If you own my Lightroom Made Easy online course, I have already updated it with four new videos covering the four biggest new features (described below). Simply log in to your course on my training website, and you’ll find the new LR5 videos waiting for you.
For those of you trying to decide whether to upgrade to Lightroom 5, here’s a quick look at the key new features.
Advanced Healing Brush
This feature alone is worth the upgrade in my opinion. Similar to the healing brush in Photoshop, this features takes Lightroom one step closer to being a complete Photo-editing solution, and it removes about 80% of the trips that I used to make to Photoshop for minor cloning and healing work.
Now you can remove objects or people from scenes, easily repair blemishes, or make other “patch” adjustments that were formerly too complex for Lightroom’s simple circular Spot Removal tool. Irregular shapes are now no problem. In the sample here I removed two poles from a landscape simply by drawing a line over each one with the Advanced Healing Brush. Lightroom did the rest. Seamless fix.
This long-overdue feature is basically a circular version of the Graduated Filter tool that you know I love so much in Lightroom. Now you can make off-center vignettes or other circular or elliptical highlights in a photo. Great for bringing a subtle spotlight to an area that you want to draw attention to (or darkening an area you want to tone down).
In the new Upright feature, Lightroom 5 has automated what was formerly a manual process of perspective correction. Now, simple, one-click buttons allow you to instantly straighten a horizon or make horizontal and vertical perspective corrections to off-kilter photos. If you shoot architecture, this one is worth the upgrade price 10 times over.
Smart Previews are Adobe’s attempt to make it easier to travel with Lightroom. Now you can edit photos that you don’t have with you by creating “Smart Previews” before you hit the road. These previews allow you to edit photos and even export small finished versions suitable for web sharing — even when you don’t have your original RAW files with you. That means you can leave the big external drive at home, or avoid carrying your massive RAW files on your travel computer. (I’ll talk more about traveling with Lightroom in a free video coming soon. Stay tuned for that).
Lightroom 5 also includes some other minor feature improvements such as:
- Include videos in your slideshows
- Book Module improvements including easier text
- New grid overlays, including aspect ratios
- New Smart Collection criteria
- And more
If you don’t have my Lightroom Made Easy course yet, you can get it here, including the new Lightroom 5 videos.