Nik Software recently released a free upgrade to registered users of it’s Viveza software. The software now works with Lightroom, well, not quite in Lightroom, more like with Lightroom. Hey don’t get me wrong, I love that I can go directly into Viveza and back into Lightroom without going through Photoshop. What you do in Lightroom is use the “Edit in” command located in the Photo menu. This brings up the choices to edit the image in Photoshop or in Viveza.

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This opens the selected photo in the Viveza window.

You can then edit your images using the control points as you would when using Viveza in Photoshop.

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When you click save, the image is automatically saved and added to your lightroom catalog. This is awesome, but what functionality do you lose by not going into photoshop? Well, the answer is in the layers. When Viveza is run from Photoshop the resulting image is a separate layer in Photoshop. That means that the original image is below the Viveza layer and can still be accessed and more importantly the Viveza adjustments can be applied to only parts of the image using layer masks. This lets you be more creative in how the adjustments are applied. The Viveza plug-in used in Photoshop lets you “brush” the effect onto parts of the image without effect the whole. This ability is lost in the Lightroom version since it does not utilize layers at all.

As a photographer, I like to stay out of Photoshop as much as possible and now that NIK Software has the Viveza functionality directly accessible from Lightroom, I can spend more taking photographs and less time in photoshop. Oh, the price is right as well. Viveza for Lightroom is a free upgrade to licensed users of Viveza. You can get it at Nik software. www.niksoftware.com

Lets hope this is just a taste of things to come and Nik releases Siver Efex and Color Efex for Lightroom as well.

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