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Courvoisier sheds light and warmth

The first of Jerry Courvoisier’s Australian ‘Lightroom Made Easy’ workshops and seminars was held last weekend in Sydney, the first of what organiser PMA intends to be a bi-monthly series of educational roadshows for enthusiasts.

The Jerry Courvoisier workshop receives a glowing review from the ‘hard-marking’ Margaret Brown, technical ediitor of Australia’s leading enthusiast magazine and website, Photo Review. It was originally published on the Photo Review website and is reproduced here, with thanks to Margaret and Media Publishing:

Jerry Courvoisier gives workshop attendees one-on-one tuition when required. (Pic: Margaret Brown)

The  workshop was held in the seminar room at the Maritime Museum in Sydney and was attended by perhaps 40 participants, both enthusiast and professional. The focus of all activities was Adobe’s Lightroom 4, the latest iteration of an application that many photographers have adopted as the essential basis for their digital workflow. As it has developed, Lightroom has taken in new functions such as outputting to books, email and web galleries and, at the same time, provided additional controls over the ways in which files can be catalogued, processed and prepared for output.

On arrival, each participant is presented with a USB thumb drive containing sets of Courvoisier’s images for use on their laptops. (Participants are expected to have Lightroom 4 pre-loaded when they arrived.) In addition, the USB drive contains a suite of documents that includes outlines of what will be covered in the workshop (and also in the half-day seminars that are being run in association).

Lessons in DSLR Workflow with Lightroom and Photoshop, a 267-page instruction manual by Jerry Courvoisier is also provided in PDF format, along with nine brief instruction sheets covering various aspects of Lightroom.  A 17-minute video tutorial by George Jardine (number 5 of 16 available through is also included.

Tutor, Jerry Courvoisier, is the former digital programs director at the Santa Fe Photographic Workshops and has led more than 250 workshops on Lightroom and other aspect of digital photography. A firm believer in’ learning by doing’ and ‘hands-on’ experience, he is an excellent instructor for both newcomers to Lightroom and more experienced users.

It was a BYO Lightroom event – Macs were optional! (Pic: Margaret Brown)

The one-day workshop begins with a basic overview of Lightroom and how it is positioned in the Adobe Photoshop family. It then moves on to cover the six basic elements of the Lightroom workflow: capturing, uploading, organising, sorting, developing and presenting.

Participants learn all aspects of file handling in Lightroom, including how to create new catalogues; import, move, copy and rename files; how to use metadata and ITPC data and how to add keywords to metadata. Different image viewing options are explored, along with different tools in the Lighroom workspace and how they can be utilised to save time when assembling catalogs and folders of images.

Editing adjustments are covered in detail, with attention to global and local corrections. There is a brief introduction to the MAP Module, which is new to Lightroom 4 and covers geo-tagging. Also new to Lightroom 4 is the Book Module, which is covered in greater detail, with different output options – to professional printing house, Blurb and exporting to PDF– explored. The final Lightroom modules, Print and Web,  are covered in detail but, being less complex, are simpler to understand.

We were impressed by the thoroughness of the coverage of Lightroom’s many facets in this workshop, and also by the way Courvoisier handled participants’ queries and gave individual assistance to those who experienced any problems with the course materials.  The course materials were very comprehensive and the ability to work with Courvoisier’s images gave participants the freedom to experiment without worrying about deleting their own precious files.

There were plenty of opportunities to exchange experiences during the morning and afternoon tea breaks and lunch break. (The workshop is fully catered.) We commend these workshops to any photographer who wants to learn how to use Lightroom effectively, including newcomers who have only begun to dabble with the program. The take-away materials will provide an excellent follow-up and enable participants to continue learning by doing long after the workshop ends.

Jerry Courvoisier’s seminars and workshops will have their final iteration this Friday and Saturday in Melbourne. For more information, visit
– Margaret Brown

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