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Lightroom Classic: Importing

Lesson 7 from: The Streamlined Lightroom Workflow

Jared Platt

Lightroom Classic: Importing

Lesson 7 from: The Streamlined Lightroom Workflow

Jared Platt

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Lesson Info

7. Lightroom Classic: Importing

<b>In this lesson you will learn all about importing your images in Lightroom Classic.&#160; Yes, there is more to it than you think.&#160; You will learn some tricks that speed your workflow along and connect you to the cloud instantly.</b>


Class Trailer



Lightroom Ecosystem Overview


Lightroom Ecosystem Image Delivery Details


Lightroom Introductions


Lightroom Application Names


Lightroom Classic Getting Started


Lightroom Classic: Importing


Lightroom Classic: Selecting


Lightroom Classic: Organizing Images


Lightroom Classic: Adjusting Images


Lightroom Classic: Cleaning Up


Lightroom Classic: Sharing Images


Lightroom Classic: Archiving Images


Lightroom Classic: Workflow Review


Lightroom Classic: Bonus - Cloud Files Location


Lightroom Classic: Bonus - Fixing Synchronization Errors


Lightroom Classic: Cleaning Up the Cloud


Lightroom: Introduction


Lightroom: Importing Images


Lightroom: Browsing Images in Local Storage


Lightroom: Organizing Images


Lightroom: Copying Images to the Cloud


Lightroom: Adjusting Images


Lightroom: Masking


Lightroom: Making an AI Preset


Lightroom: Synchronizing Adjustments and Masks


Lightroom: Sorting and Finding Images


Lightroom: Sharing Images


Lightroom: Archiving Images


Lightroom: Workflow Review


Lightroom: Importing Presets and Profiles


Lightroom Mobile: Workflow Introduction


Lightroom Mobile: Settings


Lightroom Mobile: Overview


Lightroom Mobile: Albums, Collections, and the Cloud


Lightroom Mobile: Importing Local Images


Lightroom Mobile: Importing Images


Lightroom Mobile: Albums and Searching


Lightroom Mobile: Selecting Images


Lightroom Mobile: Organizing Images


Lightroom Mobile: Archiving


Lightroom Mobile: Editing Images


Lightroom Mobile: Editing Across the Cloud


Lightroom Mobile: Sharing Images


Lightroom Mobile: Finding the Best Photos Feature


Lightroom Mobile: Presets and Profiles


Lightroom Mobile: Workflow Review


Putting it All Together


Lesson Info

Lightroom Classic: Importing

1 The first program 2 that we're gonna work in is Lightroom Classic, 3 because that is my normal working workhorse. 4 That's the place that I spend most of my time. 5 That's kind of the hub of my digital universe. 6 And so we're gonna start there, 7 doesn't necessarily mean it's the place 8 that you have to be for your digital hub. 9 You can use Lightroom Mobile for your hub. 10 You can use Lightroom, 11 the new version of Lightroom for your hub. 12 You could use web if you wanted. 13 So we're gonna be working from 14 all of these different versions of Lightroom, 15 but we're starting in Lightroom Classic. 16 So first things first, 17 I need to get some photos. 18 So I shot a disc of images. 19 I'm going to put those into the card reader, 20 and I'm going to then move those photos 21 to the place where I want them to be. 22 So now that I've imported 23 or copied the images onto the hard drive 24 where they're supposed to rest, 25 so that's the final resting place for these images, 26...

now it's time to import them into Lightroom Classic. 27 So I'm gonna go to Lightroom Classic 28 and click on the import button. 29 Now before we import, 30 actually it's probably a good idea for me 31 to give you a quick review 32 of the various areas of Lightroom. 33 So remember that there is a folders area up here. 34 So the folders panel is a list of folders 35 that actually exist on the hard drive. 36 So these are real places on your hard drive. 37 And Lightroom is going to, when I import, 38 it's not actually bringing the images into Lightroom, 39 it's looking at those folders 40 and it's bringing in the metadata from those 41 and a preview of those images. 42 And that's all that's coming into light room's database. 43 The actual images stay over in the folder 44 that we are seeing here in the folder area. 45 Below the folder panel is the collections panel. 46 And the collections are simply virtual folders. 47 They're references to the images that are in the folders. 48 And I can have as many collections as I want, 49 and I can put the same image in multiple collections. 50 I can't do that with folders. 51 An image is in a folder 52 and you can't put it in multiple folders without copying it 53 into those other folders and making a duplicate. 54 But if you're using collections, 55 you can have as many collections 56 with the same images in it as you want 57 because they're all virtual. 58 They're all virtual references. 59 That's really important to understand 60 before we start importing. 61 The other thing that you have to understand 62 before we import is the idea of 63 synchronizing collections to the cloud. 64 And I talked a little bit about that earlier 65 in the idea of our schematic. 66 Remember that it is through collections 67 that we get to the cloud. 68 And so when we're putting images inside of Lightroom, 69 we have to put 'em in a collection 70 and we have to tell that collection to synchronize 71 to the cloud in order to get them up here. 72 And when we do, it's going to send up a smart preview 73 into the smart preview storage area inside of Lightroom. 74 So that's an important reminder as well. 75 So we're gonna go into the import dialogue box now, 76 but I just needed you to have 77 those things in mind before we do that. 78 So I go to the import button down here 79 on the bottom left hand side of Lightroom Classic, 80 and that's in the library module. 81 And I click on import. 82 And now the import dialogue box 83 has on the left hand side the source 84 or the location of our photos, 85 on the middle top it has options 86 as to what we're gonna do to the photos, 87 copy 'em, move 'em or add them. 88 And we're gonna add, 89 because we already have the images where we want them to be, 90 so we will only add them to Lightroom. 91 We're not gonna move them, 92 we're not gonna copy them somewhere 93 they're already where we want them to be. 94 And then on the right hand side 95 is everything that we're going to do to the images, 96 like add metadata and what kind of previews we want 97 and things like that. 98 So in the import dialogue box, 99 I've gone to the folder where we put the images 100 in the first place. 101 And you can see that it's the 20240101 plat self portrait. 102 And then I could drill down 103 and click on the raw or the EOS digital 104 or even go further down into these buried folders 105 that are on the camera card. 106 But I don't need to do that. 107 In fact, if I were to go down 108 and find the final file, the hundred Canon file, 109 which is where the photos are, 110 then what I would see inside of Lightroom 111 is that 100 Canon folder. 112 But what I wanna see is the job folder, 113 because I wanna know what the folder is. 114 So choose this folder to import, 115 and Lightroom will actually see everything 116 that's inside of those folders. 117 And if for some reason it's the first time 118 you've ever done it 119 and it doesn't show you anything, 120 there'll be a button in the very middle that says, 121 see sub folders or show sub folders. 122 And so just click on that subfolders folder or button 123 and it will show you all the sub folders. 124 So that's the way to do that. 125 So this is a self portrait. 126 It's actually a test that I was doing 127 before I did a portrait, 128 but I'm just doing this little test 129 and I thought, well, I'll do a self portrait. 130 So here's my self portrait. 131 And this is what we're going to bring into Lightroom Classic 132 to show you the pathway for this. 133 And actually it'll be great 134 because it'll make it a very quick pathway 135 so you can see start to finish 136 very quickly what we do with these photos. 137 Alright, so I've chosen the folder. 138 I'm gonna add those images, 139 not gonna copy 'em, I'm gonna add them. 140 And then I'm gonna go over to the right hand side. 141 And I have four options here. 142 I have Minimal, Embedded in Sidecar, Standard 143 and One for One for building previews. 144 Minimal and Standard make no sense whatsoever 145 because if you choose the standard 146 and then you zoom in, 147 you still have to build the one for ones 148 and so you sit there and wait for it to build. 149 Minimal, same thing, it's really quick, 150 but it al also takes a little bit of time 151 to actually build them. 152 So that's not fun to wait for 153 and especially since they're very small. 154 The best previews to choose are the Embedded and Sidecar 155 because of the speed at which they go. 156 So Embedded and Sidecar just basically takes 157 the embedded preview that's already inside of the image, 158 whatever that is. 159 If it's a camera made it 160 or if it's a DNG, 161 there's a preview already in there. 162 So it actually uses the preview 163 that's already with the file itself. 164 And so it's instantaneous, 165 it just happens really fast. 166 It's kind of like using photo mechanics. 167 So it's really quick. 168 It shows it to you fast 169 and you can generally tell if something's sharp 170 or if someone's eyes are open or closed, 171 like you can zoom in and see that kind of information, 172 so it's really good for choosing images right now. 173 But if you're gonna be waiting around for a day 174 before you look at these images 175 or even a couple hours, 176 then you can just choose one for one 177 and then it will build one for one previews 178 and then you can really see everything. 179 I mean down to the pixel level, 180 exactly what that image looks like. 181 But the problem is that it takes an hour or two. 182 Say if you're doing a wedding, 183 it would take an hour or two 184 to go through 3000 to 5,000 images 185 and build one for one previews. 186 So I choose Embedded and Sidecar most of the time 187 just because I want to get it done with. 188 This is not a super new feature, 189 but it's relatively new like within the last five years. 190 And so I prefer this method, 191 but I always wanna build the smart previews. 192 Smart previews are the small raw file 193 that's a companion to these files. 194 And so the original raw file is in your hard drive, 195 but the smart preview is a very small, 196 about 2000 pixel raw file that sits in the catalog. 197 And it is very compact, 198 but it's also very good file. 199 So I've even had last resort issues. 200 I had a friend who lost everything. 201 Someone stole everything. 202 They broke into his house 203 and stole all of his backup drives, everything. 204 But he has his laptop with him 205 and his laptop had the smart previews in them, 206 and as a result of that, 207 he was able to actually deliver full on 208 family portrait prints from those smart previews. 209 So as a last resort, 210 they actually can be used to print up to, 211 I've tested it at 30 inches. 212 So I've tested a 30 inch print and it looked pretty good. 213 And now today with some of the new AI technologies, 214 you could probably go a lot further than that 215 with just a smart preview. 216 So smart previews are really, really good 217 plus for what you would normally use 'em for, 218 which is just to be able to adjust the images 219 while you are not near the photos, 220 so like you can detach the drive 221 and you can just still work on the photos, 222 for that one reason alone, it's worth it. 223 And it's also worth it in that 224 when you are out and about 225 and you don't have the originals with you, 226 you can still create a blog post. 227 You could post them on social media, 228 proof prints and no one would know 229 that you weren't using the original raw file. 230 So smart previews are a great idea. 231 Go ahead and build them. 232 I did talk to you about the smart previews 233 being the things that are thrown up into the cloud 234 when they come from Lightroom Classic. 235 These are not necessarily needed in order to do that. 236 So you don't have to build the smart previews on import 237 if you want to send them to the cloud 238 because once you tell it to send them to the cloud, 239 it will automatically build those smart previews 240 and send them, but it's not going to keep them around 241 for you to use. 242 And so it's better to just build them. 243 And then when it sends stuff to the cloud, 244 it'll just use the smart previews and send it. 245 So I always build the smart previews. 246 This checkbox of don't import suspected duplicates. 247 This is a great tool to make sure 248 that you haven't imported the images before. 249 So if you think that you've maybe brought these in before, 250 or maybe you're bringing an entire drive 251 full of images that you might have duplicates in, 252 just click that and it'll avoid all of that. 253 It'll help clean things up. 254 But we're not gonna do that. 255 We're not gonna make a second copy, 256 but I am going to add it to a collection. 257 And the reason for that is 258 that the collection, as I just mentioned earlier 259 with the schematic, 260 the collection is what ties us to the cloud. 261 And I want these images to be available inside the cloud 262 because I wanna be able to work on 'em on my iPad. 263 I wanna be able to see them on my laptop. 264 I also wanna be able to just post them really quickly 265 as soon as I'm done editing them. 266 And that allows me to do that 267 if they're in the cloud already to go. 268 So I'm gonna add them to a collection, 269 have to check that box, 270 and then I'm gonna hit the plus button 271 and that's gonna allow me to choose 272 where that collection is going to be 273 and what it's gonna be called. 274 So I'm gonna actually name it the same as the file itself. 275 So 20240101-plat-self portrait collection. 276 There you go, so that is the name of my collection, 277 and I'm gonna put it inside of this workshop, 278 so Creative Live Lightroom Workflow 2024. 279 So I've put it inside that collection set, 280 and I'm going to hit create. 281 Now, something to notice is that 282 there should be another little checkbox right here, 283 and that checkbox should say 284 to synchronize with Lightroom, 285 but it's not saying that. 286 And the reason it's not saying that 287 is because the cloud is for some reason paused 288 or it's not active. 289 So lemme cancel out of this. 290 And I'm gonna actually cancel out of 291 the import dialogue box 292 and show you a little secret. 293 So if I go to the collections, 294 you can see that the collections 295 don't have the little sideways lightning bolt 296 that I showed you here. 297 It doesn't have the little sideways lightning bolts 298 that I have that represent 299 that these things are actively synchronizing with the cloud. 300 And that little sideways lightning bolt 301 is the indicator that you have collections 302 that are actually synchronizing with the cloud. 303 So you don't see anything over here. 304 You should right next to these collections 305 see either a box or a lightning bolt 306 that tells you either I'm synced or I'm not synced. 307 The problem is in Lightroom there's a glitch, 308 and this is a really longstanding glitch, 309 and I don't understand why they haven't fixed it yet. 310 But if you click this little clouds button, 311 do you see how it says it's synced? 312 If I click on pause syncing 313 and then start syncing, 314 I have just reset the sync. 315 And now when I go over here, 316 you can see that there are little boxes, 317 and if I hover over 'em 318 they turn into these little sideways lightning bolts. 319 So now I am active, 320 and if something is synchronized, 321 you can see this wedding 322 has a synchronized option right there. 323 If I were to click on it, 324 it would unsynchronize this, 325 it would stop syncing with the web, 326 it would pull it off of the cloud. 327 So now I can go back to the Import Dialogue box. 328 I can go to my self portrait 329 and I can come over here and click on add to a collection, 330 click on the plus button, 331 come in here, type in my information. 332 Again, this is the name of my collection. 333 I'm gonna put it inside 334 the collection set for this workshop and voila, 335 sync with Lightroom because it's active. 336 The cloud is now active in our Lightroom classic catalog. 337 So sync with Lightroom, hit create. 338 And now you can see that I've got an active collection 339 that's gonna synchronize with the cloud. 340 Now below that, I'm going to put in some keywords 341 and I'm only gonna put keywords 342 that are applicable to every image I'm importing. 343 Now this is a portrait, 344 so it's all exactly the same, 345 but if it was a wedding or if it was a trip to Europe 346 or something like that, 347 then you might put Travel Europe Spring, 348 something like that. 349 But you're not going to put Germany, 350 because if you went to Germany and Italy, 351 you're gonna have to put those keywords in later. 352 So what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna just choose images 353 that are used on all of these images. 354 So I'm going to put self portrait, 355 and you can see that it actually 356 automatically tries to fill things. 357 And then I hit the comma, 358 and that's the separator between keywords or key phrases. 359 And I don't need to put a space after the comma. 360 And then I'm gonna put Jared Plat, 361 studio portrait, 362 studio lighting, ProPhoto, 363 because I was using ProPhoto lights 364 and I was actually using some A2 lights, 365 and I was using ProPhoto B10 lights. 366 And I can call this educational 367 because I have some schematics 368 on the lighting for these. 369 So I'm just putting information in here 370 that will help me find these images. 371 Oh, and there's a chandelier. 372 So chandelier is in there, 373 and I think that's about it. 374 So I'm gonna hit Enter. 375 So now there is my keyword set. 376 So that helps me to find things. 377 I also, by the way, put in some metadata for the copyright. 378 If you want to add your own metadata on the way in, 379 use this metadata dropdown to create a new preset. 380 You can enter in any information you want here 381 that you want to have in all of your photos. 382 Like for instance, your copyright information, 383 creator information, your email, 384 your website, et cetera. 385 So now that we have chosen the images, 386 we've chosen what we're gonna add 'em, 387 we have chosen our preferred previews. 388 We told it to build the smart previews, 389 we added it to a collection. 390 We told that collection to synchronize with Lightroom, 391 and we added some keywords 392 and some metadata in our copyright, 393 now we're ready to import. 394 So I'm gonna click on the import button 395 down in the bottom right hand corner. 396 And they're coming in. 397 And you'll notice that 398 at the very top of the left hand panel 399 there's a catalog panel. 400 That catalog panel allows us to see 401 lots of different things. 402 We can see all of the photographs 403 in the collection or the catalog. 404 So there's 401,000. 405 We can see all the ones that are synced with the cloud, 406 which is 99,000. 407 We can see any sync errors that we have, 408 which is 118 of 'em. 409 So we could go investigate those. 410 We can see quick collections. 411 We can see the previous import, 412 which is just 33 images, 413 also previous exports. 414 These change over time 415 depending on what you're doing at the moment. 416 These images are in a folder. 417 If I wanna find that folder, 418 I can just right click them and say, 419 show it in the folder in the library. 420 That's the folder where they are. 421 Here's the original job folder right there. 422 And as long as I'm looking at the parent folder, 423 then I get to see all the children folders. 424 I get to see everything in those. 425 So like for instance, 426 if I'm looking at this wedding, 427 I can see the selects by clicking on the selects folder, 428 I can see the rejects or I can see everything 429 by just simply clicking on the parent folder, 430 and now I see everything no matter what it is, 431 whether it's reject, selects or anything else. 432 I'm gonna go back to my self portrait 433 and I want to review these images. 434 So the next thing we're going to do 435 is we're going to select.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials

Ratings and Reviews

Milena Marguenski

After giving up on Adobe long time ago (for apparent reasons). I decided to go back with my recent coming back to photography. I’ve been a heavy Photoshop user but never Lightroom’s. Since I signed up I was straggling to decide between the “new” Lightroom and Lightroom Classic. It was obvious LRC is more versatile but I loved the modern, cleaner look of the Lr. At the end I am a visual person :). Jared’s workshop made my decision easier and cleared up the question I asked Google repeatedly about managing Adobe cloud storage. A very comprehensive, easy to understand and fun course. Can’t wait to rearrange my 20+ years photo library. Thank you, Jared!


Jared Platt is the best educator when it comes to explaining how and when to use each program in the Lightroom ecosystem. He knows and explains extremely well the pros, cons, and tricks of using LrC, Lr, & LrMobile together. Most people teach each independently. Jared teaches in depth knowledge of how they interact --amazing!

Chris Lang

Student Work