It’s always incredible to see the shift in perspective that comes with the transition from hobbyist to working photographer. Even after the very first paid shoot of any size, so much about the approach and thinking about photography and the workflow changes, and drastically.
It’s not uncommon for those who shoot on the odd occasion to not understand how and why many working professionals care about memory card speed, or what can seem like minute differences in autofocus performance or post processing software performance. 45Mb/s card vs 90Mb/s? Who cares? Lightroom taking a half second longer to bring up and render an image? No biggie. Then on a paid project where time is a matter of concern, and certain shots need to be nailed, these things become all too clear for the newly forged. They will see that a half second more to load an image makes a huge difference when an image needs to be brought up several times, and there are thousands of them.
One of the ways I see behavior change especially is in the approach and use of post processing software. Someone shooting for fun with no pressure at all will have no problem ‘discovering’ something like Lightroom as they go along, dismissing the customizable aspects, and shortcuts and so forth because there’s no rush. But these things can really make a difference to your entire workflow. In this vein, shortcuts are very important, and we all have our favorites.
If you’re using a spread of software, however, it’s not always the simplest thing to remember what each does in each program, especially as many of them have the same keystrokes for very different effects. Sometimes, a little help goes a long way, and Joshua Cripps of Professional Photography Tips has created a short, succinct tutorial on how to create a display of your favorite shortcuts right within the Lightroom Modules. Joshua is a professional landscape photographer whose work has actually been part of the worldwide marketing campaign for the Nikon D750 (which you can see my full review of that here).
The process is essentially just about creating a PNG image that has the list of your shortcuts, and then importing those for display within the module panel end mark areas. I haven’t done it myself because I’m a freak and have mine down, but it actually looks dead easy to do, and if you’re really not in the mood of making your own, Joshua has generously provided the PNG files he uses for every one. You can find more from Joshua here, and get the PNG files here.
If you really want to kick up your Lightroom processing, at least culling and organization to the max, check out the CTRL+Console Lightroom Sorter. Here’s a link to our review on that here. Also, if you want to be a Lightroom power user and in record time, there’s no substitute for the Lightroom Workshop, which you can find here.