Thursday, May 31, 2007
Lightroom Lights Up
After a lengthy public beta and considerable time and thought in development, Adobe Lightroom arrives. Will the application become your ultimate workflow tool?
The Library Module
If there's one thing photographers do, it's look at images, often a lot of images (they tend to shoot a lot now that “pixels are free”). Lightroom offers a wide variety of ways to look at, organize and manage images—Lightroom's primary function is as an organizer.
From the main view of the Library, you can easily select multiple images and move them into what Lightroom calls the “survey mode.” If your computer display is large enough, you can look at plenty of images. You can rank, label, sort and otherwise evaluate images for selection editing.
In the two-up compare mode, you can even zoom in with locked zoom and pan to help select images and check for sharpness. In fact, you can zoom in up to 11:1—an engineer's joke, loosely referring to This Is Spinal Tap, the movie's reference to the volume going up to 11. Eleven isn't all that useful, but it's there if you need it. I tend to look at images at 1:1, 1:2 and 1:4 for gauging how they will print. You can toggle between two preset display modes: Fit or Fill and 1:1 or a custom zoom. You also can zoom via the keyboard using Command (Control for Windows) + and -.
Preferences under the View menu allow the user to select his or her specific views while in Library and Loupe modes. The user can choose from a long list of what info will be displayed and how it will be displayed. At the bottom of the Library is the Toolbar that provides further viewing, sorting and filtering options.
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