Well if your a photographer, especially if you shoot digital, which is about everyone these days, you probably use Photoshop, and/or Lightroom. Love it or hate it, everyone edits their photos…everyone. Some do this with a heavy hand, while others stick to the basics of “clean up” for what the camera failed to capture. (I really mean to do a post on my Photoshop pursuits, and I promise I will soon.) The other function of the Photoshop/Lightroom duo is the storage aspect. You need somewhere to store and categorize all those photos you take. Here again, Lightroom provides an answer few find any major faults in. I’m a fan of these products, I really am, and I’ve used them for years. The problem with this relationship is that the maker of these programs, Adobe, keeps slapping me in the face.
Once upon a time, you bought these software applications and you had a license to use them forever, but a few years ago, that went away, and now you have no choice but to “subscribe” to their Creative Cloud service. Initially, the cost was $50 a month and included every application available in Adobe’s Creative Suite of programs. This allowed for video editing, web design, publishing, and a host of things I will never, ever need. As a rank amateur, I had been smacked down. I had no intention of paying $50 a month for something I would never use to its full extent. Adobe tried all sorts of promos to get people to bite, and eventually they won me over with the Photographer’s Plan. For $10 a month, I get Photoshop and Lightroom. All I would ever need, and at a price I could justify. Said plan still exists, and still costs $10 a month, but I got another smack down this week. Adobe has just released a second version of Lightroom that is wholly web based. Apparently, this serves a growing group of professionals who need to edit in the cloud. This is not me. The old version of Lightroom still exists, but it has been renamed “Lightroom Classic”. Lots of people have speculated on this version’s future. Some believe this is a beginning of the end. Adobe says “no”, but there is precedent for taking little comfort in such an assertion, but once again, Adobe has firmly pointed at me and said, “Amateur!” It’s hard to say how many like me use the photographer’s plan as part of their hobby, but maybe this isn’t a niche Adobe is concerned about. My biggest concern is that if Lightroom Classic goes away, I’ll be forced to store my images in Adobe’s web space, and quite honestly, that will never happen. Not only because I won’t rely on anyone else to store my images, but also because I have so many of them. Literally tens of thousands of them encompassing several terabytes of storage. Buying that much space from Adobe would break me. So now, I’m left to speculate if I will be using a software that is leading me down a dead end, that at some point will say, “Sorry, ride’s over, please convert to the web based program.” At that point, years of edits will evaporate as I seek an alternative, which will leave me left out to dry.
Let me just say that I love the photographer’s plan. It’s fair at the price it charges for the service it provides, and I have gone “all in” on developing my skills with these programs. So much so that I have shunned the competitors, many of whom have stepped up their game significantly since this whole subscription based model went live. Not having a perpetual license doesn’t bug me because at this price, the constantly updated forms of these programs are worth the money (don’t tell Adobe that). However, control of my images is also important to me, and is my paramount concern. They will live two feet away from me on these hard drives and nowhere else. Lets hope there are enough photographers like me to make sure Adobe gets this message. For now, I’m, “drinking the Kool-Aid” with a wary eye. How about you?
I hope you enjoy today’s image. It is a heavily processed fall image of a forest path I hike on frequently. I’ve applied an Orton Effect to give it a dreamy quality. Thank you Photoshop for providing the means for this expression. I hope we have may more years together.
Until next time…All the Best…John