Developing a New Photo Workflow

Adobe Bridge

When I changed platforms from Windows to Mac, I left behind the three tools I used the most in my digital photography workflow: Adobe Photoshop CS3, Downloader Pro, and Irfanview.

I picked up Adobe Photoshop Elements 8 for Mac, and while it’s not quite as complete in some areas as full Photoshop, it’s close enough that I don’t need more. Elements comes with Adobe Bridge, a product I never warmed up to in the past, but not having the handy Downloader Pro around anymore, I explored Bridge as a substitute and was surprised by its versatility.

It does a good job of grabbing images from my SD cards and putting them in a workspot on my HD away from my permanent files. The batch renaming feature is close to being as good as the one in Downloader Pro, and its view mode substitutes quite well for Irfanview, both for culling images and for adding information to the filename. Bridge does a great job of batch adding and editing IPTC data too. I’m converted.

The plugin I most missed from Windows was Nik Silver Efex Pro. When I saw the plugin existed in Mac format, I downloaded and installed the 15-day trial and tried my registered key. It worked, and I now have my all-time favourite utility at my disposal again.

I had similar good luck with Nikon Capture NX2. I downloaded and installed the Mac version, and my registered key worked on it too. NX2 is an excellent image editor with some features that are better than Photoshop, and it can’t be touched for extracting the ultimate from a Nikon NEF (raw) file.

Now that my toolkit is in place and I’ve learned where features are located in Elements, my workflow is up to speed again. I especially thank and congratulate Nik Software and Nikon on their enlightened licensing policies. Adobe should take lessons, rather than charging for a platform change for its products.

3 thoughts on “Developing a New Photo Workflow

  1. I’m hoping that Vuescan has a similar policy, as I just bought the pro version to solve my Canoscan woes. Of course, I could just read the license agreement, I ‘spose … 😉

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