6 things to do before you open Lightroom and edit

I'm not always a routine person — and totally admire those of you who are — but when it comes to editing in Lightroom, an editing routine is a must. Sure, creating a fun atmosphere with good music, ice water (man cannot live on coffee alone — ha!) and diffusing an oil like orange or lemon will set you up for your editing session. But what technical things do you need to build into your editing routine?

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Do these 6 things before you start editing in Lightroom

Step 1: Disable Flux

I have flux installed on every device — including my work computers. I try not to work after hours, but sometimes things come up as a small business owner. There are launches, glitches, and sometimes you get sick and have to make up the time somewhere.

Some encouragement: No shame if you have to put in some late hours. My main piece of advice for working late? Just remember that your business doesn't own you. You own your business and that means that working late is something we choose, not something we are obligated to do.


Back to flux... it's set up to automatically take out all the blue on my screens when the sun goes down and put them back at sunrise. It's helped with sleep when I do have to put in the late hours, but you can't use it while you're editing.

Since it's taking out all the blue, it effects the appearance of the image. Thankfully, your edit will be just off enough that you'll notice something strange is happening. Turn flux off when you're editing so you don't have to go back through and re-edit everything the next day.

 
Before & After
 
 

Light & Airy Photo Recipe

I love walking through a greenhouse in the middle of my work day to get inspired. I like to photograph the succulents, herbs, hanging plants and anything that sparks creativity.

A tip for photographing at a greenhouse: look for leading lines that direct your eye toward the object you're shooting. These lines can be in focus or out of focus.

Ingredients

There's just one! Grab the  Light & Airy Preset Suite so you can #rockyouredits!

Directions

For this image, I worked with the mix and match presets from the 10 second editing system inside the L&A preset suite...

Light & Airy Pro
Fuji Film
Restore Whites
Medium Contrast
Warm Skin Tones
Green Saturation

Just click those presets and you're good to go! The presets are designed so that you can stack them on top of each other and create your own look!

 

Step 2: Turn up the brightness

All the way. Turn up the brightness on your computer all the way so that you can see exactly what's happening in your edit  — light and color. I don't have experience doing this on a PC, so it may look a little different on a PC. But on every mac, you'll want to push the brightness all the way up. This will save you from dull skin tones and "grey" light.

Step 3: Open your color profile

I open this thing every time before I edit. It helps me stay on track with my edit and make sure that I'm hitting my target coloring, skin tones, and brightness with each edit. 



Step 4: Backup your session on an external hard drive

Let me just be totally candid... backing up images is the worst. It's a technical admin thing that is no fun and it feels like a waste of time when you've got gorgeous images ready to be edited! It's not a waste of time though and deep down you and I both know that. So backup those images before you ever edit them to make sure they are sitting safely on a separate storage system.

 
Before & After
 
 

Light and airy photo recipe

Grab one of your biz besties and set up a shoot at a place you always shoot. Challenge yourself to see the light and scenery in a new way. Need a clean shot of a bouquet? Have your client hold it against their white shirt. Images like this look great on websites and social media.

Ingredients

There's just one! Grab the  Light & Airy Preset Suite so you can #rockyouredits!

Directions

Import your photo into Lightroom and apply the Fuji Classic preset for an image with soft tones and a soft finish. Want to make your digital image look like film? This preset does just that.

Ready for 10 second edits? Get the L&A Preset Suite.

 

Step 5: Remove old files from your computer

You remember when you first got your computer and it ran lightening fast? A huge reason why is that it didn't have all the programs and files that are currently sitting pretty on the computer's hard drive.

I'm the queen of slow computers because I hate deleting files from my comptuer. Haha! I mean... what if I need that file for something? Here's my plan: have an external hard drive for different years and different parts of my business. When I was shooting weddings, I had a hard drive for each wedding year! It kept me organized and I just need to implement that system now.

Steal my system and get a hard drive for each year. Get those files off the computer so it can ran a little faster while you're editing.

Step 6: Create a new catalog

When you open lightroom, go to the top and select File -> New Catalog. Give your new catalog a name and store it in the same event folder you'll be working with. This will make it easier to find and creating a new catalog will make Lightroom run a bit faster! 


 
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Name your board "Light & Airy Editing Tips" so we can find your faves!