Photo Editing Seamlessly Across Lightroom and Photoshop

Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop are undoubtedly the most popular software among photographers today. While many use Lightroom to make basic adjustments and to catalog their images, Photoshop is widely used to make advanced edits. Thus, there can be circumstances when you want to take your images from Lightroom to Photoshop, and back. The good news is that Adobe has done a fantastic job in integrating these two software to make your editing workflow as seamless as possible. In this video, photographer Phil Steele demonstrates how you can do so without any fuss:

“Lightroom and Photoshop are designed to work hand in hand.”

A basic understanding you need to have is that you’ll get slightly different behavior when editing in Photoshop from Lightroom depending on whether you’re working with jpeg or raw files.

  • With  jpegs, a good idea is to “Edit a Copy with Lightroom Adjustments”. This preserves the original file while carrying over the adjustments you’ve made in Lightroom.
  • When working with raw files, all the adjustments are carried along with the file into Photoshop. That’s because Photoshop cannot directly edit a raw file.

Once you are done in Photoshop, simply save the file (not ‘Save as’) to carry over the changes you’ve made in Photoshop into Lightroom. This saves the file in tif format and Lightroom automatically imports it  into the catalog you’re working in.

In case you need to make multiple round trips between Lightroom and Photoshop, or with a third program in the mix, you really need to be careful. Otherwise you can get caught in a weird situation as Steel demonstrates in the video. So, be sure to follow Steel carefully.

If you find yourself switching between Lightroom and Photoshop on a continuous basis, be sure to go through these steps carefully. This will definitely save you loads of time and make your editing workflow more efficient.

For further training, Phil Steele has in-depth courses on Photoshop Basics for Photographers and another on Lightroom Made Easy.

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