As a photographer, I have been a devoted fan of Adobe’s Lightroom for about two years now. I’ve been a big fan of Wacom tablets for many more years. So who would have thought that bringing these two together would get me to a point where I’m pulling my hair and where I’m about to throw my computer out the window in a blind rage ?

Lightroom 2 was good – shouldn’t Lightroom 3 be better ?

Ever since Lightroom 3 came out, something changed. Lightroom 2 was a treat – I could do almost anything I needed to do on a daily basis with just one application, and it worked fast and straightforward. Of course version 3 introduced a heap of new features, for each of which I am more than grateful, but it also introduced one big annoyance, something that is literally costing me time and money.

I do all my photo processing in Lightroom (sometimes I want to go a bit further and I revert to Photoshop), but when combined with my Wacom Intuos 4 tablet, I feel like I have been thrown back into the age of Neanderthal Technology or NT. To be more precise, the healing brush tool in LR3 drives me nuts – when I try applying this using my trustworthy Wacom, LR3 grinds to a hold and smoke floats upwards from my computer.

Oh… so it’s a bug ? Really ?

There seems to be an annoying bug in either Lightroom or the Wacom software that makes removing freckles and hiding blemishes in photos near to impossible. This bug is a widespread fenomenon all over the internet. It’s all over the Wacom and Adobe support forums and has been around for quite a while now. But since, apparently, no one really knows whether it’s a Wacom or Adobe issue, it looks like one is blaming the other and nothing gets fixed. Adobe states this particular bug was fixed in LR 3.3, and it might have been, but I encountered the bug after applying the 3.4 update.

When the minor 3.4.1 update came out, I thought to myself: ‘Oh good ! It must be the healing brush fix.’ It wasn’t. Although there’s plenty of talk about this particular bug, Adobe doesn’t seem to have it in the list of bugs to fix for the next update and neither does Wacom.

And they’ll sell it to you for cheap !

Isn’t this amazing ? Thousands of online shops will try and lure customers with this amazing combo of Lightroom 3 with a Wacom Intuos 4M with a discount – is the discount because this combination is  faulty ? Over the past couple of days I have read so many negative customer reviews that you might think Wacom and Adobe take this issue seriously, but apparently I am being too naive.

Thanks to…

I want to thank Gene McCullagh of for hanging in there with me trying to figure out what was happening with my healing brush in Lightroom 3. You can find Gene via his website and on Twitter as @LRSecrets.