Composites from Lightroom Classic


Today’s Question: If in Lightroom Classic I send an image to ‘Edit in Photoshop’, then edit and ‘Save’, the edited image lands nicely in the same located from which I sent the original. If, however, I send two images from Lightroom to Photoshop, layer them into a single image, and edit, I get no ‘Save’ option, but must ‘Save As’. How do I get the finished image to save to the location of one of the original images in Lightroom Classic?

Tim’s Quick Answer: In this case the solution is to use the “Open as Layers in Photoshop” command rather than the “Edit in Photoshop” command. That will create the layered document for you, which will then save in the manner you are accustomed to when sending a single image to Photoshop.

More Detail: When you send an image from Lightroom Classic to Photoshop, it is best to simply use the “Save” command (not “Save As”) to save the resulting derivative image file, to help ensure that image is correctly included in your Lightroom Classic catalog. To address the issue of creating a composite image with photos being managed in Lightroom Classic, it is best to use the “Open as Layers in Photoshop” command, which is intended for this purpose.

The first step is to select the images in Lightroom Classic that you want to assemble into a layered document in Photoshop. Note that the first image you select will be the default for the filename of the final layered document. After selecting multiple images in Lightroom Classic, you can also click on the thumbnail for the image you want to be used for the filename of the composite image. By default, the word “Edit” will be appended to that filename, but you can change this setting in Preferences.

Next, go to the menu bar and choose Photo > Edit In > Open as Layers in Photoshop. The selected images will then be loaded into Photoshop in a single document, with each image on a separate layer on the Layers panel. Each image will have a layer name matching its filename. You can then add layer masks or otherwise modify the layered document. When you’re all done, choose File > Save followed by File > Close from the menu, and the finished result can be found alongside the selected original image in your Lightroom Classic catalog.