As the rain continues to fall in Ulefoss, Norway where we are summering, and the children brave the cold water in spite of the wettest summer on record–see photo below–I have plenty of time to ruminate about things that may or may not be all that important. Right now I’m taking stock of Lightroom, wondering how it will be viewed in future years.
When Adobe released Photoshop in 1990, it was one of several image editing applications. There was Digital Darkroom from Silicon Beach, ImageReady and Color Studio from Letraset and others whose names I can’t remember. Photoshop wasn’t the first image editing application by any means. Before it even came out, in 1989 I remember reviewing for Publish magazine the first desktop 24-bit color editing application called PhotoMac, by Avalon. This was going to be the big hit, and I wrote in my lead, “The race in high tech is often to the starting line.”
If I had taken stock 6 months after Photoshop was released by Adobe–like I am now doing with Lightroom– I would certainly have been impressed, but could hardly have predicted its unbelievable success. Photoshop, as you know, has even become a verb. I photoshopped this or that, has become part of the popular vernacular, even though it makes lawyers at Adobe cringe because of trademark issues.
What about Lightroom? Will it be as successful; will it ever become a verb? I lightroomed this; I lightroomed that? It sounds kind of awkward, but who knows. It’s too early to tell. (Lawyers get quills ready!)
It’s also probably too soon to see if Lightroom has fulfilled its original promise of freeing us photographers from ours desks and computers and giving us more time to shoot. Up to now, I wasn’t a good person to ask. I’ve spend the last 9 months mostly chained to my desk writing the blimey Lightoom Adventure book. But now as summer lingers, and the book is behind me, I see glimmers of a promise fulfilled. I do go out and shoot more. And I shoot with Lightroom’s capabilities in mind. The other day, for example, when I shot this feeble patch of rare blue sky, I was already planning in my mind’s eye to saturate the blue and use Lightroom’s Recovery slider to bring out the detail in the clouds.
I’m seeing the future, and it’s not a verb, it’s a lifestyle and I welcome it. What about you?
PS For a really funny parody of Photoshop as a verb check this out!