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Photography 101 - Tips and Editing Techniques

How I import into Lightroom 4

For some reason it took me awhile to organize in my head how I was going to import my photos in to Lightroom 4.  Then when I finally decided how I wanted to do it, the task seemed so simple!

When I first got Lightroom I decided to commit entirely to the Lightroom way of life. Although it kinda freaked me out at first. You enter your photos into this amazing organizing editing machine, but after a year and dated imports I wasn’t sure if I could still find everything. At first I thought I might need two Lightroom catalogs to keep my family photos and other photos separate, but finally I came to a simple solution that I love! A folder for family and a photo for… well all other photos each broken down by years, and then months.



So in Lightroom my family folder looks like this:

Note – You can also add keyword to the end of your dates by right clicking on your folder and renaming the folder. I would add the name after the date so the dates still flow in chronological order!











Here is what I do when I import – First I pick a few keywords to describe my photos. I been using about 3 keywords to describe certain pictures. But the one I always add is “edit” as a keyword that way I know this group coming in has not been edited.

Once the images are in the catalog I can navigate to the top of my screen under the Library module and click on TEXT search the keywords for all text containing the keyword edit. This way I don’t have to open folders to remember what needs to be edited. Once I edit them I remove the keyword edit.

When importing I organize by date with the format 2012-09-07. I scroll down to the destination folder I want to import into and then import!

Render Previews 1:1
Check mark next to “Don’t import Suspected Duplicates”
Check mark next to “Make a Second Copy To: (I back up all my originals to an external drive)
*Note I also back up my Library Catalog to an external drive

To start a folder you can create the folder in Lightroom or in windows explorer. You can only do this before any pictures are placed within the folder. Once you have images in the folder only move them around via Lightroom. Lightroom is the king of organizing if Lightroom didn’t see you move them then Lightroom doesn’t know where you moved to.

A couple shortcuts I have been using a lot:

G – for grid view (to see thumbnails of everything in the folder)
L – Library
D – Develop
E – Export

This way of import is working great for me! What is your favorite way to import into Lightroom? There are so many different approaches… You just have to find one that is right for you!





Related posts:

Understanding Exposure Compensation
Stages of a photographer
How to edit a low light image with Photoshop CS4


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