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Lightroom Classic: Essential Training

Lesson 21 of 33

Creating an Import Preset

Mark Wallace

Lightroom Classic: Essential Training

Mark Wallace

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Lesson Info

21. Creating an Import Preset
Import Presets will keep your catalogs healthy and organized. Mark will explain the benefits of creating Import Presets and give a demonstration of how they work. Then we’ll create our first Import Preset and add it to our workflow.

Lesson Info

Creating an Import Preset

one of the greatest tools, one of my favorite tools in Light room Classic, our import presets. We can set up all of that stuff that we did previously. That took us forever to get everything ready to go and organize our images and get them into Light Room Classic. We can automate all of that with a single import preset. Now I like to make import presets for different things when I was traveling around the world, I made a single import preset for every single country I was in. So anything I did in Colombia, I would just click a button and it will automatically be categorized in key warded and set and go into a folder for Colombia. And when I was in peru it go into the peru folder. If I was in Czech Republic would go into that. If you're an event photographer, maybe you would do a preset for different events. If your wedding photographer, maybe you do presets for different weddings, you can choose however you want to use these but it will save you a ton of time and you can copy your exist...

ing presets and maybe change a few things and create a new presets. So even duplicating presets is going to save you a lot of time. Um So let's hop over here into Light room Classic and create an import preset. So what I'm going to do is we start by importing, so we're going to go over here to import, going to click the import button and this is everything that we saw previously. Remember we're saying where we're coming from, what we want to choose, where we want this to go with an import preset, we just set this up one time and it's done. So I'm gonna choose my source. Now the source will change from every single time you do an import, the source is going to be different. So that's the one thing that will change with your preset, You'll choose what you're importing and then the rest of it will be applied automatically. So I'm gonna go into my light room. Classic. And I'm gonna go in here to my z old hard drive backups and I have a folder of a model that I shot in spain. Her name is Diana to bar and I want to import these images. Okay, so we have all these images that we want to import. So we've selected what we want and we want to copy these to a new destination and adam to the to the library. So what I'm gonna do here is I'm going to say minimal previews. I'm not going to build smart previews. I'm not gonna import suspected duplicates. Um I'm gonna save time by not making a backup for our demo but I would normally choose this so that I would have a backup copy here. Um I could, if I want I could rename the files to anything I wanted to for this demo. I'm just gonna leave that as is, but it's an option. You can do that, you can rename all of that stuff. Now, here's the fun, here's the joy. So we have some presets over here, some preset options and we can choose the metadata. So remember we created that metadata demo, so I'm going to choose that to be saved here. The other thing we can do is now that we've created a develop preset, I can choose any develop presets that is in Light Room Classic. So what we're gonna do is we're gonna go down here to Light room essentials. Remember we created this Gillian, black and white preset. Way back before when I was showing you how to create presets, I'm going to choose that one. So what will happen is as these images are coming in they're going to be put on my light room hard drive. They're going to have the metadata added from Mark's demo. So that's my fake address and email and copyright information. It's also going to add a develop preset. So these are going to be automatically converted to black and white. The other thing I'm gonna save in this preset is I'm gonna say model and photo shoot and black and white because I want this to be able to be applied not just to diana but to several different photo shoots. So let me explain this. So it's clear. So this is not a light room preset that is specific to this one. Photo shoot. This is something I want to be able to apply to many different photo shoots in the future. And so what I can do is because I've chosen generic keywords just model and photo shoot in black and white and I know that they develop preset is a black and white any time in the future. I say I want to import all of these images and I want to keyword them and convert them to black and white. I can do that. So it's not going to have a keyword saying Diana on models that aren't Diana. And so that's why I'm keeping it generic. Okay. The other thing I want to do here is tell this where I wanted to go now remember this is going to be used over and over and over for a long time. So what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna put it in my photos folder and I'm gonna just organize the organize these into a sub folder and maybe I'll call this model shoots and then or maybe models. That's a better way to say maybe models. And then I'm going to organize this was going to put it into one folder just to keep it easy. I'm just gonna have it come into uh my photos into a photo called models. And then I'll use my key wording to make sure that I can sort all this stuff later on. Okay, so that is all set up now. Everything looks like it did before. Normally we would hit import down here. But right now we're not gonna do that yet. There is a little bar that you might not have noticed right here in the center of this import. And so it says right now none what is asking for is what import preset do you want to use? So I'm going to click on that and you can see in my light room catalog there are tons of presets. The reason there are tons of presets because I use these all the time. And light room presets are shared across catalogs. Now, this is an important thing to understand. Some presets that you create in a light room classic are going to show up no matter which catalogue you're in. And so if you have multiple catalogs, your light room presets for importing for watermarking for develop presets, things like that export presets, they will show up. So you're creating them once and then you can use them over and over. Which is fantastic. If you create a catalogue for maybe a wedding one and then you create a brand new catalog for wedding too and Wedding Three and Wedding 600 or Event 500 or whatever. You don't have to re create presets over and over and over again. They are going to travel with you to all of your different catalogs. That's why you're seeing all of my presets show up. So we zip back in here, you can see that. I have one for every single country um that I visit frequently. What I want to do is I want to save this as a new preset. And so I'm just going to click save as a new preset. And then I'm just gonna say model demo, black and white. And I'll create that. Okay, now it shows up there and I can say import, but just to show you how this works, I'm going to cancel this because it's created now. So now let's say we're in the future and we want to import model photo shoot and convert everything to black and white. Here's how it would work. I would go over to import, it's gonna say where do you want to import from? I'm gonna choose diana Tobar and then I'm just going to go here to my import presets and then I'm gonna scroll to um let's see where it is. It's called Model shoot, Model demo black and white right there. I'm gonna click that and then I'll say import notice. I didn't take any time to check anything because I don't need to it's all set up now these files are going to start pouring in and as they pour in notice they're being converted to a black and white image. We have that vignette that we added all of that preset that we created is just being added to this. You also see that my contact info and all that stuff that we added is in there. Um When we go to our keywords here keyboarding we have black and white model photo shoot I think there it comes, it's coming in but we have all of that information in there. Um So this takes a little while because it's adding all of those uh that preset to each one of these images and so it's going to be doing that. That is how you create an import preset. Now if I wanted to use a different develop preset I could do that, I could make one that's model shoot highly saturated model shoot 16x9 crop. I can do all anything I want. So the joy of presets is that you can put presets inside of presets to create automation to make light room behave the way that you want. Now for me I normally don't use develop presets in my import process. Normally I want those files to come in as I shot them in the camera so that I can manipulate them later. And then use my presets on an image by image basis. And so it's up to you if you want to use a specific develop preset in your import or not. The other thing that you can do even with an import preset is when you choose import preset, remember it brings up the entire dialogue, You can still go in and make altercations or alterations to don't make altercations. You beat up your presets, you can make alterations to your uh your options before you click import. So you can use an import preset as a starting point to import your images. And so for this one, for example, I could have used model shoot black and white and everything would have been set and then it could have gone over to those um those key wording areas and just added diana, Tobar spain and maybe some specifics about that one, import and then click import. And so presets. It doesn't matter if it's a develop preset, a watermark preset and import preset export preset. You can use those as either an end product, click a button and it's done. Or you can load them up and make modifications and just use them as a starting point. And that's all there is to know about import presets.

Class Description


  • Understand how Lightroom keeps things organized – the catalog system.
  • Use The Library module: importing, keywording, metadata, organizing, and more.
  • Use the Develop module: Make global and local adjustments, use the tools, use and create presets.
  • Understand the Map module: Organize your photos geographically and use privacy settings.
  • Use the Book module: Create a book from scratch.
  • Use the Slideshow module: Create a slideshow, create presets, learn strategies for increasing your income using the slideshow module.
  • Use the Print module: Create prints, create proof sheets for clients, and learn other hidden features.
  • Use the Web module: Create galleries for online viewing.

In addition to the modules Mark will be covering:

  • Custom Presets for automating your workflow.
  • Watermarking your images.
  • Using Publish Services.
  • Integration with Photoshop, Lightroom, and Creative Cloud.


This class is a step-by-step walkthrough of Lightroom Classic, perfect for the beginner as well as those who have worked with Lightroom Classic previously. This class is everything you ever wanted to know about Lightroom Classic but were afraid to ask.

This class will give you an overview of Lightroom Classic and show you how to maximize its potential by creating a workflow for importing, keywording, adjusting, and exporting your images.


  • Beginner and Intermediate photographers.
  • Professional Photographers looking to streamline their workflow.


Adobe Lightroom Classic

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Class Materials

Tether Tools Pro Kit Discount

Tether Tools Starter Kit Discount

Ratings and Reviews

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This is an excellent class to learn about Lightroom Classic. Since it's not the same as Photoshop, I found Lightroom Classic to be confusing and difficult to intuitively figure out. Mark Wallace is an expert and exceptional teacher for the program and I learned so much today in this free class presentation that I am planning to purchase the program so I can continue to have a solid understanding of Lightroom Classic basics. Thanks, Mark, for inspiring me to get back into computer photo editing with LR Classic!