If during this lockdown you found a passion for photography, you most certainly started hearing about different editing softwares, and unless you have been living under a rock, you heard the names Photoshop and Lightroom being thrown around.
Can you guess which one is better?
I have been using Photoshop for the past 6-7 years, and until about 2 years ago I was trying to steer clear from Lightroom as much as possible, maybe because i was so used to Ps already and a new editing software would have messed up my editing creative process (or maybe I was scared of it).
But now that I have been using both for a while and people keep asking which one is better, I thought I would shine some light on the subject.
The versions I will be talking about today are the Lightroom Classic and Photoshop CC versions.
First of all when it comes to Lightroom you have to keep in mind there are 2 versions out there. You have Lightroom Classic and Lightroom Cc and they both come in the same pack.
Lightroom Classic is the actual editing software that I want to focus on, as Lightrom Cc is a simpler version with less editing options that I personally never used and occasionally I happen to open by mistake.
What is Lightroom best for?
If you need a way of organising your images in folders and make them easy to find, then Lightroom will help out. You have options to categorise your photos, pick your favourites and have them all in separate collections ready for editing.
With this one you can easily adjust most of the settings of a picture, from brightness, contrast, saturation to colour tones and sharpening. You can also make local adjustments using the brush option that has been introduced fairly recently as well as a spot removal tool.
Most people would think that Lightroom is not powerful enough to edit a picture from start to finish (and I have to admit I was in that category too), but after you get familiar with the settings and have a good play you’ll realise that you might not even need the use of Photoshop.
Another great advantage is that editing your images through Lightroom is non-destructive for your photos. That means you’ll always have access to the original file anytime you wish.
One of the great perks of using Lightrrom is that it does make your life really easy when it comes to editing a batch of images or adjusting the same setting to a number of files as you can easily do that in one click for all of them.
Exporting the files is also made easier with built-in settings for different purposes but you can also create your own ( for example for the intagram files you could have a different setting than from your website).
For me Lightroom gets a bit thumbs up!
Why do we need Photoshop then?
My love for Photoshop started a while back, when as a beginner photographer I thought relying on a software to make your images pop is all it takes to be a good photographer.
It took me a while to realise that a software can’t make a perfect image, but can only improve it slightly, but by then I learned most of the tricks available.
Loved changing the hair colour, removing backgrounds, adding things, making the skin look like a doll and so on. And those are some of the things that Ps excels at.
While let’s say in Lightroom you adjust the overall look of the image or correct the settings you might have missed in camera, in Photoshop you can go crazy with your editing.
Apart from the Photography side of things, Ps is also designed to deal with Graphics and Web design, 3D, Motion and even Painting.
One downside of Ps is that, if not used well it can be quite destructive for your images. Meaning that in the editing process your changes are permanent and you’ll never be able to return to the original file.
So should you bother with both?
Even though I have been using Lightroom more often than Ps recently, I still prefer to have the option of both, especially if you look at the available plans.
As you can see for the price of Lightroom you can get ps as well but with less cloud storage – that to me is a great deal especially since nowadays we all keep our files on external hard-drives or we already have some form of cloud storage option for saving and storing our files.
You can also purchase a year plan that will offer you access to the 2 softwares
A year ago I would have said that I prefer Ps over Lightroom, but gosh how times have changed. I tend to use Lightroom more now and sometimes don’t even need the need to open an image in Photoshop. Don’t choose one over the other because what people are saying. You can get a trial for both, test them out and make a decision after.
Let me know if you have any questions and I’d happily help you out.
Keep on shooting!