We get asked frequently if it is possible to use Lightroom to create collages to share on social media and blogs. The answers is a big YES! Not only is it possible but it is simple to do once you understand how to set your settings and add your images. And once you create a blog template, it is easy to save them for use next time!
Follow the steps in the video or instructions below the video to easily create collages for your blog or social media!
To create a blog board in Lightroom's Print Module, you will first need to have open all the photos that you want to use. If they are all from the same session and in the same folder, you can just have that folder open as you move to the Print Module. If the photos you want to use are from several different sessions, then you will need to create a Collection and add all the photos you would like to use to that collection.
Next, move to the Print Module. The Print Module is the second to last Module in Lightroom.
Creating Your Template
Once you are in the Print Module, start by choosing one of Lightroom's "CUSTOM" default templates. You can find those on the left side of the Print Module in the Template Browser Panel under "Lightroom Templates".
Once you have clicked on one of the custom default templates disregard the size that opens. We will be changing that in a few minutes.
Creating Your Custom Settings
Now move to the right-side of the Print Module and open the Layout Style Panel. In this panel make sure that "Custom Package" is highlighted.
Next, we are going to move to the bottom Print Job Panel and set these settings to be what we want for our blog. In the "Print to" section, make sure that JPEG File is selected. Under "File Resolution" I set it to 150 ppi. Make sure that Print Sharpening is UNCHECKED and that JPEG Quality is set to 100.
Under Custom File Dimensions we are going to set the width to height ratio of our blog board. For this example we are going to create a long, skinny board that holds 4 photos—2 horizontal and 2 vertical. For this type of blog board I will type 10 in the first box and 10 in the second. This will give me a blog board that is approx. 1500 pixels wide which is plenty for most any blog.
You can create other sizes and shapes of blog boards. For instance, if you wanted one that was square you could make it 10 x 10. Play around and experiment with different shapes.
Adding Photo Cells
Photo cells are what will be used to hold your photos in the blog board. We need to add some of these to our template. Before adding any cells make sure that the "Lock to Photo Aspect Ratio" box at the bottom of this panel is UNCHECKED.
If your blog board has some cells left from the custom template you chose, delete those by highlighting each one and then tapping the delete key.
Now we will add the cells that we want by going to the Cells Panel. Here there are set up some buttons for different photo ratios. You can click on any of them to add a cell. Once the cell is added to your blog board, resize it to be the shape that you'd like.
You can add a new photo cell by clicking on another button or alt+clicking and dragging on the current cell in your blog board to create a duplicate of the one you just added.
I like to keep a little bit of white space between each of my photos. To do this, make sure there is a little space between each photo cell.
Saving Your Template
Once you have all the photo cells how you think you want them you can save this as a template to use over and over. To do that, click on the "+" sign next to the words Template Browser on the Template Browser panel.
A dialog box will open that will ask you to name your Template and choose which folder to add it to. I typically choose to save mine in the User Templates folder that is already in Lightroom by default. You can create a new folder and save it there if you desire.
If at any time you make a small change to the template and you want to update the template with those changes, you can right-click on the template name that will now be located in the User Templates folder and choose "Update with Current Settings".
Adding Your Photos
Adding your photos to the template is simple. Just drag and drop them from your photo filmstrip into the cells you created in your template. To adjust the photo in the cell, you can hold down the command/control key and click and drag on the photo to adjust what is visible in the cell.
Saving Your Image
Once you have inserted images into the cells and want to save the image for use on your blog, just click the Print to File button located in the bottom-right of the Print Module. Once you have clicked on the button, a dialog box will open and ask you to give the file a name and tell Lightroom where to save it. It will be saved as a JPEG in the folder you choose and available to post on your blog.
Once you have created several templates for your blog, you will only need follow the last two steps in this process create your blog board. Move to the Print Module with your photos ready to go and choose one of the templates you have created, add the photos, and save it as a JPEG. Simple.
Hopefully this will help you save time sharing your images on your blog and various social media sites. Please let us know if you have questions about this process by commenting below!