Lightroom Guy Blog

How to Fix Color Cast in Lightroom Classic

By D.A. Wagner | February 19, 2020 |

Is There a Color Cast in Your Raw Capture?

It’s been nearly four years since our last posting on how to correct a color cast. And, although correcting color cast in Lightroom hasn’t changed much over the years, Adobe has done significant, “under the hood” improvements with machine learning. So, it’s time for a refresh and we’re adding our free PDF download, “How to Fix a Color Cast” for reference.

Photo with color cast that requires white balance correction
Get the download link for this practice raw file from our PDF
Lightroom Sliders to Correct a Color Cast
White Balance Sliders + Eyedropper in Develop Module, Basic Panel

For many users, color temperature may not be a familiar measurement. The Temp and Tint sliders are frequently the first place we go in an effort to fix a color cast. But, it’s a bit like trying to drive a standard transmission when we’ve only driven an automatic.

Lightroom Eyedropper to Correct a Color Cast
Use this to fix color cast

The good news is, there is an automatic white balance feature in Lightroom: the Eyedropper. AKA the White Balance Selector, helps us to correct a color cast. The free PDF download will tell you exactly how to use it and when.

Also included in the PDF is a link to our Color Temperature chart to help clarify what the numbers in the Temp slider mean when you are trying to fix a color cast.

Color Temperature Chart to understand White Balance

Lightroom Classic Version 9.2 Released

By D.A. Wagner | February 12, 2020 |

Along with updates to Lightroom Desktop, Android, iOS versions, Lightroom Classic 9.2 released yesterday Here are the takeaways of note for Classic:

Lightroom 9.2 Bug Fixes

There are nearly 60 new bug fixes in this release. One bug fix that we’ve been waiting for is the “No photos found” displayed in the import dialog when connected to an iPhone. Done! Also, there have been considerable bug fixes for Macs on Catalina. So far, we have been warning users to NOT update. Now, we are expecting to give a go-ahead on updating to 10.15 very soon … Watch our blog for updates!

Camera and Lens Support

In addition to New Camera support for Canon, Leica, LG, Nikon, PhaseOne (yes, PhaseOne!) and relative newcomer, OnePlus smartphones. Lightroom has new lens correction support for nearly 50 lenses, including 15 of the new Sigma lenses.

Features and Enhancements

  • Support for Photoshop Elements 2020
  • Added a “Done” button in the Export dialog to remember changes
  • Added, a “Cancel” button in the Export dialog to forget changes made in the Export dialog

And, these are enhancements we’ve been waiting for!

9.2’s Develop Module’s Auto Sync button highlights when it’s turned on. Now, it’s way more visible than the old Auto Sync button, which we’d forget to turn it off and accidentally continue to sync develop settings.

Auto Sync button now highlights when active in Lightroom 9.2 release
Auto Sync button now highlights when active

Another added bonus in Lightroom Classic 9.2 is an Auto Sync is a banner notification. Once we’ve Auto Synced, Lightroom flashes a banner letting us know how many photos we’ve adjusted. Previous versions had no banner notification which also contributed to accidental syncing. Other adjustments will also show a banner, like Flip and Rotate. Nice job, Adobe!

A close up of a sign

Description automatically generated
A banner now appears after syncing Develop settings
Lightroom Classic 9.2 now sees Photoshop PSB icon
Courtesy of Adobe, Inc.

Lightroom now recognizes Photoshop large document PSB format files (Photoshop files over 2GB). For those of us working in Photoshop with multiple layers, this is has been long awaited (11 years!).

Lightroom 9.2 Default Develop Settings now called Raw Defaults

Lightroom classic 9.2 released, Camera Raw Defaults icon
Photo Courtesy of Adobe, Inc.

Raw Default is found in the Presets Tab of Lightroom Preferences. In the pulldown menu, Adobe Default will apply an Adobe standard profile. When checked, “Use defaults specific to camera model,” and Camera Settings is selected from the pulldown, Lightroom will attempt to use whatever in-camera settings you have selected for your camera raw captures. Or, choose any of your Develop presets. Note: Any previous default settings will not be imported over to the updated Lightroom 9.2 release.

You can also customize the Raw Defaults by choosing a specific camera and develop preset (including user created presets) and save the Default and automatically apply it later to selected photos. Look for an upcoming blog post on how to use this improved feature.

Customize Your Camera Raw Settings

Other Enhancements

Lightroom Classic 9.2 other enhancements icon
Photo Courtesy of Adobe, Inc.

These are the notable items in this Lightroom Classic 9.2 release we know our readers will like. You’ll find more about Classic 9.2 here. For more details about Android, iOS and Lightroom Desktop (formerly Lightroom CC) updates, go to the Adobe site for those details.

Should You Back Up Your Lightroom Catalog?

By David Mark Erickson | February 6, 2020 |

Best practices for finally taking care of that annoying pop up!

Ever find yourself in this situation?
You go to quit Lightroom and this pops up … Do you want to back up your catalog?

Lightroom Back Up Catalog popup dialog
Do I want to back up my Lightroom Catalog? Um, yeah … I think so???

Let’s demystify what that pop up message really means and understand the best practice to back up your Lightroom catalog.

First, this blog post applies only to Lightroom Classic because the other version of Lightroom (aka Lightroom Cloud, aka Lightroom Desktop) automatically stores all your photos on Adobe’s cloud servers.

Contents of the default installation folder for Lightroom
Contents of the Lightroom Catalog Folder

Second, at its heart, Lightroom is a database. This helps us understand that any time you complete this backup, it is a snapshot of your catalog’s database file at that moment. If your database gets corrupted and you have a backup, you can use the backup, which contains all your edits and organization of your photos.

The backup will be of the .lrcat file. This is the file that holds all the metadata information about your photos: where they are stored, the date/time the photo was taken, keywords, develop settings and much, much more. Your photos are only linked to the lrcat and stored independently. So, they are NOT backed up when you back up the catalog. 

Your photos remain in their original location on your hard drive and backing them up is a different process. See our blog post about backing up using the industry standard 3-2-1 Backup Strategy.

What’s In A Lightroom Backup?

Let’s look at the “Backups” folder, usually located in the same folder as your Lightroom catalog. When we peer in, we see subfolders, named in reverse date [YYYY-MM-DD] and a timestamp, indicating when the backup was done. Inside, there is a compressed .lrcat file that is a cloned copy of your Lightroom catalog file. 

Listing of the contents of the Lightroom backup folder
Contents of the Lightroom backup folder

Lightroom keeps only this file, as all of the other files it uses (helper, previews, etc.) aren’t critical. The idea here is you can move the backup to right where its predecessor is located. Lightroom will recreate any other helper and preview files as needed. If all else was functioning normally, then you would be able to pick up where you left off, from that point in time when the backup was made.

Personally, we’ve never experienced a corrupted catalog [knock on wood]. However, I have used catalog backups when working with clients to help them recover or correct other problems. Hence, we do recommend that all Classic users back up your Lightroom catalog, following the best practices outlined below.

Best practices for Backing Up:

  • Set Lightroom to back up, “Every time Lightroom Exits.”
    • You can set this under the Catalog Settings OR whenever you see the backup dialog box. 
Lightroom preference settings
Lightroom Catalog Settings for Back Up
  • When you get the pop up, think to yourself:
    Have I done significant work that it would be bad if I lost those changes?
    • If you haven’t done significant work during your session, then go ahead and skip the backup at this time.
    • If you have done significant work, then, by all means, click the blue “Back up” button.
Lightroom Back Up Catalog popup dialog
Lightroom Catalog Back Up Pop-up
  • In the Back Up Catalog options window, be sure to check the boxes to “Test integrity” and “Optimize catalog” before backing up.
    • It’s a good idea to let Lightroom check itself internally.
    • This also assures that the catalog you are backing up is not compromised.
  • As you back up your Lightroom catalog over time you will notice that these files will accumulate. And, it is safe to delete the older versions. Since your catalog changes over time it is unlikely very old backups will be useful. We suggest keeping a few month’s worth, no more.
    • However, if disk space allows and if you are someone who likes to hold onto things, then you can keep them.
    • You can also save disk space by offloading the backups to an external drive.
  • Finally, follow the recommended 3-2-1 Backup strategy to back up your computer AND your photos:
    • 3 copies, 2 local and 1 offsite.
    • For the offsite backup, we recommend Backblaze as the best cloud backup service for most individual users.

If you have any questions about this, feel free to leave a comment below OR reach out to us. We’re always happy to help!

P.S. If you have ever wondered about the difference between “back up” and backup,” here is a great explanatory article! Backup or Back up – What’s the Difference?

Catalina 15.2 Still Isn’t Ready

By Lightroom Guy | January 28, 2020 |

Where should we start, when we say, Catalina 15.2 still isn’t ready for prime time?

MacOS Catalina was released back in October 2019. Apple has released two updates since then (as expected). However, as more users migrate we are finding out more problems with how Catalina impacts digital photography users. You’d think we’d be finding fewer problems with each release but, we’re not … Catalina 15.2 still isn’t ready!

When we wrote about Catalina and Lightroom last October, one major issue was Nikon users not being able to tether in Catalina. In our December review of Adobe and Catalina, nothing had changed. Just a few days ago, Adobe added Canon tethering to the list of Lightroom-Catalina compatibility issues. That would represent a massive user base of photographers who can’t use Lightroom with Catalina! So Lightroom problems have grown as new macOS versions release.

And, this warning still hasn’t changed: “Adobe strongly recommends that customers do their own testing on a non-production partition to ensure that new operating systems work with their current hardware and drivers (printing, and so forth).” That’s technical jargon for: don’t use Lightroom on Catalina if you absolutely depend on Lightroom!

We note that Adobe also warns: “…older versions of Lightroom Classic were neither designed nor tested to work on macOS Catalina. They are not supported in any way for use on macOS Catalina.” This is pretty strong stuff so our assessment still stands: do not upgrade at this time!

Other Catalina 15.2 issues we’ve read this week are:

If you’re tired of constantly seeing, “update to macOS Catalina” reminders popping up, you can turn them off! Read our recent how-to blog post on that. As well, we will show you how to check for other important updates if you are running Mojave. 

We expect that, eventually, Apple (as well as Adobe, Microsoft and many other companies) will get there. But for now, Catalina 15.2 still isn’t ready. We’re going to wait and see what happens with the next upgrade of Catalina 15.3.

Create a 2020 Copyright Preset for Lightroom

By D.A. Wagner | January 22, 2020 |
Copyright Preset - illustration of copied lightbulbs
©2020 D.A.Wagner

As we’ve done every year for quite a while, we’re encouraging our readers to create a 2020 copyright preset for Lightroom. It’s easy! This year, direct download our free PDF copyright preset tutorial! It’s a clear, easy to follow set of step-by-step instructions for creating a 2020 copyright preset for Lightroom that you can use every year to update your settings.

Why Should You Create a 2020 Copyright Preset for Lightroom?

Before I tell you why, let’s look at what copyright is. Simply, copyright law gives the creator or owner of a creative work (photo, painting, text, even this blog post) the right to say how others can use it. Using that creative work without express permission, usually in writing, is infringement on your rights as the creator or owner.

Copyright laws have changed over the centuries, often to reflect changes in technology – like the invention of movable type and up to and including the internet.

A Little Copyright Background for Your Next Trivia Night

Copyright Preset - example of illuminated manuscript, the Book of Kells
Example of illuminated manuscript from the Book of Kells

The first tested case of copyright infringement happened around 550 AD, in ancient Ireland. There was a dispute over the ownership of a psalms manuscript between a priest and a missionary. The priest accused the missionary of copying his manuscript, “at night in haste.” (At that time hand copying artwork could take months. So the concept of “in haste” is all relative to our current sense of time.)

The priest’s hard work had been copied without his permission! The king decided to resolve this conflict and determined, “To every cow belongs her calf, therefore to every book belongs its copy.” This ruling didn’t sit well with the missionary and the Battle of Cúl Dreimhne (also known as the Battle of the Book) ensued. The missionary lost and three thousand people died, so he sailed off to Britain to be a pilgrim.

We Have Copyright Laws to Protect Us

No longer do we need kings or have to fight wars to protect our work. We have laws like the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) and the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act (yes, that Sonny Bono from Sonny and Cher) to help protect us.

Brochure link to Copyright Law of the United States - Copyright Preset
U.S.Copyright Download
Law Brochure

Whether it’s friends and family or submitted images to contests and publishers, you don’t need to be a professional to consider embedding a copyright. Take advantage of these protections to their fullest. Use a copyright preset in Lightroom on import to identify you as the creator/owner of your digital images to outside third parties. This embedded copyright information does not appear on your images, it’s hidden inside a metadata “container.”

Click here to direct download Lightroom Guy’s easy, step-by-step PDF guide to creating a 2020 copyright preset.

All the best for 2020 from the Lightroom Guys!

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