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Luminar Flex from Skylum Updated to v1.1 – What is Flex and What About this Update

Skylum today has released a free update to Luminar Flex bringing it to version 1.1.

What is Luminar Flex? Don’t they have Luminar 3 too?

For those not familiar with Flex, think of all the great photo editing filters and tools from Luminar 3, minus the not-ready-for-primetime catalog features that Luminar 3 has. If you don’t want to use the “DAM” (digital asset manager) of Luminar 3 (and I can’t blame you as it has been a big disappointment from day 1) but still want to use Luminar’s filters to enhance your photos, then Flex might be for you.

Luminar Flex v1.1 running as a plugin inside Photoshop

I say “might be for you” because this is where things get a little confusing. And bear with me for a moment as I discuss Flex, as I never posted a review of it when it first came out. If you just want to see what’s new with Flex, scroll down to the New Features.

A Little History

Luminar 3 arrived back on December 18, 2018 and was initially marketed by Skylum as a Lightroom replacement, even though it barely had any more organizational power than Finder on Mac or Explorer on Windows. I was not a fan, and apparently I wasn’t alone as the majority of people in my Learn Skylum’s Luminar & Aurora HDR Facebook Group who voted in a poll I conducted just last month still couldn’t use the DAM because of missing features and/or performance issues. Only a small percentage were happy with Luminar 3 at the time. In fact, one of my most popular YouTube videos I have is a video I recorded showing how to use Luminar 3 without the catalog.

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Starting with No Image Library in Luminar 3

In my Learn Skylum’s Luminar & Aurora HDR Facebook group, I have noticed some people wanting to kind of hit the reset button on Luminar 3. Maybe they added too many photos at once in Luminar and it is not running great. Or maybe they don’t want to even have Luminar 3 index their photos but still want to use Luminar 3while waiting for things like keywords and LR migration to appear in future updates.

I prepared a video just for you 🙂

This video also appears in my Mastering Luminar 3 Online Course.

I’ll show you a few ways to start from scratch and also which files and folders you can delete to free up some hard drive space if you don’t want to use a photo library in Luminar 3.

FREE Webinars this Saturday and Monday on Luminar 3

Join me this Saturday, December 15 at noon Mountain or Monday, December 17, at 3:00pm Mountain for the last 2 sessions of my Super Important Photo Organizing Strategies with Luminar 3 online webinar events!!

There are some very important things you need to consider before adding all your photos into the new and upcoming Luminar 3. I will show you what they are!​​​​​​​

BONUS MATERIAL COVERED: If you work with Image Adjustment Layers, you DO NOT want to miss my super important tips on using them in Luminar 3.

You can find out more info and register for the event here.

My previous 2 webinars went 20 minutes over the scheduled time so I could get to all of your questions. I’ll do the same for these webinars if needed. Make sure you are ready for Luminar 3 which comes out December 18th!!

 

The New Luminar 3 with Libraries – the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

On December 18, 2018 Skylum will be releasing their long awaited DAM (Digital Asset Manager) for Luminar. Called Luminar 3 with Libraries, this will be a free update for everyone who currently owns Luminar 2018 on Mac and Windows.

Originally, it was first talked about being released in 2017. Once that didn’t happen it was next anticipated to be released in early 2018. That didn’t happen either, but now here it finally arrives a couple weeks shy of the end of 2018.

Has the long wait been worth it? Let us find out.

 


Quick Note Before We Get Started

I will be doing a number of free webinars showing off the new Luminar 3 with Libraries between now and December 22. I will update this blog post here once I confirm the dates and I will also be posting it on my Facebook Page as well as in my free-to-join Luminar/Aurora Facebook Group. These will be my own webinars, put on by yours truly 🙂

Join me in one of these webinars to see what is new and to ask any questions you have!!

Two New Webinars have been added, for Saturday, December 15, and Monday, December 17, 2018.

The Good

Since it’s arrival in 2017 Luminar quickly started replacing ON1 as my #1 goto program for enhancing my photographs. At the time, I was still using Capture One Pro and, to a much lesser extent, Lightroom for my RAW files. After some initial adjustments to my RAW file I would send a 16-bit Tiff file to Luminar to finish it off and give it my signature look.

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Skylum Publishes Roadmap for Upcoming Luminar 3 with Libraries

Skylum has published a roadmap for the upcoming Luminar 3 with Libraries, a free upgrade for users of Luminar 2018.

Luminar 3 comes out on December 18, 2018 and Skylum has promised free updates to it through late 2019 to add features and enhance the program.

Photo from Skylum

 

Here is a look at what’s coming up as mentioned on their roadmap.

December 2018 Update(s)

For Mac Users

  • Libraries – You will be able to conveniently & quickly browse photos in a Gallery, review and rate images, organize photos in Albums, access the right pictures faster with a Calendar mode, and speed up your workflow with smart shortcuts.
  • Sync Adjustments – You will be able to enhance a single image to your liking, and then apply the same edits across all your photos with a single click.
  • Info Panel – You’ll be able to view EXIF data for your images.
  • New LOOKs – Presets become history. Luminar brings a collection of new LOOKs that will allow you to enhance and stylize your images much faster.

For Windows Users

  • Libraries – You will be able to conveniently & quickly browse photos in a Gallery, review and rate images, organize photos in Albums, access the right pictures faster with a Calendar mode, and speed up your workflow with smart shortcuts.
  • Sync Adjustments – You will be able to enhance a single image to your liking, and then apply the same edits across all your photos with a single click.
  • Info Panel – You will be able to view EXIF data for your images.
  • New LOOKs – Presets become history. Luminar brings a collection of new LOOKs that will allow you to enhance and stylize your images much faster.
  • Color Management Improvements – Issue Fixed. You’ll be able to properly manage colors between Luminar, monitor and 3rd part devices.
  • Various Improvements – Speed improvements, Image Export improvements, more controls for filters, plug-in performance improvements, share pop-over updated, drag & drop issue fixed and other.

 

Photo from Skylum

Planned Updates from January – July, 2019

For Both Mac & Windows Users

  • Raw + JPG (Luminar Libraries) – You’ll be able to work with Raw & JPG versions of the same image in a more convenient way. View as a single image, but switch between versions in real time.
  • Virtual Copies (Luminar Libraries) – You’ll be able to create versions of a photo with different styles, adjustments, editing history, etc. This is especially useful when you want to try different looks on the same image.
  • IPTC edit & sync (Luminar Libraries) – You’ll be able to edit core IPTC info. Plus create custom presets related to IPTC data and sync these presets across multiple images.
  • Hidden Features (Powered by AI) – We are busy working on more smart tools powered by Artificial Intelligence to give you more powers when editing skin on portraits, architecture; removing objects or simply applying masks on your images.
  • Lightroom Migration Tool – You will be able to move your data and images from Adobe Lightroom to Skylum Luminar.
  • Smart Search (Luminar Libraries) – You’ll be able to quickly find the image you need, using keywords, EXIF information and file names.

Remember that this is a FREE upgrade for all Luminar 2018 users. If you don’t yet have Luminar 2018 you can get it here. You can also save 10% with coupon code: mattsuess

 



Announcing my Mastering Luminar 3 Online Course

 

 

Learn how to organize and edit your photos with Luminar 3 in my comprehensive step-by-step online course. This is the most complete training video course available for Skylum’s Luminar! It officially launches when Luminar 3 becomes available on December 18, 2018 (but you can enroll in it today).

Check out all the details on my new Luminar 3 course here and enroll today!

Want to become an Affiliate Partner for my online course? Contact me today and let me know and I will fill you in on the details!

 


 

Disclosure about product links and affiliations: Some of the links I provide are affiliate links which means I get a small commission, with no additional cost to you, if you click it and end up buying something. It helps me provide free educational resources and articles. So if you use them, thank you! My affiliations however never influence my opinions on any products/services and I am only affiliated with companies whose products/services I personally use.

Bug with Photo Mechanic and Sony a7R3 Files for Pixel Shift

Any Sony a7R3 shooters out there who also use the awesome Photo Mechanic software from Camera Bits?
Be careful right now with Pixel Shift images.
 
I just picked up my a7R3 the other week and noticed an issue today. I have been using Photo Mechanic for a long, long, long time to batch rename & caption all my photos prior to adding them to my catalog in Capture One Pro. But I discovered a bug with the Pixel Shift images you might want to be aware of.
 
If you batch caption/rename your photos in Photo Mechanic, then use the Sony software to merge your Pixel Shift images into Sony’s RAW .ARQ file, the Sony Viewer and Edit programs will not be able to then recognize the .ARQ file. In the screenshot I posted here, you can see normal .ARQ files processed before I captioned/renamed them and blank thumbnails on .ARQ files that were first captioned/renamed in Photo Mechanic. Sony Viewer and Edit will not read these files now after the merge into .ARQ.
 
I just got off the phone with Camera Bits. They were not yet aware of the issue having just received their own a7R3 camera today. But they were able to repeat the problem on their end and told me the engineers will begin working on a fix to be released soon.
 
So in the meantime, you might want to hold off just yet on renaming & captioning your a7R3 files that were shot for Pixel Shift until they release the fix.
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