Ready to watch this entire course?
Become a member and get unlimited access to the entire skills library of over 4,900 courses, including more Photography and personalized recommendations.Start Your Free Trial Now
- View Offline
- Evaluating images
- Seeing a before and after view
- Correcting mistakes with the History and Snapshot features
- Develop module basics
- Fine-tuning with the Tone Curve
- Sharpening an image
- Painting adjustments into an image
- Image cleanup
- Creative adjustments
- Duplicating adjustments
Skill Level Intermediate
Lightroom certainly has many tools that are very powerful for optimizing the appearance of your images. But in some cases, you might want to send your images to Photoshop in order to perform some more advanced work there. Let's take a look at how we can send images from Lightroom to Photoshop, and then back again. So that we can manage our images with Lightroom, even if we're optimizing them in some ways using Photoshop. I have an image here I'd like to send to Photoshop to perform some additional image cleanup work on. Getting rid of some of these branches, for example, and so I'm going to choose Photo > Edit In, and then Edit in Photoshop CS6. Now, you'll notice, that there's also an Open as Smart Object in Photoshop option. This will enable me to retain the ability to apply Lightroom adjustments as a Smart Object in Photoshop.
However, that can create some problems in terms of a layer based workflow. So my general recommendation is to apply basic adjustments in Lightroom as you see fit. But then, for that image, in terms of the copy that we'll make in Photoshop, you commit to only using Photoshop moving forward. So I'll go ahead and choose that Edit in Photoshop option. If Photoshop is not already running, then Photoshop will be launched and the image will be opened. So you'll see in this case I have not opened the image as a Smart Object. But I have converted the RAW Capture into actual pixels using Lighroom as the engine for that purpose.
I can then apply a variety of adjustments. Now, for our purposes, I'm just going to keep things simple and I'm going to add a Curves Adjustment layer. But of course, I could add multiple image layers, I could create a composite, I could do all sorts of things. But I just want you to understand the overall workflow. So that you can leverage all sorts of capabilities in Photoshop for images that are being managed in Lightroom. Here, I've applied an adjustment, just so that there's an obvious difference between the original image, and this image that I've adjusted. Now, of course, normally, I would be applying better adjustments, and more creative adjustments.
In this case, I'd probably be cleaning up the image a little bit, for example. But the point here again is just to understand that workflow. So assuming that I were actually finished at this point with this image, all I need to do is choose File > Save from the menu. Notice that I don't need to provide a file name or location that has been handled automatically for me by Lightroom. And then, I can choose File > Close, of course, I could simply close the image directly by clicking the x on the tab for the image, but I'll use the menu command at the moment. And then, if I switch to Lightroom, you'll notice that I now have two versions of that image and they are contained in a stack. So I have my original image that was adjusted only in Lightroom. But I also have a copy of the image, in this case, saved as a TIFF file with layers intact.
And so that is, in effect, my Photoshop version of the image. I could always go back to the original, if I decided I wanted to create a different interpretation, for example, but I now have this additional copy. When using a workflow like this, it's important that in the future, you follow the appropriate steps if you want to gain access to the layers that you've added to this image. And that means two things, in essence. Number one, it means not applying any other Lightroom adjustments to that version of the image. If you want to use Lightroom, you'll want to go back to your original image. The second thing that means is that, if you want to edit this image, you need to edit it directly in Photoshop and you need to edit the original. Now, I realize the terminology here gets a little bit confusing. We have an original RAW capture, which you would probably think of as being your original.
But in the context of this TIFF file we've created separately, that in essence, is the original for this specific image. So it's a copy of the original, but it is the original version of that. So I realize that can be a little bit confusing. But again, we want to edit that original. We don't want to make a new copy of this image. We want to edit this original, this TIFF image that we've edited in Photoshop. So I'll go ahead and go to the Photo menu, and then I'm going to choose Edit in, and then Edit in Adobe Photoshop CS6 once again. But this time, Lightroom will ask me how I would like to deal with this particular photo.
I can edit a copy, making an additional image with the Lightroom adjustments included, if I had applied any. I can also edit a copy of the original without any Lightroom adjustments, but what I want to do is edit the original, so that all of my layers will remain intact. Keep in mind, that means that if I had applied any additional adjustments to this TIFF version of the image in Lightroom. Those changes will no longer be visible once I send the image over to Photoshop. So I've chosen the Edit Original option. The reason this is such an important option, though, is now, I'll be able to see those layers, in this case, the Curves Adjustment Layer that I had added. I'll go ahead and click Edit, and Photoshop again will launch if it was not already running and the image will be opened.
And now, you can see that I have my Curves Adjustment Layer, which I can continue to fine-tune. I can also add additional Adjustment layers. I'll go ahead just for the sake of seeing the fact that we've changed the image. I'll add Black & White adjustment and I'll add a tint to the image. Obviously, this image is looking far from ideal, but we can see some obvious changes, so that we know that we're being successful in terms of our workflow. I'll go ahead and choose File > Save once again. And then, I can switch back to Lightroom, and you'll see that now, I have that sepia tone version of the image. So, I can open the original RAW capture or whatever the file format was for my original into Photoshop the first time.
But moving forward, when I work with the edited version the derivative image, I want to make sure to edit that original, so I maintain the ability to access the layers that I've created in Photoshop.