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Without a doubt, catalogs can be a bit confusing. In the previous movie, we walked through a scenario where we worked from a main catalog, exported a folder or a collection, and worked on it on another computer. Here what I want to do is continue to talk about that process, but this time I want to do so by stepping outside of Lightroom and just provide you with a few visuals that I hope will help you understand these topics even more clearly. So here, we're talking about multiple catalogs and multiple computers and how we can work with these in these scenarios.
Well, in the previous movie, I suggested that we start off with a catalog on our main computer, and here is that catalog. It has all of our images. But then in certain situations we may decide to export some content out as a catalog, either from a folder or from a collection--whatever. Well, when we do that, what we are doing is we are taking a piece of this catalog and we are exporting it. Here, you can see I have a smaller catalog icon, just to kind of represent that this is a little part of that big one. Then what we are going to do on our external, or other computer, is we are going to open up that catalog.
We are going to open it up. We are going to work on the images, maybe add some metadata, crop the photos, do some processing--you know the drill. Well, after we've done that, all that we need to do is to close Lightroom. Then we send that catalog back to our main computer. Typically, we do that by putting it on an external drive and then plugging the external drive into our main computer. Now, once we've plugged that in, what we really need to do here is go to our main catalog and then select Import from Catalog.
You can think of this this way. What you're doing is you're adding these two together, yet the addition is a little bit interesting, and here's why. You're saying, I have one main catalog. I'm going to import from another. Here's the other one. So I have one plus one, and that equals one. In other words, it takes both of these catalogs, it then combines them together, and what you have left is one catalog, which contains all of the work that you've done on multiple computers.
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