The old adage is that “it’s a poor craftsman that blames his tools,” and while there’s some truth to that, we know the right tools make the work and the process better, more predictable, and even more fun. In photography, gear matters, and our tool for photographers matters, and together they allow us to do what we love to do. From a sea of options out there, we narrowed down the bare essentials we think should be in every photographer’s toolkit, have a look at the list of must have softwares for every wedding photographer!
1. Backblaze – Photo Backup
Every digital device stores your photos, documents, and other data on a small memory chip or a spinning hard drive, both of which can fail. In fact, due to the nature of how hard drives work, they will inevitably wear out over time. It’s just a matter of when.
In photography it is said that you if you don’t have your data backed up in 3 different places you don’t have your data backed up. Typically, that means you have your local drive, a copy of that drive (preferably stored in a different physical location in case of fire or other disaster) and a copy in the cloud.
All the redundancies might seem a bit excessive but the safety of your images is paramount to anything else.
However, if you’re going to cut corners there’s only one you should cut, and that’s the second hard backup, but definitely keep a copy in the cloud, and arguably no one makes this easier than Backblaze.
Backblaze Key Features
Backblaze does not bother you with the specifics of your backup plan, only that it is taking place: when you first install the desktop client, it does not require you to select files and folders, but instead simply grabs all the files and folders it considers important and begins transferring them to your Backblaze cloud backup.
The continuous backup & full-disk backups feature makes Backblaze feasibly one of the most essential softwares for professional photographers’ business. Backblaze lets you back-up your computer and all attached drives for only $6 a month!
Not only that, but should the worst happen and your computers are stolen or drives fail, you are able to either download them all from Backblaze as one might expect, or Backblaze will mail you a physical drive with all your data so you can make quick work of downloading it all again, and then simply ship back the drive!
2. Adobe Lightroom – Photo Management
When it comes to photo editing, Adobe Lightroom is the ubiquitous photography editing software and has been for over a decade. Together with Photoshop, which is among the best photo editing softwares for pc, they can accomplish start to finish editing, pixel bending, retouching, and asset management. Thankfully, they are now sold together with the Adobe Creative Cloud subscription plan for $10 a month, and that subscription comes with access to their mobile versions as well.
Lightroom highlights include but not limited to:
- Most familiar digital asset management
- Mobile apps
- Seamless round tripping with Photoshop
- Raw processing on desktop and mobile
- Cloud sync
- Global and local adjustments
- Largest library of professional presets
If you’re looking for the most well covered and common photo editing and organization app then Lightroom is it, and its mobile solutions are relied upon by professionals and the everyday creator alike.
As a photographer, we require a software that can deal with heavy bulk edits, which leaves Lightroom a better option for us. Learn more about the minimum system requirements for Lightroom to work efficiently and produce excellent results.
Adobe Lightroom Pricing
Adobe Lightroom comes in three different subscription plans, you can choose one that is well suited for your needs. But if you wish to just use Lightroom and no other Adobe apps like Photoshop then their Photography Plan is what to go for and it’s $9.99 a month.
3. Capture One – Photo Editing
If you’re looking for the professional’s choice of photo management and processing software, then Capture One is the benchmark, and unbeknownst to many, Capture One has been around longer than Lightroom. It was developed to handle files from Phase One’s large sensor Medium Format cameras, considered the best in the world, but lucky for us Capture One is available and accessible to all for pretty much any camera in existence.
While it and Lightroom are very similar they each have advantages. Capture One doesn’t yet have a mobile option (but rumors are they soon will), but it is also the industry go-to for tethered-capture, and the most accurate camera profiles and color control. It is why in major fashion and product studios like Peter Lindbergh and Amazon you will find Capture One being used. It is considered the best raw processor.
Plans for Capture One start at $9.99 a month, but there are brand-specific versions which are reduced in price and others that are free!
Capture One Key Features
- Speed Edit – It allows you to work without touching a slider on the interface and adjust multiple photos at the same time.
- Color Balance Tool – The Color Balance tool adds color tints and adjusts luminosity individually for shadows, midtones, and highlights for precise color grading.
- Skin Tone Editing – Creates accurate skin tones without complex retouching.
- Black & White Tool – For a smooth result, it controls the black and white conversion while minimizing the amount of noise introduced.
- Before/After Tool – It helps you to review your edits in just one click!
Most professional photographers use Capture One for photo editing as it offers a variety of workflows and has a spectacular layers-based approach to local modifications.
Capture One isn’t only for studio photographers, it’s ideal for everyone who shoots raw and wants to get the most out of your raw data. Capture One truly stands out in this respect.
4. AfterShoot – Automated Photo Culling
It goes without saying that we are fans of AfterShoot, but not without due cause. AfterShoot is an automated machine learning and artificial intelligence application made by photographers for creatives. Unlike other culling apps, AfterShoot handles most of the work for you whilst still keeping your preferences in mind, and it’s always improving.
AfterShoot aims to do 90% of the work in 10% of the time. You simply drop in a folder of images to be culled, take a few seconds to set your sensitivity preferences, and then AS will cull and sort through your images for you–never deleting–by flagging and star rating and all the metadata carries over into Lightroom and Capture One with one click.
It is the fastest easiest way to find the best images in a set!
Learn more about AfterShoot on how it can help you streamline your workflow process and save your time to generate more business.
AfterShoot Key Features
- Automated and fast
- Easy to use
- Gets better over time
- Subject recognition
- Duplicate grouping
- Adapts to your preferences
- Differentiates between
- Blur and camera shake
- Closed eyes and blinks
- Under / overexposed vs properly exposed
- Shows previews of selections
- Works with the best photo editing software
AfterShoot is easy to use, fast, works with Windows and Mac OS including Intel and Apple Silicon M1 Macs. AfterShoot’s Photo Culling software offers free trial version for photographers, so try it out now!
5. JPEGmini – Photo Delivery
JPEGmini is an image size compression tool, that is simple, and incredibly effective. Designed by the genus minds behind Beamr, JPEGmini is a drag and drop application that quickly compresses them whilst not sacrificing any perceivable quality level.
Unlike exporting from other apps at various quality percentages, JPEGmini will deduce exactly how much is can reduce an image file size by before it affects visual quality, and does that and no more. It has been tested against the best printers in the world and come out successful. It is also able to be used as a plugin for Lightroom and Capture One which makes it extremely convenient.
If you want to reduce your image file sizes whilst not giving up any image quality there is no better solution than JPEGmini.
JPEGmini Key Features
- Reduces file size, not quality – It makes sure you are using the best quality possible for your photos without constantly worrying about file size or speed.
- Fits into your workflow – When you export your photos directly from Lightroom, Photoshop and Capture One, they will automatically be optimized by JPEGmini to the lowest file size possible without ever sacrificing quality.
- Reduce Expenses – Cut your image storage (i.e. flash drives, hard drives, and Client Galleries) costs when optimizing your images with JPEGmini.
- High Print Quality – JPEGmini does not alter the perceptual quality of your photos, you can print them at the same size you normally would, and the prints will look exactly the same.
Although it may not be a key tool for people who does not care about the file sizes, but those who are publishing images on their websites or fighting against large files on their computers, tablets and other devices should take a close look at what the software is providing.
When you’re displaying multiple images, even a 20% reduction in the size of each image makes a big difference. And the results from JPEGmini, especially when combined with regular optimization, are quite often significantly better.