10 April 2013

Why Shoot RAW?

I remember reading about RAW files on the Pioneer Woman's website a few years ago.  She talked about how it was amazing, but the files were huge & she needed more back-up hard drives because of it.

So here was my thought process:
-What I'm doing is yielding great results.
-What she's doing is also yielding great results, but she has to spend more money on back-up hard drives.

Seemed like a no-brainer-- RAW wasn't for me!

But then last year I did some second shooting for a great local photographer & she had me shooting in RAW.  After that I was hooked!  I can't believe I was scared of it, and felt completely unprofessional that I hadn't been using it, especially for weddings.

Why is RAW so special?


Need I say more?  This is before & after.

Why not just be a fabulous photographer & have great exposure all the time in camera?  Shouldn't I be good enough to get the perfect exposure every time?

Well yes, I should be.  But I'm human.  And sometimes crazy things happen, like conditions go from super bright to super dark very quickly.  Or sometimes I think I changed my settings correctly & guess what?  I didn't.  Things happen.  I'm a human & I live in an imperfect world.  Brides trust me to get all the magical images from their special day, and I am going to do everything humanly possible to make sure that happens.

So now I've bought a second external hard drive & four new memory cards.  Overall it was about a $400 investment (I shopped around & got great deals-- & I needed more memory cards anyway).  But it was a crucial investment!

If you're wondering what this whole RAW thing is about, start researching!  Any DSLR camera should shoot in RAW, but you will have to make sure you have a program on your computer to open & edit a RAW file.  You can't just shoot in RAW & upload to Facebook-- each image has to be converted to JPEG to be useful to anyone other than a photographer.

One more thing-- I don't shoot everything in RAW.  Anything for a client is always shot in RAW, but when it comes to grabbing a quick shot of my little girl, I've started using JPEG a lot more recently.  That way I don't have to run it through Lightroom & get bogged down in editing.  Every picture doesn't have to be a masterpiece!

Do you use RAW?  Do you have a need for using RAW?

Don't forget to check out my photography site here!

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