Adobe Working on Adding Metadata Features to Lightroom mobile

Lightroom mobile has been out just a week and already there’s evidence that what we’re using now is very much a 1.0, with new features in the works. This shouldn’t be surprising: the original Lightroom started fairly bare and aggressively added new features after its release.

One of the top surprises I’ve heard from people is the lack of a way to edit metadata for photos in the app—star ratings, keywords, IPTC data, and the like. I suspect those were probably planned for the app but held back so Adobe could ship the first version on the schedule they set for themselves.

Now, it’s clear that star ratings and other probably other metadata features are being worked on, following a tweet posted by Adobe’s Tom Hogarty this morning:

Of course, Hogarty doesn’t offer a timeline, but it’s promising to see them work on features that will beef up the app.

[As a reminder—I know, I know—I've just released an ebook through Peachpit Press about the app called Adobe Lightroom mobile: Your Lightroom on the Go. It's good, and only $8!]

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At 500px: How an iPad Can Improve Your Photography

Premiere photo site 500px has just published an article of mine that takes a high level overview of what an iPad can do for photographers: How an iPad Can Improve Your Photography. Think of it as the ultra-compact version of my iPad for Photographers book, covering the options for using the iPad as a portfolio, importing photos to the iPad and reviewing them in the field, adding all-important metadata, editing the shots, sharing images, and more.

I’m actually quite excited to appear on 500px, not only because I like what the company is doing, but because the people who post and read at the site tend to be extremely talented photographers. It’s fabulous company to be in.

Announcing My Lightroom mobile Fuel Ebook!

LRmobile 150pxAdobe released Lightroom mobile for iPad last night, and I’m thrilled to announce that I’ve written a brand new ebook for Peachpit Press covering it: Adobe Lightroom mobile: Your Lightroom on the Go.

The book features 53 pages of detailed information on how to use Lightroom mobile, including lots of tips on how to get the most out of Adobe’s new remote tool. And it costs just $8! As near as I can tell, this is the first book about Lightroom mobile on the market.
(Update: Victoria Bampton, aka The Lightroom Queen, also released a book. Go buy her book, too!)

The book walks you through creating and syncing collections from the desktop version of Lightroom, as well as creating collections on the iPad itself (and why you’d want to do it). It also goes into detail about the app’s editing features, covers the many gestures used to speed things up, and more.

Here are some page samples. Buy it now (not-so-subtle-hint), and let me know what you think!

LRM ebook pages 03

LRM ebook pages 04

LRM ebook pages 01

LRM ebook pages 02

Lightroom mobile! Read my First Look article

Adobe has just released Lightroom mobile, an iPad app that synchronizes with Lightroom on the desktop and provides a great deal of editing capability on the iPad.

I wrote Macworld’s First Look about it. Adobe also wrote about the app on the company blog.

And here’s a first for me: I’m quoted in Adobe’s press release! (Yes, mine is one of the quotes that journalists often skim over, sometimes rolling their eyes as they do so.) The folks working with the development program for Lightroom mobile approached me, since I’m the author of The iPad for Photographers:

“Adobe Lightroom mobile transforms the way I am able to work with my photographs because now I can review and process photos when I’m comfortable and creative, and not just when I’m at my computer,” said Jeff Carlson, educator and author of The iPad for Photographers and Adobe Lightroom mobile: Your Lightroom on the Go. “It also works as a malleable photo portfolio on my iPad. As I add or remove images from a collection in Lightroom mobile or on the computer, the changes stay synchronized. When I need to show my work those photos are already set up to be viewed.”

I’ll definitely have more to say about Lightroom mobile soon, but Adobe’s posts and my First Look article are good places to start.

Rumors of an iPad companion app for Lightroom surface

Last week, 9to5Mac posted an article about a leak on Adobe’s Web site that revealed what appears to be a Lightroom app for the iPad. According to the leak, the app would be a service that costs $99 per year (or may be included in a Creative Cloud subscription).

A Lightroom app for iPad was teased by Adobe’s Tom Hogarty earlier last year when he showed a very early proof-of-concept app that could edit raw files with apparent ease (on an iPad 2, no less).

There’s no indication of whether the app is imminent or still in development (and I wonder if the subscription pricing might be an intentional test balloon to see how people would react to the pricing). But it’s definitely an exciting development.

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Macworld Reviews iPhoto 2.0 for iOS

Macworld’s Jackie Dove has published her review of iPhoto 2.0 for iOS, the new version of Apple’s mobile photo editor for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. She likes it quite a bit, writing:

iPhoto 2.0 for iOS is a fantastic upgrade to Apple’s mobile consumer image editing flagship program; its streamlined, updated interface is a joy to use. Though not as cute and whimsical as last year’s debut version, its swift operation, direct controls, enhanced sharing, and no-nonsense interface make it a must-have upgrade.

Other pressing deadlines have kept me from digging into the new version in depth, but it’s still the photo editor I turn to first on my iPad. I’m looking forward to seeing how well it performs on my new iPad Air, since Jackie’s review suggests a lot of the processing is now being handled by the graphics processor.

Google Updates Snapseed with New HDR Scape Filter

Google announced improvements to its Google+ service today, with a focus on photography. One of the items mentioned was an update to Snapseed that adds a new HDR Scope filter to the versatile image editor. According to Google, this implementation uses pixel edge detection instead of relying solely on tone mapping. As soon as the iOS app update was available, I had to throw an image at it and see what the results were.

Here’s an original photo, shot with a Nikon D90 and imported to my iPad via Eye-Fi. This is the JPEG portion of the Raw+JPEG pair I shot.

Snapseed HDR before

Here’s the same shot taken into the HDR Scape filter. This is with a setting strength of +83, the default that Snapseed used.

Snapseed HDR after 83

That’s too much HDR effect for me, so I dialed the effect down to +47. Total time editing: about two minutes.

Snapseed HDR after 47

iPhoto 2.0 Syncs with Camera Roll, Can Delete and Hide Images

Federico Viticci at Macstories writes about a very interesting change in Apple’s latest iPhoto 2.0 app for iPhone and iPad. In the first version of iPhoto for iOS, images you edit stay in iPhoto unless you explicitly share them back to the Camera Roll. This situation applies to other applications, too, due to the sandboxing security architecture that keeps apps separated in their own virtual workspaces.

iPhoto 2.0, however, manages to tunnel under the sandbox walls and updates edited photos in the Camera Roll without any additional export step. If you view the image in the Photos app and tap the Edit button, you can edit the original.

IPhoto2 edited camera roll

In another great move, you can now delete photos from the Camera Roll from within iPhoto: Tap the More button (which looks like an outlined ellipses … ) in the bottom-right corner and choose Delete. There’s also an option to hide a photo from view in iPhoto there.

Go read Federico’s article for more details. Currently this functionality doesn’t seem to be accessible by third-party developers, but I’m hoping it doesn’t stay Apple-only.

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Transfer Photos Wirelessly without the Camera

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In the “learn something new” department, I ran across an interesting discovery today.

First, some setup. I woke up before dawn to catch the sunrise in the Columbia River Gorge, and for some reason my camera’s battery didn’t last very long—I think it was the combination of the cold weather, composing my shots using Live View, and transferring the images from my Eye-Fi card to my iPad. With a full day of shooting ahead, and only one extra battery available, I was in trouble.

Jump ahead a few hours, I want to transfer my newest photos to the iPad but not kill the spare battery in the camera. So, I attach my iPad Camera Connection SD adapter to copy the photos directly. The problem is that connecting the SD card to the iPad using the adapter means I need to import the raw versions of my photos in addition to the JPEGs. (I’m shooting raw+JPEG so I can edit better-quality photos on the iPad than the previews generated by the camera.) What I want to do is import into ShutterSnitch which includes an option to copy only JPEG images.

That brings me to the surprise: I opened ShutterSnitch to see if it could import directly from the adapter (it can’t; Apple blocks access to the sync port, I believe), but suddenly the photos started importing anyway. The trick is that I’m using an Eye-Fi card. And when the card is connected to the iPad using the camera adapter, the iPad is also supplying the card with power, which in turn activates the Eye-Fi’s wireless hotspot.

So even though the card is physically connected to the iPad, it’s transferring images via Wi-Fi! Pretty cool when you don’t want to tax your camera battery and bypass the Camera Roll.

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Article: Tips for iPad Photo Retouching

iPad RetouchingThe iPad is a great photo viewer, but does it have enough oomph to handle photo retouching? Yes! In my latest article at Peachpit.com, I look at several ways to edit photos on the iPad, including red-eye removal, removing unwanted objects in the image, and compositing: Tips for iPad Photo Retouching