The British Society of Underwater Photographers (BSoUP)
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Saeed Rashid's Lightroom Training Course

A review by Tony Neal

Let me introduce myself - my name is Tony Neal aka "Goose". I've been diving since 2005 and taking photo's for three of those years, Two years on a compact and just under a year using a DSLR. I am a member of East Midlands Underwater Photography Club and BSoUP.

With the thought of an impending live-aboard trip approaching, and the anticipated countless hours spent in the water capturing hundreds, perhaps thousands of images, it was now time to face my fears, yes editing importing and managing my images a lot better than previously using iPhoto badly. I'm basically saying I dreaded image management and avoided it at all costs, but its part and parcel of what we do as underwater photographers. So when I saw Saeed Rashid' Facebook post regarding Lightroom training, I got in touch and booked myself onto his course pronto!

The course was held at Swanage pier, with a dive in the morning and classroom training in the afternoon. This was ideal, as it gave us a chance to collect images before we started.

Our group was of mixed age, but not ability. We were all Lightroom beginners. This gave Saeed a good firm footing of our ability from the start. His teaching manner was patient. As we were complete beginners it was stage by stage teaching showing us what he wanted us to do and how to get there. I took notes of the different tasks we did, just for my own reference, and that proved invaluable the next day.

Saeed had hired the local Christian centre at a perfect location in the town coupled with tea and coffee on tap and a super first floor meeting room. This was an ideal learning environment. The class began with how to import your images into your computer, and also how to back up to an external device, which as underwater photographers we were encouraged to do. Rejecting images and key wording your them for future reference was enlightening. What was I scared of? We then went onto development of images.

Saeed had brought his own images to show different elements of adjusting each image and by showing each key element of adjustment. Lightroom as a whole is super to use now that Saeed has shown us its very simple to deal with workflow, but as Saeed said "I can teach you to use Lightroom, but its up to you to use, practice and experiment with lightroom" 

If I was going to be critical then on the down side we as a group could have done with a bit more time, as I had images to edit and look at with Saeed.

The course was four hours long with a tea break in the middle, nothing about the course was rushed, but as beginners you will always take a bit longer to do certain elements. With that said I paid £69.00 for the course and got a lot from it as a beginner. My fears have now gone and I am at one with Lightroom. Bring on the live-aboard and the thousands of images I'm going to take.

I took the time put into practice what I'd learned from Saeed. There is room for improvement, but practice makes perfect.

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