Getting Started in Lightroom – Step 2: Exporting from LR

Lightroom for Beginners Exporting Photos from Lightroom

The process of moving your new, edited photos out of Lightroom is called exporting.  

In traditional software, you are probably used to seeing “Open” and “Save As”.  In Adobe Lightroom, we import and export:

  • Open is to “Import” as
  • Save As is to “Export

If you watched the video in Step 1: Importing in Lightroom, you should have a basic understanding of how to import photos into Lightroom, and how the software operates with a non-destructive workflow. 

The next thing you need to understand is how to get your shiny new image OUT of Lightroom and into a format you can proudly show!

What makes exporting in Adobe Lightroom different from “Save As” is that it allows you to create several unique export versions of one photo, such as a version ideal for print, another watermarked for online use, and a third for digital media. 

For example, I always export one full resolution master file version, one formatted for large-scale printing, another with a watermark for Facebook, and yet another compressed for this very blog!

Why have so many versions?  For starters, different printers have different color calibration needs and you want to make sure your print comes out right!  Another reason is that uploading a full-resolution version of my photo to this website would take forever for browsers to load, and it would allow anyone to download the full-quality version of my image!

Hopefully, you understand WHY we like the export function, now you need to learn HOW.  This video will walk you through that process and explain all of the various options for settings, as well as how to set up your Presets!

Video Notes:
0:00 – Intro
0:55 – How to Export
1:30 – Setting up your first “Full Resolution” Export Preset (All Settings)
3:37 – Setting up File Settings / File Type and a quick explanation
7:40 – Other possible Export Presets to consider & Batch Exporting

Make sure to watch this a couple times if you need – REWINDS ARE FREE!

Once you feel confident you understand what is happening in the Export process, I recommend setting up at least one “Full Resolution” preset.

At this point, you are able to move photos in and out of Lightroom! Now comes the fun part; learning how to post-process our images!

Understanding Global Adjustments

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Adam Marland is a professional travel blogger and landscape photographer from Oregon. After over a decade of experience as a freelance travel photographer, Adam found national acclaim when he became the National Park Foundation's “Chief Exploration Officer” in 2021.

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