Adobe® Lightroom® CC Photo Editing: The Complete Guide


Lesson Info

Questions & Answers Part 2

I am in Florida at the moment. I'm in our temporary home. Which is, because we're in between motor coaches. In the next few months, our next motor coach should become ready, and we'll start living on the road once again. And, what I've done, is I have gone through on Facebook, looked at all the questions that people have been putting in, and I've answered most of them on Facebook. But what I'm gonna do here is I'm going to answer some that come in Live, and then I've made a list of just general topics that I thought would be useful, based on the questions that everyone's been asking on Facebook. And if you're not on the Facebook group, then you don't probably don't know about this broadcast. Although you might. It is a great place to go to post your questions, and, even better than questions are comments so that other people can learn just like you do, and therefore, instead of just benefiting from question and answer, you can just learn how does somebody else use the same feature in a...

different way. So, let's take a look here. Let's see, it's telling me people are tuning in. I'm not used to Facebook Live, just so you know, so I'll be staring at little parts of it to see what to... how it works. So, to get started, one of the main concepts with Lightroom, when it comes to this class is, if you're about to make any big changes in your Lightroom Catalog, for instance, some people have been working with individual catalogs, one for each project, then... what you want to do is, if you decide to combine those catalogs together into a single one, before you do any of that, back up your current catalog. And back it up on a different hard drive so if anything weird happens, it shouldn't, but, who knows? If you hit the wrong button or do something weird, it'd be really nice to be able to get back to what you had before. So, the first think I would do is back up your catalog. Then you can start making any kind of changes you want. I find that a lot of people just have no idea where their catalog resides, because at the time they installed Lightroom, Lightroom might have made that decision for you, or you might have just clicked okay and not paid attention to where it is. So, if you go into Lightroom and you go up to the Lightroom Menu, if you're on a Mac, or it's the Edit Menu if you're in Windows, and choose Catalog Settings. In the Catalog Settings screen, on the left side, there will be like three little tabs, so the left-most tab will have a button, I think the button is just called Show, and it will send you on your hard drive to wherever your catalog resides. And so there's where you could copy those files that are there to another drive to back it up before making major changes. Or you can have Lightroom set up to make backups on a regular basis. But that's the first thing to think about, because I hear a lot of people making big changes, and I just hope that they've backed things up, just in case they do something weird. So, let's see, what else? I'm just looking through my comments here before we get enough questions for me to answer that are coming in Live. Ah, renaming your catalog. When you first installed Lightroom, it came up with a name, who knows how, but you might not like that name. And, in fact, many times, the name has the name of Lightroom attached to it because you might have upgraded from a previous version of Lightroom, and when it did, it made a backup of your catalog and it added, like, a Lightroom version number to it, and you might not like that. So, if you go into your Lightroom folder, which I'm gonna do here, I'm gonna go to Catalog Settings. I know you can't see this, but I need to look to make sure I'm saying things right. I'm gonna hit the Show button, and I see my Lightroom Catalog folder. Inside that folder are three files. Those three files are, first off, my catalog itself. That one ends with the letters lrcat. That's your catalog file. That's what you're opening every time Lightroom launches. Even if it's done automatically for you, that's the file. Then there are two other files. One has the exact same name, but it ends in the letters lrdata, in fact there's two files that end in that. One has the name Previews, and one says Smart Previews near the end of the file. If you're gonna rename these things, make sure the beginning part of the file ends up being exactly the same for all three of those files. So, right now, I can click on my Lightroom Catalog file, and I can rename the whole thing. And if I go in here and do that, all I'm gonna do is, I'm gonna Copy, with Command C in a Mac, Control C, I'm assuming, on Windows, the file name that I put in there minus the file extension. Then I'll just go to the file above it that has the word Previews on the end, and I'll select the beginning portion of the file name before the word Previews is on the end, and I'll just paste in what I renamed the other file to. So the beginning of that file name is exactly the same, then it just has a space, and the word previews. And if you maintain that naming, so the beginning part of the names are exactly the same, then you can rename your catalog file to whatever you want. I would usually do that when Lightroom is not running so it doesn't get confused if it's trying to write some information to that file. And then, the next time you launch Lightroom, it might be confused. It might say it can't find your catalog file. And that's because it just keeps track of the location and the name, and so if you just changed either the location or the name, it doesn't know that that's the same file you used before. So, if that's the case, you might need to go up to the File Menu in Lightroom, and choose Open Catalog. And navigate to that folder where you just renamed your catalog file, and point it at it. And it will open it. It will be as if nothing happened as far as the way things used to work. Everything should be the same. And you can work from then on. But I just wanna make sure I mention that, because it seems like a lot of people were having general questions about how to think about the Lightroom Catalog file, how to rename it, how to move it, if you want to. Just make sure Lightroom's not running. You can move that folder wherever you want on your hard drive. You can change the name, just making sure the beginning of each file name remains consistent. And then the next time you open Lightroom, you'll have to choose Open Catalog, and show it where you moved that file. So that can be nice. Then, another thing we had a lot of questions about were related to the folders in Lightroom. Some people were asking should I use a folder, or a collection? Well, first off, you should know that you have to use a folder. Meaning, your pictures have to reside somewhere on your hard drive, and that will be within a folder. And so, no matter what, your picture is in a folder. It's just a matter of, are you going to utilize sub-folders for managing your images, or not? And there are advantages and disadvantages of doing so. The main disadvantage is, you can only move files between folders, or create new folders, when the hard drive that contains your original pictures are attached. And so, if you're traveling, you're on a laptop and your main file storage is sitting at home, then you're not going to be able to create those sub-folders, you're not going to be able to drag images into those sub-folders. And that's the biggest limitation of my system. But I just haven't found another system that works that gives me the same benefits. And so, that's why I use that system. Now, if I'm on the road, though, there are some things you can do. You could standardize on using the Flag as a Reject to indicate an image that should be moved to your Outtakes folder when you get home. And then, you could use flagging something as a pick as an indication that it should be moved to the Base-Level folder. So then when you return home, you could inspect each folder that you'd worked on, and see which ones are flagged as picks, move them to the Base-Level folder, 'cause that's where I leave my finished images, and then you can move the ones that are flagged as rejects, and put them in the Outtakes folder. And that's, personally, what I do. Some people use flags and picks, you know, the reject and pick for other purposes, but in the end, that's what I do when I'm traveling. It makes it easier to keep track of what should be moved where. Let me adjust this so you don't see my ceiling fan as much. And you can see my Dodge & Burn shirt. He-he-he. So then, a couple other things. Let's see here. The Folder List in Lightroom is a literal reflection of what's on your hard drive, so if you ever say you can't find your image, that means you probably don't remember where you stored it. It's not Lightroom's fault necessarily. It means you don't remember where you put the file. Because if you can remember where that's located on your hard drive, then in Lightroom, just go to the left side of your screen in the Library Module, look in the Folders List, and look for the folder you know it's stored in, and it will be there. And, losing track of it, that means you might not have named your folders well, or maybe you didn't use a collection. A collection is like a virtual folder where, I think of it, similar to a playlist in a music program, where, when you drag an image on top of a collection, it doesn't move it on your hard drive at all. It just remembers where it is on your drive, and it's a way of putting your images into projects. And what's nice about collections is, unlike with folders, one image can be in multiple collections. I can have it in a collection called Portfolio. I can have it in a collection called Process Soon. I can have it in another collection called Deliver to Client, another one called Print Me, whatever, and it can reside in all those even though there's one original. And so, collections are great. There are a few problems, though, as far as managing your files with collections. If you have a collection called, let's say Process Soon, or something like that, might be the equivalent to my In Progress folder, if you click on that, and you view the images that are in there, and then later on you decide to drag that file to another collection, it doesn't automatically remove it from the collection it was in previously. And therefore, you've gotta remember to remove it from certain collections. Whereas, if you use My Folder system, that file can only be in one folder, and therefore it can only be in one status. Either it's done, which means it's in the base-folder, or it's in progress, or it's in Outtake, and it can't be in more than one of those places at once. So, just a few ideas there. Now if you know for a fact that one of your files is in a particular folder, and in Lightroom, you go to that folder in the Folder List, and you see it's there, if it's not there, you hit the Import button and go tell it to put it in Lightroom, but if you see that the folder's there, you know there's a file there and you just don't see it in Lightroom, then right-click on that folder, and choose Syncronize. Syncronize is when Lightroom compares what it has in its database to what's actually on your hard drive 'cause, who knows, maybe you added five or ten pictures in there when Lightroom wasn't running, or just outside of Lightroom, and it doesn't know about it. So Syncronize will look at that folder, so be sure to use that if you don't find it. Let's see, then as far as folders versus collections, collections are completely optional. You can totally ignore collections if you care to, but I find them to be just so useful. It's the way I organize projects. I don't wanna move the files around on my hard drive. I just wanna keep track of which images should be used for various projects, and that's where collections come into play. And so, it's a combination for me of collections and folders. The folders tell me the status of an image. Is it ready to show the public, or does it still need work? And that's what my sub-folders do. Then, my collections organize my projects. I'm gonna do a book on Christmas over the years. I create a collection called Christmas. I'm gonna do a portfolio of all my landscape images. I do a collection called Landscapes. And those images are gonna come from more than one folder in Lightroom, so it's a great way of working. Now, a couple things that can mess you up. When you're going between various collections and folders in Lightroom, there's a few things. First off, if you go to a collection and you don't know where a certain picture is. You see it in the collection, but you don't know where it is in your hard drive. You don't know where the other images are that are similar to it. Then right-click on it after viewing it in a collection and there'll be a choice. Gotta look to make sure I say it right. If I right-click there's a choice called Go to Folder in Library. And that will move you from the collection you're currently viewing, to the folder that the original actually resides in. Now the problem with doing a lot of that is suddenly you're in a different folder, a different view, a different set of images, and you might want to get back to where you were a moment ago. And instead of having to go back to your collections list, and manually go through it, then let's see how can you move back and forth from where you were previously, and where you are now. Before I continue, though, I notice some people saying there's no video. I'm not certain why that is, but if you can hear me, the only thing the video is, is me staring at the camera. And so, in many ways, you're having a better experience, 'cause you don't have to see this mug for the entire time. So, don't worry about not having video. If you wait until I'm done recording, then it usually posts the video on the page so that you can play it back and hopefully then there'll be video. But I see there are people that say no video and there are other people that say they are seeing the video. So, I'm sorry if you're not, just know that it's just my mug, my face on the screen. You're not missing anything. You can just find a picture of me somewhere online and stare at it, okay? So, although I do have a cool Dodge & Burn shirt. If you google, Dodge & Burn t-shirt, you can probably figure out where to get one. Because most other people don't have any idea why that would be interesting. Alright. So, I was saying, you could right-click on an image, and there's a choice called Go to Folder in Library. And, if you choose that, it's gonna send you to whatever folder that image resides in. After doing so, though, you might wanna get back to the folder or collection you were in previously. And if you wanna do that, there's two methods that I use. The first one is you could move your mouse to the bottom of your screen, and if you go down to the filmstrip, that little pop-up part at the very bottom of your screen that extends all the way across the bottom, you might have to click the little triangle at the bottom of you screen to get to it, near the left side of that will be a left and a right arrow. The left and right arrow will bring you back to where you were previously, and after doing so you can hit the right arrow to go forward to where you were, where you just left. That's great, but I don't like having to go down to the filmstrip to get to it, and so you should be aware that there's a keyboard shortcut to go back or forward from where you've been previously. And that is on a Mac, you'll hold down the Option and Command keys, and use the right and left arrows. Now, on Windows, I would assume that would be Alt Control. But if it's not, for some reason, let's find it. It is under the Window... Go Back and Go Forward is what it's called. And if you use those you'll see the keyboard shortcuts listed just to the right of it. Alright, a couple other things. When it comes to collections and hard drives and all that, if you look at your hard drive list, you'll notice just to the left of each hard-drive name is a little color. It's supposed to look like a LED, like a power light on your hard drive. Know that it can be in three different colors that I am aware of. If it's gray, it means that drive is not connected to your computer, or at least not powered up. So it can't see it. If it's green, it is powered up. Lightroom sees it. And if it's orange or amber, or whatever color you wanna call that other one, it means your hard drive is almost full. So, in case you weren't aware, sometimes there's just a color you've never seen before, which is probably an orange one, and that means that your drive's just getting close to full. You might want to clear some space off of it. Alright, then. A couple of other things, about the status of your images. If you select a bunch of images, which I'm gonna do right now. I'm selecting maybe five or six images, randomly, in my catalog, and you'll look at the right side of your screen when you're in the Library Module. There is a Histogram available on the upper right. And I'm gonna talk about the actual histogram. I wanna talk about something that's just below it. 'Cause I don't think we have time to cover it in class. Under there you're gonna find a set of four icons. Those icons will look like a solid rectangle surrounded by a little box, just an outline of a rectangle. And if you select a series of images and you look up there right at the bottom edge of the histogram area, in the Library Module, if what you see is just an outline with no center put into it, then it means the Lightroom can see the original picture. It's actively available to Lightroom, but the middle part, since it is empty on that left-most icon, it means it does not have a Smart Preview. Meaning if you wanted to adjust that image, when that drive gets disconnected, you won't be able to because there is no Smart Preview. The icon to the right of that, shows a solid rectangle that's outlined. And that means you have both the original image available right now, and the center part that's solid tells you it also has a Smart Preview. That means you will be able to adjust it even when you disconnect that hard drive. The third icon over, has the center area solid and the outer box is dashed, like it's gray. That means it does have a Smart Preview, you can adjust it when that drive's not attached, but it can't find the original right now, which usually means the drive that contains it is disconnected. Although it could mean that you moved that folder and Lightroom just doesn't know where it is. The final icon on the far right side will show a dotted rectangle with an exclamation point in the middle of it. And if there's a number next to that, that means that that number of images it simply can't find and it has no Smart Preview. Most of the time that means it's on a hard drive. It's not connected, and it doesn't have a Smart Preview. All that means is when you connect that hard drive again, everything will be fine. It's just, while you're traveling, that image, you'll only be able to view, you'll be able to put it in collections and keyword it, but you will not be able to adjust it. You most likely won't be able to print it or export it with any kind of quality, because it doesn't have a Smart Preview, and it doesn't have the original. But those are some icons that some people have asked about and that I didn't have the chance, I believe, to cover during class. I'm gonna look at some of the comments here. Looks like some of the people are seeing both the video and audio now. There's saying the video is good. Like I said, you're just looking at me, so the video is no big deal. Let's see here, just glancing at a few of these. I see some of you are losing sound or video. You can try reloading the page, or like I say, wait until I'm done recording and it should post the end result, which would include both. Okay, looking at a few other comments. Alright. So, other things that I saw come up in the questions. Virtual copies. There's a lot of misinformation and just confusion about them. If you right-click on an image, you can choose a choice called Create Virtual Copy, and when you do that, you will see two versions of the picture. Two separate thumbnails in the Library Module. In the one that has the lower left corner turned up, at least it looks like it's turned up, that's your virtual copy. Now when you create that virtual copy, it hasn't done anything in your hard drive. It's just one original file, but you now have two representations of it. Since Lightroom simply writes down what you've done to your pictures as text, and that's what it's storing in the Lightroom Catalog file, It simply has two records for one picture. It says make it show up as a square picture, for instance, and also make it show up as a black and white, that might be the two versions that you have. But know that those two versions are linked back to one original file. And that makes it so that there's some slide odd behaviors there, and some things you need to consider. First, if you're trying to move a virtual copy between folders, it won't let you. You have to move the original, and if you move the original, all the virtual copies move with it. They have to reside in the same folder because there's just one original. There's not more than one file, so it can't be in more than one folder. If using collections, you can have it with virtual copies only in one collection. The original doesn't have to be there. But in folders you have to drag the original image, and if you move it, even if you didn't tell it to move the virtual copies, they're gonna move alone with it. If you're not sure which file is the original, because all you're looking at is the virtual copy, and you have no clue which one. You have a lot of similar images. What you can do is in the, if you click on an image, and I don't know how quickly I'll be able to find one here, but, I should be able to find one relatively quickly, but if you find a virtual copy, I've got one right here, you go to the right side of your screen when you're in the Library Module, and over there you're going to find a choice called Metadata, it's a whole section, and one of the choices under there is called Copy Name. And that's where you can actually change the name of that virtual copy. It's very useful to put a good name in there to say why did you make it. Because otherwise you can end up with a whole bunch of them that look very similar. So give it a great name, and then to the right of the field called Copy Name is a right-pointing arrow. And if I click that right-pointing arrow, it will bring me to whichever folder contains the original, and it'll highlight it. So if you needed to move it to a different folder, and have all those virtual copies move along with it, you would have it selected, then you'd know where it is. Let's see what else with Virtual Copies. Alright. Then let's say you've been using Virtual Copies just to experiment. And you got your image to look good at one point, you made a virtual copy to keep that version, and started working on this alternative version. You kept adjusting it and you're like, maybe that's better, I'm not sure. Let's make another virtual copy and continue experimenting. So that by the time you are done, you go back to the folder where the image is and you see the original sitting there and you see, let's just say four virtual copies. But they're very similar. Well, that's where, first off, you might wanna name them to make sure you keep track of why is there each one there. Maybe you call one Vivid Version, another one Low Contrast Version, Cropped for Magazine Cover, whatever it is so you can remember why they're there. But let's just say you only need one version in the end. When you're completely done, you only need one version in your file. And if so, those virtual copies are just cluttering up that folder, and making it more difficult the next time you visit it to figure out what file to use. So if that's the case, and I have that case in front of me right now, you can click on the version of the picture that you like the most, the only one that you wanna keep, and if it happens to be the one where the lower left corner, the corner's turned up to indicate it's a virtual copy, you can then go to the Photo Menu, and there's a choice in there called Set Copy as Master. Set Copy as Master, it's under the Photo Menu. What that does, is it'll make where you used to have folded up corner that indicated it was a virtual copy, that will go away. And what used to be considered the original, it's corner will be flipped up to say now it's considered a virtual copy. Since they all point back to the same original file, you can do that without any problem. And, then you could delete all those virtual copies that you had, because you were just using them to experiment, you didn't really need 'em. The time that I keep my virtual copies is when I actually need more than one version of my picture. Oftentimes, I get requests that somebody wants to use one of my pictures on a magazine cover. Magazine cover is vertical, my original was horizontal. I need to crop it for their specific use. I'd rather not have them crop it, cause they might not crop it the way I like it, so that's when I create a virtual copy, 'cause I don't want it to mess with the version that I have other uses for, but making a nice print of, and then I'll go crop it just for their purposes. But I'll name it. I'll go over on the right side of my screen where it says Copy Name, and I'll put in the name of the magazine, crop for, and then that magazine, so I'll know why it's there. And since it has to be in the same folder as the original, what I might do is select all those virtual copies along with the original, and just make sure whichever version is my personal master version, I click on to make it the most selected. It will be selected in white instead of light gray. And I can then go to the Photo Menu, there's a choice called Stacking, and I can say Group Into Stack. You can also do that by typing Command G on a Mac, which should be Control G in Windows, and that will make it so all I see is one picture. It's as if the others are just stacked underneath it. And there'll be a number on top of the image indicating how many more images are in the stack. If I were to click on the number, I'd see 'em all. Click the number a second time and it would collapse the stack, so I only see the top one. And by doing it that way, then it's not gonna look cluttered in my folder list. What else do we have about Virtual Copies? Oh, a couple other things were... There's a couple of odd behaviors you should know about. And that is, if your original picture had keywords attached to it, and you make a virtual copy of it, that virtual copy has the same keywords attached. It's not that the two are linked. It's just at the moment you made the copy, in order to be a true copy, it has to have the qualities of the original, which means those keywords come along with it. You can, after you do that, remove the keywords either from the original or the virtual copy. So that you don't suddenly start seeing two of them when you do searches based on keywords. Because if I have a keyword of Portfolio, and then a keyword, maybe a sub-keyword of that, called Landscapes, it really doesn't make sense to have two copies of the exact same picture with slightly different treatments in that portfolio. I would need to decide which of those two is worthy of my portfolio, and whichever one isn't, I'd click on it, and on the right side of my screen I'd go to the keyword list, where you can type 'em in, and I would select the word Portfolio and hit delete to remove that keyword from whichever one shouldn't be there. But it is something you should be aware of. Now, it's only gonna have the same keywords as the original at the moment you make the virtual copy. If, after that, you make additional changes to your keywords, you can click on the original and add another keyword. That keyword is not automatically applied to the virtual copy, because the virtual copy is supposed to be independent as if it's based on a different photograph. So you need to be a little bit aware of that. The moment you make the virtual copy, copy does have the exact same qualities as the original. But after that they start to deviate. If you make any change to either one, then the other one, either the original or the copy does not suddenly keep those additional changes. There are a few exceptions, and that is, if you put the original or virtual copy in a Quick Collection, when you make... I think when you put the original in a Quick Collection, if you make a virtual copy, it will be in there as well, in the Quick Collection. That's not true with normal Collections. So if you drag the original picture into a normal collection, later on when you're not looking up a collection instead, you're looking at the folder that contains the original picture, you say let's make a virtual copy. It's not included in that collection. So you'd have to manually drag it over there if you wanted to include it as well. Someone else asked questions about keeping track of images that you send to other people, because one way of keeping track of what's sent to other people is to just keep those files around. So you might have a folder called, you know, Sent to Client on this particular date, and you have some jpegs in there that you sent them, and then you send the same images to somebody else later, and you put another sub-folder in there with more jpegs to indicate here's what you sent to the client. I personally don't like doing that because then, when I go to my folder list, it's cluttered, and there's a lot of duplicate images in there that might be of various sizes. I would rather have my Catalog be full of only the originals, what I would call my Master Files. Those are RAW files, if all the changes were made in Lightroom. Or it's a tif or Photoshop file format image, if the image made it into Photoshop, it had additional changes made. And that's what I keep. Then, when a client needs some pictures, I select the images that they need, I go to the File Menu, choose Export with Preset, and hopefully I have a preset for the size that they need, and if so, I use it, and it exports my image. I email those to a client, and when it's done being sent, I throw away that folder. The folder of jpegs. Because I still have the full-size originals in Lightroom on my hard drive, and therefore I can always create another set of those jpegs. And so, not get all cluttered. It won't get cluttered then. Just so you know, the video said it would cut out for a second, and then it came right back in. So, therefore I don't have to keep all these folders and folders of jpegs. Instead, I deliver to the client and I throw 'em away. But then how can I tell what have I sent to people and what haven't I? Well, that's where I use keywording. And so, if I were to click on an image on the right side of my screen, on my Keyword List, I have a... and this is something that we'll talk about as far as organizing you keywords into a structure. I have a Parent keyword called Details, and one of the Child keywords underneath there is called Submissions. And that's where I can see submissions that I've sent to various awards contests, like photo awards things. I'll put, like here's the 2012 Spider Awards, which is a black and white contest. Here's 2015 ones. In all that I can figure out what have I submitted to that particular contest. Below that I have the names of some clients that use my images for marketing purposes. And so if I go in there, I can see what images have I submitted to them as possibilities to use for marketing on various dates. Because I created a keyword that includes the year, and the month, I don't usually need the day for my purposes, and then the name of the company. And I can tell exactly what have I submitted to each company on any particular date. And then I also sometimes put additional keywords like Requested High Res, and it's only marked on those pictures that they requested. However it is you find it useful to be tracked. Everybody has different uses for their images, so the main thing is, get out a sheet of paper and brainstorm, who do you need to send you pictures to, and what specifics about those images? Do you send low res files to begin with, and then they request high res of only certain ones? Or is there some other process? And, if so, think about what would be the best way to track that using just words that you're attaching to your pictures. And, so anyway, I do it in keywords. Therefore, I don't have to have a bunch of extra files cluttering my Lightroom Catalog. Okay, I'm gonna look at a few of the comments here to see if there's anything... I'm mainly basing what I'm doing, so far, on comments we've received this week on the Facebook group. But I wanna look here for a moment. Someone is asking, "How do I send the full-resolution "RAW file to the client? "Can I do this through Lightroom?" Yes you can. I have a preset in my Export Presets that I call, let me see what it's called here. It's just called Copy to Desktop, is what I named it. And if I go and look at that Export Preset, you can create one for this, and, in my Export Presets, I'm gonna go Copy to Desktop, and the main thing that is unique about this particular export settings, is under the section called File Settings, that's where you'd usually choose between jpeg and tif and all that, one of your choices is called Original. And if you choose Original, then there will be no options for setting it up, there'll be no options for resizing either. It will all become grayed out, because you literally are asking for the original. And so, I create a Preset. If you've never done a preset before, go to the File Menu and choose Export. Then you go on the right side of that screen to dial in the settings that you want, the main one being under File Settings, where you set it to Original. And then on the left side of that screen there'll be a button called Add. And I would click the Add button and give it a name, like Copy to Desktop. And that means it will copy a copy of the original file, same quality and everything, and I give them that. Now, for me personally, I never give my RAW files to clients because that's like giving my unprocessed film out of a film camera to a client, and trusting them with processing it. Sure, some clients might require that, and so you gotta do it, but as a general thing, if they want the highest quality file, I'll give them a tif. A tif will be a processed version. It has the developed settings I applied at Lightroom applied to it, but it's as high quality as I can give without them needing Photoshop or Lightroom tif to be able to open that file. 'Cause RAW files are not processed, and if you give them to a client and they don't have professional software to work on those files, they largely won't be able to use them. If you give them a jpeg or a tif, though, those are more universal file formats, those are usually what you use for delivering file formats. Let's see, just so you know, there's people that aren't seeing videos still. Some people are saying there's no video on Firefox, but if you get in Chrome, there is. So, this Facebook Live stuff is new to me, and I found it's not perfect yet. In the playback video, I found it looks like an Asian transcribed Karate movie, when the lips don't line up with the audio, but... Let's see here. Alright, just looking for other questions, and also trying to cover some things that came up this week. So, let's take a look. Some people were confused a little bit about what happens when you edit an image in Photoshop. First, if the image has been imported in Lightroom, in order to keep Lightroom informed about the fact that you're sending it over to Photoshop, it's best if you click on the photo in Lightroom, go to the Photo Menu, where you're gonna find a choice called Edit In, and there you're gonna find Edit In Photoshop. And if you do that, it will send that image over to Photoshop, where you can make changes. But Photoshop can't save it's changes back into that RAW file. A RAW file is locked. It's made by the camera manufacturer in a way that's not designed to have additional changes added later. And so, because it can't save it back into the RAW file, it needs to create a second file. That second file should be in either tif format or Photoshop format. There is no quality difference between those two. I personally use tif. There are some advantages of tif, but they're not huge. So don't feel bad if you use Photoshop, and if you're used to using Photoshop, only look at these advantages and decide do they apply to you, and if they don't, keep using what you are. No reason to change. So, the advantages of tif. First, Photoshop file format, the maximum file size is two gigabytes. That sounds huge! But I sometimes have images that are made out of 140 photographs combined. My camera is over 40 megapixels. So, that ends up being a humongous file. Those are light paintings, where there's a bunch of different exposures that are being combined. So if I try to save that in Photoshop file format, and I run into the two gigabyte file size limit, it just won't be able to save the file. Tif, on the other hand, has a four gigabyte file size limit, and therefore, I can often get it to fit in a tif file. If it's even bigger than four gigs, which is really rare, but it still happens, then I have to use another file format called PSB. That stands for Photoshop Big. And, unfortunately, Lightroom does not support that format. So what I have to do in that case, is I save out a PSB file, Photoshop Big file, and I put it in the same folder where I would usually store my images. But then, in Photoshop, I flatten the image so there are no layers. And I do Save As, and I save it as a tif. And, or a jpeg, and on the very end of the filename I put a dash, and I can't remember the wording that I use, 'cause I try to keep it consistent, but it's so rare I need to use it. But I would put a dash and put something like Has PSB, meaning it has another file associated with it that Lightroom's not showing me. And in order for me to get to that big file, what I do is, in Lightroom, I right-click on the one that's either a jpeg or a tif. It's a flattened version, it's much smaller. I right-click on it, and I say Show in Finder. It brings me to the folder in my operating system, shows me that tif or jpeg file sitting there, and right next to it will be the PSB file. I can double-click on that and it will open it right in Photoshop. It's extremely rare to have to do that. 'Cause you have to have a file that's larger than four gigabytes to have the need for it. But when you flatten one of those file, the file size is gonna go down quite a bit, and if I'm saving a full-sized flattened version in the Lightroom, I can print it, I can export it, I can use it for all sorts of things. The only thing is, I can't edit it and still see the layers. That's when I need to right-click on the image, say Show in Finder, and then open the associated PSB file. It'd be nice if Lightroom had some sort of mechanism for dealing with that, but I think there are so few people that need to, that they just haven't put it in as a priority. So, if I've gone to Photoshop, and I've added some layers and I've saved it, and now I have a tif or a Photoshop file format image, now I've got two files. I have the original, which is either a jpeg or a RAW, for me it's always RAW, and then I have my file that came from Photoshop. So, what do I do? Well, I create a sub-folder that is called Support Images. And I move the original RAW file into the Support Images folder, sub-folder. And that tells me that it was used in the creation of one of my other files. That's also where I put the individual exposures that I stitched into a panorama, or the exposures that I combined together into an HDR file. They all go to the Support Images folder to make sure I don't delete 'em, in case I find a better way of stitching a panorama or do an HDR. I might wanna be able to go back to those originals. And I make sure I don't spend any extra time on them because I have the end result, probably either in the In Progress folder if it's not done yet, or in the Base-Level folder if it's done and ready to show the public. If you, then have this layered Photoshop file, it's either tif or Photoshop file for an image, and you try to open it a second time, you click on it in Lightroom, you go to the Photo Menu, choose Edit In, and go to choose Photoshop, a little screen will come up. And you usually wanna choose the bottom-most choice, which is called Edit Original. If you do that, it will open the file as if you never closed it in Photoshop. Meaning that it's in the same... It has all the layers intact and nothing is different about it than when you saved it. If you choose one of the other two choices, one is Edit a Copy, I'd only choose that if I need to keep different iterations of the image. Meaning to show the progress of the image. Here's what it looked like after retouching. Here's what it looked like after color correction. Here's what it looked like after cropping, or something, and I needed all those versions, then I could choose Edit a Copy. And when I did, I'd have two of the Photoshop file format, or tif images now, one would be the older version and one would be one with additional changes. But for me, that's starting to get cluttered. If you're gonna do that, some people need to, then just make sure that after you have, you click on the image and go on the right side in the Library Module into the metadata where you have file name, and add something to the file name to indicate what is this file for. What I would do if I need to have iterations, is I would a add number at the beginning of the file name. One for the first version, two for the next version, three, four, five. So the highest number is the newest file. And on the end of the file name I would probably put a dash and put what was done last, like Retouching Finished. Therefore, if I go to a folder and see 10 versions of an image, I'm not trying to sort through and figure out what it is. You can always sort by date though, to find it, if you haven't done that in the past. I might also stack those images so only the newest one's on top. Therefore, you just see one image and you could always expand the stack and see the others if you happen to need them. Let's see if there's anything else here. But what I would do, is if I am doing iterations like that, I might move them, all except for the newest one, to the Support Files sub-folder. If I just wanted to get rid of clutter, either that or stacking, one of the two can help you with clutter. Also, just so you know, in Photoshop, it's perfectly fine to go to the File Menu and choose Save As. A lot of people will say "never, never do that!" No, go ahead and do it. Do it as much as you want. It's just, if you do it, you're gonna create a new version of that file, so you'll then have two. The original and the one you just saved as a new version. And so you might end up with two versions in Lightroom, and if you happen to move that to a different folder, or do some other things, Lightroom can occasionally get confused. So if you return to Lightroom after using Save As, and you don't see that file showing up, and you know where it is in your folders, but it's just not there in Lightroom, then right-click on the folder and choose Synchronize Folder. That will force Lightroom to take a fresh look at the folder, it should find the image, and it will import it so it shows up. But most of the time you don't need to do that because as long as you chose Edit in Photoshop, then when you save from Photoshop, Lightroom's aware of your doing that. On occasion it will mess up a little bit, though, and that's when I use Synchronize. But for me, personally, I don't keep iterations where I show here's what it looked like at the beginning, here's what it looked like the next day, and the next day. I just keep the end result, and in Photoshop, if that's what I'm using, I'm using layers to make it so nothing is permanent. I can always turn off layers to get back to certain versions of my picture most of the time. So I find I just don't need those intermediate files. I just have one master, and then I have the original RAW it was made from, which I move to my Support Files folder. Alright, well that is all what I have written down for questions, so I'm gonna scroll through here. Take me a second, to look at more questions that we've had typed in while we've been Live, to see if there's any here that I've missed and might need to address. And I'm not gonna answer every single one, just because, if it only applies to one person, then I'd rather answer it in Facebook. Here, I'd like to answer ones that apply to many people. So, let's see here. Oh, good point, thanks Sam. If you need to go between folders quite frequently, like maybe you manage your files based on folders instead of collections, or you can use collections, if you frequently go to the same folder over and over again, like you have a big project and you're always going back there, if you go down to the filmstrip, which is the thing at the bottom of your screen in Lightroom, you might have to click on the little arrow at the bottom to get it to pop up, near the left side of it, there is, it will tell you the name of the folder you're currently viewing, it will tell you how many pictures are in that folder, how many of those pictures are selected, and the name of the picture that is currently selected. But right on the right edge of that, is a down-pointing arrow, so it's right at the edge of where there's some text. If you click there, you're going to find a choice of Recent Sources, which is very convenient, 'cause if you know you were viewing a folder or collection, you know, five minutes ago, and you're trying to remember where it was, instead of having to manually navigate, you can just go to that little pop-up menu and go to Recent Sources, and it should be within the list. I see in my Recent Sources, there's about a dozen folders and collections listed there. Then, below that, there's a choice called Add to Favorites, and if I choose Add to Favorites, which I just did, and then I go back, there's a separate section in the same pop-up menu, just called Favorite Sources. And that's where you can put your own choices. So if there's folders you go to all the time, I mean all the time, then you probably wanna put it in your favorites and that might be a convenient way to get to it. So, again, that was in the filmstrip, and the filmstrip is found at the bottom of your screen. If it's not currently visible, you'll have to click the little triangle that's at the bottom center of your screen, and on the left side you'll just find a line of text. It indicates what folder or collection you're currently in, how many pictures are in there and that kind of stuff, and it's just on the right edge of where that shows up. It's a little down-pointing arrow that you click on, and that's a quick way of going to Research Sources, and also, you can save things in there as your favorites, and that was Sam Cox that brought that in as a comment. Thank you, Sam. You've been great as far as helping out the Facebook group. Oh, one thing I need to mention is, for the next few days, I won't be able to spend as much time on the Facebook group answering questions. I'm not supposed to be anyway. That's what this is for. But I have some projects I need to be working on, and so I won't have as much time. I'll still try to get in there on occasion, so please try to help each other a little bit more than usual, just because I won't be spending quite as much time there. I'll be back in a few days where I'll have more time to devote to it. Someone says "what happens if you output, "meaning export, a size that is not the same size "as the image in Lightroom? "Does it crop it, or will it resize it to the longest size?" Yeah, the number you type in for exporting, for width and height, it's not gonna crop your picture. If you type in, let's say, the same width and height, so the numbers are identical, 1,000 and 1,000. You're not gonna get a square photo. You're gonna get your proportion of a photo, let's say it's a panorama, and it's just gonna fit within 1,000 by 1,000 pixels. So, if it's a panorama, in that case, the widest dimension will be 1,000 pixels, 'cause that's what you have typed in, and the hightest dimension, the height, will be whatever it naturally comes to with your cropping. So, what you're saying is, go no larger than this width and this height, but maintain the proportions, or aspect ratio, or original cropping of the picture. If you needed a different crop, if you actually need a square, you'd probably want to create a virtual copy, if you wanna maintain the original cropping as well, crop it to a square, and then you can do an export, and if you had a 1,000 by a 1,000 typed in, you'd get exactly that, because it's a square image to begin with. So, it just resizes the image without cropping. You have to manually crop something. Photoshop will not do that for you. The only time you'll see Photoshop cropping things for you is in places like the Print Module and the Slideshow Module, where you have choices of Resize to Fill and Resize to Fit. Fill means don't have any empty space on my screen. No black space, and therefore it will crop your image. It'll zoom up on the center of it until it fits the screen, whereas Resize to Fit means it will fit within your screen, but there might be some black filling it in where it doesn't completely fill it. Let's see here. And Scott Hamil, I'm not certain, as far as an adjustment brush, you want it to save the size, feather and auto mass selections, if you don't find it saving that in the normal preset, there's no other additional options to get it to do any more than that. I think it's most likely to ignore those settings in the very bottom. It's just mainly the adjustment settings that are being saved. This recording will be available later. Once I'm done recording it, it will be on Facebook, so if you missed anything, you will be able to see everything. You can play it back multiple times as much as you want. And, if you're worried about my hair, I just got out of the shower. I just came back from yoga. Let's see here. It looks like mainly questions about the video doing great things. Someone asked, "Why would I want virtual copies "if I can create snapshots and get back "to the different look?" Snapshots are great. I use snapshots when I'm experimenting. So I get the image to a stage where it looks pretty good. I'll add a snapshot, and then I feel free to experiment as much as I possibly want, 'cause I could always click back in the name of that snapshot and it would get me back to what the image looked like at that stage. Which is great. But sometimes I need more than one version of my picture. You know, a magazine asked for a vertical crop of the image, and I want to see it there in my catalog as a separate image. Because there are some things you can't do with snapshots. Just so you know, if you hear any sounds, Friday is lawn day here at the townhomes we're in, and they make a lot of noise, so trimming hedges and things. I just heard one of them go by, so, nothing I can do about that. But, there's some things you can't do with a virtual copy, I mean, sorry with a snapshot. I can't keyword a snapshot, so I can't tag it with "I delivered this to the client," kind of thing, keyword. I can do it to the original, but if the original had different cropping, then it's not helpful. I can't add that snapshot to a collection. Only whatever the current version is can be in a collection. And so it really depends. But if all you're doing is experimenting and things, then snapshots are great, and I only use virtual copies if I actually need to see more than one version of the image at a time. And I'm not talking about in the Develop Module or something; sometimes you wanna compare two side-by-side. Maybe you got it be certain black and white look, and now you're gonna tint it and you wanna compare the two. You can do that with snapshots. Here's how. Go to the Libr... I'm sorry, the Develop Module in Lightroom, when you have a picture active, and add a snapshot. Then, in the bottom of your screen, when you're in the Develop Module, near the left side... I should probably do this... There are some icons, one of which looks like some Ys, the letter Y, and if you click the little arrow that's next to it, you have some options. I'm gonna choose a choice called Before/After, Left/Right, and that's gonna put two images side-by-side. What I'm seeing on the left side of my screen is the original untouched image before it was ever changed. On the right side, I'm seeing my end result. So that's how it's usually used, Before and After. But now, I want the image that's on the right side to be considered the Before, so I can continue to experiment and still see them side-by-side. You'll have to try this to know what I'm talking about. Well, there's a couple things you can do. One of them is, at the bottom there will be an icon, once you're in that side-by-side view, that's called Copy After Settings to Before. It's the icon that looks like an arrow pointing left. And if I click it, it's gonna move what's currently considered my After, over to the left side, and it will be considered Before. Then I can continue adjusting my picture. I can move the sliders around, do whatever I want, and now I'm seeing what used to be the After on the left, and what I've done since then on the right. Or, I can do the same thing with a snapshot. If I go to my Snapshot list, and I have a snapshot in there, I can right-click on it when I'm in that view that shows the two images side-by-side, and there's a choice called Copy Snapshot Settings to Before. And therefore, on the left side of my screen, I'll see what the snapshop looked like, and on the right side is the current version of the image, and I can continue changing it. I'll see them side-by-side. When I'm done with that and I want to get out of it, the icon just to the left of the ones that have the Y's on them, the ones that got you into that side-by-side view that's near the bottom of the Develop Module, it just looks like a rectangle inside of a rectangle, that gets you back to normal. And so that's how you can do it. Alright, well I've gone through the majority of questions I wanted to cover, and I covered quite a few that you guys had typed in. It's been almost an hour, and so I think the broadcast is about to start for today's lesson, so I wanna cut this off here. If you happen to miss anything, know that this video will be posted soon on the Facebook group, so you can review it and play it back, and I'm sorry my face is blown out to solid white. I don't see any options for changing the exposure. Before I started this video, I tested it with a normal camera and I looked fine. So, I am a pretty pale guy, but not that pale. Anyway, thank you guys for tuning in here. If you find this video to be useful, feel free to send any of your friends to it to have them view it as well, once it's posted in the group. The more people that know about this class, the better.

Welcome to CreativeLive’s comprehensive Lightroom® workshop! Join one of our best software instructors, Ben Willmore, to learn how to process and organize your images more efficiently - and have more time to spend doing the stuff that matters. In this series of lessons, you’ll learn how to:

  • Import and organize your images
  • Optimize your photos and workflow
  • Make your images searchable within the program
  • Exporting, printing, and troubleshooting

When you purchase this course you’ll gain access to both an enduring resource to build your skills and a community with which to share the fruits of your work. Ben will provide a workbook that acts as a reference guide.

Don't have Photoshop yet? Get it now so you can follow along with the course!

Software Used: Adobe Lightroom CC 2015.2 - 2015.3



  • Creative Live is a godsend and, in my opinion, Ben Willmore is one of their best instructors - if not the best. He is as natural and thoughtful a teacher as he must be a learner. He knows a lot! He is clear about what his students want and need to know, from basic to advanced concepts, and he is constantly aware that he has students watching who are of different knowledge levels. He never takes off, leaving the less experienced behind - instead he moves forward at a good pace while referring back to create mental links during the progression; good for all levels. I work with Lightroom already and so have both experience and questions about how to work more efficiently and creatively. This bootcamp is definitely helping me. I've watched others of Ben's classes, and they always help. Thank you, Ben and Creative Live.
  • Thanks again Ben, for your fabulous teaching and your ability to actually teach and not just show and tell...As other people have commented you have a gift to teach in the way that you do. I have purchased many of your courses and was not going to purchase this, thinking I have all your prior courses...alas, you are just too good!!! I had to buy it in the end and thanks again for all the goodies, so worth the money: Really looking forward to June for your Photoshop class. Once again, I have taken many of your photoshop courses but you keep adding such great info that I cannot resist...see you in June!! Keep up the fabulous work, byw, I love all the yoga poses, what fun you both have with this idea...
  • I have had the privilege of participating in this excellent class from the front row seat in the Creative Live San Francisco studios. After only a few of the 20 sessions, I quickly appreciated the many features and benefits of using LightRoom to organize and edit all of my images. If you're like me, you've had access to LR for a while, and have opened it and fumbled through the myriad of complex menus a few times, then have gone back to using Photoshop. After these classes with Ben Willmore, (and they're not even done yet), I have tackled the job of re-organizing and keywording tens of thousands of images that reside on various backup drives, many of which I've never even had time to look at. I now have a path forward to enjoying what is in my archives rather than letting them gather dust. I have made HDR images, panoramas, slide shows and Blurb books with ease based on the techniques learned in class. Throughout the class, we lobbed many questions at Ben, and every single time he knew the answer in an instant, or could give us a work-around or several ways to do what we're trying to accomplish in LR. His deep knowledge of LR (and PS) simply cannot be matched, and he's a natural trainer. The days have flown by, and after each day I can't wait to get home and start working on my images. Regardless of your type of photography - professional, avid amateur, or hobbyist - if you shoot and edit a lot of images, LR can be a huge benefit in your workflow. Even if you think you already sort of know how LR works, there is still plenty of useful info in this course that will help you to extract maximum benefit from Lightroom. For me it has been nothing short of transformative!