7 Hidden Lightroom Tips to Improve Your Workflow

by Brea

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It’s hard to believe that I have been using Lightroom since 2009. Over the years, I’ve picked up on a lot of tricks that have helped me speed up my workflow to work smarter, not harder.

Here are some easy tips that will help you improve your workflow and start integrating today.

1. Easily Edit Between Photoshop and Lightroom

Have you ever had a photo in Lightroom Classic (LrC) that you wanted to bring into Photoshop (Ps), then add back to LrC? There is a really easy way to do this that doesn’t involve anything more than a few clicks on your keyboard.

Steps:

  1. Click on photo in LrC
  2. Hit Command + E (Mac) or Ctrl + E (PC)
  3. The photo will load to Ps. Edit your photo in Ps. Once complete, hit Command + S (Mac) or Ctrl + S (PC) to save your photo.
  4. Your image will appear back in LrC with the edits from Photoshop. Pretty Cool! If it doesn’t automatically do this, you may need to flatten then image first to remove the layers (under Layer).

2. View Before and After Images Instantly with \

There’s an easy keyboard shortcut so you can easily view your before and afters as you edit images. To do this, just click the backslash key (above your Return or Enter key) to easily see your before. Click it again to see your current edit.

3. Edit Your Top Menu Items

Have you ever thought that maybe you don’t need to see the ‘slideshow’ or ‘Print’ option in the top menu? To easily get rid of menu options and declutter, you can just right-click in the top area to remove any menu items you don’t use. I only keep the Library, Develop, and Book modules in mine. The same goes for your identity plate, or what’s showing on the left-hand side. I changed mine to my name to make it more personalized. To do this, just right-click in the top area then click ‘Edit Identity Plate’.

4. Easily Copy and Paste Edits To Multiple Photos

Most people know about Lightroom presets and how they can quickly help you apply edits to multiple photos at once. There’s also another easy way to apply multiple edits at once.

Once my photos are imported, I will usually edit the first one to my liking. Then, to replicate my edits easily and quickly, I will simply copy and paste my edits. To do this, just do the following:

  1. After you’ve made your edits, click Command + C (Mac) or Ctrl + C (PC) to copy your settings. I don’t copy my Local Adjustments, Transform, or Crop as this changes with each photo. You can always unselect anything that you don’t want to be copied from photo to photo.
  2. Next, find the photo you want to apply your edits to.
  3. Then just hit the ‘Copy’ button or click Enter/Return to have your edits applied to the photo.

From here I’ll usually make small adjustments to each photo as I go. If I’m editing a shoot with a lot of different lighting scenarios, I will do a new edit with the new lighting, then proceed to copy and paste my settings as I go.

For me, this method is usually much faster than finding a preset for each photo and applying it, hoping it’ll work. This also helps you to learn Lightroom and what each slider does.

5. Change your Green Hues

Have you ever edited a photo, and no matter what you do to the color at the top, you just can’t get your greens right? Maybe they look too lime or neon for your tastes. Here’s my tip to adjust your greens easily:

Scroll down to the HSL/Color tab. From here you can use either tab. I prefer color because it’s faster, but you can play around with both.

From here you will want to adjust all the sliders. I typically increase my ‘Hue’ to the +5 to +25 range, I decrease the ‘Saturation’ to around -10 to -35, and then I’ll either increase or decrease my luminance depending on the shot. See below for reference.

Once I do this, my greens adjust just slightly so they’re not so dramatic. This also helps if you’re going for a more film look.

If you are still wanting to desaturate and change the Hue even more, then you can go down to the ‘Calibration’ menu and further adjust your greens. Here is a sample image after adjusting my greens

Before:

After editing HSL/Color tab and Calibration tab (it’s a little dramatic, to show the effect):

6. Undo Multiple Changes at Once

Have you ever started playing around with different settings, only to find that you actually preferred the edit you had before you started making more changes? To easily go back to your older edit and not lose those changes you’ve made, you can go to the History tab on the left-hand side and see where you started making changes. Once you find where your preferred edit is at, you can just click on it then continue with editing. If I don’t want more changes, I will still move a slider a tiny bit so it deletes the newer edits.

Before changing the history.
After making changes. I clicked on Vibrance then updated the Exposure. This removed all the other edits on the left.

7. Create Multiple Copies of the Same Image Easily

Sometimes I like to apply different edits to the same photo but I also want to save both versions to my catalog. There’s an easy way to create a virtual copy of the same image in LrC. All you need to do is go to Photo < Create Virtual Copy. You can also use the keyboard shortcut Command + ‘ or Ctrl + ‘.

The virtual copy has a little fold at the bottom left to indicate its a copy. Note that the copy doesn’t show your editing history, so if you want to go back to your unedited version, you will want to use the original

I hope you learned something new with these tips. If you enjoyed this article, please leave a comment below. If you want to send me a message you can use my link here.

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