After The Camera Live(ish)!

In Craft & Vision, Lightroom & Workflow, Video podcast, Vision Is Better by David26 Comments

I should be on a plane to Lesotho right now. I’m not. A back injury is keeping me from an adventure I was really excited about. I’m trying hard not to be totally bummed about it. But my loss is your gain because, friends, I’ve got nothing but time on my hands

So January is now Vision-Driven Workflow month. We launched After The Camera in the first days of January and I figure those 20 episodes ought to keep you busy for a while. But I also figure they might lead to some questions. So I’m going to use this time to get answers to those questions for you.

Now, I’m assuming you’re working through the AFTER THE CAMERA material – I spent a lot of time making it and the last thing I want to do is answer a question I have been pretty clear about in the videos. The 20-episode video series is still on sale for 25% off – making it still only $30. Now’s your chance. But if there’s something I can clear up for you, or perhaps a RAW image of your own that you’d like me to take crack at, I’d like to try.

This is highly experimental, but here’s how I’m hoping it’ll work:

LEAVE A QUESTION, as clearly as you can in the comments below or in this Facebook post. This has the potential to get out of hand if questions get left in a million places so only questions left in these two places will be answered. (Follow this LINK to Facebook)

SUBMIT AN IMAGE (OPTIONAL) I can only do a few of these but if you want to submit an image of your own and see how I’d approach it, submit an image link from Dropbox. You can give it to me in RAW or JPG, but the only way I will receive these is if you put a Dropbox link into the comments below. I won’t take emailed RAW images for obvious reasons.

WATCH THE VIDEO REPLIES.  I will answer your questions by creating a handful of videos that I’ll post on the Craft & Vision You Tube channel. I will answer as many of the questions as I can and – depending on demand – release a couple episodes of Vision Is Better on my YouTube channel  each week. Subscribing to the You Tube channel will just make sure you know when a new episode gets posted, so you don’t miss a thing. So depending on how this goes, your $30 purchase of this video series could get another couple hours of helpful additional material.

You can find the  VISION IS BETTER show on my YouTube channel here.

And you can find the AFTER THE CAMERA series here, and still on sale for a week or so.

Finally, here’s a link to the full version of Episode 13 of After The Camera if you’re still trying to decide.

My hope is of course first to be helpful. I enjoy these times when we get to connect in some way. The more valuable I can be to you the happier I am. But I’m also hoping that you’ll see enough value in the After The Camera series, and these Live(ish) Q&A videos that you’ll want to share the love and tell others.This is part of how I make my living and the vast amount of sales come from people like you who honestly and enthusiastically recommend my resources to others. As always you have my gratitude for letting me be a part of your creative journey.

So, who’s first? What are your questions, frustrations, etc. about editing, organizing, and post-producing your images in Lightroom? I’ve got nothing but time friends, let me know how I can help.

Share this Post, Share the Love.



  1. Dear David,

    As a fellow back/neck sufferer I extend my sympathies. On a positive note, half way through your videos and they are terrific.


    Jed Best

    1. BTW, these were a few shots on my trip through Rome and Assisi Italy this past year. What beautiful character these folks have. 😀

    2. Author

      Thanks Rick. I’ve downloaded them and already have some ideas. It’ll take me a few days to get some questions together and to get clearance from my chiropractor to sit down – only lying down or standing right now – but I’ll have something together soon! Thanks for trusting me with your photographs.

      1. Thanks David. Hope to be able to see your thoughts on one of them.
        But first…you must start healing!
        Will say some prayers for a speedy resolution to your pain.
        One of my favorite phrases from the series so far…”don’t waste time polishing turds”. HAHAHA – So true!

  2. It feels great buying something without regret. Some of my favorite conversations with other photographers is to compare the challenges of file management and just to hear how everyone approaches that task in many different ways. It’s easy to think you know it all. It’s also easy to reject change. I can be stubborn in my ways but after just 4 episodes, I’m already thinking about how to incorporate a few of your methods to use myself. Particularly using stars instead of flags to provide the option to flag-for-later with 4 stars.

    Nobody needs more Lightroom manuals of what all the sliders and features can do. I want more real world use cases and the sharing of actual work flows. This does this with great honesty on your actual catalog.

    In your import episode, I noticed a dropbox folder. It’s something I’ve tried with little success. Have you run into any troubles when Lightroom and Dropbox are doing it’s thing and becomes out of sync full of conflicts and duplicates? Specifically during import, moving and file renaming.

    1. Author

      Thanks, Stephen. Feels great to make something and know people are buying it without regret 🙂

      I do use Dropbox sometimes but to be honest it’s kind of an in-between measure. I use Dropbox to transfer files from one place to another and often just want to use it to get an image into my catalog from my iPhone. You’re right in identifying Dropbox as a little problematic with Lightroom. I just use one folder in my Dropbox as a bit of a dumping place.

      1. Actually, you could use LR mobile for syncing photos from your iPhone to LR. This way you wouldn’t have to contend with dropbox vs LR syncing

  3. So sorry to hear about your back and the need to cancel your trip!

    On the other hand, it will benefit many folks to get the training they seek and questions answered.

    Happy New Year, David and get well soon.

    1. Author

      Thanks Tom. I’m in good hands with a great chiropractor and massage therapist team. I’ll mend up just fine. 🙂

  4. Dear David.
    What a bummer! Does this mean you will be cancel your trip in full? Or hope to get on later on?
    Anyways, as fellow members – I have also arrived somewhere in the middle of your ‘After the camera’-video. I have been a keen LR-user for a while, but I find nuggets here and there. Great work, David!

    1. Author

      Hi Jan – Thanks. No, my whole trip is not cancelled, but the chunk I was most excited about is cancelled. I’ll be on a plane to Nairobi at the end of the month and continue from there. Thanks for your kind words and encouragment.

  5. I’m sorry you don’t get to go on your adventure (and sorry we don’t get to hear about it after!) I hope you aren’t in pain and recover quickly.
    I went to Multnomah Falls near Portland yesterday to experience it in its half frozen state- that doesn’t happen often. It was beautiful, but I don’t think my image straight out of camera evokes the magical feeling I felt when I was there. I used a slower shutter speed to smooth the water to add to the wintery frozen look but it is not standing out from the texture that surrounds it as much as I expected. I would love to see how you draw the eye through it and what you create with it.
    If I figured out Dropbox correctly, here is a link to the uncropped dng. It is a panorama of 4 horizontal images.

  6. Sorry to hear about your back and trip. As someone with a slipped disc married to someone with scoliosis I can relate to how a bad back feels. Hope you recover soon!

    I just bought After the Camera and it’s going to take me a while to get through it all. I’m going to list my questions and hope that they aren’t answered in the videos, if so, I do apologize. They’ve been questions I’ve had since reading Vision and Voice and The Print and the Process (still one of my absolute favorite photography books):

    1. I like how you use the Adjustment Brush in Lightroom to highlight and darken areas to draw the eye. I’ve tried doing it myself, but one of my worries is that the adjusted lighting will look unnatural. How do you avoid doing that?

    2. One of my biggest challenges is with color. I know you don’t adjust to accuracy but how the scene felt, and that is my preference also. But I also realized that my color accuracy needs some work. How do you adjust accurate colors, if necessary, and do you have any suggestions or resources for a photographer to improve their eye for color and skill for color in post?

    3. Have you ever hit Auto Tone in Lightroom, thought it looked pretty good, and then left it at that? It’s one of my guilty steps and I’ve always secretly wondered if other people do it too 😛

  7. Hi David,
    I’m sorry to hear about your back; I hurt mine a few years ago and can imagine how it feels. We’ll be keeping you in our prayers for a speedy recovery. I’ve been a big fan ever since I picked up my copy of Within the Frame years ago. I’m looking forward to working my way through After the Camera and I was curious, how does the video series relate to Vision and Voice?

    Here’s a link to a couple of images from a series I am working on. I know what my vision is for them but as I work on them they come across as flat; that is the best way I can describe it anyway. I am curious to see what you would do with them. I know I will learn quite a bit seeing them through your eyes and I hope they can be of use to the community.


  8. Hi David,

    Sorry to hear about your ill fortune – it’s good of you to use that time you now have in this way!

    Below is a link to one of a series of pictures I took of people walking in front of the Taj Mahal. Apart from being obviously underexposed, I’d love to see how you’d take this image forwards.

    If you’re interested, the way in which I developed it can be seen in my portfolio on my website.

    Best wishes,

  9. David, I just want to offer up my sympathies and prayers for quick healing. Back issues suck!

    I will have to wait just a few more weeks to purchase this video series, and so will likely miss out on your generous offer for images, but I am very much looking forward to sitting down with a digital you to see how you do your thing in LR.


    1. Author

      Thanks Steven – Feel free to submit an image anyways if you like. You’re a long-timer, there has to be some kind of privilege that comes with that kind of loyalty. 🙂

  10. Here is a question from Episode 18 about printing. Do you have any suggestions for archiving, storing, creating folios, shipping your prints? A few years ago you were using folios from Opus but those are no longer available – at least online directly from them. I have also tried Dane Creek Folio Covers (Lenswork style), but always looking for presentation ideas.

    After a print graduates from the cable hanger and is replaced, do the older prints end up in a flat drawer cabinet?

    1. Author

      Hey Stephen – Well this is bad news indeed – I loved those portfolios. I was in Opus the other day and didn’t see them but I was there to get frames and it never occurred to me that they no longer sell them. So I’m in the same boat as you – needing to start all over again. I keep all the boxes my print papers come in, so those get recycled for my own prints. Yes, once prints come off the walls they go into boxes or folios and then into a large flat-drawer cabinet. I’m starting to run out of room and beginning to wonder why I keep printing to 17×22 instead of 8×10 or 11×14. How do you like the Dane Creek Folio Covers?

      1. The Dane Creek folios are nice with a thin profile. It’s not as protective as the Opus ones but I was impressed for a paper folio. It comes with the backing and clear poly bag. If I could find a way to emboss the front to personalize it, it would be all that much better.

  11. Thanks for a great set of videos David. I just finished watching them last night and I really enjoyed the approach you took with them. Between these and your Created Image series I have learned a lot about how to refine my own approach to my photography (at least when I’m not thinking of putting everything in a box and selling it on ebay 🙂 ). As someone said above purchasing your books and videos is a “no regret” decision every time.

  12. David, not sure how I missed dropping you a comment. Sorry for the belated reply!

    Thanks for sharing your approach to the shot I sent.

    Agree with your assessment on the Mickey Mouse ears…it was one of those passing moments that I just couldn’t pass up shooting. We were in a rush, but I knew I’d kick myself if I didn’t capture this guy’s “character”. If I had more time, would have loved to break the language barrier and re-set him on a less distracting background.

    I had never thought to go B&W with this particular image. I’ll have another look at it this evening and see where that approach may lead me using a few of my B&W portrait presets.

    Loved the texture in his appearance, especially his clothes and beard. Used quite a bit of “Clarity” there. Funny enough in your videos you want to rename the Lightroom Clarity tool to “Texture”. I’ve thought that many many times!

    All the best and safe travels my friend!

    Capture the moments!


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