May 19, 2024

My fellow Lightroom Help Moderator Laura Shoe was kind enough to give me a copy of her Lightroom Fundamentals DVD to peruse. It’s a detailed and comprehensive look at how to use Lightroom, as well as external things like file management and Catalogs.

The 37 sections are nearly 7 hours long in total, and begin with tips on managing your catalog, how to organise your files, before getting into importing your images. I find that most instructors have different ways of doing things, and for different reasons. Laura does manage her files differently to me, but her reasons are quite valid and well explained-and that’s the important bit. There’s no ‘my way or the highway’ here, it’s just good practical advice. Especially important is the background information videos on how Lightroom works and on image organisation and backup. This is a must for beginning Lightroom users to understand what’s going on outside the program itself, and for keeping your stuff safe.

The next 11 videos cover the Library. This is a dry topic, but Laura’s relaxed style helps bring you through it easily. As well as showing the tools, we get examples of them in operation-perfect for the visual learner. Key topics like Keywording, searching for files, file management and image selection are covered in detail.

The bulk of the remaining videos are dedicated to the Develop Module, covering all the available tools in practical use. Once the right panel tools are done, we’re over to the left to discuss Presets, Snapshots, and their cousins, Virtual Copies. Also covered is getting settings from one image to others in the many guises that Lightroom offers.

The final few videos wrap up other specific topics, like Export, Publish Services, Watermarking and Edit in Photoshop. Again Laura shows loads of examples of how this works. For instance Publish Services includes publishing to Flickr, Facebook and your hard drive.

The material here has been covered in a well paced, conversational style. There’s no rush and everything is spelled out well. Each movie is self contained and long enough to be comprehensive, while being short enough to keep your interest. The DVD doesn’t cover the output Modules, but it very definitely covers the fundamentals and more.

The DVD can be got as either an actual DVD, or as a download from Laura’s website. It’s $56.95 as a DVD, or $49.95 as a download, but I see that there’s a 10% offer with the code SAVE10 currently.

If you’re more a visual learner than a book reader, this series will get you familiar with Ligthroom, helping improve your workflow and final output.

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