Lightroom has lots of settings and preferences. Sometimes it is hard to know what the best option is. Today I thought I would share with you 3 Lightroom settings you can change right now that will make your life in Lightroom much easier!
1. Solo Mode
If you haven’t already changed this one, you will thank me for showing you this. By changing your panels to Solo Mode, only one panel will be open at a time. When you open the Effects Panel, the Basic Panel will close. When you open the Tone Curve Panel, the Effects Panel will close. This means no more scrolling and scrolling through all your open panels just to find the one you need. If you are using Lightroom on a laptop, this is even more of a lifesaver.
2. Automatically Saving Your Work
If Adobe were being perfectly clear, they would have called this setting auto-save. This setting isn’t really a lifesaver as much as it is a work saver and a sanity saver. Whether you shoot in JPEG or RAW, Lightroom saves the changes that you make to your file to the Lightroom Catalog. Those changes don’t get saved to the file until/unless you tell Lightroom to do it.
By making sure to check the “Automatically write changes into XMP” box you are pushing Lightroom to also save the changes with the file and not just in the catalog. This way, if your catalog ever becomes corrupted, all your edits and changes are still with the photo file and can be read by Lightroom or Photoshop.
If none of this makes sense, just follow these steps anyway. I promise you won’t regret it. With a windows computer go to Edit>Catalog Settings>Metadata (tab) to find the check box above. With a Mac go to Lightroom>Catalog Settings>Metadata (tab).
3. External Editing
This preference will set how Lightroom interacts with other editing programs. Since other editing programs don’t use the same color processing/color space that Lightroom uses, it is important that you set this to be color space that your lab uses. Most labs use the sRBG color space and want the resolution set to 300. You can also select how you want your images to open in Photoshop—PSD or TIFF.
Also, when you export files using the export dialog box, it is important that you have these settings set to sRGB and whatever resolution you want the photo to be.