!!!!

    I shoot wildlife and use RAW+JPG(highest available). I move the SD card to reader and move to PC then integrate into my filing system. While reviewing the ones I want to work on, I decide if the JPG is good or if I need to drop back to the RAW file and start from scratch. RAWs get worked in Canon DPP and then converted to JPG. All JPGs get worked in GIMP for final output.

    Some GIMP workflows could be helpful. I will show mine if you will show yours!!! I have really shortened my workflow in GIMP with some great filters over the past year.

    PS if you use Canon DPP and it is not up to version 3.9.2.0 you are working way too hard. This upgrade from the web was VASTLY better than the version on disk with my XSi.

  • Pete Spencer May 14, 2011 04:03 am

    I don't take many pictures with my digital cameras as I use film mainly, but scan it and process the pictures on the computer, so, after the image is created

    it is completely a digital process.

    Before I scan a processed film, I create an entry for it in my master Excel spreadsheet, giving it a sequential number. The spreadsheet contains data for the

    film; camera, film type and approximate contents. There are other columns which I tick off as post processing proceeds. Then I create a folder, on a

    dedicated drive, for the scans. The folder is a copy of a template which contains the following sub-folders:
    01_Download
    03_RotatedAndCropped
    05_Spotted
    07_Fixed
    09_JPEG
    11_Video (in case there is this type of stuff on one of the digital cameras)

    I scan the film into the 01_Download folder in TIFF format using an Epson V700 and Epson Scan using these settings:
    35mm colour 4800 dpi 24 bit colour
    35mm mono 4800 dpi 16 bit greyscale
    120 colour 3200 dpi 24 bit colour
    120 mono 3200 dpi 16 bit greyscale

    I usually use auto exposure and I rarely use Digital ICE or any other scanner enhancements. If the film is medium format mono I often have to set the

    exposures manually for each frame. The individual frames are auto numbered _001 etc. After scanning, the film's folder is copied to a backup

    drive,.

    Using Photoshop, the frames are then rotated, cropped and spotted. Sometimes I save the rotated/cropped version temporarily in the 03_ folder but mainly the

    frames are saved, after spotting, in the 05_Spotted folder. The film's folder is again copied to the backup drive (a lot of work might have gone into it).

    The final stage is to review the spotted frames and fix them, for example adjust colour balance, levels, curves. Then they are saved to the 07_Fixed folder

    as flattened TIFF files and also to the JPEG folder in that high quality JPEG format.

    Finally:
    The newly created fixed and JPEG folders are copied to the backup drive. Subsequently the film's folder (download, spotted, fixed and JPEG) will be backed up

    to DVD, with a copy of the master spreadsheet, and the network files will be deleted.
    The JPEG folder is renamed to identify it as belonging to the numbered film and the folder is copied to the network gallery folder and to a backup copy of

    the gallery folder.

    Once a month or maybe a couple of months, the gallery folders are copied to another external drive, with the Excel spreadsheet, which someone else keeps for

    me.

    The film negatives, or positives, are filed in sleeves which are identified by the film's number.

    For digital stuff, the film number is assigned when the files are downloaded from the camera.

    I had a few false starts when I bought my first film scanner and I disciovered by experience that it is musch better to adopt a rather pedantic style than

    leave things to chance. In between processing my recent oictures I have digitised all my father's negatives and slides as well as my own. Although post

    processing is ongong I should think that amounts to about 35,000 images. It wouldn't have been possible without a systematic approach.

  • Bruce May 13, 2011 04:57 pm

    Much thanks to John Nuss' comment above, for alerting me to the FastStone Image Viewer -- it's free, can also work in Linux (under Wine), reads RAW, and is great as a quick viewer of the uploads off my camera to pre-filter the discards etc. Lightzone remains my software of choice for working on images, but this was a nice find. Thanks.

  • joe May 13, 2011 04:29 pm

    I'm working with RAW (DNG) files. I import them to Lightroom where I adjust exposure, color, crop etc.
    Somtimes I use Paint Shop Pro to remove dust, specks, unwanted objects etc.

  • Susan van der Walt May 13, 2011 03:50 pm

    Hi,

    I am still trying to figure the whole workflow thing out. I have just recently acquired Photoshop Elements 9 and love doing photo editing with it. I haven't figured the Organizer out yet, so currently I still prefer Picasa.

  • Mustafa Sazak May 13, 2011 03:17 pm

    I use Aperture to find the perfect color tones and adjust the exposure; Photoshop to remove the unwanted things from the photo, futher processing like masking etc..

  • Mustafa Sazak May 13, 2011 03:17 pm

    I use Aperture to find the perfect color tones and adjust the exposure; Photoshop to remove the unwanted things from the photo, futher processing like masking etc..

  • Mike May 13, 2011 02:47 pm

    I primarily use lightroom. 99% of my photos edits are done with lightroom. For more detailed post processing, i use photoshop

  • Paul May 13, 2011 01:44 pm

    DDP+PS

  • Peter L May 13, 2011 01:29 pm

    I always dump all photos (100% RAW) into Lightroom 3.4. There is sooo much you can do to tweak those shots in there.
    PS 5 I use for special photos or projects.
    I also use Photomatix for HDR and Auto PanaPro for panoramas.

    But 98% Lightroom

  • robbiow May 13, 2011 11:18 am

    Another aperture 3 user. i upload RAW, then try to work through a few photos each day. i'm an amateur but have read up on lots of the aperture - but I'd love to learn about the optimal workflow in terms of order of adjustments, when to use what etc. I find metadata management is also a challenge. I think a general overview on workflow itself, library management, metadata, adjustments would be helpful. You could then make reference to which apps have functionality at each phase, related tips etc. Going RAW was possibly the most useful decision i ever made in terms of post processing.

  • happyspace May 13, 2011 06:33 am

    I'm fairly new to photography and haven't done any post-processing (except resizing, cropping and brightness on PhotoScape and standard Windows applications).

    I'd love a rundown on what post-processing tools are out there and some kind of recommendation on the type of photographer a particular software is suited to / recommendations according to how you plan to use your photos (such as the type of photos suitable for blowing up on canvas/ photobooks etc) / cost effectiveness in relation to the type of photog you are and similar questions.

    I'd also love some kind of checklist to go through with post-processing as well, perhaps modified to (again) the type of photographer you are (ie. perhaps some steps are not as important for family snaps as they might be for commercial work).

    Finally, I would be really interested in the kind of computer setup recommended for post-processing as I'm looking to upgrade my computer but I'm stuck on what I might need when/if I buy post-processing software.

  • Tomi May 13, 2011 06:00 am

    I shoot RAW, with Nikon D90. I use Capture NX2 to correct WB, exposure, etc. - if neccessary.
    For some final retouches or special effects I use PS Elements 9.
    I still have to learn how to isolate an object from the photo, with PSE9.

  • Tammy May 13, 2011 05:13 am

    I am like Celesta, I use Photoshop for all my editing except quickly resizing. Its just easier in Picasa.

    I would Love to have and learn Lightroom. maybe someday. :)

  • John Nuss May 13, 2011 04:10 am

    I make an initial pass thru my raw files using FastStone Image Viewer, deleting all the throwaways and
    making a list of those deserving post editing. I put my list entries into Photo Shop Elements, first in the
    ACR module, and finally in detail edit. I save the final edited image as a jpeg into a separate sub folder.
    As a backup, I copy the raw files and jpegs onto an external hard disc.

  • John Nuss May 13, 2011 04:10 am

    I make an initial pass thru my raw files using FastStone Image Viewer, deleting all the throwaways and
    making a list of those deserving post editing. I put my list entries into Photo Shop Elements, first in the
    ACR module, and finally in detail edit. I save the final edited image as a jpeg into a separate sub folder.
    As a backup, I copy the raw files and jpegs onto an external hard disc.

  • Amy H May 13, 2011 03:18 am

    Photoshop, but am curious about Lightroom.

  • Bruce May 13, 2011 03:11 am

    My previous post seemed to not appear! The shorthand repeat is that Lightzone sits at the centre of my Linux-centred workflow (full details here http://berbmit.deviantart.com). Lightzone is great!

  • Lynda May 13, 2011 02:46 am

    I use Adobe Camera Raw and Photoshop CS3. More and more lately my goal is to clean edit my photos and make them look real, though I do like to dabble in some "fine art photography" effects with textures and more creative applications of adjustment layers.

    The more I learn about photography, the more it helps my post-processing as I know what to change in my RAW files to correct the mistakes I made when I click the shutter.

    I've educated myself a lot this year in both regards and I'm very happy with my ability to clean edit images. I want to continue to absorb all I can and continue learning so I can get better!

  • iamunique127 May 13, 2011 02:34 am

    I need to understand Curves and Layers better.
    I use Aperture 3 for 99% of my workflow.
    The other 1% is TopazLabs plug-ins in Aperture 3 and Pixelmator for Layers.

  • Simone May 13, 2011 02:22 am

    Lightroom 95%, Photoshop 5%.

  • Lina May 13, 2011 02:17 am

    I use Lightroom for managing my photos, and to do initial white balance, color, etc adjustments. I shoot in RAW, so it's easy :)

    If I need to process my pictures further, I take them into Photoshop.

    I rarely reimport them into Lightroom though. I feel like that would mess up the organization of my photos in Lightroom... Do you then have the same image twice in Lightroom, once as the original, and once as processed in Photoshop?

    As for things I want to learn about... I still haven't figured out the best backup strategy I think.

    I have a NAS that holds most of my calendar but because of speed issues during processing, I keep a small catalog on my local computer. So I frequently run into issues where I manually copy that small catalogue over to the NAS... it's a mess =P

  • Javaslinger May 13, 2011 02:11 am

    Lightroom for everything... I might take 5% into Photoshop and I use a variety of Nik Software plugins as well...

  • Frank Goss May 13, 2011 02:07 am

    I would like to understand correction to enhance my images.

    I shoot in RAW mode on my Nikon D40. I use a number of open-source programs:
    * to upload my images I use a Java application called Dim. It copies my images to my Ubuntu-based computer, changing the file name to a data-time stamp and creates the necessary year, month and day directories/folders.
    * I add a copyright notice to each image using a Perl tool called exiftool.
    * For processing the images I use a combination of applications: Rawtherapee and the Gimp. I haven't decided which I find more useful since both have very similar features. After I select the images I want to process further I convert the RAW format to TIFF format using Rawtherapee.

  • Sitting Elf Productions May 13, 2011 01:53 am

    I start with Aperture 3 for importing from my cards. Aperture excels at importing both Canon CR2 and Jpg twins together. All exif and meta data in Aperture.

    I then re-import to Lighroom 3 for exposure, keywording, renaming, cataloging, and color correction.

    Then on to PS CS5 for layers and plugins including all NIK, Topaz, and OnOne plugs. I print using a Canon large format ImagePROGRAF iPF6350 and use the Canon Photoshop printer plugin for the 6350 for softproofing and final output.

    In addition, depending on the picture and intent, I use Photomatix, Portrait Professional Studio (for portraits), DXO for some lenses, and even Canon's DPP occasionally.

  • Celesta May 13, 2011 01:48 am

    I use Photoshop for pretty much everything except one thing: when I need to quickly resize photographs to different standard print sizes, I use Picasa.
    I have several custom workflow macros in Photoshop that I use regularly, such as framing, retrograding, optimizing file size for web.

  • KenP May 12, 2011 10:04 am

    For Linux users ... recently, I stumbled upon 'darktable'. It seems like a promising tool for managing workflow of your RAW photos. Worth a look.

    Apparently, there is nothing stopping anyone from building a Windows version but there are no downloads for Windows platform yet.

    Link: http://darktable.sourceforge.net/

  • Kristen Olesen May 12, 2011 05:00 am

    Right now it is iphoto and then photoshop elements and then aperture. I guess iphoto is my default because I don't like to do too much post processing and it is where I put my photos first. I am still learning photoshop elements and aperture so I tend to go there only when I have time to explore and play. Please give us more tutorials on aperture! thanks so much!

  • Lucie May 11, 2011 07:24 pm

    I use Gimp, since I have Linux, but still cant get rid of the feeling that post production is cheating and i am always dissapointed when find out that great picture/colours/contrast was actually done in Photoshop. Either way I wish I knew more about layers and masks how to do them properly and what effects you can create using them. Lucie

  • Lucas May 11, 2011 04:30 am

    UFRaw - exposure correction, then export to:
    Gimp - usually just minor levels corrections and auto white balance as needed...and of course cropping/resizing and exporting to .jpeg.

    I know Gimp users are far outnumbered by the Adobe crowd, but I'd love to see any articles/tutorials for FLOSS tools such as:

    Gimp
    UFRaw
    Digikam

  • Carlos Garcia-Salas May 11, 2011 01:50 am

    Lightroom and Photoshop

  • Maarja May 10, 2011 06:32 pm

    I use Lightroom (RAW), then I will go to Photoshop (if it's necessary) and sometimes at the end: quick edit at Picasa.

  • TimUwe May 10, 2011 05:33 am

    Switched from Photoshop CS3 to Lightroom 3. It is much better at organizing photos. Un-installed Bridge. Still learning a lot. Thanks for the tutorials.

  • Jarrod Whitehead May 10, 2011 02:37 am

    I use Adobe Creative Suite 4 for all my post production. Primarily the Photoshop and Bridge applications.

  • Jason Smith May 9, 2011 10:05 pm

    - Import into Lightroom 3 and convert to DNG in the process.
    - 80% of edits are done in LR3.
    - For remaining 20% I export to Photoshop CS5 then save the file as a TIFF or PSD back in LR3 depending on what type of work it is.
    - Export final photo from LR3
    - Use a number of different catalogs in Lightroom (personal, travel, client, etc...)

    TL;DR
    LR3 for all management and 80% editing, Photoshop %20 editing.

  • javier May 9, 2011 08:05 pm

    I import my raw files as DNG's in a Lightroom 3 catalog that then use for quick tagging, rating and discarding images. After a few rounds of rating I do some basic post-processing (lens-distortion, camera calibration, white balance, exposure, level curves, and the like). If the picture needs some denoising or just an extra "pop" that works better with several layers I send it to Photoshop (CS5) as a 16 bit TIFF and work on it there (often using Portraiture of Topaz's plugins). Once I am done I import back to Lightroom where I do the final sharpening depending on the final media. I publish all my files online directly from Lightroom, which I find very convenient.

  • Abhimanyu Ghoshal May 9, 2011 05:26 pm

    The first thing I need to do is see all the pictures I've taken. Then I'll choose the best and edit them. I do this by:

    1) Copying images on my hard drive and opening the folder in Adobe Bridge
    I group all the pictures of the same shot (same pose/angle, etc.) into a stack, rate the ones I'm going to work on or going to ignore and then choose the best from each stack to edit.

    2) I open the images I want to edit in Photoshop Camera RAW
    I check the white balance, exposure, fill light, blacks, clarity, vibrance and lens correction. I don't touch anything else in this stage.

    3)I sharpen the image
    I open up the image in Photoshop to begin editing and the first order of business is sharpening because DSLRs don't give you the sharpness one is used to on film. Usually the Unsharp Mask filter is enough, but I sometimes use the High Pass filter to get the sharpness I need.

    I complete the editing and save
    I then see what the image could use - cross processing, dodging and burning or selective blurring and any little fixes (artifacts, red eyes, etc.). I then use actions to flatten the image and add a white or black border and then save a TIFF, a JPG (at full size) and a smaller-sized JPG.

  • davidhdz May 9, 2011 01:59 am

    UFRaw ? Gimp

  • John May 8, 2011 09:44 pm

    I use Lightroom. If I need something more, which is rare, I use the Gimp Can't justify the purchase of PS, since I do so little beyond color, tone, exposure adjustments.

  • Ruthanne May 8, 2011 11:07 am

    I have RAW capabilities but still shoot jpeg...sort, catalogue and edit in LightRoom 2.
    Occasionally tweak with picnik processing.
    Depends how 'arty' I want to be.
    Iphoneography is processed via several apps prior to uploading to LightRoom. My cameraphone is the preferred camera most
    days. Probably shoot close to 1000 images a day so I'm vicious with deleting, saving about 25 to work with.

  • ThomJ4 May 8, 2011 09:21 am

    I shoot almost entirely in RAW, so I use Litghtroom 3 for almost all my post production work. If I need to use layers, I will sometimes use Photoshop Elements 9. Both programs are pretty straight forward, and I like them both very much. The one thing I really wish I could get a better handle on is the catalog/filing system in Lightroom. Any time I go out to shoot, I seem to end up with a conglomerate of macro, street, landscape, and sometimes even a smidge of portrait. I've read Scott Kelby's book, and I understood everything except the filing system. I guess this shows just how resistant I am to orginization.

  • Dipayan May 8, 2011 05:18 am

    I use Lightroom 3 and/or Photoshop CS2 as well as CS5...
    For HDR processing I use Photomatix and/or Topaz Adjust...

  • Joe May 8, 2011 05:07 am

    I shoot jpeg large formats so first I import the images onto my harddrive then to picasa. On picasa I go through the photos and star the one's i'm going to edit. From there its of to photoshop CS4!!!!! for editing

  • arthur_dayne May 8, 2011 02:10 am

    Since I'm on linux I use Gimp, before that I used Photoshope. There are a lot of areas that I could improve in...

  • tutness May 7, 2011 11:16 pm

    Post-production, now there's something I know something about :) I work at a lab, I specialize in canvas prints, I sometimes find myself doing post-production on anything from professional photography to "I took this with my cellphone, can it be used?" images. Now I know Lightroom is a favorite among photographers, but I come from a Photoshop background and I stick to what I know ;)

    For my own images, my workflow starts with:
    1) Selection - I spend time on Bridge checking out what I shot, I'm a beginner at photography, so I sift through a lot of "meh" material. I rate the images I deem usable, and then compare between those till I have "the one" (or few ;)) that I want to stick with.

    2) Before I do anything else, I try to stop and think where do I want to take my image, what's the vision? what will be the end result? I try to listen to my images and I'll admit sometimes I get started and by the end I feel like I screwed it up, this happens when I don't listen carefully to the image. Sometimes I'll find myself chucking things out and starting over, or posting half-baked images on my blog just to remind myself that I can do better (tough love! ;)).

    3) Once I have a clue what it is I want to do, I start working out my RAWs in Adobe Camera RAW, I usually stick to the first panel to fix exposure, highlights, shadow, clarity and well, anything else that needs fixing. Honestly, I'm still learning Camera Raw and getting to know all it's possibilities.

    4) Once in Photoshop (CS5 baby!), If the colors still need any corrections, I use profiles (SO IMPORTANT!) to fix them and/or a curves adjustment layer (which goes a really long way if you know how to harness it's full potential).

    5) And to wrap it up, it's time for details. I ask myself does anything need to be cleaned up? sharpened a little more? removed entirely? softened? textured? how about some cropping? do I wanna go nuts on the image and give it a full stylish makeover? go grungy? go light? I tend to be drawn to drama, but I try to challenge myself with different feels when I do go all-in on an image.

    Cheers.

  • Alvonsius May 7, 2011 10:06 pm

    I use GIMP all the time, since I don't have any Windows or Mac installed on my notebook. Afterall, as a hobyist, it just meet what I need from a image editor for now ^^

  • Lovelyn May 7, 2011 09:07 pm

    I shoot in RAW and just use the software that came with my camera for light editing and conversion. I've recently downloaded GIMP but haven't figured out how to use it yet.

  • Dailydose10 May 7, 2011 07:49 pm

    I use Sony Image Data Lightbox (came with my A350) to tweak then convert from Raw to Jpeg.
    I then use Gimp to complete the post production. This is where I do most of the post production work.
    I would like to get a complete tutorial on Gimp from a Photographer's viewpoint. Also a recommended workflow would be great.

  • dok May 7, 2011 07:11 pm

    Wow, the part of Photoshop users is impressive!
    I am a 100% linux user.
    - viewer : Geeqie. excellent software, fast.
    - librairy : F-Spot. Has many good points, but it is DAMN SLOOOOOOOW. kinda fed up with this. i'd love to switch to digikam but i'm not a KDE fan.

    For the post-processing itself, I use 99% of the time the awesome free software Raw Therapee. It is also available under windows. I can only HIGHLY recommend this excellent software. GIMP for the 1% that lefts.

  • Calvin May 7, 2011 05:45 pm

    RAW import into Lightroom with a preset EXIF copyright added, touchups with the Quick Develop panel, crops if needed, and processed.

    While I know this may not be the most optimal way of processing photos, it certainly gets the job done.

    If there are any suggestions out there to further improve this workflow, that'd be much appreciated.

  • Andrew May 7, 2011 03:01 pm

    I haven't really been taking pictures for more than about the last 4 months, and editing has only been the last couple, but I have a lot of fun with it nonetheless.

    A couple weeks ago I started shooting all RAW.
    I import my pictures into iPhoto, where most of my 'messing up' (heavily editing) of colors, contrasts, etc. takes place. Though I haven't been doing it all that long, I've had a lot of people comment on my pictures.

    As soon as I have the money, I'll upgrade to Lightroom 3, though I still think I'll use iPhoto at least a lot, because of the quick and 'cool' modifications I can make using it.

  • Julie Cortens May 7, 2011 02:25 pm

    95% Lightroom 3 and 5% Photoshop CS5

  • J Miller May 7, 2011 02:00 pm

    "What one thing about post processing photos do you wish you understood better?"

    How to stream line and work efficiently to cut down time in front of the monitor and spend more time behind the lens.

    "What is your preferred post processing platform?"

    Lightroom 3 main with a little PS5 after. Use the plugins, Nik suite, OnOne, etc.. Anything to make it go faster...

    Process an average of 300 shots a day (work week) and while I love shooting for a living, the post processing is 2 edge sword....Love to tweak, but the time....

  • WJDougherty May 7, 2011 01:27 pm

    ACDSee ProPhoto 3 is my choice from initial culling to final edits jpg and raw files. I have Elements 9 for a few features that ProPhoto doesnt have.
    With ACDSee ProPhoto 3:
    Transfer photos from cf card via ProPhoto
    Cull failed shots
    Delete duplicates and 'close enough' shots
    Rename photos with date and sort ID
    Edit exposure, color, sharpen, crop etc
    Post to web via ProPhoto direct to SmugMug

    Additional work done with with PSE9 - special edits

  • richard May 7, 2011 12:50 pm

    I use mostly RawStudio and gimp. Dark table I never liked that much but might give it another go.
    (Linux Platform -- I have never had as much fun on a computer since my Atari ST days)

  • Mark May 7, 2011 11:54 am

    More often than not, it begins and ends with Darktable. Occasionally, GIMP will enter into the equation, but as Darktable continues to mature and add useful features, it's becoming the only app I need.

  • J Porter May 7, 2011 09:31 am

    Lightroom3 with a little Photoshop CS5

  • Ved Upadhyay May 7, 2011 08:55 am

    I use photoscape for my editing. I got photoshop CS4 too but I'm still new learning all the features

  • Kelly Crout May 7, 2011 08:50 am

    I currently PS Raw, and then do the rest of my adjustments in CS5 ..I try to get it right in camera to avoid unesessary editing
    As for post processing I would like to improve or know more about....maybe it is just me because very few mentioned this topic but my biggest struggle is cropping!! What is the best size to crop so that you can get a decent 8x10, 5x7 or 4x6 and not cut out good portions of your pictures?? who thought of these sizes anyway, and why aren't are cameras sensors any of these sizes? 5x7 seems to be the easiest I found to work with ...until you need a 8x10.......%#*@$!

  • Carl May 7, 2011 08:26 am

    I use Lightroom exclusively. I LOVE it. I have a lot of images to sort and Lightroom is so helpful in doing this.

    In addition, it has more than enough features to prepare images for posting on the web. IHMO LIghtroom is a must!

  • Ezio Armando May 7, 2011 08:22 am

    DxO Optics Pro

  • TheChieftess May 7, 2011 08:17 am

    Lightroom...HANDSDOWN!!!

    Raw files 99% of the time!!!

    My only recommendation is to really think about and perhaps research how you will download and organize your photos...Scott Kelby's book is very helpful...I tried several ways at first and got a bit bungled...now that I'm really familiar with it, I know how I want to do it...and guess what...it's pretty much how Scott does it minus the DNG conversion!!!

  • Trevor Sowers May 7, 2011 06:55 am

    Aperture 3 for my raw conversion, organization, slide shows, book design and 90% of my edits. Pixelmator for what's left.

  • Elizabeth Stein May 7, 2011 06:12 am

    I use Picnik, because I'm seventeen and do not yet have money for Adobe, etc. But hey, Picnik is pretty sweet. And it's free.

  • Rabi May 7, 2011 05:28 am

    Personal: Convert to DNG and import into Lightroom, where virtually all editing occurs.
    Professional: Drag-and-drop import, sort/caption in Bridge, edit in Camera Raw.

  • Meghan D May 7, 2011 04:40 am

    I use CS2 for my editing. I would really like some white balance and newborn photography editing tips (evening out skin color and texture).

  • Joe Urbz May 7, 2011 04:29 am

    Aperture with NIK plug-ins and quite a few presets. PS5 when needed.

  • philman May 7, 2011 04:01 am

    Shoot...'dng' files ->
    Cataloging & keywords...FastStone image browser ->
    Prime adjustments & rate (using 1,2, or 3 stars only)...LightRoom ->
    Export the 'keepers' to tiff...LightRoom ->
    Apply effects / further touch ups...Corel PSPx3 ->

    Once a year burn whole 12 month output to DVD.

    So, a good image of mine will be kept in 5 versions:
    1. "dng" - original capture
    2. "tif" - primary adjustment
    3. "pspimage" - effects/touch up (with all the layers)
    4. "jpg" - small web-friendly size @ 72dpi
    5. "jpg" - full size @ 300 or 350 dpi

  • Peter Roelofs May 7, 2011 03:56 am

    Aperture user here! Recently got the Silver Efex Pro plugin from NIK software. Love it!! :)

  • Troy May 7, 2011 03:27 am

    My goal is to as little post processing as possible. If I do any it happens mostly in Lightroom and if I need to really get down and dirty and more creative with a photo or use it in a publication or other document, I will edit it in Photoshop.

  • Ryan124 May 7, 2011 03:21 am

    Here is my work flow:

    Shoot in RAW > Import into Aperture 3 > rank photos using star scale (1= worst, 5=perfect shot) > delete all 1's and 2's > slight edits for "5" rank shots (crop, color, effects, retouch) > slight edits for "4" rank shots (crop, color, effects retouch) > moderate to heavy edits on "3" rank shots > re-rank "3" shots using all or nothing criteria and delete accordingly > export remaining edited shots into appropriate format.

    I use CS5 in case I want to create a tilt shift effect on any of the photos, but then its back to aperture for all the editing.

    I feel aperture is adequate for most shots I take since I like to portray objects in a more natural environment most of the time (i.e. no crazy saturation or color substitution). And for the times that I decide to go color crazy, I feel aperture can do an adequate job. Although I haven't used Lightroom, I'm dying to try it out to see the difference in quality vs. Aperture. If I want to put a friends head on a celebrity's body, then of course CS5 would be the way to go, but I almost never do that!

    Due to my perfectionist tendencies, I know that I would spend half my day editing just a few photos if I used CS5 - with aperture, I know that I can only do so much, so it forces me to only do what is necessary to improve a photo, and move on to the next 1,000 photos.... after all, I want to enjoy the sun and be with friends and family, not in front of my computer (don't get me wrong, I cherish my MBP...) :D

  • Jake Townsen May 7, 2011 03:18 am

    For a weddings, Lightroom/Photoshop is essential. We use lightroom to edit down the shoot from thousands of shots to hundreds. Then color correct, crop, dust check, and make black/white picks as well. Once done there, we export as full resolution jpgs as final prints. Of those final prints we usually pick 80-100 favorites. Those favorites are then pulled into photoshop for final processing...where they come out looking magazine quality. Each image is treated with a different photoshop workflow according to what that image needs.

    Once done with process we backup to raid, burn client discs and photolab discs. Use favorites to make a dvd./web slideshow, and also upload full batch of photos to online sharing gallery.

  • tony May 7, 2011 03:17 am

    My wife is an instant gratification kind of gal ( no sex jokes!). So I shoot both a jpeg and a raw image with my D50 and D80. I download all images to the selected folder so that Picasa can pick them up for her. Then I move the raw images to an external hd where I will process through Bridge in CS3. I will replace the original jpg with an updated one post-processing.

  • Calos "Bawawa" May 7, 2011 03:13 am

    I start batch processing and rate or flag a full catalog, then I calibrate and adjust colors and levels on Lightroom,
    Efects and clearing unwanted marks like zits, racoon eyes, telephone posts, dust, people in the background, etc.. I go to Photoshop, and here magic is done...like cloning, bluring, and focusing, special efects, artifitial light source, vignetting, and boosting.

    Always trying new stuff I can find, ask for opinions on flickr groups, and Facebook, many people are willing to share and help, the main point is to have fun and enjoy creating and image that stands out.

  • Cari May 7, 2011 02:11 am

    I do Adobe Bridge CS4 and sometimes and I send the files to Photoshop CS4 for editing.

  • Aaron May 7, 2011 01:59 am

    I don't use any post production other than cropping. If you can't make good pictures without post production you're not a real photographer.

  • Eric Williams May 7, 2011 01:54 am

    I use photoshop, and would love to know how to create images that are stunningly real looking. Effects are great, but there is a fine line where it becomes more about the post production than photography.

  • Kaj-Ivar May 7, 2011 01:50 am

    I always use Raw Therapee to process my raw files. Than everything is organized by date, tag and event in Shotwell. All in Linux. It works great.

  • ArianaMurphy May 7, 2011 01:50 am

    Wow, lots of Lightroom users out there.

    I'm an enthusiastic amateur, and use this process:
    Shoot in jpeg + RAW
    Open and look through all the photos in Windows Live Photo Gallery. Save the ones that are just for me personally, like birds for my Life List file or family photos.
    The ones that are worth keeping I open the RAW file with the Nikon software, tweak the exposure, temperature and other basics then send to Photoshop Elements. By then, almost all the adjustments are done, but if it needs a bit more, or something removed, it's done at this point, then saved as a jpeg. Back them up, delete the

    I wish I knew more about layers, masking and painting. That would really help a lot. Elements 9 can do that.

  • Brett May 7, 2011 01:34 am

    I mainly stick to Lightroom, with the ability to jump into Photoshop for anything Lightroom cant cover.

  • Mike May 7, 2011 12:48 am

    Lightroom all the way.

  • SimonK May 7, 2011 12:45 am

    I've used Aperture from version 1 and love it. I have PP but hardly ever use it as I can do 98% of what I need in Aperture. I also have the NIK plugins which are awesome and complete Aperture for me. Of the NIK suite, I most heavily use Silver Efex Pro and HDR Efex Pro with occasional, careful use of Color Efex Pro.

    As for workflow, mine runs as follows:

    - Shoot eveything in RAW
    - Import to a new project in Aperture with standard metadata settings (creator, copyright, location, major keywords etc)
    - Use auto-stack to group identical shots (most often those that will be used for HDRs). Don't stack 'similar but not identical' shots
    - Allow to import and process previews
    - Rate images & flag for edits
    - Keyword any images 1* or higher
    - Edit / work on any images that are flagged for edit and 2* or higher (includes create HDRs; re-rate edited images as necessary)
    - Upload best shots to flickr / website (www.extrospectivevisions.com)

    I use a standard 5 star rating system with consistant meanings for each level:
    1*: Technically OK (it's in focus and caught the subject)
    2*: Captures the moment (I'd show this to family - it captures the moment and may have potential. A 'snapshot' would stop at this level)
    3*: Pick of the shoot (This is a decent shot and would be suitable to share or show as an 'experiment'. Usually a shot has been edited if needed to get to this level)
    4*: Great image. (This is a shot I would be proud to be associated with)
    5*: Portfolio (There are very few of these - less than 1 in 5,000 or so?)

    I usually rate in a few passes:
    - 1st pass, High speed. Get rid of the rubbish by rating 1* or reject. ('CTRL-+/-' in Aperture helps here)
    - 2nd pass, High speed. Flag the ones that have potential or tell the story 2*. Also flag those that are worth editing (i.e. have potential to make it to 3*) with a red label.
    - Review the labeled 2*s and edit/crop as necessary to work out if they really have potential to be great shots. This is the fun part and can take a while (I use smart albums to help)
    - 3rd pass, More considered. Review the 2*s and edits and upgrade the ones that I like and might be proud of. As a guide maybe10% of my shots make it to 3*.
    - Wait at least a day to let the 'hype' subside
    - Review the 3* images and tweak or upgrade a very few to 4* (at best 1 in 40 of the 3* images)

    I also use color labels to manage workflow with action categories: Edit ths shot, Print candidate, Upload etc. Then I use smart albums to pull out those shots for action.

    Note: early rating and color coding might be done on an iPad using Pixelsync (great app)

    I use Flickr and Smugmug to share and show my images.

    They beauty of this workflow is that everythings lives within the Aperture ecosystem and is logged in metadata - so I make heavy use of smart albums to keep track of what I'm doing and the images that are 'bubbling' to the top as I process.

    Simon

  • Steven T Beard LRPS May 7, 2011 12:43 am

    I do my 1st edit in CS5 bridge RAW, I then present this edit to my clients and if any further editing is needed, I do this in photoshop

  • Steven T Beard LRPS May 7, 2011 12:42 am

    I do my 1st edit in CS5 bridge RAW, I then present this edit to my clients and if any further editing is needed, I do this in photoshop

  • Noel May 7, 2011 12:34 am

    The majority of my work happens in Lightroom then to Nik Software and potentially Photoshop depending on the amount of really detailed processing necessary (layers, precise skin softening or significant retouching like removing unwanted objects etc.).

  • Graeme May 7, 2011 12:29 am

    I shoot in RAW (sometimes with jpg at the same time if situation allows).
    Slap the card into my laptop card reader.
    Lightroom 3 automatically detects the card and fires up LR's import photo function.
    I always have import new only option selected (just incase I have some existing pics on the card).
    Import to a new sub folder, named appropriatly.
    Review the folder in LR's Library view.
    Junk (delete off disk), those that are clearly rubbish during my first pass.
    Do a second pass, closer inspection and junking again of those that don't make the grade.
    Select those image that are keepers and start tweaking the RAW file in LR's Develop view.
    Then it depends, over to PS CS5 for closer editing where appropriate, or if LR is enough I then output as per the project requires.
    Either print using LR print view, export to Flickr using the built in function from LR or export the images as jpg for buring/emailing as needed.
    When I use PS in addition to LR I particularly like the way they both integrate, where and LR changes can be taken to PS and vice versa automatically. Awesome feature.

    I also backup (it's part of workflow!) using Mozy constantly, both locally and to the cloud. Very useful and a life saver.

  • Dewan Demmer May 7, 2011 12:24 am

    For my photo mangement I use Picasa and for all post processing I use Gimp. What would I like to be able to do better ? That would be understanding lighting and colours more in my post processing, what colour works best in what light, how do I get the best from the lighting in a particular photo.

  • kauaikid May 7, 2011 12:23 am

    I use Photoshop CS4 most of the time and Portrait Professional Studio 10 to enhance portraits. I have Lightroom 2 as well, but rarely use it.

  • harold May 7, 2011 12:15 am

    1. Digital Photo Professional - to download from camera and initial screening
    2. Lightroom 3 for editing

    3. on Wishlist is CS5 for more editing capability....

  • Neeraj Mishra May 7, 2011 12:02 am

    I always shoot in Raw and post process it in Photo Shop- CS5 extended.

  • Aparna May 6, 2011 11:58 pm

    I'm not very good with post production stuff beyond the real basics. I mostly use the Canon camera software DPP, Photoscape and a bit of GIMP.

  • Dunc May 6, 2011 11:56 pm

    I use ACDSee Pro 3.0 (soon to move up to the 4.0 version) for pretty much everything...

    It handles all my management, tagging, exposure control and basic editing. Automatically converts RAW images from my Nikon and my wife's Sony and my daughter's Pentax... Also has non-descrutive JPEG processing which is very cool....

    I am trained in Photoshop CS4, but I much prefer the ease of ACDSee.....

    Cheers

  • Johnny Miracký May 6, 2011 11:54 pm

    What one thing about post processing photos do you wish you understood better?
    I can't think of a concrete area.

    I use Aperture 3. I don't use any bitmap editor like Photoshop. Aperture 3 meets my needs pretty well.

  • Prateek May 6, 2011 11:53 pm

    From Camera to PC - Canon EOS Utility
    In PC ... Import and process in Lightroom 3.x
    Use Gimp/other tools for something like Panorama, etc. No processing outside LR.

  • Jim May 6, 2011 11:52 pm

    Like many others here, I shoot mostly in RAW and use Lightroom for post processing. From time to time, I also make some adjustments using Photoshop Elements. When cropping, I always use Google's Picassa... love the preset sizes, quickness, preview and non-destructive nature of the edits.

  • Guillaume May 6, 2011 11:52 pm

    As I am a pro "open source" solution, I first edit my RAW files with UFRaw (white balance and tone correction, crop and rotate) and, in case I need to sharpen my files, I open them in Gimp.

    Both tools are running on a Linux desktop.

  • Jan Gemeinhardt May 6, 2011 11:42 pm

    I use Lightroom3.4 and shoot RAW. Always looking to learn more about LR, while I've owned LR for quite a while just now getting into the nitty gritty really using it. I also have PSE9 but want to REALLY know LR inside and out before I continue on with Elements.

  • Hans May 6, 2011 11:37 pm

    Most of my post processing steps from RAW (NEF) to end product are usually done with ACDSee Pro. Especially the RAW processing saved me a lot of time this way. I only use PS / PSE when applying additional plug-ins (NIK & Topaz) as ACDSee Pro doesn't support plug-ins (yet). Hopefully they will follow in LR footsteps regarding plug-ins one day.

  • Holly May 6, 2011 11:34 pm

    I use Aperture 3; I do have PS3, but I am not too familiar with program.

  • John Davenport May 6, 2011 11:28 pm

    I'm just learning, but I typically will start with the RAW file in Lightroom and adjust the exposure, contrast, colors, etc. Once I get the photo the way I think looks best I'll move it into Photoshop CS5 and do final edits like cropping, cloning dust spots or powerlines. Finally it's ready to be uploaded to My Photoblog!

  • mike c May 6, 2011 11:27 pm

    I shot in raw then d/l & convert to dng, store, sort, add metadata and do gross adjustments in lightroom then send what files I want to print onto photoshop for soft proofing and printing.
    I wish I could calibrate my nec lcd3090wqxi monitor a little tighter I use a spyder3elite and still find the colors off. I cant seem to get the white balance right.

  • bongtschik May 6, 2011 11:21 pm

    I use a combination of tools: first, general overview with "Fast Picture Viewer", then Lightroom, then Gimp, when necessary Neat Image and ShiftN.

  • Doug Sundseth May 6, 2011 11:18 pm

    Depends on the subject:

    Landscape and Wildlife: Shoot RAW and edit 99% in Lightroom - Crop, adjust color and exposure, add clarity, play with the tone curve, adjust sharpness, and sometimes add a vignette or lens correction. Photoshop for stitching or particularly refractory problems.

    Industrial / process photography: Shoot jpg, Bridge for review, Photoshop for cropping, B&W conversion, curves and levels, and sometimes pixel-level edits.

    Marketing: Shoot RAW, edit in Lightroom as above, then Photoshop for pixel-level edits (compositing, retouching).

  • Chocoholix May 6, 2011 11:17 pm

    I start off with Lightroom or Adobe RAW when I am working with RAW, then I use Photoshop for the rest ... I also use Photoshop for any graphc work I do like photobook design and such.

    I have only recently started using Adobe RAW and I would love to see a comprehensive tutorial about how to tweak things in RAW.

  • Distan Bach May 6, 2011 11:12 pm

    Aperture 3

    Shoot in RAW
    Import images into new project with my current naming convention so I can keep track of things eg. 11 05 06-shoot name. (This keeps everything chronologically sorted and then I just move the projects into a folder like, for example, 2011 > Portraits.)
    Quickly rate images, allocating 1 star on first pass. Repeat process until I have identified a small handful of true keepers for further editing.
    Adjust exposure, white balance, temperature, crop.
    Usually increase saturation and vibrancy sliders fractionally.
    Slight sharpening (depending on image subject).
    Adjust levels; sometimes add curves.
    (Depending on image may use dodge, burn, skin smoothing, selective sharpening etc around here).
    Vignette
    Export image with my watermark as a jpeg for sharing on the web.

    Occasionally go out to PS for some edits. Am trying to use pixelmator more for the easy stuff and when I think of it. Will usually bring any changes back into Aperture for any further refinements and cataloguing.

    Have been using Aperture for the past 18 months and just really love it's workflow. I find it smooth and intuitive (to my way of thinking granted). It really has helped improve the quality of my photographic output without the steep learning curve of PS.

  • Rob Gipman May 6, 2011 11:10 pm

    Everything is done by me with Bibble Pro (on Ubuntu Linx). I came from Adobe CS 4 and DXO Optics. Once I was able to create the files DXO kicked out after CS in Bibble I was happy with the move and have not lokked back yet!

    Gtumb I use to quickly look at raw or jpeg files if I do not want to open Bibble for that takes some time to start.

    Lot's of my photo's processed in Bibble are on the Front cover of The Eye Magazine in Uganda.

  • Geoff May 6, 2011 11:02 pm

    My main post production software is Lightroom which covers colour and exposure 'tweeks', tagging and renaming photos. The links to Flickr is great and the printing interface is brilliant. I use Photoshop for more advanced work such as Panoramas, montages,distortion corrections and removal of unwanted objects.
    I also use Lightroom as a client viewer and images search.

  • Jaron May 6, 2011 10:59 pm

    Capture NX2 with Color Efex 3

  • Jim Camp May 6, 2011 10:56 pm

    I use a combination of PMB that came with my Sony a500 and Corel Paintshop. I am learning about these tools but as a relative newbie, I know i am only touching the surface of possibilities. Some time spent on the common functionalities across all platforms would we terrific!

  • Harry May 6, 2011 10:42 pm

    Addendum: I also use GIMP when Aperture isn't enough, but that's only about 0.1% of the time.

  • Carol Smith May 6, 2011 10:31 pm

    Lightroom > Photoshop > Noiseware > (OnOne Photo Tools) > Lightroom. That is the current workflow.

  • Estevao Seco May 6, 2011 10:30 pm

    I am just importing them to Aperture, and then applying the correcetions needed.
    I'm pretty much a starter in photography, and you are the guys (between others) that indirectly incentivated me to start, this week, my photo blog.
    Thanks and congrats for your posts...

  • Mainer82 May 6, 2011 10:09 pm

    Shoot in Raw
    Merge GPX file from my GPS using Geosetter & keyword photos
    Download into Canon DPP
    Edit RAW files
    Convert to JPG
    If needed more advanced editing, tweak that JPG in an Adobe product
    Publish

  • Steve May 6, 2011 10:05 pm

    Geotag the RAW files with RoboGEO
    Convert to 16-bit TIf with DxO Optics Pro
    Apply metadata with Adobe Bridge
    Edit in Photoshop CS4

    Plus
    Photomatix Pro (after Bridge and before Photoshop) for HDR.
    Microsoft SyncToy to copy to a 2TB portable drive for off-site back-up.

    I'm slightly surprised that more people didn't mention making back-ups as part of their workflow.

  • Claudia May 6, 2011 09:54 pm

    Work flow has been my biggest challenge. I work in RAW exclusively. Import to RAW files to Lightroom 3 and onto a backup external drive at the same time. I used to use Bridge and Elements, but now find that almost everything I want/need to do can be done in Lightroom. I can still go to Elements when necessary. The inventory control of Lightroom is invaluable for any digital photographer and has no competition in my opinion.

  • Mike May 6, 2011 09:50 pm

    Capture in raw, post-process with Aperture and plug-ins. Rarely (actually very rarely anymore) go to CS5 for special needs.

  • Simon Ross May 6, 2011 09:48 pm

    I use Lightroom first and then retouching in Photoshop.

  • Chris May 6, 2011 09:37 pm

    I use Adobe Camera Raw to edit all my RAW files. Then ill move over to Photoshop if my photo requires a little bit more adjusting.

    I have been thinking about purchasing Aperture, but my current process seems to work fine for now.

    Are there any thoughts if buying Aperture would be a wise move?

    Cheers!

  • Ozzie May 6, 2011 09:36 pm

    Mostly use PaintShop Photo Pro x3. I guess I would like to understand what makes one post processing platform better than the other.

  • travellinardie May 6, 2011 09:03 pm

    I use ACDSee, SageLight Image Editor and Topaz Plugins. Just starting to learn about the GIMP. Thanks for your site.

  • shotslot May 6, 2011 08:55 pm

    Actually I have a blog post about this on my blog today:

    http://www.shotslot.net/2011/05/pushing-photographic-workflow-to-limit.html

    anyway to answer the question, the thing I wish I understood better is probably making Lightroom print what I want it to, I only delve in when I really have to.

    Also, does anyone know why the Canon 60D has in-camera creative filters and RAW processing, I mean, what the hell for? I don't know anyone who doesn't go via PC first...

  • Steve W May 6, 2011 08:45 pm

    Everything starts in Lightroom. Anything that is going to be cropped, resized, and/or manipulated ends up in Photoshop. Make extensive use of Nik, AlienSkin, and OnOne plugins.

  • Shane Kelly May 6, 2011 08:27 pm

    First, I look at the picture - then I usually do nothing for several days (unless some one wants them in a hurry!)
    After that, I look at the composition, the colours, the subject after importing into Aperture.
    Then I make any needed changes - 90% of the time right in Aperture. The other 10% is either Pixelmator (preferred) or Photoshop elements.
    A workflow is a personal thing - we all use tools we are comfortable with - and changing it is usually a wrench....
    Aperture-Pixelmator combo suits me. YMMV

  • Nicomag May 6, 2011 07:34 pm

    I just use picasa, very convenient, simple, coz i just think that a good picture does'nt need many postprod work !

  • Lara May 6, 2011 07:31 pm

    I use Picasa for most of my basic photo edits - adjusting highlights and shadows and occasionally adding saturation or using it's soft focus tool. However, there are two things that I always turn to Photoshop for - to brighten pictures (and by this I mean more than just the highlights) and adding focal black and white.

  • Joseph May 6, 2011 07:22 pm

    Well my typical workflow usually follows like this:

    1) Remove pictures from memory and place them in an appropriate new folder
    2) Import that into Lightroom
    3) I usually go through them all and Flag my favourites, or those that I intend to edit later on
    4) I edit the photos accordingly in Lightroom
    5) If further editing is required, I export to Photoshop
    6) If HDRing then I export to PhotoMatix
    7) Then I export the finished products into Jpeg, depending on the sizes I require

    So to sum up, I use Lightroom, Photoshop, Nik Silver Efx Pro Plug-in and Topaz Adjust for Photoshop and Photomatix Pro

  • Juha Ylitalo May 6, 2011 06:47 pm

    BibblePro 5.x (since its available for Linux, Mac AND Microsoft) for RAW to JPEG conversion.
    Anything else with GIMP.
    Haven't yet made up my mind whether I want to use Bibble for managing tags, etc. or should I look for something else (for example Picasa).

  • Wulf May 6, 2011 06:47 pm

    Camera -> iPhoto ( -> Gimp ) -> (Flickr | Filesystem (viewed through Picasa) )

    I use iPhoto to take the photos from the camera. I love the full screen and comparison views but found it was slowing under the weight of my entire library. If I process the pictures, I use the Gimp. Then the pictures get published to Flickr and stored locally on my filesystem. Flickr allows me to flexibly tag and share my images; Picasa is happy to sit as a visual window for browsing the filesystem.

  • Jamie M May 6, 2011 06:28 pm

    Well, I shoot in Raw, process in Photoshop CS5.

    Some really nice portrait post-processing would be great.

  • Ola Pettersson May 6, 2011 05:57 pm

    As a Linux user, I use Bibble (http://www.bibblelabs.com). The quality of the RAW images processed in Bibble is really top notch, and there is a wide assortment of plug-ins. Bibble also feature layers, including heal and clone tools. In my opinion, it's the best/only post processing software for Linux, but since there are versions for Windows and MacOS it's a strong competitor to Lightroom, Aperture etc., especially when price is taken into account.

  • yisra_el May 6, 2011 05:55 pm

    Definitely, Photoshop.

  • Soda Citron May 6, 2011 05:55 pm

    My pictures are perfect ; I don't post-process them.

    - I shoot
    - I print the picture directly from my camera
    - I frame it

  • Richard Keech May 6, 2011 05:43 pm

    It depends on the situation but generally like this:

    Shoot either tethered or imported from card into CaptureOne
    Basic edits/selects done in CaptureOne
    Basic adjustments like white balance, contrast, crop in CaptureOne
    Export to either JPG to send to client or as TIF to import into Photoshop for retouching
    Export from Photoshop into the desired file format for the client

    Thats it
    the ony reason I use anything else is if I have no other choice

  • dapipoy May 6, 2011 05:41 pm

    I use lightroom. export to folder and delete rejects. make virtual copies and work inside the collection. i usually start from top to bottom in the develop module, from basic to detail, then go back to basic to finish it off. sometimes i use photoshop in the last stage.

  • Ann May 6, 2011 05:33 pm

    i use Photoshop Elements.
    My workflow:
    rotating and cutting
    adjusting lights and colours
    clooning
    transfer to B&W

  • otto May 6, 2011 05:14 pm

    Bibble 5 for 99.5%. Every now and then some Photoshop.

  • Ben May 6, 2011 05:10 pm

    Bibble to process the raw images, GIMP if the jpg needs editing, Digikam to organize,Hugin to create a panorama

  • Tom_Vienna May 6, 2011 04:41 pm

    Hi,
    I always have my Canon Powershot G11 in my Poket. I use CHDK for enhanced functions. Scripts for intervall and bracketing are very often in use for timelapse capturing and HDR. I run a windows system and use ZoombrowserEx for saving and managing the images. For manipulations i use Gimp, wich is free and a very powerful tool. For Raw developement i use the tool "Digital Photo Professional " delivered with the camera.
    HDR´s i do in Picturenaut, wich gives a lot of tone map options for realistic results - also free to use.
    Because i love the variable screen, a Canon EOS D60 is on my wishlist for summer 2011.

  • Blaise Liu May 6, 2011 04:36 pm

    1) Import w. Lightroom into DNG format.
    2) All the non-destruction edit in Lightroom.
    Crop and rotate;
    White balance;
    Exposure, recover, black ...
    Noise reduction if necessary;
    But I do not use the brush tool. I prefer to use Lightroom for global adjustment only. Leave the more detailed work to Photoshop.
    3) Edit in Photoshop
    For portrait: blemish removal -> skin/make up -> light/color adjustment -> shape change [not on every pic]
    For landscape and others: light and color adjustment.
    Just make sure the destructive editing (liquify, lens effect, etc.) is in my last steps.

  • Joey Rico May 6, 2011 04:33 pm

    mostly done in photoshop

    but i also use aperture, photomatix, silver efx pro

  • roman76aut May 6, 2011 04:29 pm

    I use a Linux Box with UFraw for processing my RAW files and GIMP for finetunig or playing around

    Developing my RAW images is currently the point i want to know more.

  • KenP May 6, 2011 04:22 pm

    @Tim: You could try the following URL to get digiKam on Mac:

    http://opensourcecat.blogspot.com/2009/01/en-digikam-little-step-more-to-world.html

  • KenP May 6, 2011 04:18 pm

    I use digiKam to organize my photos and for quick editing. For advanced photo manipulation, GIMP with ufraw plugin.

  • Kamal Jain May 6, 2011 04:18 pm

    I use ACDSee 8 for the initial tweaking and then GIMP 2.6 for Windows for some advanced work.

  • Stephanie May 6, 2011 04:17 pm

    Lightroom + Photoshop

    I'm pretty sure my whole procedure for processing could be revamped to be more efficient...but I don't really know how to get there.

  • Mara May 6, 2011 03:45 pm

    Thanks so much for this! I am really looking for a good workflow between lightroom and Photoshop. Currently, I import my raw images into Lightroom and then when needed, I take them one by one into Photoshop and then back again into Lightroom for cropping, export, etc. This process would be totally inefficient for large quantities of images- I would love to know a better way. Also, I find the Tif or psd file that the process creates adds clutter as there is the raw (well, dng) file in Lightroom as well. I have to pick through the collection or folder to figure out which files I only edited in Lightroom (and therefore there is only a dng file) and which have both a tif and dng file, flagging only the finished version (the tif if I took it into Photoshop and the dng if I did not). This process is tedious and I know there must be a better way!

  • Mara May 6, 2011 03:45 pm

    Thanks so much for this! I am really looking for a good workflow between lightroom and Photoshop. Currently, I import my raw images into Lightroom and then when needed, I take them one by one into Photoshop and then back again into Lightroom for cropping, export, etc. This process would be totally inefficient for large quantities of images- I would love to know a better way. Also, I find the Tif or psd file that the process creates adds clutter as there is the raw (well, dng) file in Lightroom as well. I have to pick through the collection or folder to figure out which files I only edited in Lightroom (and therefore there is only a dng file) and which have both a tif and dng file, flagging only the finished version (the tif if I took it into Photoshop and the dng if I did not). This process is tedious and I know there must be a better way!

  • Irene May 6, 2011 03:44 pm

    My favourite is Picasa but then I do the absolute minimal editing (mainly red eye, spots etc). I do have Gimp and Photo Elements on my Mac but need to get stuck into learning on how to use them (haven't made up my mind yet which one I would prefer).

  • melvint May 6, 2011 03:15 pm

    I use mainly Lightroom 3 and shoot only RAW.

    My workflow in Lightroom3:
    1 - Import photos and apply lens correction and my metadata presets.
    2 - Select the keepers with the colour tags.
    3 - Edit the keepers. For panoramas, i'll let CS5 do its magic through Lightroom 3
    4 - Export the edited keepers as JPG

    I also use Picasa 3 and it'll always be scanning the folder which i store the exported JPGs and upload to my Picasa Web Album.

    By the way, i'm only just a serious enthusiasti

  • Ross May 6, 2011 02:49 pm

    100% lightroom.

    I'd rather know how to take better photos so i don't need to do as much in post!

  • HighMakaMaka May 6, 2011 02:28 pm

    Shoot RAW -->> Aperture 3 --> Lo-Fi 20% because it's soooo easy and fun to use --->>> GIMP if I need to do something extra special with the Photo.

    My reason: Aperture 3 $70, Lo-Fi $29, GIMP -$0.00 (plus YouTube has some great tutorials on GIMP)

  • tacgurl May 6, 2011 01:59 pm

    Nikon's View NX, Capture NX2, & Picasa. Have Aperture 3, but need help (& patience) in learning how to use it. I want to keep post-processing to a minimum. Prefer to learn more on how to get in right in the camera.

  • Abhishek Singh May 6, 2011 01:56 pm

    I start with RawTherapee or DarkTable (for RAW photographs), export JPEG from there, and then move on to Gimp for fine editing. After GIMP, depending upon if I'm to use panaorma stitching, I use hugin. I use Shotwell to manage my shots.

  • Ruben Rojas May 6, 2011 01:38 pm

    I use Lightroom, is powerful and simple

  • Russ Mathis May 6, 2011 12:52 pm

    Aperture, Photoshop CS5

  • Josep May 6, 2011 12:50 pm

    Always from RAW files:
    Digital Photo Professional, for the first screening
    Lightroom 3.x for first processing (cropping, white balance, etc.)
    PS CS5+Topaz plugins for final edition

  • Vidhu S May 6, 2011 12:46 pm

    Here's my workflow

    1. Import the RAW file, from the camera, using lightroom and change the lens profile, lens corrections and picture style.

    2. Adjust white balance

    3. Export the file to PS CS3 as Tiff

    4. Adjust levels, shadows and highlights if necessary

    5. Sharpen the picture. I mostly use High pass filter (for Shallow DOF pics) and Unsharp mask

    6. Boost the saturation if necessary

    7.Export the file back to light room and make some adjustment in tone curve if necessary.

    8. FInally, save it as a Jpeg file

    I always try to keep Post processing to a minimum.
    [eimg url='https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=205892799444148&set=a.191548857545209.45678.174126872620741&type=1&theater' title='photo.php?fbid=205892799444148&set=a.191548857545209.45678.174126872620741&type=1&theater']

  • Anthony May 6, 2011 12:45 pm

    LR3 mostly, CS5 sometimes to do some further editing of panoramas or apply some filters.

  • ScottC May 6, 2011 12:42 pm

    I shoot in RAW and use LR3 100% of the time, though I'd like to learn and use photoshop when the budget permits.

    I'd like to see more tutorials that demonstrate other's workflow in LR and use of LRs tone curve, split toning, and camera calibration modules, as well as Lightroom plug-ins.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/lendog64/

  • Johnp May 6, 2011 12:35 pm

    I use photoshop elements for RAW conversion and editing. Photomatix for exposure fusion & HDR. Tiffen and Portrait Professional for extra editing if required. Thinking of changing to full photoshop but elements seems to have all I need at the moment and cheaper of course to update. I particularily like the new panorama workflow in Elements 9.

  • Mark Houston May 6, 2011 12:34 pm

    Ingest, Tag, add Metadata and Rate with PhotoMechanic,
    Process raw files file Adobe Bridge and ACR
    Photoshop only for retouching.
    All asset management by Extensis Portfolio.

  • SDreamer May 6, 2011 12:30 pm

    I use Windows Live Photo Gallery, I'm pretty much an amature when it comes to photography. If I need more post processing, I hit up Paint.net. I just simply can't afford other products right now (even PSe), and find that these solutions work pretty well.

  • Nate May 6, 2011 12:28 pm

    Lightroom and then photoshop elements

  • Richard May 6, 2011 12:24 pm

    Canon Digital Photo Professional,but intend to shift to Lightroom soon. Need a computer upgrade first.

  • Erik Kerstenbeck May 6, 2011 12:14 pm

    Hi

    Here is a Lightroom treatment using NIK Silver Efex

    http://kerstenbeckphotoart.wordpress.com/2011/04/11/locomotive-breath/

    Cheers, Erik

  • Royston Kane May 6, 2011 11:47 am

    I am doing Lightroom then Photoshop if needed.

  • John Newton May 6, 2011 11:18 am

    I use Lightroom for managing my images while I use Photoshop, with several plug-ins and custom actions for making major changes/corrections. Everything gets saved back into LR.

  • Michelle Simpson May 6, 2011 11:00 am

    I use Picasa as a quick run through for tossing RAW files that are blurry, or to compare compositions. Then I do all editing in Photoshop.

  • Narelle @ Cook Clean Craft May 6, 2011 10:55 am

    I'm a beginner, just starting to edit photos and have only used Picasa and Picnik for basic editing. I'd like to start to get more detailed, but am not sure which path to go down with software.

  • Major Latimer May 6, 2011 10:52 am

    I use Photoshop, Bridge and a little bit of Nikons NX software. I now know a lot about Bridge and couldn't edit or organize my photos with out it. It's such an amazing program. When I first took noticed of this program bundled with Photoshop it was when I got CS2. Now It may have been bundled with prior versions but I never paid attention. I think Bridge is under rated. Many people use Lightroom, and it is a great program for photographers. But say you already dropped major $ to get photoshop and you don't want to make another perchase to get Lightroom. Bridge is a well designed alternative to making corrections, edits and organizing your photos even before you get them into Photoshop. And the best part is it's "free" because is come bundled with Photoshop (yeah I know, no such thing as a free lunch). My point being I think many photographers over look Bridge and the many advantages it has. It's an Adobe product so there are many great bells and whistles and familiar tools that make the editing process far easier to bare. I could be wrong but I don't recall ever seeing a tutorial on Bridge. Its a pretty versitle program that deserve some spotlight.

  • Roberto Sacasa May 6, 2011 10:50 am

    Lightroom, NIK software, photoshop

    I honestly think that:
    1. Each session is post processed individually depending on the specific mood.
    2. As individual pictures, i always check them like this:
    a. import, specific folder/ custom name
    b. pick the best ones, always keeping the files for the ones i don't use
    c. check for color, lighting preset, increase black and contrast
    d. NIK software, if necessary
    3. Export to specific folder

    http://www.flickr.com/robsacasa/

  • The Retired One May 6, 2011 10:47 am

    I presently use Picasa but would love to learn Photoshop and Lightroom!

  • Don May 6, 2011 10:29 am

    Depending on the photo I use either Photoshop, Color(Silver) Efex or Nikon Capture NX

  • Speedy May 6, 2011 10:26 am

    Wow, only Rick uses GIMP?!?!

    I use Lightroom and GIMP, 99 and 1 percent of the time, respectively. I would like to see more GIMP tutorials, because I think it would be useful for budget hobbyists, like myself, to know that there are excellent and free (in both senses of the word) alternatives to Photoshop, of which GIMP is one, possibly the most advanced. Regardless of software used, I would also like to see good tutorials on sharpening - for some reason that's something I do predominantly with feel, rather than strategy, and I prefer strategy, just can't figure out a decent one.

  • PHugger May 6, 2011 10:11 am

    I use Breeze Browser Pro for rating, key-wording and sorting.
    I use Capture One Pro for most (90%) of my post processing.
    The latest version even has Layers.

    I am weakest on using Curves and Sharpening.

  • AP May 6, 2011 10:03 am

    I always shoot RAW, convert after white balance adjustment to JPG using RawTherapee and finally perform any minor tweaks and upload using Picasa.

  • Todd May 6, 2011 10:02 am

    I use Lightroom 3 and Photoshop CS 4 if I need further processing. However, Lightroom 3 works for 95% of my work. I shoot 100% RAW.

  • Tim May 6, 2011 10:00 am

    Adobe Bridge is my central point for organizing stuff and assigning metadata, etc.

    My most frequent workflow is a one-photo-per-day routine:
    offload; use Bridge to apply an auto-exposure b&w preset; assign ratings; delete everything <=2/5; (maybe repeat until I'm down to a handful of decent images);
    Then I send the best few (4-5) to DxO Optics Pro where I apply a specific custom preset (Ilford FP4+ a few Fuji Superia) and tweak parameters per frame;
    process everything and inspect images in the blip/ subdirectory, re-rating them and choose the one best overall; apply metadata to all files of the same name; publish via pixel.pipe to blipfoto, flickr and tumblr all at once.

    As a variation on the theme, sometimes I want to produce a panorama: I apply my regular daylight preset in ACR and export as 16-bit TIFFs, load into hugin and process (variously enblend, enfuse and/or HDR mode) and choose one TIFF to go forward to DxO etc.

    As another variation, sometimes I want to produce a huge/smooth/low-ISO-noise image: I tell ACR to work in 16-bit ProPhotoRGB mode at 25MPel, open two or three images in Photoshop itself as layers, realign and stack and average them together for optimum image quality and size. Output to TIFF and DxO etc, probably.

    In case of having to produce a whole photo-set from an afternoon's shoot, I run a zsh script wrapper around imagemagick's convert(1) to produce small (800x600), flickr-sized (1600x1200) and archive JPEGs from DxO's output, then run a custom python script to produce an index.json file (containing all the assigned metadata) in the directory and upload it to my dumping-ground website and sync the database tables... At least in flickr-uploadr all I have to do is assign sets to organize stuff!

    I love DxO's output but hate its awful buggy reliance on PACE license-enforcement. I quite like Bridge's interface but hate its buggy unreliable slow metadata writing. Would quite like to use digiKam instead, if I could get it to work on the Mac.

  • JCTorres May 6, 2011 09:56 am

    I use digikam and ufraw for raw conversion, then Gimp.

  • Tracy May 6, 2011 09:54 am

    Lightroom 3 almost exclusively, with the occasional Photoshop tweak to use my Alien Skin plug-in. But 95% Lightroom.

  • Vincent Hrovat May 6, 2011 09:48 am

    Here's my flow, in a nutshell:

    Shoot raw --> import into Adobe CS4 Bridge --> adjust temperature, exposure, minor touch-up in Adobe Camera Raw --> detailed adjustments such as sharpness, curves, filters, dodge/burn, cropping, clone stamp in Photoshop CS4 --> add framing and watermark as needed in Photoshop CS4 --> save as .psd (in case I need to put the picture back "on the rack" for more work) and .jpg for distribution.

    I'm basically following the workflow that author Scott Kelby describes in his "CS4 for Digital Photographers" book. Sometimes I can do all of the processing in ACR, but, if I am going to have to do anything in Photoshop, I do most of the detail work there instead of in ACR.

  • EC May 6, 2011 09:20 am

    I 98% of the time shoot in RAW. Then I use Lightroom for conversions and some editing (presets). For the exported JPEGs I use Aperture 3 where I love the way the catalog, books & slide shows are handled.

  • Izzy May 6, 2011 09:13 am

    used aperture for the past 2 years and recently switched to Lightroom (finally) after getting the leica x1. :)

  • Amy Liz Photography May 6, 2011 09:13 am

    Oh and I also use Lightroom and Photoshop Elements. Hope to be getting CS3 soon! I have a very hard time with white balance as well and with getting my picture focused....it seems to look focused on my camera screen but once on my computer....it isn't and it is too hard for me to fix :(

  • Amy Liz Photography May 6, 2011 09:07 am

    The hardest thing for me is understanding the proper way to save photos. What are other photographers saving besides their hard drive....incase their computer crashes?

  • TommyG May 6, 2011 08:55 am

    I shoot in RAW and then use Lightroom 3 to sort and make slight adjustments, I then use NIK software plugins to finish up.

  • Albin May 6, 2011 08:41 am

    Nice to read what others do. Really depends on whether I'm starting with RAW or JPEG. I'm learning so it's going to be free software until I get competent:

    In Windows:
    Irfanview Viewer - often use OptikVerve plug in for quick "effects"
    For HDR brackets (realism not colorific) - Picturenaut
    DOF Stacking brackets (pure beginner experiments) - CombineZP
    For RAW - RawTherapee (preferred over ACR in Elements)
    For JPEG - Noiseware if needed
    For JPEG Photoshop Elements as required, again with OptikVerve bf8

    In Ubuntu Linux:
    Default "Image Viewer"
    RAW and JPEG - GIMP with "Data-Extras" plug-in package and UFRaw installed. I'm increasingly impressed with it.

  • Pete May 6, 2011 08:37 am

    ACR for RAW processing and Photoshop exclusively!

  • Rob Beckett May 6, 2011 08:26 am

    Adobe bridge to download and back up lightroom to tweak exposure and straightening, CS3 photoshop to spot and manipulate image and lightroom to export and organise

  • Caetano May 6, 2011 08:24 am

    2 to 10 minutes using Aperture 3

  • Erik Kerstenbeck May 6, 2011 08:18 am

    Hi

    First of all I always shoot in RAW. This allows me the maximum control for adjusting exposure or white balance corrections. For the longest of time I have used Nikon Capture NX2 and have learned to love its speed and the U-Point technology incorporated from NIK SW.

    I am now also using Lightroom3 with NIK Plug Ins like SilverEfex, Viveza and HDR Efex Pro. I like the seemless integration.

    For noise reduction I use Noise Ninja - it is fast and powerful
    .
    For HDR processing I use either Photomatix or HDR Efex, really depends on the situation.

    This one shot in RAW, processed only with Capture NX. A bit of exposure adjustment, a small horizon straightening and some corner vignetting:

    http://kerstenbeckphotoart.wordpress.com/2011/05/04/smoke-on-the-water/

  • Joan Nova May 6, 2011 08:16 am

    I use iphoto for most things and photoshop for resizing to special sizes. My nemesis is white balance.

  • Harry May 6, 2011 08:14 am

    RAW Photos -> Aperture -> Zenfolio

    One thing about post-processing I wish I knew better: How to rely less on post-processing.

  • jason m May 6, 2011 08:07 am

    - Aperture 3
    - sometimes all post is done in Aperture
    - sometimes I go into PS CS3 from Aperture
    - then back to Aperture 3 for cropping and maybe vignetting

  • Cole May 6, 2011 08:05 am

    I use Photoshop CS3

  • Philip May 6, 2011 08:01 am

    I use the Nikon View NX to organize and Photoshop CS5 for editing.

    Since this is a post looking for potential new threads - One thing I'd really love to know from some of the more experienced photographers out there - what is your mental checklist/SOP for taking an image through post-processing?

  • Bobbi May 6, 2011 07:55 am

    100% Aperture

  • Ankur May 6, 2011 07:43 am

    I use Lightroom. Sometimes I use http://pixlr.com/editor/ also. :-)

  • PhotoDad May 6, 2011 07:30 am

    Wow, i feel like i'm underprocessing

    Abobe Elements (Adobe Camera Raw) for any color corrections, etc

    Then...

    Photoshop to export.

    It it needs more work it gets tossed

  • Jeff Freeze May 6, 2011 07:30 am

    I just wish I had Post Production process. If I could ever truly develop the routine, I own Aperture now and would like to learn to use that software. Up to this point it has been iPhoto. My pics are poorly organized by the default event and generally not meta tagged, or easily searchable. I am just an amateur but I sure wish I could stream line the post process so I could get results people could see. Most of my photographs sit on my hard drive and have anyone's eyes on them.

  • PhotoDad May 6, 2011 07:29 am

    Wow, i feel like i'm underprocessing

    Abobe Elements (Adobe Camera Raw) for any color corrections, etc

    Then...

    Photoshop to export.

    It it needs more work it gets tossed

  • GoremanX May 6, 2011 07:28 am

    I used to use UFraw to develop RAW files, followed by Digikam for any fine-tuning and colour management. But now I do everything in Bibble. I still use Digikam for keeping my catalogs organized, though. It's the only software that allows groups of people on different computers to work on the same catalogs at the same time.

  • Tapio Kaisla May 6, 2011 07:26 am

    After Lightroom 3 I have used Photoshop just few times for post production. With the newest Lightroom I can do all what I need. Of course CS5 is the choice for more advanced editing. I also have ACDSee for small tweaks and browsing.

    When talking about Photoshop/Lightroom there's always new tricks to learn!

  • Rick May 6, 2011 07:24 am

    I would like to understand white balance a lot better, and how to adjust it appropriately in a RAW file in Lightroom.

    Also, advanced GIMP techniques would also be welcome, specifically those that mimic actions in Photoshop.

    Also, a good article on high-pass sharpening (GIMP or PS) would also be welcome.

  • Jordi May 6, 2011 07:24 am

    I'm a Lightroom user.

  • Christopher May 6, 2011 07:24 am

    99.5% lightroom 100% RAW

  • Mark May 6, 2011 07:19 am

    I run an ad' agency Studio and our post production revolves around acquiring (hard drive from photographer) and distributing the images (RAW to retoucher and LR JPG selects to various clients).

    Most photographers want to use CaptureOne, and I'll agree the quality at pixel level is better in CaptureOne than Adobe RAW. BUT, CaptureOne has useless meta data, and colour correction, ratings, selects and any useful information is not transferred with the RAW files back to the agency. And every production company uses Photoshop, not CaptureOne.

    So I dictate photgraphers deliver RAW files and an Lightroom catalogue. I don't care about file type as long as it can be read by Lightroom. Then I get all the colour correction, ratings, keywords and selects. I supply the DNG with embedded RAW to retouch or client or production who process how they see fit.

    In advertising, the days of photographer deciding how images should beis over. The entity who is responsbile for final output is the client, and they need to get the files they want. There is no one image, you can't over sharpen for digtial or building wrap or outdoor or print.

    Oh, the qustion was about post processing. What is high res? What is low res?

    Even my best guys talk about hgh res, but that's pointless if you scale an image up 250% in InDesign. Why are we still considering image quality in DPI when the pixel width is more relevant? And even then only when you know the size and the crop?

  • reesepieces May 6, 2011 07:18 am

    I use Photoshop. I would love to use Lightroom but I do not have it at the moment!

  • Kasim Ayyildiz May 6, 2011 07:15 am

    I am trying to learn Photoshop. I think a tool-independent post processing workflow would be very helpful as a tutorial.

  • Richard Taylor May 6, 2011 07:10 am

    Lightroom 3 for and then CS4 for final PPing.

  • iHarley May 6, 2011 07:08 am

    I've been using Aperture. And I wouldn't mind knowing what other workflows people use.

  • Flonou May 6, 2011 07:05 am

    I use photoshop only

  • Mihai May 6, 2011 06:56 am

    For me Photoshop is essential, but lightroom & his add-ons help greatly with the artistic touch :)

  • Gary May 6, 2011 06:51 am

    For several years, I have been using Lightroom and Photoshop. Lightroom is my digital asset manager but I do use it to make minor recovery, temperature and fill light adjustments to my images prior to sending them to CS5. Photoshop is the real workhorse in post production.

    High level detail masking is a area where I would like more training.

  • Job May 6, 2011 06:50 am

    I'm still learning everyday about the right use of color correction. People tend to exaggerate it.

    I use lightroom for most of the post production. (Color correction etc) But if i need to do some more advanced editing i do use Adobe Photoshop for that. (making panorama's or combining multiple photo's into one image)

  • Jack Foster Mancilla May 6, 2011 06:50 am

    Aperture first, sometime into Photoshop, then back out Aperture.

  • Shannon May 6, 2011 06:48 am

    I do my raw conversions in Lightroom 3.4, then I send the files to Photoshop CS5 for editing, then it's back to Lightroom for any cropping and export.

  • Rick K May 6, 2011 06:47 am

    I use Lightroom with NIK plugins and a Bamboo pad.

  • Rick K May 6, 2011 06:47 am

    I use Lightroom with NIK plugins and a Bamboo pad.

  • Tiago Poiares May 6, 2011 06:47 am

    I just started at photography hobby, and I'm actually looking for a platform to post processing my photos.

    Sadly I'm terrible with those tools and I really need to learn how to use it, so I'm gonna see wich one is the most used to start work with it.

    My answer is: I don't really post processing my photos.

  • Kelsey May 6, 2011 06:46 am

    I actually use a combination. I start my edits in Lightroom - adjust the exposure, sharpening, clarity, etc. Then, if I need to remove anything from the photo like dust, unwanted specks, anything like that, I'll go to Photoshop.

  • matabum, MaP blog May 6, 2011 06:42 am

    i'm 100% lightroom user...

  • Doug McKay May 6, 2011 06:40 am

    I use ACDSee for the first steps and follow with Nikon Capture NX for the more involved adjusting.. I have Nikon and Minolta cameras for my digital photos.

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