When Adobe made Lightroom, they forgot to include the manual…or even any comprehensive offline help. However, they do publish an ‘official training workbook’, that is available as an optional extra. This does kind of beg the question, why can’t they just include its content in the Lightroom help menu, as doing so would offer a far better user experience. Whatever the answer, if you are serious about making Lightroom your photo editing and management software of choice, you’re going to need some help, because whilst, prima facie, it’s easy to used, like an iceberg, much of it’s might is buried, so this book comes highly recommended.
Kicking off with ‘a quick tour’, that provides a clear and easily digestible overview of what Lightroom is, it then introduces its workspace in a similar vein. The book is laid out in the order in which one would logically use Lightroom, so chapter 3 teaches you how to import images and apply metadata, whilst chapter 4 is devoted to managing the images you have just imported (reviewing, rating, etc.).
The exception to this workflow style layout comes in the shape of chapter 5, which deals with organising and selecting folders, as it contains content which crosses over with earlier chapters and so might be best placed elsewhere.
Next up is the ‘Developing and Editing’ Chapter, which, unsurprisingly , is the longest one. This is followed by chapters on creating slideshows, printing images and publishing them on the web. This is all rounded out with a closing chapter concerned with exporting and backing up and a bundled CD that includes the images used in its tutorials and other resources.
The book is well written, well constructed, easy to understand and choc full of high quality colour illustrations and screen shots (of which there is at least one and often several on almost every page). If there’s a criticism, it’s that it doesn’t always delve deep enough into the slightly more esoteric aspects of Lightroom. Nevertheless, it contains more than enough for the majority of Lightroom users and comes as highly recommended.
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