When paying fees Adobe Creative Cloud for photographers you can install Adobe Photoshop and both versions of Adobe Lightroom. And doubts arise as to which program interests us the most or which is the best. doPhotoshop or Lightroom? Let’s give our opinion.
The birth of Adobe Lightroom is due, in all likelihood, to the rise of a program that no longer exists, the famous Opening from Apple. A program that offered all the steps that can be taken in photography, from import and organization to printing, including publication on web pages.
Adobe launched Lightroom to stop the leak of photographers who just wanted to open their photos and do the Basic settings without too many complications, just like the bitten apple program did. That was the original goal, a simple program that would work for everyone.
The main difference: the catalog
I would leave Photoshop for more complex tools and Lightroom for faster adjustments. The problem is that sometimes we are not so clear. Is one or the other better? They do the same thing, but Photoshop allows you to be finer.
And then there’s the problem of Lightroom and its two confusing versions. Right now we have Lightroom Classic and Lightroom to dry. The first allows you to work with the catalog, and the second is available as a program for the computer and as a mobile application, but it cannot work with the catalog. This is the main difference between the two versions, in addition to the interface change. Since we are talking about the Photoshop comparison, we will focus on the Classic version.
The catalog is a file with an .lrcat extension, which contains a copy of all the thumbnails to avoid working with the originals. This allows you to go faster and to be able to do all kinds of research as if you were in an excel sheet. Our file becomes an image database where we can perform searches by cross-referencing all kinds of data.
And this catalog marks the big difference between Lightroom and Photoshop. Organizing our work is more agile, even if we have to know how to do it, working with Lightroom Classic than with Photoshop, which would force us to work yes or yes with Adobe BridgeAdobe’s main organizer.
The basic development of our photographs
Although there are photographers who deny digital development (out of ignorance or vital attitude), you should still get the most out of a file using editing programs. And Photoshop and Lightroom can do that perfectly. Photographers can also be differentiated by how they reveal. Some prefer to shoot in-plane and make basic adjustments. And others bet everything on the revealed. Some like to be in between and choose based on the photograph or the project.
Adobe Lightroom It is a perfect program for basic development, where you only have to adjust the overall brightness and contrast. If we want to continue the decalogue of disclosure It is a perfect program, because in a short time we solved the photo.
But if you need to do more things, like working in areas or removing elements from the image, it’s better to bet on Adobe Camera RAW and smart objects in Photoshop. This way we will have more possibilities.
It is true that Lightroom has made great strides in the latest versions to work by zones, to darken the sky and lighten the earth, for example. But for fine details Photoshop is still irreplaceable.
The possibilities offered by the two programs
Everything we can do in Lightroom modules, we can do in Adobe Photoshop. If I’m not mistaken, except the Module mapwhich allows us to geolocate our photos on Google Maps, and the Web module, which allows us to create a web page, we can do everything else with Photoshop+Bridge+Camera RAW.
Lightroom lets you do it all without leaving the program. Each module is specialized in one aspect. I always recommend to learn the Library and Development modules. These are by far the most interesting. Then we find the Book modulewhich allows you to easily layout a book without having to learn InDesign.
I think the rest of the modules are not widely used by the majority, either because they are not useful, like the Map module, or because they have become obsolete, like the Web module. In this sense, we must choose if we want (and can) do everything in Lightroom or we have no choice but to go to other options.
Adobe Lightroom is a perfect program to work from start to finish, without rushing and without too many demands. Adobe Photoshop has many more options because it is not just a photography program, it is a design software that allows us to do everything we imagine.
Lightroom is only for photographers and Photoshop allows even the most experienced designer to do anything they can imagine, simply because of the number of tools it has and for something as important as being able to work with layers.
If you don’t have much experience with computers, Lightroom will be your go-to tool. But if you’re not afraid of diapers, blend modeslayer styles, adjustment layers and everything in between, Adobe Photoshop has you covered.
Of course, you can do like many photographers. I always work with both. The photographs, I download them, organize them and classify them in Lightroom. There I give them the first development and if necessary I finish them in Photoshop, where I can adjust the lights, shadows and different areas more precisely.