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Introducing the Workspace in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4

Article Description

Whether you prefer to use menu commands, keyboard shortcuts, or buttons and sliders—whether you use a small screen or a large one, one monitor or two—you can customize the flexible Lightroom workspace to suit the way you work. Customize each of the modules individually so that you always have your favorite tools and controls at hand, arranged just the way you like them.

Note: This excerpt does not include the lesson files. The lesson files are available with purchase of the book.

2. Introducing the Workspace

Lesson overview

To help familiarize you with the Lightroom workspace, this lesson will focus on the interface elements and skills that are common to all the workspace modules:

  • Toggling between screen modes
  • Adjusting the workspace layout
  • Showing and hiding panels and panel groups
  • Collapsing or expanding panels
  • Changing and customizing view modes
  • Working with a second display
  • Personalizing the workspace
  • Choosing interface options
  • Using keyboard shortcuts

You’ll probably need between one and two hours to complete this lesson.

Make working with Lightroom even more pleasurable, and ultimately more productive, by personalizing the workspace so that you always have your favorite tools at hand. Lightroom streamlines your workflow, allowing you to move effortlessly between the different modules and viewing modes and freeing you up to spend less time in front of the computer and more time behind the lens!

Getting started

Before you start on the exercises in this section, make sure that you have correctly copied the Lessons folder from the CD in the back of this book onto your computer’s hard disk as detailed in “Copying the Classroom in a Book files” on page 2, and created the LR4CIB Library Catalog file to manage the lesson files as described in “Creating a catalog file for working with this book” on page 3.

  1. Start Lightroom. In the Adobe Photoshop Lightroom - Select Catalog dialog box, make sure that the file LR4CIB Library Catalog.lrcat is selected under Select A Recent Catalog To Open, and then click Open.
  2. Lightroom will open in the screen mode and workspace module that were active when you last quit. If necessary, switch to the Library module by clicking Library in the Module Picker at the top of the workspace.

Importing images into the library

The first step is to import the images for this lesson into the Lightroom library.

  1. Choose File > Import Photos And Video. If the Import dialog box appears in compact mode, click the Show More Options button at the lower left of the dialog box to see all the options in the expanded Import dialog box.
  2. Under Source at the left of the expanded Import dialog box, navigate to the Lessons folder that you copied into the LR4CIB folder on your hard disk. Select the Lesson 2 folder and ensure that all seven images in the Lesson 2 folder are checked for import.
  3. In the import options just above the thumbnail previews, select Add so that the imported photos will be added to your catalog without being moved or copied.
  4. Under File Handling at the right of the expanded Import dialog box, choose Minimal from the Render Previews menu and ensure that the Don’t Import Suspected Duplicates option is activated.
  5. Under Apply During Import, choose None from both the Develop Settings menu and the Metadata menu and type Lesson 2 in the Keywords text box. Make sure that your import is set up as shown in the illustration below, and then click Import.
  6. If necessary, press the F6 key to show the Filmstrip across the bottom of the Lightroom workspace.

Thumbnails of the seven Lesson 2 images appear in the Grid view of the Library module and in the Filmstrip. You’re now ready to start the exercises in this lesson.

2. Toggling screen modes | Next Section