Hey folks! Today’s quick blog post is going to be a SUPER quick primer on Adobe Lightroom.
It is for complete beginners—people who just bought their first DSLR or Mirrorless camera, took a few pictures, and are scratching their heads wondering, “How come my pictures don’t look as good?”
I’m going to do this little how-to in the form of a workflow. I’ll show you the exact steps to take so that you can get up and running in Lightroom in 10 minutes flat.
On my Mac, I open Spotlight (hit ⌘+Spacebar), type Lightroom, and hit enter. It opens right up.
Shortcut time! Hit Shift+⌘+I (an I as in import) to open the Import Photos and Video window.
On the left side, you have the Source column. This is where you’ll tell LR where to find the photos you want to import. Look for your SD/CF/Whatever card and click it. LR will bring up thumbnails of all your images in the center column. By default, everything will be selected for import. This is good. It means we don’t have to do anything. Before moving on, I’d recommend selecting Copy in the top center of the window. You don’t need to worry about converting to DNG. Copy is just fine.
Okay, you just imported your first photos into LR. Congratulations! Next, you’ll need to edit them.
Once the Import Photos and Video window closes, you’ll be left with your library. To get you acquainted:
The top strip shows you what module you’re in. Module is just a fancy word for what MODE you’re in. If you click Library, you’ll see your library. If you click Develop, you can start editing a photo. We’ll only ever use the Library and Develop modules. At least I’ve never used the other modules and haven’t found a need to yet.
The left column is how we’ll navigate around…
You know what, let’s not worry about getting acquainted. Let’s focus on editing a picture. Okay?
Make sure you’re in the Library module by clicking Library at the top. (Or hit the L key.)
Click once on a photo to select it.
Ready for another shortcut? Hit the d key. This will switch over to the Develop module.
Don’t get overwhelmed. I know there’s a bunch of stuff. Don’t look at it. Just look at the photo and the right column.
Ready for a sweet shortcut? See the word Basic towards the top of the right column? See the word Auto below it? Hit that.
Cool, right? I mean, it’s not the most amazing thing in the whole world, but I’m always amazed at how great of a start it gives me for editing.
Why are we even taking pictures if we can’t ‘gram them! Here, I’ll show you how to export pictures so you can post them to Instagram. Or schedule them on Planoly.