Adobe Lightroom for Beginners Guide 1

Briefly Lightroom is the best image database app out their and seamlessly works with Photoshop. Its a no brainer if your a professional photographer. The subscription service I think is the best value.

I am going to assume you have a load of images dotted about your hard drive that need cataloguing. I am also going to infer that your images are stored on your hard drive and not an external drive though the instructions usable for both. Lets start at the beginning.

  1. If you haven’t got one get a backup drive and some backup software (or use Time Machine on the Mac)
  2. Find all you image folders and put them in a folder in your main Picture folder or on a external drive. If you can start organising your pictures into subject groups. i.e. Spain 2014, Family Snaps, The Dog etc. If they are too mixed up then you can catalogue later in LR but if you can order before import it will be quicker to catalogue in LR later.
  3. One thing to do before your first import is create some copyright data. This will be embedded in the image together with the keywords you are going to create. Open LR and go to press the tab key on your keyboard to bring up both panels left and right panels. On the right panel go to Metadata > Presets > Edit Presets and add some info. I ‘ve shown you the most important here. Save the preset.
  4. LR screen shot
  5. Open LR go to File > Import Photo and Videos and find your image folder in the file manager on the left of the screen. You can also drag your image folder over the LR icon in your Applications folder and let go. This will also open the Import window at the correct folder. If you see a dialog that says Include Subfolders then click that and also check ADD at the centre top of the screen. This will add the pictures to LR without moving them. On the right select Apply During Import and select the Metadata you have created in step 3. Press Import. LR will then find and import all the images in all the nested folders and add the metadata you created.
  6. Make a cuppa tea, go to bed, do whatever while LR imports your images. If you have thousands then this will take some time…….
  7. When it’s finished check the Folder tab on the left.lr2
    You can then see the nested folder tree of where your images a stored on your hard drive. Click on a folder and LR will show the images in that folder.


If you managed to sort your images into themed folders then cataloguing will be easy. Click one of your folders on the left (lets say Spain 2014) and you will see the images in the viewer. The tab on the right is where you will input data and eventually ‘develop’ your images. (To see the tabs press the tab key a few times on the keyboard). Providing all your images refer to Spain 2014 select one image and press cmd-A to select all. In the Keyboarding panel on the right and type your keywords. This will set the keywords to all those images. Select individual images and add whatever keywords you like. LR remembers all the keywords you type and completes words as you type. You can also add other data under the Metadata tab if you wish.LR screen shot

This will just get you started. There is loads more info on the web.





  1. […] last blog got us to stage where we have imported our images, copyrighted them and keyworded some of them. Lr […]


  2. […] last blog got us to stage where we have imported our images, copyrighted them and keyworded some of them. Lr […]


  3. […] Blog 1 dealt with importing your old pictures where they were on your hard drive […]


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