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FORUMS Post Processing, Marketing & Presenting Photos RAW, Post Processing & Printing 
Thread started 11 Jan 2016 (Monday) 10:10
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Where to get started??

 
marsh9077
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Jan 11, 2016 10:10 |  #1

Hey,

I was wondering how/where most of you guys learned how to use Photoshop, lightroom, gimp, etc. I am very new to this and would like know what is the easiest way to get started? I have looked at my local community college however they do not offer night classes that work with my regular M-F day job.

Thanks.




  
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gjl711
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Jan 11, 2016 10:20 |  #2

Open an image and dive right in. Experiment and play around. That gets you started. Once you start developing questions like "I wonder how to do this", then turn to Google. There are thousands of tutorials out there showing you how to do just about anything imaginable. Or you can Google "photoshop getting started" and go from there. Here (external link) is one with 12 getting started tutorials.


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gjl711
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Jan 11, 2016 10:30 |  #3

This (external link) is a good one as well. ANd tons of stuff here (external link).


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bpalermini
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Jan 11, 2016 10:35 |  #4

Early in my time with Lightroom I watched a class by Jared Platt on creativelive.com. Creative Live has classed in Lightroom and Photoshop (I'm not sure about Gimp) that are normally very good. I believe that Platt has done an updated class from the one I took on version 4. In that one he went through his workflow an of course spent a lot of time on actually working on a photo.


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Jan 11, 2016 11:32 |  #5

I started by buying a book that covered a lot of the basics. When I wanted to do something more advanced I searched youtube. My free online favorite resources are the PHLearn tutorials. I've found them way more accessible than any other videos. Even with some of what I (a beginner) would consider more advanced techniques are explained in a way that allows me to duplicate the effects.


Constructive criticism is always appreciated.

  
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kirkt
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Jan 11, 2016 11:38 |  #6

Take a look at overview type books and materials authored by Martin Evening. I have not read his work in a while, but for every version of Photoshop, he published a book called Photoshop for Photographers. The books covered raw conversion and basic image editing skills using Photoshop tools in a cohesive manner that progressively builds upon the knowledge shared in the previous chapters. His books offer a good balance between a general description of "workflow" and specific explanations of individual tools and techniques.

You can start playing around with software, but the the tools in various applications are usually fairly similar for most of the "Standard" operations in image editing. The harder part at the beginning of the learning curve is taking an image file and inspecting it, thinking about what you want to do with it and then developing a strategy, based on image editing tools, to make the image. This process is application agnostic.

have fun!

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werds
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Jan 11, 2016 11:42 |  #7

I started with jpegs and and wait for it.... Microsoft Photo Gallery! http://windows.microso​ft.com …o-gallery-edit-photos-faq (external link)

After getting comfortable with some very basic stuff and pretty much actually understanding what I liked and didn't like about the software... as well as getting a general grasp of touching what means what and does what I moved over to lightroom. I started here because it was free and the interface was dead simple to use.

After that I moved over to lightroom and although it was more complex I was able to latch on to the things I had learned from using Photo Gallery and poke around in the develop module of lightroom... anything else I wanted to learn or add after that was just slowly built on top of that through either messing around with it or through youtubes from google searches after seeing an article online or pictures on these forums and trying to learn it a little at a time....

And it is still a work in progress as just last year I made the jump to working with just the RAW files (and I am much happier for it!)


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gonzogolf
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Jan 11, 2016 11:44 |  #8

Kelby Photoshop for photographers(whicheve​r version for the software you have) is a good task based book. By learning how to do specific things, portrait edits, clean up, contrast adjustment etc. you also learn the skills to branch out from there.




  
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marsh9077
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Jan 11, 2016 12:18 |  #9

Thanks for all the input guys! Would you recommend going out and spending the money on Photoshop and just going for it or should I spend some time with cheaper or free programs first? If so any recommendations of programs?




  
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BigAl007
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Jan 11, 2016 12:44 |  #10

marsh9077 wrote in post #17853887 (external link)
Thanks for all the input guys! Would you recommend going out and spending the money on Photoshop and just going for it or should I spend some time with cheaper or free programs first? If so any recommendations of programs?

I'd probably just go straight in with PS if that is where you think you will end up, and can afford it. The great thing with going directly to PS is that as it is such a universal program probably 90% of all of the information out there on editing is based on the program.

Although other applications will also do very much of what PS does, the details of how they operate are different with different names for tools in many cases. This means that very often if you are using something other than PS you have to be able to convert the workflow from PS to whatever it is you are using.

Full PS is a huge program with very many different ways of doing the same thing. Don't worry about that though, as you can just use the basic tools to start with, then as you get more proficient you can start to use more of the tools.

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werds
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Jan 11, 2016 13:03 |  #11

marsh9077 wrote in post #17853887 (external link)
Thanks for all the input guys! Would you recommend going out and spending the money on Photoshop and just going for it or should I spend some time with cheaper or free programs first? If so any recommendations of programs?

I say it depends on what you are doing this for? Lightroom vs Photoshop are different tools for different purposes although they share things in common.

Is this for pay, hobby, etc? What kind of results are you looking to get at currently?


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gjl711
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Jan 11, 2016 13:07 |  #12

marsh9077 wrote in post #17853887 (external link)
Thanks for all the input guys! Would you recommend going out and spending the money on Photoshop and just going for it or should I spend some time with cheaper or free programs first? If so any recommendations of programs?

Go for PS Elements first. Less expensive than finding a copy of PS6 or signing you first born away with Photoshop CC. Actually, as you are not invested in anything at the moment, might look at some of the other programs that do not require monthly subscriptions first.

Also, Photoshop and those types of programs are really designed to do pixel level manipulation, adding/combining different images, removing elements in a photo, complex changes requiring different layers and such. If you are looking to do things like photo adjustments, things like brightness, contrast, color, saturation, and a slew of other parameters but all within the same image, you might look at some of the other programs like Capture-1 Pro or Lightroom. They allow for a lot of manipulation but stop short of a true photo editing package.


Not sure why, but call me JJ.
I used to hate math but then I realised decimals have a point.
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marsh9077
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Jan 11, 2016 13:28 |  #13

I am just a regular average "Joe" that likes to take pictures for fun so this not for pay. I am not looking to do anything super fancy more just clean up work, HDR, panoramics, etc. Main reason I got into photography is because I am always taking trips to all kinds of neat places all over the world so I wanted a way to document them. For the past several years all I do is take jpeg pictures and delete the ones I think look bad and save/print the ones I think look good. I have always been jealous of all the neat things people can do to there photos so now I am looking for a starting point. But to be honest I am a little intimidated by PS, keep in mind I am not supper great on the computer, I can run Word, Excel, Power Point and some limited AutoCAD and Solid Works but that's about it.




  
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gjl711
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Jan 11, 2016 13:35 |  #14

marsh9077 wrote in post #17854012 (external link)
I am just a regular average "Joe" that likes to take pictures for fun so this not for pay. I am not looking to do anything super fancy more just clean up work, HDR, panoramics, etc. Main reason I got into photography is because I am always taking trips to all kinds of neat places all over the world so I wanted a way to document them. For the past several years all I do is take jpeg pictures and delete the ones I think look bad and save/print the ones I think look good. I have always been jealous of all the neat things people can do to there photos so now I am looking for a starting point. But to be honest I am a little intimidated by PS, keep in mind I am not supper great on the computer, I can run Word, Excel, Power Point and some limited AutoCAD and Solid Works but that's about it.

PS-Elements (get the latest version) Most of the power of it's big brother and a fraction of the cost, though if you really want to do HDR, Elements does not support it but Photomerge does and dose a better job than PS.


Not sure why, but call me JJ.
I used to hate math but then I realised decimals have a point.
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marsh9077
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Jan 11, 2016 22:22 as a reply to  @ gjl711's post |  #15

Thanks for the info. PS elements sounds like a good start for me.




  
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