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Selecting photos

From: Up and Running with Lightroom 5

Video: Selecting photos

It almost goes without saying that when you're working in Lightroom, you need to select photos before you work on them. But Lightroom has some quirks around selecting that you should be aware of. First, let's go through the basics of selecting, which are much like the basics that you may have experienced in other programs. If I want to select a photo, I'm going to click on its frame. If I want to add more photos to that selection, I'll hold the Cmd key on the Mac or the Ctrl key on the PC and I'll click on the frames of other photos that don't have to be next to the first one I selected. If I want to deselect everything, then I'll either press Cmd+D on the Mac or Ctrl+D on the PC or I'll click in a blank area of the preview window if that's available to me like this. Now let's say I want to select photos that are next to one another. I can select a whole range by clicking on the frame of the first photo, holding the Shift key and clicking on the frame of the last photo in the range and that selects all in between.

Selecting photos

It almost goes without saying that when you're working in Lightroom, you need to select photos before you work on them. But Lightroom has some quirks around selecting that you should be aware of. First, let's go through the basics of selecting, which are much like the basics that you may have experienced in other programs. If I want to select a photo, I'm going to click on its frame. If I want to add more photos to that selection, I'll hold the Cmd key on the Mac or the Ctrl key on the PC and I'll click on the frames of other photos that don't have to be next to the first one I selected. If I want to deselect everything, then I'll either press Cmd+D on the Mac or Ctrl+D on the PC or I'll click in a blank area of the preview window if that's available to me like this. Now let's say I want to select photos that are next to one another. I can select a whole range by clicking on the frame of the first photo, holding the Shift key and clicking on the frame of the last photo in the range and that selects all in between.

And, as in other programs, if I want to eliminate one of these photos from the selection, I'll hold the Cmd key on the Mac or the Ctrl key on the PC and I'll click in the frame of that photo. So right now I only have three photos selected the three bike photos. And again I am going to deselect by clicking in this blank area. So that is all the same as in other programs. Now let's see what is different about working with multiple selections in Lightroom. To set that up I'm going to select four other photos. I'll click on this photo, I'll hold the Shift key and click on this one to select all four. Now, what's different in Lightroom is that if you look closely, you'll see that the borders around the selected photos aren't all the same color. The photo that I first selected has a brighter frame around it than the photos that I selected after that.

And the reason for that is to accommodate Lightroom syncing behavior. We're not going to look at syncing at great detail in this course, but the upshot is that you can have Lightroom take the settings from the most selected photo and automatically apply them to other selected photos. So that's why there is more than one level of syncing. Even if you don't plan to sync settings, the fact that there are two levels of selection can get you in a jam if you're not aware of it. And if you don't know how to avoid that jam. So let me show you the problem and then I'll show you the way that I recommend avoiding it. Let's say that I have a number of photos selected like this and then I decide that I want to convert just one of those photos to black and white. Well, you might expect from working in others programs, that if you were to click on the photo that you did want to remain selected, the others would become deselected.

So let's say that I want to convert only this photo of the table to black and white. I'm going to click right inside the image. Not on its frame, but inside the image. And then I'll try to change it to black and white by going up to the Quick Develop panel, which is in the column on the right side of the Library module. I'll click the drop down menu on that panel, and from here I can access various black and white, toned, and other color presets. And from this menu, I can select a preset. So, I'll go down to the first category, the black and white filter presets, and I'll choose the green filter preset. Now remember, I only wanted to convert, that photo of the table to black an white.

But in fact, all of the photos in the bottom row have been converted to black an white. An that's because clicking inside the image of the table, did not actually deselect, these other photos. All it did was change which photo is the most active. Now here, you could pretty much see what was going to happen. But imagine you had selected maybe a hundred photos, and you couldn't see all of the thumbnails on your monitor. That could cause a problem down the road, when you realize that you had turned all of them to black and white. So how do you avoid that. Well I think the solution is to get in the habit of clicking not directly on an image but rather to click on the frames of images as you've may have noticed that I was doing in this lesson.

So lets try that instead. I'm going to press Cmd+Z on the Mac, Ctrl+Z on the PC to undo that black and white conversion. Now I still have multiple photos selected. Let's say that I only want to convert this photo of the river to black and white. I'm going to click on the frame around the photo of the river and this time I get the expected behavior, which is that I've managed to deselect all the other photos. The only one that remains selected is the photo of the river. So that's the advantage of getting use to clicking on the frame rather than on the image itself. And now, if I were to go to the Quick Develop panel, and go back to that same black and white filter preset, only the photo of the river is converted into black and white.

Now there are exceptions to every rule, of course, one of the exceptions to clicking on the frame is this. If you want to move a thumbnail, then you need to click not on it's frame but on the image itself. And that's true whether you are moving a photo in the sort order as I showed you how to do earlier. Or if you are trying to move with thumbnail into another folder in the Folders panel or into a collection in the Collections panel as I will show you how to do later in the course. So, for example, if I wanted to move this photo of the cherries so it appeared down here, I can't click and drag from the frame.

I have to click inside of the image itself, and drag over here, and then release my mouse. There's one other thing to keep in mind about multiple selections in Lightroom. And that is that you can get different behaviors depending on where you make your selections. You can make selections here in Grid view. But you can also make selections in Loop view in the Library module or in another module like the Develop module. So let's compare the two. Here in the Grid view of the Library module, I'll select these three photos of the bike, clicking on one, and Shift-clicking on another.

And then I'll go to the Quick Develop panel, and I'm going to apply an effect. This time I'll go to the color presets category of effects and choose aged photo. And that affects all three of the selected photos. The most active selected photo, and the other two selected photos. Let's deselect Cmd+D on the Mac, Ctrl+D on the PC. Now let's go some place else and make a selection. We'll go to the Loop view of the library module. I'll press the e key to switch to Loop view. In Loop view, the Develop module, and other places, if I want to make a selection, I need to use the film strip to do that.

So I'll come down to the bottom of the screen and I'll click the bar there to open the film strip. I'm going to select the last three photo sin the film strip, starting with the photo of the bottles. I'll click on its frame, and then I'll hold the shift key and I'll click on the photo of the cherries. If you look very closely you'll see that the first photo I selected, the one of the bottles, has a brighter frame than the other two meaning that the bottles photo is the most selected. Now let's see what happens when we apply a quick develop preset.

I'll go up to the quick develop panel and this time I'm going to go to the Lightroom black and white toned presets and I'll go with the cyanotype preset. Keep your eye on that filmstrip. And you'll see that that blue effect has been applied only to the most selected photo in my selection, and that's because of where I've made the selection, not in Grid view, but here in the film strip in another view, Loop view. So those are some things to be aware of when you're working with selections in Lightroom.

Show transcript

This video is part of

Image for Up and Running with Lightroom 5
Up and Running with Lightroom 5

40 video lessons · 20706 viewers

Jan Kabili
Author

 
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  1. 5m 24s
    1. Welcome
      1m 2s
    2. Using the exercise files
      4m 22s
  2. 30m 31s
    1. Understanding catalogs
      4m 21s
    2. Organizing your photos before importing
      3m 10s
    3. Deciding where to store your photos
      4m 28s
    4. Importing photos from a drive
      8m 14s
    5. Importing photos from a camera
      10m 18s
  3. 1h 15m
    1. Library module workspace
      7m 21s
    2. Viewing and sorting photos
      6m 16s
    3. Selecting photos
      7m 9s
    4. Reviewing and rating photos
      8m 41s
    5. Organizing with collections
      6m 27s
    6. Using Smart Collections
      6m 21s
    7. Keywording
      4m 51s
    8. Finding photos by keyword
      5m 40s
    9. Finding photos with the Metadata filter
      4m 53s
    10. Moving files and folders
      7m 16s
    11. Renaming photos
      4m 18s
    12. Working with Smart Previews when traveling
      6m 6s
  4. 54m 18s
    1. Develop module workspace
      6m 14s
    2. Cropping and straightening
      4m 25s
    3. Fixing perspective with Upright
      7m 19s
    4. Setting white balance
      4m 41s
    5. Using the histogram to evaluate tones
      4m 5s
    6. Adjusting tone and color in the Basic panel
      8m 45s
    7. Fine-tuning colors in the HSL panel
      3m 35s
    8. Converting to black and white
      3m 56s
    9. Using virtual copies
      3m 43s
    10. Reducing digital noise
      3m 24s
    11. Sharpening
      4m 11s
  5. 26m 21s
    1. Targeting edits with the Adjustment Brush
      6m 45s
    2. Spotlighting and vignetting with the Radial filter
      6m 0s
    3. Gradual editing with the Graduated filter
      4m 5s
    4. Removing dust spots with Spot Removal circles
      6m 12s
    5. Removing content with Spot Removal brushstrokes
      3m 19s
  6. 30m 40s
    1. Exporting photos
      9m 22s
    2. Setting up a connection to Facebook
      6m 22s
    3. Sharing photos to Facebook
      5m 44s
    4. Printing photos
      9m 12s
  7. 26s
    1. Next steps
      26s

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