Saturday, November 17, 2012

Some Learning Resources For Adobe Lightroom 4

In spite of knowing for the last year that I had to find a new way to organize my thousands of photographs and digital edits, it is only recently that I decided to give Adobe Lightroom 4 a try.  I first downloaded the free 30 day trial of Lightroom 4 and have now purchased it.

If you are interested in the Adobe option to "Try" Lightroom 4 free for for 30 days, check it out by clicking HERE.

It's one thing to acquire Lightroom 4 - it's another to learn it.  I have immersed myself in trying to learn it for the past few weeks.

Thought I would share a bit of the research I have done around learning how to best use LR4.  The sites I have discovered and share here do not by any stretch of the imagination represent a comprehensive overview.  (At some point you have to stop researching/investigating and really get down to learning!!) I have no personal or professional interest or connection to any of the training links I mention, I am simply sharing my research and my personal experiences with the training.

When I decided to purchase Adobe Lightroom 4, I reflexively decided to pay to take a popular on-line course.   Despite persisting with that course my sense of dissatisfaction with it grew and  prompted me to search out other resources to learn the ins-and- outs of the LR4 program. I wish I had done my research first.  When will I finally learn to look before I leap?!  :)

 If you are thinking of purchasing LR4, or already have it and want to learn better how to use it, here some good resources that I have found - so far.  The great news is that one of the most professional options that I found is, of course, from Adobe itself and it is FREE!

Let me share what I have learned from my research and the links to a few of the sites:   -   The best learning resource that I have found is from Adobe itself - hosted mainly by the digital guru (she calls herself a digital evangelist!) Julieanne Kost.  The videos are visually pristine and clear. Julieanne is precise, organized, adept and obviously knows LR4 intimately. The good news is that all the tutorials she offers at this Adobe link are free.  Highly recommended.   -   At this link Adobe provides its Lightroom 4 users with links to its own Adobe training resources and even to third party training resources.  Many of the third party resources charge for their tutorials (and rightly so) but also offer free mini training videos so that you can get a glimpse of exactly what they offer and their training/teaching style.   -   After my dissatisfaction with the course I was in, I discovered George Jardine at the link at the beginning of this paragraph and purchased the first module of his comprehensive course on LR4.  Yes, he breaks up his course into separate modules so that you can purchase only the modules ($24.95 each) you want.  George is SO clear (as are his videos - visually), thorough, precise, professional and knows Lightroom 4 like the back of his hand.  As well as learning LR4, you are getting a mini-course from George in digital asset management.  Highly Recommended.   -   Laura Shoe has a blog recommended by Adobe as a good training site for LR4.  She offers webinars, tips and tutorials - some free, some for purchase.   Worth checking out as an on-going resource for LR4 users.  I am still new to this site - so we will have to discover and evaluate it together.  -   Kim Klassen's Round Trip (LR4) course has a lot of content and Kim's enthusiasm for LR4 is infectious.  The course offers many excellent written tips to support the video material.  This Round Trip course will cost you $89. Unfortunately, the videos were sometimes a bit frenetic and occasionally confusing.  Round Trip did not quite measure up to the other courses I 'attended', in terms of its preparation and presentation.    Somewhat disappointing.   -   I have not taken any of Erin's from Texas Chicks Blog and Pics courses, but have benefited from free written tutorials on her blog  -  so thought I would let you know that she is now offering a LR4 live course (webinar) ($80 for two modules - $50 each if purchased separately).   I cannot evaluate it or recommend it since I have not taken it.   -    I like the free training videos offered on Phil Steele's site.  He gives short example videos of what you will get if you purchase his course and they seem very professional.  One big proviso - his current course on Lightroom seems to be about Version 3 and not LR4.  Perhaps a LR4 course is in the works.

I just purchased these two books from Amazon to have as desk references as I get used to working in a new way with my photographs in Lightroom 4.   Can't really review them yet, but from the research I did online they seem like they should be good bets.

The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4 Book for Digital Photographers by Scott Kelby

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4:  The Missing FAQ by Victoria Bampton

So if you are about to embark on an Adobe Lightroom 4 adventure, you now have a few places you can check out in terms of how to learn it!

Are you thinking of purchasing LR4?
Are you already using LR4?
Do you have any learning resources that you would like to direct us to?

Any LR4 tips you would like to share?


  1. Bonnie thank you so much for sharing this information and links.My husband got me lightroom LAST CHRISTMAS! and after a few feeble attempts to work with it... gave up and continued with elements 10. I really want to learn this, but every day seems filled up with something... You are inspiring me to give it a try. Do you find it a program to use independently, or in conjunction with Photoshop. Am on my way out the door right now, but will give your post the attention it deserves as soon as i get home, and bookmark this. hugs from Texas, and more later!

  2. Since I don't even know what the purpose of Lightroom is, I guess I'd have to do that research first. lol Another thing to add to my list. Thanks so much for sharing all your research :).
    Stay inspired!

  3. Hi Bonnie: Good topic. I have recently started using Lightroom 4 also. I have purchased Scott Kelby's book and he is thorough with the components of all the categories. I have watched his webinars and I just find him fascinating but he has used these programs for years. I also love Julianne Kost as she is so knowledgeable. I also watch any good tutorial on Youtube that shows me how someone edits their photos just to get pointers. I took Kim Klassens's class on Lightroom also. I love her enthusiasm and her photos but she desaturated all her photos and I like contrast and colour in mine. Where Scott Kelby makes an awesome photo using very few sliders to watching Kim practically use every one. I got lost a lot. I am taking a workshop with my camera club next Saturday. I hope I come away feeling more confident with my edits and not more confused. Valerie

  4. What valuable information, Bonnie - thank you! Like Jeanne, I also got Lightroom for Christmas last year and attempted to take an online course. I just didn't seem able to grasp it and am still feeling very confused. I will definitely check out some of your links because I'd really like to figure it out eventually.

  5. Bonnie, thanks so much for this post -- it's perfect timing. I'm taking a LR class online now and I'm feeling really frustrated. I didn't even think about Adobe having all the information. I'm thrilled to find some info that I really need to move ahead with the online class.

  6. I have had LR4 for a month now and try to spend some time each day learning it. It is a struggle for me. I am currently taking an on-line course and have a book for desk reference, and I check out Adobe TV but still so many unanswered questions. I keep trying. Now I'm wondering why I even need LR.

  7. Thanks for this Bonnie. I desperately needed to organise my photos so that I can find them! It's Ok keeping them in folders when you only have a few hundred but now they run into 4 figures it is a night mare.. I am using Aperture given to me by my son. He tells me it is the 'same kind of thing' I am I am happy to use photshop for editing and have decided not to bother with aperture for that (too much new stuff for me at the moment) I am slowly going through my folders adding keywords...I think it might be a lifetimes work!!! Thanks so much for sharing your learning


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