I’ve been doing short little blogs about finalizing an image with the understanding that, for the professional and the enthusiast, the image that goes from the camera to the computer in a RAW format, is not a finished product until it is further processed in software specifically designed to work on RAW files.
As I have written recently there are companies out there that make software that work within some of these RAW processors that give one a great starting point to enhance an image beyond what the software can do on its own. These are called plug ins.
One of those companies that I wrote about is MacPhun who has been around for a few years. But the king of the hill when it comes to these plug ins is NIK. Simple name, for easy to use software when one wants to handle complex image variations.
There was a time that I can remember and track back to when I spent over $500.00 for a full set of NIK plug ins, but a couple of years ago Google bought NIK and of course all the rights to their software plug ins. The whole set of plug ins now costs $150.00. That is an incredibly low price for plug ins that will elevate the look of your images.
NIK has a great set of tutorials which really tell you and teach you how to use the Nik programs. The primary programs that use Nik Plug ins are Adobe Lightroom, Adobe Photo Elements, Adobe Photo Shop, Apple Aperture (now discontinued). I am not sure if there are any others, but these are the primary ones.
My workflow=Irident Raw Developer (Mac Only & because I process Fuji xtrans files) + Lightroom 5.0 (6.0 is coming) + Nik Plug ins. Nik is not the only plug ins I use, but they are used most often and at $150.00 they are a great deal.