A few changes in how I’m doing things. I used to develop with Lightroom, but I am consistently getting better results doing so in PhotoLab. I used to keep all the Lightroom image gallery under one main heading on my computer -Lightroom- and I have always been careful to only work in that folder with Lightroom.
I was going to share the folder between Lightroom and PhotoLab, but that got way too confusing, so I created another main folder -PhotoLab- for many of my new images. I use PhotoMechanic to sort out images from my memory cards, and I used to import them into Lightroom. For use with PhotoLab, I copy the images into a new folder someplace under -PhotoLab-, using a file structure similar to what I’ve done for Lightroom. That way things are organized, and I can find my image a year from now, after I’ve long forgotten what I stored where.
This also has me thinking that instead of relying on the Lightroom catalog, I should use the process that creates sidecar files in the Lightroom folders, with all the editing changes I have made. I need to learn how to do that.
Because I also want to work with photos in Luminar, I decided to create a main folder -Luminar- and put photos there which will be primarily edited in Luminar. Peter, I think that will allow me to more easily do what you described, using tiff files, and only when everything is finished, export as JPG images to my folder for completed images ready to email or post online.
I am having second thoughts about all of this. It comes down to "how much editing am I allowed to do, before my “photograph” becomes a “photo illustration”. With Lightroom and PhotoLab, I try to create the image that I was thinking I saw when I took the photo. That definition no longer is adequate, as PhotoLab especially is great at bringing out things in a photo that I did NOT see in the original. Since I’m shooting in ‘raw’ whenever possible, there is a lot of work I can do on an image before I start to think I’ve gone “too far”. BUT… with Luminar, to be honest, when I’m all finished, I no longer even have a “photograph”. I have artwork based on my photograph. To be honest, I need to find a way to mark those images somehow, maybe with a watermark, so nobody ever thinks I’m trying to fool people.
I don’t have an answer - the best answer so far is to create a unique “watermark”. I wish PL3 could do this, but it can’t. I know LR can do it, so I guess starting this week, I’ll have two watermarks available in LR. I also should look around for software that only does one thing - watermarks - and make that my standard for finishing images. I’ll have one watermark for LR and PL3 photos, and another for Luminar photo illustrations. (Anyone know a shorter word to imply a photo illustration?). For that matter, does anyone here know of a good program that is specifically designed for watermarks?
…added later - how do I use the “underscore” character, so if I put an underscore in my folder name, and type that folder name in this forum, the software here will show it that way? The forum software changes the whole word, making it italic or bold. So when I wrote -Lightroom- up above, the hyphen is really supposed to be an “underscore”, but I can’t find a way to get it to show up accurately.