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Reviewing Images in Lightroom 2

  • Sample Chapter is provided courtesy of Adobe Press.
  • Date: Oct 20, 2008.

Chapter Description

The Lightroom Library module offers you a variety of ways to review and evaluate your images: you can sort and group thumbnails in the Grid view, examine a single photo up close in Loupe view, assess images side by side in Compare view, or hone a selection of shots in Survey view.

Switching views

In the Library module you can move between four viewing modes to suit different phases of your workflow. Press the G key for Grid view (grid.jpg) to see thumbnails of your images while you search, apply flags, ratings and labels, or create collections. Use the keyboard shortcut E to inspect a single photo at a range of magnifications in Loupe view (loupe.jpg). Press C to see two images side by side in Compare view (compare.jpg) or use the keyboard shortcut N to evaluate several images at once in Survey view (survey.jpg).

The Toolbar displays a different set of controls for each view mode.

The Grid view

By default your images will be displayed in Grid view after they’ve been imported.

  1. Click the triangle at the right end of the Toolbar and ensure that View Modes is activated in the tools menu. If you are working on a small screen, you can disable all the other options except Thumbnail size and Info for this lesson.

  2. If Grid view is not already selected, click the Grid view button (grid.jpg). Adjust the size of the thumbnails by dragging the Thumbnails slider so that you can see about two rows of thumbnails in the Grid view without having to scroll down.

  3. To specify how your photos will be displayed in the Grid view image cells, choose View > View Options. The Library View Options dialog box appears.
  4. For the purposes of this exercise, activate the Show Grid Extras option and choose Compact Cells from the menu beside it. Customize the settings for Options, Cell Icons, Compact Cell Extras, and Expanded Cell Extras to your liking. As a guide for your choices, please refer to “View Options for the Grid view” on the next page. When you’re done, close the Library View Options dialog box.

    You can quickly activate and disable groups of the options you just set in the Library View Options dialog box by choosing from the Grid View Style menu.

  5. To switch to Expanded Cell viewing mode, select Expanded Cells from the View > Grid View Style menu. Ensure that the option Show Extras is activated in the same menu.

Zooming with the Navigator in Loupe view

In Loupe view you can look closely at one photo at a time at a wide range of zoom levels. Use the Loupe view to help you to evaluate your images as you sort them in the Library module and to inspect and adjust them in the Develop module.

In the Navigator panel you can set the level of magnification for the Loupe view and find your way around a zoomed image with ease. Like the Loupe view, the Navigator is common to both the Library and Develop modules.

  1. Select the first thumbnail image (showing the Empire State building) in the Grid view or the Filmstrip, and then click the Loupe view button (loupe.jpg) in the Toolbar. You can also switch to Loupe view by double-clicking a thumbnail in the Grid view or the Filmstrip or by pressing the E key on your keyboard.

  2. If necessary, expand the Navigator panel at the top of the left panel group. The zoom controls for the Loupe view are in upper right corner of the Navigator panel. Click 1:1; as you can see, the resolution of this particular image is quite low.

  3. Click the small triangle at the right of the Navigator panel header and choose the zoom ratio 3:1 from the menu.

  4. When working at such a high level of magnification, the Navigator helps you move around in the image quickly and easily. Click anywhere in the Navigator preview and the zoomed view will be centered on that point. Drag in the Navigator preview to reposition the view. The white rectangle indicates the area currently displayed in the Loupe view. Click in the Loupe view to move back and forth between the last two zoom levels used; when zooming in, the view will be centered on the point you click.

  5. In the header of the Navigator panel, click each of the four zoom levels in turn (Fit, Fill, 1:1, and 3:1—the option you chose from the menu). Press the Ctrl / Command key together with the Minus key (-) repeatedly to zoom out through the last four zoom levels used and to finally switch to Grid view; press the Ctrl / Command key together with the Equal key (=) repeatedly to switch back to Loupe view and to progressively zoom in. Finally, set the zoom level to Fit.

Comparing photos

As the name suggests, the Compare view (compare.jpg) is ideal for examining and evaluating images side by side.

  1. Press Control+D / Command+D or choose Edit > Select None.
  2. In the Filmstrip, Ctrl-click / Command-click two images or your choice (in the illustration below we first changed the sort order using the controls in the Toolbar and then selected the images of the Flatiron building and the Chrysler building), and then click the Compare View button (compare.jpg) in the Toolbar.

The first image you selected becomes the Select image and is displayed in the left pane of the Compare view; the image displayed in the right pane is the Candidate. In the Filmstrip the Select image is marked with a while diamond in the upper right corner, and the Candidate image with a black diamond.

To use the Compare view to make a choice from a group of more than two similar photos, select the photos you wish to compare—being sure to select your favored choice first to place it as the Select image, and then add the other images to your selection. Then click the Select Previous Photo and Select Next Photo buttons (arrow.jpg) in the Toolbar or press the left and right arrow keys on your keyboard to move between the selected candidates.

Should you decide that the current Candidate is better than the Select image, you can reverse their positions by clicking the Swap button (swap.jpg) in the Toolbar.

  1. To compare fine detail in the images, zoom in by dragging the Zoom slider in the Toolbar. You’ll notice that the images are zoomed together. Drag either of the images in the Compare view and the images move in unison. The closed lock icon to the left of the Zoom tool indicates that the view focus of the two images is locked.

  2. If you wish to zoom and move the Select and Candidate images independently, click the lock icon to unlink them.

Using Survey view to narrow down a selection

The last of the four views in the Library module, the Survey View lets you to see a multiple selection of images together on one screen, and then narrow your choices by dropping one photo after another from the view.

  1. In the Filmstrip, sort the images by filename, select the last five images. In the Library module, click the Survey view icon (survey.jpg) or press the N key.

  2. Navigate between the images by pressing the arrow keys on your keyboard or click the Select Previous Photo and Select Next Photo buttons (arrow.jpg) in the Toolbar. (See illustration below step 3.)
  3. Position the pointer over the last photo. A Deselect Photo icon (deselect_photo.jpg) appears in the lower right corner of the image. Click this icon to drop the image from the selection in the Survey view.

  4. Continue to eliminate photos from the Survey view until you’ve narrowed your selection to the image (or images) you want. For the purposes of this exercise, deselect all but one favorite (we chose the active photo—marked with a white border—in the illustration below).

4. Flagging picks and rejects and deleting images | Next Section Previous Section

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