HOW TO GUIDE
Please read each section of this guide in order to make the most out of your new editor!
1. CREATE YOUR CATALOG
Once you've shot your job, you just create a NEW Lightroom Catalog and build your smart previews! You can create Smart Preview files upon import or by doing this: select the files for which you want Smart Previews, and then click Library > Previews > Build Smart Previews (make sure you are in library mode not develop mode). It's super important that you build smart previews for all files as this allows me to edit your Catalog without having the RAW files! If you are going to do your own cull, please complete this before sending me your Catalog.
You do not need to export your catalog to send it to me. Simply close LR and then compress the LR folder into a ZIP folder - no exporting required! Here is a great video that shows the whole process from start to finish!
2. EDIT YOUR SNEAK PEEKS
This a great way for me to see how you'd like each section of a shoot or wedding to be edited and helps me maintain a consistent editing style.
If you're editing a sneak peek, I recommend rating your edited sneak peeks as 5 stars. I'll then use these sneak peeks as a guide for editing the rest of the job! A good minimum amount for weddings is between 20 - 30 images, from different sections of the Catalog!
The more sneak peeks you can provide, however, the better!
3. CREATE YOUR CATALOG
Once you are ready to send through the Catalog to me, you just need to compress the LR catalog folder into a ZIP folder. There should be 5 files here - helper.lrdata, previews.lrdata, smart previews.lrdata, .lrcat, and .lrcat-data (these will start with the name of your catalog). I do not need any RAW files to edit, just the smart previews, so please do not upload any RAWS.
Once this is done, simply upload the ZIP folder to Google Drive - you will be added to a folder to upload all of your future jobs to (you do not have to have your own storage).
Please also complete the provided questionnaire, sign the contract, and make sure you have paid the invoice as work will not start until the invoice has been paid in full!
4. DOWNLOAD AND EXPORT
When editing is complete, I will send you an email with a link to download your catalog. All you have to do during this part is reconnect your RAWs and check the editing. I also recommend updating AI settings (you can find this option by selecting all images, right-clicking, and heading to develop settings). Once that is done, you just need to hit export on those photos!
As amazing as smart previews can be, they are not designed for exporting so make sure that your photos all say "original photo" and not "smart preview" before you export. This should automatically update when you reconnect your RAWs.
LIGHTROOM CLASSIC CHECKLIST
- A new catalog has been created for each individual editing job.
- Images are in RAW format.
- Sneak peeks are edited and labelled.
- Smart Previews have been built for ALL images in the catalog - turn off all filters.
- The LR folder contains the correct files (helper.lrdata, previews.lrdata, smart previews.lrdata, .lrcat, .lrcat-data) and is zipped/compressed.
- Access has been granted to your online sharing platform (use firstname.lastname@example.org)/you have used the provided Google Drive folder.
- All relevant presets and profiles have been shared via questionnaire or email.
- Invoices have been paid in full and contracts have been signed.
- The editing questionnaire has been completed in detail.
TO GET THE BEST OUTCOME
A good way to ensure a consistent editing style throughout each job is to include edited sneak peeks in your Catalog. A good minimum amount is between 20 - 30 images from different parts of the day.
If you have a particular vision for a certain location or time of the day, editing one or two images from each section helps me see how you'd like this to look! The more sneak peeks, the more consistent the editing! It is a good idea to edit at least one image from each part of the Wedding day - getting ready, ceremony, group photos, couple portraits, reception etc.
I recommend rating your sneak peeks as 5-star in Lightroom so that I can easily identify them, but if you use another rating system you can let me know in the questionnaire!
I personally use the "Flag" filters to cull in Lightroom. To filter out the culled images from the chosen images in your Catalog, turn "Flagged" and "Unflagged" filters on and make sure that the "Rejected" filter is turned off. This will show you all of the chosen images!
If you are culling your own Catalog before sending it to me for edits and are using a different method than the one described above, please let me know in the questionnaire! I can also use your method of culling if you would prefer - just let me know!
Make sure to time-sync all of your cameras so that I can do the best job I can culling your photos!
When you send through a new job, you will be sent a questionnaire to fill out. Please include as much information as possible! Let me know how you would like certain images edited, what you'd love me to keep or cull, or what percentage of Black and White edits you want. Do you like centred crops or more creative off-centre crops? Do you include grain in your images or not? Want it culled to exactly 600 images, or is 550-700 images a good range for you? Let me know as much as possible!
Before you commit to anything, a trial edit is a great way to make sure we are on the same page! I am happy to trial edit up to 10 images free of charge, subject to availability. Simply create a sample Catalog that includes 10 images you'd like me to edit, and a handful of edited sneak peeks.
If you wish to book a job without doing a trial edit first, I recommend including additional sneak peeks and sharing some galleries so that I have additional reference images to work with!
If you are struggling to explain how you would like a certain image edited, or want to show me specific settings, a Loom Video is a great way to do this! For videos under 5 minutes, Loom is free.
You can record your screen and explain things at the same time, which can be great for those trickier instructions! If you are having issues uploading files or getting your Catalog ready, let me know and I will make a Loom video to help you!
Sharing a couple of your online galleries with me can be super helpful! This shows me what kind of images you like to keep during the culling process, and allows me to see your editing style throughout a whole wedding or engagement/family shoot.
Sharing a link to your website and social media accounts also gives me more insight into your style and editing preferences! You can share this information with me in the questionnaire!
Please let me know when you would like the job completed! The current turnaround time is 20 business days and starts once I have all the correct files and full payment. Rush jobs are subject to availability and may incur an additional cost.
Please communicate any delays with me! If you are 7 days or more late sending me your files, the turnaround time for your editing job will increase and a late fee of $50 will be charged.
COMMUNICATION IS KEY!
I am only an email away! If you need to share any additional information with me that you might have forgotten in the initial onboarding process, just send me an email and let me know as soon as possible!
Once I send the completed Catalog back to you, please feel free to give me feedback on what you did and didn't like. The more we communicate, the more I can perfect my editing just for you!