Getting your images into Lightroom can be a hassle. Getting them out again is the same. The problem with editing software packages such as Adobe Lightroom is that they don’t label things as we are used to them.
If we work in MS Word, we click on ‘Save’. Easy. Learning to export photos from Lightroom requires a bit more work.
Editing software, except on mobile formats, doesn’t have a ‘Save’ function, as the images save automatically as you work on them. Here, the ‘Save’ function is ‘Export’.
This is because you are taking the image from the saved area, and moving it to your desktop.
Here are four different ways you can export photos from Lightroom, so you are free to choose which one is easier for you.
Lightroom Export Settings
Library & Develop Module
Adobe Lightroom is a great, user-friendly software package for editing images. You can come across hiccups along the way, of course, and one of these are the Library and Develop modules.
For example, you cannot edit your images in the Library Module, just as you can’t add Metadata when you are in the Develop Module. This took me a while to figure out.
When exporting images, you can use the majority of these methods in both Modules.
The only exception is if you’re using the Export Box (see below).
Al of these methods bring you to the same Dialogue box, which we will look at towards the end.
You can export single or multiple images. While in the Library module, Ctrl+A will select all the images in your folder.
Clicking on an image, holding Shift and clicking on another image will select the two images and all those in-between.
Another way is to select single images by holding Ctrl and clicking on the images you want to export.
One easy method to locate your image in either the Library or Develop modules is to right-click on the image.
A menu will pop up, and all you need to do is scroll down and find Export.
This is the only one that works in the Library module.
Underneath the folders panel on the left-hand side, you will find the Export box. Click this to export.
The easiest way and the one most of us will be familiar with is by going to the top bar and clicking on File.
This will send down a menu, where you want to find the Export tab.
A shortcut can be the fastest way to export your images. Ctrl + Shift + E will bring up the dialogue box.
Just make sure your images are selected.
Export Dialogue Box
When you use one of the above methods, you will open the Export Dialogue box. Here, you get to set all of the parameters of your exported image.
You can export to full-sized JPEGs, DNGs, or straight to email (it will automatically open and add the image to Outlook on PC).
Setting the export folder is easily done, yet I would recommend setting it to the same folder as the original images. This stops any confusion until you figure out exactly where your images should go.
When you click on Export, you will see a progress bar in the top left.
Export With Previous
Another way to export is to click on Export With Previous. This bypasses the dialogue box, and exports the images in the same location as the last. This can be tricky, especially if your sessions are far from each other.
It is a great option if all of your edited images are going to the same folder indefinitely.
Under the Export methods, you will see the Export With Previous tab. Click this to export without any other interactions.
Some Final Advice
The naming of the files is very important to separate edited images from the originals. Make sure you keep in mind where your edited images go, so you can find them again.
If you come to look for them and find they are not where you expect, open Lightroom and the dialogue box again. The settings will be saved, pointing you in the right direction. This has saved me more than once.
Looking for more helpful Lightroom tips? Check out our articles on Lightroom tips for concert photography or creating a cool timelapse with Lightroom.