Lightroom changes the colours!

October 23, 2007

Here’s a good question…

“When I first load my pictures into Lightroom, they look great! But then the preview changes to something not so nice that needs to be tweaked. Why is Lightroom changing my files? I want to keep the original settings!”

The first image that you see is the preview jpg which the camera created. If you’d shot jpg in camera, that’s how your picture would have looked. Then Lightroom finishes reading the raw file, and applies it’s default settings. A raw file is a linear file, not an image, so settings must be applied to turn it into an image. The camera manufacturers don’t share their information, so Lightroom applies its own defaults.

If you want the raw files to look like the preview jpeg, you have to play with the settings until you find a close match, and then save them as a preset to reuse on future occasions. The easiest way to do this is to shoot a series of different situations in Raw+Jpeg and try to match the raw file to the jpeg. Once you’ve come up with settings you’re happy with, you can either save these as a Preset and apply them on import, or you can change the default settings for that camera. More on that another day!

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Defaults by ISO and Serial Number

October 22, 2007

Today’s question… “Can I set up the defaults so that they’re different for each camera and ISO rating? I want to set different noise reduction depending on the ISO rating.”

First, look in preferences, and double check that it’s set to use different defaults for each ISO and camera combination.

Preferences - Presets

Then you need to find images for each ISO/camera combination, make sure everything else is set to your normal defaults, and set the noise reduction settings (or other default settings) that you want.
Once you’re happy with your chosen settings, go to the Develop menu and choose Set Default Settings…

Set Default Settings

Confirm the settings in the next dialog, and your new defaults are set.

Set Default Develop Settings

Repeat for each of the other ISO/camera combinations.

From now on, any new images will import with your new default settings.


Keyboard Shortcuts

October 21, 2007

I’ve just updated the links to the keyboard shortcuts for Lightroom 1.1 and 1.2. Links to the latest versions will always remain in the Download Links section on the menu bar, but here they are:

Keyboard Shortcuts – Windows version

Keyboard Shortcuts – Mac version


Fixing Unexplained Problems

October 21, 2007

If Lightroom starts behaving weirdly, and you can’t find a logical explanation, there’s a few things you can try.

1. Restart Lightroom

2. Restart the computer

3. Optimize the catalog.

To do so…

Go to the File menu and choose Catalog Settings.

Press Relaunch and Optimize and wait for it to tell you it’s completed.

4. Create a New Catalog to see if catalog corruption is causing the problems.

To do so…

Go to the File menu and choose New Catalog. Try importing some of your photographs into this new test catalog to see if the problem remains.

5. Delete the preferences

To do so…

Close Lightroom, and find the preferences files.

For Mac OS X that can be found at [username]/Library/Preferences/com.adobe.Lightroom.plist and for Windows it’s Documents and Settings/[username]/Application Data/Adobe/Lightroom/Preferences/Lightroom Preferences.agprefs.

Back them up to another location in case you want to restore them later, and then delete the preference file from the above location.

Restart Lightroom.

If the problem still isn’t fixed, try visiting some of the Forums listed in the sidebar, and you’ll get some of the best brains in the business puzzling over your problem. ūüėČ


Changing the Time Stamp

October 19, 2007

Nate’s question is: “How do I change the capture time by any amount (as in NOT just by exact hours…but any # of minutes I need) on a bunch of images at once?”

First, make sure you are in Grid mode.

Select the first image in the series, and note the time that this image should be set to.

Select all of the images that need the timestamp changed, keeping the first image as the most selected (lighter gray).

Go to Metadata menu > Edit Capture Time… and this dialog will appear.

Edit Capture Time

Choose the first option ‘Adjust to a specified date and time’ as this allows you to change by years, months, days, hours, minutes or seconds.

Now, in the Corrected Time section, adjust to the correct time for your FIRST image Рthe time you noted down earlier.  You can select each timestamp section (hours, minutes etc) individually, and either use the arrows or type the time of your choice.

And then hit Change All.¬† Whilst not entirely obvious, this will update all of the other selected images by the same time difference – it won’t set them all to the same date and time.

Exactly the same process can be used for matching up the timestamp when shooting with multiple cameras.

One point to note on changing times in Lightroom… this does not affect the original file.¬† Any files which are exported do carry the new timestamp.¬†¬† The changes are stored in the catalog, and you can return to the original time stamp at any time by using Metadata menu > Revert Capture Time to Original.


Renaming by Sequence Number

October 18, 2007

Fundy gets question of the day. “I want to renumber with the numbers starting with 001, 002, 003, etc. but it always just comes up 1, 2, 3. This messes up ordering in other programs.” So here it is step-by-step…

Select all of the images you want to rename.

Go to Library menu > Rename Photos…

Rename Dialog

Go to the File Naming dropdown menu, and choose Edit…

Rename Edit

Now you’re going to create your own preset. Using the little lozenges, you can put together any combination of filename that you like. In this case, choose Sequence #(001) instead of Sequence #(1) from the dropdown menu to get your extra zero’s padding, and hit insert. You can delete lozenges which are already there, or rearrange them to make your new naming convention.

Rename Sequence

And finally, let’s save this to use again another time. Go to the Preset dropdown menu at the top of the dialog, and choose ‘Save Current Settings as New Preset’. Give it a logical name – I’ve called mind “Sequence only – 3 digit”.

Rename Save Preset

Next time you open the Rename dialog, this new preset will be one of your presets.


Export Problem – Low Disc Space

October 17, 2007

A nice quick one today.¬† Chris asked: “I’m having problems with the new Lightroom. LR will export the photos but it’ll get deleted immediately. ” He goes on to explain that the images initially appear in the export folder, but then they disappear again, as if they’re being automatically deleted.

First place to look in this case…? Disc space!

If there’s not enough room on the hard drive, Lightroom can’t write the files, the placeholders disappear again and it sends you a friendly error message. Free up some disc space or export to another drive, and the problem is fixed!