Auto-Eject Media Card


Today’s Question: In previous versions of Lightroom Classic, I enabled a setting to automatically eject the memory card following import. In recent versions, I have not been able to find the configuration setting. Is it still available somewhere?

Tim’s Quick Answer: If the “Eject after import” checkbox is not shown at all in the Import dialog in Lightroom Classic, it is an indication that the card you’re importing from is being treated as a hard drive rather than a media card. This would be the case with some of the newer cards such as CFexpress and XQD.

More Detail: The “Files” versus “Devices” categories in the Import dialog can be a little confusing, especially since most memory cards will appear under both “Devices” and “Files”. There are some issues in the background that led to this, and in general you’ll get better performance by making sure you select the source under Files rather than Devices.

For removable media devices that support being automatically ejected, you’ll see a “Eject after import” to the right of the Devices heading on the left panel in the Import dialog. Even if you select the media card as a source under the Files section (as is recommended) if you have the “Eject after import” checkbox turned on the media card will still be ejected via the operating system. That means the card can be removed from the card reader without having to go through the process of ejecting through the operating system.

However, some of the newer types of memory cards are designed in such a way that they are treated as an external hard drive by the computer, rather than a removable media device (even though external hard drives can and should also be “ejected” through the operating system). For these cards the “Eject after import” checkbox won’t be displayed and therefore you’ll need to eject the card manually using the “Eject” feature on Macintosh or the “Safely Remove” feature on Windows.

Print Button Disabled in Lightroom Classic


Today’s Question: The Print button is grayed out in Lightroom Classic. I can print from Photoshop but not Lightroom Classic. How can I fix this?

Tim’s Quick Answer: This is an indication that you have the “Print to” option set to “JPEG File” in the Print Job section at the bottom of the right panel in the Print module. Change that to “Printer” and you’ll be able to print again.

More Detail: The Print module in Lightroom Classic is obviously focused on enabling you to print your photos. Templates can be used as the foundation of creating a print layout, which makes it easy to print a single photo of a given size, to print the same photo multiple times on a page, or to print multiple different photos on a page.

In addition to being able to print your photos based on the layouts you create, you can also generate a JPEG file that reflects the same page layout you might otherwise prepare for print.

This can be very helpful when you need to share photos with clients, for example. You might create a contact sheet layout for a batch of photos, and then generate JPEG files for each page of the print job to deliver via email rather than having to share printed pages with the client.

There are, of course, a wide variety of other ways you might put this feature to use, creating JPEG images based on page layouts with photos designed in the Print module. To “print” to a JPEG image rather than the printed page, select “JPEG File” from the “Print to” popup in the Print Job section of the right panel in the Print module. You can then configure the output settings and click the “Print to File” button to generate the JPEG image(s) based on the current layout.

When you want to print to paper again, simply change the “Print to” popup back to “Printer” and the Print button will be available again.

Size for a 4K Monitor Display


Today’s Question: I’m about to buy a new 4K screen for post processing my photos but I still have a doubt about the size. What do you recommend: 27-inch or 32-inch?

Tim’s Quick Answer: I recommend 32-inch when running a 4K resolution, as long as that size is comfortable with your setup.

More Detail: When it comes to resolution, more is not always better. And when it comes to a monitor display, bigger isn’t always better. Instead, I recommend finding the right configuration for your specific needs and preferences.

I personally don’t find a display with a 4K resolution (about 4,000 pixels across) to be particularly helpful for photographic applications. In general, I find that at a 4K resolution text and various interface elements tend to be a bit too small to see comfortably. Instead, I tend to prefer display resolutions closer to around 2,000 pixels across, such as 1920×1080 pixels.

I also favor displays that aren’t too large. Personally, I find a 27-inch display to be the largest I tend to be comfortable with. Of course, this is influenced by the fact that I prefer to be relatively close to the display. I don’t want my nose pressed right against it, but I don’t like having the display more than about two to three feet away from my face.

Admittedly, this largely comes down to personal preference. I have known many photographers who very much prefer a 32-inch display even if it is positioned really close to them. I’ve known even more who love a 4K display and never want anything at a lower resolution.

I highly recommend visiting a store where you can see various displays to get a sense of what works better for you. At the very least I recommend getting a good sense of what size and resolution you tend to prefer, making sure that the display you’re evaluating in a store is set to the native resolution of the display so you’re getting an accurate look at the display resolution.

Once you have a good sense of the size and resolution you prefer for a display, you can filter the available options to look or other important features, such as color space support and more.

Note by the way that I do maintain a list of specific products I recommend for photographers. Most of the list is focused on photography gear, but there is some computer gear on the list as well. You can find the list here:

Counting Subjects in Photos with Photoshop


Today’s Question: In my wildlife photography I sometimes have a need to count the number of birds or animals in the frame. This can sometimes be a challenging task. Can you recommend a way to mark up the photo in Photoshop to help keep track of which animals have been counted?

Tim’s Quick Answer: Yes! The Count tool in Photoshop is designed exactly for this type of purpose, enabling you to count objects by clicking on them within the image.

More Detail: The Count tool has been included in Photoshop for quite a while, but I feel it is one of the least-known tools on the toolbar. Admittedly, probably a relatively small percentage of Photoshop users ever try the Count tool, but it can be remarkably helpful when you need to count objects in a photo.

The Count tool is associated with the button for the Eyedropper tool on the toolbar in Photoshop. So, the first step is to select the Count tool by right-clicking on the button for the Eyedropper tool (or the related tool that may be on the top if you had recently used something else) and choosing “Count Tool” from the popup menu.

To count objects in the image you simply click on them. As you click a marker will appear with a dot and a number indicating the count number for that object. You can continue clicking on each object you want to count, with the number incrementing for each marker as you go. To make it easy to know what the actual count is you can simply look at the “Count” value toward the left end of the Options bar.

If the markers aren’t easy to see on the image you can adjust the size and color to help. On the Options bar you’ll find a color swatch you can click to bring up the Color Picker dialog, so you can choose a better color. The same color is used for all markers, so you’ll want to try to select a color that will stand out across the entirely of the image. I generally use a highly saturated color, like a really bright magenta.

You can also adjust the size of the marker dots using the Marker Size field on the Options bar, or adjust the size for the number associated with each marker using the Label Size field. You can hide the count markers by clicking the eye icon on the Options bar, which will toggle the visibility.

When you’re done counting, or you need to reset the count to start over, you can click the Clear button on the Options bar. There’s even an option for creating multiple groups so you can count the number of different categories of objects within the same photo.

If you save the image as a Photoshop PSD or TIFF with the count still present for the image, the markers will be saved along with the image. In other words, when you open the image again the count markers will still be there for you to review.

Today’s question has inspired me to include a comprehensive article on the Count tool in the January 2023 issue of my Pixology magazine for photographers. If you’re not already a subscriber and would like access to back issues and upcoming issues, you can learn more and sign up on the GreyLearning website here:

Sorting Smartphone Photos by App


Today’s Question: I recently purchased the iPhone 14 Pro Max and have been shooting raw (DNG) files using both the native iPhone camera and the Lightroom app. After I have imported my photos into Lightroom Classic, is there a way to filter for all photos captured with the Lightroom camera versus the Apple native iPhone camera? I can sort all photos by filename because the photos captured with the Lightroom camera have filenames that start with “APC” and the photos captured with the iPhone native camera have filenames that start with “IMG”. But I see no way to filter for one of the categories.

Tim’s Quick Answer: Sort of, but not with great reliability. The app used to capture the photos is not recorded in metadata, though there are some ways you could keep track of which app was used on your smartphone.

More Detail: When you capture a photo using a smartphone the specific app you used to capture the photo is not recorded in metadata. However, the software used to edit the photo is recorded, which in the case of a photo captured with the Lightroom mobile app means there will be an indication of the Lightroom app in metadata. This is found in the Software field, which will indicate “Adobe Lightroom” along with the version number and operating system (such as “iOS” for an Apple iPhone).

The Software field isn’t one you can filter exclusively, but you could search for unique text using the “Any Searchable Field” option on the Text tab of the Library Filter bar. For example, in this case searching for “iOS” would work, whereas searching for “Lightroom” would not because many other photos will include Lightroom Classic in this field.

Using the Software field is frankly not much more helpful or reliable than using the starting characters of the filename. I therefore recommend that you instead create a different workflow to keep track of which app had been used to capture the photos.

For example, you could use two different approaches to importing the photos captured with different apps. I recommend not importing photos captured with the native camera app on your smartphone into Lightroom mobile. You can then import the Lightroom mobile captures into Lightroom Classic using the synchronization feature, and separately download and import the photos captured with the native camera app as you would when importing photos from the media card taken from a camera. By importing these two types of photos in different ways you could then add information to metadata to indicate which app had been used for each.

You could use a color label to indicate the different capture apps, for example, or add a keyword for the photos based on the app that was used to capture them. This would provide a much more dependable option for later reviewing which app was used for a particular photo or searching for photos based on which app had been used to capture them.

Note, by the way, that I provided details on a recommended workflow for getting your photos from the Lightroom mobile app into your Lightroom Classic catalog in the August 2022 issue of my Pixology magazine for photographers. I also covered my recommended approach to importing photos captured with the native camera app on a smartphone into Lightroom Classic in the April 2022 issue. If you don’t already subscribe to Pixology magazine you can sign up now and get access to the back issues at no extra cost. Details can be found on the GreyLearning website here:

Safely Removing Photos from Lightroom Mobile


Today’s Question: I have Lightroom Classic and Lightroom mobile. I don’t know where to delete from Lightroom mobile without deleting my originals. I do not want to have thousands of photos on my mobile devices. I do all my processing on my computer for all the photos I take with my camera. I know that collections are synchronized to mobile. But I’ve cleaned out my collections but they’re still thousands of images on my mobile.

Tim’s Quick Answer: While this can be a challenging issue to resolve, ultimately you need to carefully remove the photos you don’t want to appear in the mobile version of Lightroom from the “All Synced Photographs” collection.

More Detail: Synchronizing photos to the cloud within the Lightroom ecosystem can be a bit challenging, in that there isn’t an obvious way to remove the photos once you have transferred them to Lightroom Classic without the risk of losing the original photos if you delete them in the wrong way.

To remove photos from the cloud without affecting the original images you’re managing in Lightroom Classic you need to remove the applicable photos from the “All Synced Photographs” collection found in the Catalog section of the left panel in the Library module in Lightroom Classic.

The challenge with removing photos in this way is that you want to be sure not to remove photos that are being synchronized via a collection in Lightroom Classic. You also want to be sure to only remove photos from the cloud after you’re sure those photos have been safely transferred to your hard drive and are being managed by Lightroom Classic.

I use a color label to identify photos that I’ve migrated from the Lightroom mobile app to my Lightroom Classic catalog. Once I know those photos have been safely transferred to the desired folder on my hard drive, I can then remove those photos from the “All Synced Photographs” collection based on the color label I assigned.

If you have thousands of photos to clean up in this manner, you could turn off synchronization for all collections in the Collections section of the left panel in Lightroom Classic. Then make sure that all original photos from the Lightroom mobile app have been safely transferred to a hard drive within Lightroom Classic. Once synchronization is then completed you could remove all photos from the “All Synced Photographs” collection, and then re-enable synchronization for the desired collections.

This can be a bit of a tricky and involved process making sure that all photos are safe on your hard drive before you remove them from cloud-based synchronization. However, I do think it is important to go through that process to avoid the risk of losing photos accidentally.

Note that I provided coverage of my recommended workflow for getting photos from Lightroom mobile to Lightroom Classic, including the process of then removing the photos from Lightroom mobile, in the August 2022 issue of my Pixology magazine for photographers. If you don’t already subscribe to Pixology you can learn more and subscribe, which will provide you to access to back issues, on the GreyLearning website here:

Image Resolution for Online Presentations


Today’s Question: My photo club used to request that submitted images be sized at 1400 x 1050 pixels, because this was the resolution of the projector. With Covid came the Zoom meetings, which have been done by the photo club and by me among friends. I have learned that if I show images sized at that old standard of 1400×1050 pixels the images naturally don’t fill my own screen, which is 2160×1440 pixels, and consequently don’t fill the screens of the friends participating in the zoom call. My conclusion is to size my images larger so that they fill my screen, and then they will also fill the screens of my friends, regardless of the screen sizes they have. Is this correct?

Tim’s Quick Answer: Zoom defaults to a video resolution of 1080p, which is 1920×1080 pixels. I therefore recommend setting your display resolution to 1920×1080. You could also size images to these dimensions if you don’t mind cropping photos to fit these dimensions.

More Detail: While it is possible to share your screen set to just about any resolution for Zoom or other online sharing platforms, in most cases I recommend setting your display resolution to 1080p (1920×1080 pixels). This matches a commonly used video format and is also generally a good choice when sharing a screen that will include software interface elements. If you share your screen at a different resolution it will generally be scaled to fit the resolution of the broadcast, which by default is 1080p.

When preparing images that you’ll present, you might want to size them to about the same dimensions, depending on how you’ll be sharing them.

If you will be zooming in on details of your photos while presenting, then you’ll want to save the images at a higher resolution to allow for good image quality even when zooming in. I would generally use a full-resolution copy of the image for this type of scenario.

If you’ll only be presenting the full image without zooming then I recommend sizing the images to fit the overall dimensions, without cropping the images unless you really want them full screen. For example, a vertical image could be sized to 1080 pixels tall, accepting that there will be blank space to the left and right since you’re sharing a vertical image in a horizontal space.

For horizontal images I would resize to fit within the 1920×1080 dimensions. This might result in some blank space either above and below or to the left and right, but to me this is preferred over cropping the image just to have it fill the screen. That said, if you prefer to crop so the images will fill the screen you can crop them to the same dimensions as your display, which again I recommend setting to 1920×1080.

You can learn more about resolution, by the way, by watching the recording of my webinar presentation on “Solving Resolution Confusion” on my Tim Grey TV channel on YouTube here:

Folders Missing for Exported Photos


Today’s Question: In Lightroom Classic I create a folder for the current month. I then create a subfolder representing the date and a brief description or location of the project. I import into and process images, then export selected JPEGs using the “Same folder as original photo” option. This process has served me well for years. However, some time recently the subfolders for exported images stopped showing up in Lightroom Classic. Thanks for any help you can offer.

Tim’s Quick Answer: The folders being created for exported photos aren’t showing up in Lightroom Classic because you have the “Add to This Catalog” checkbox turned off in the Export dialog.

More Detail: By default, when you export photos from Lightroom Classic the exported copies are not added to the catalog. To me this is the preferred approach, because I view the exported copies as just “extra” copies of my original photos being used for sharing in some way. When I want to share a photo again, I’ll simply go back to my original (which I may have further adjusted in the meantime) and export another copy.

If you prefer to have exported copies of photos added to the Lightroom Classic catalog you can simply turn on the “Add to This Catalog” checkbox, which is found in the Export Location section at the top of the Export dialog. This will cause the exported copies of photos to be added to the catalog. If you’re creating a new folder as part of the process of exporting those photos, that folder will also be added to the catalog so you’ll see it on the Folders list on the left panel in the Library module.

Turning on the “Add to This Catalog” checkbox for future exports won’t solve the issue for the folders that are “missing” in this context, since they had already been exported without the checkbox turned on. To resolve that issue I recommend using the “Synchronize Folder” command.

You can simply right-click on a parent folder that is missing the subfolder with the exported JPEGs, and choose “Synchronize Folder” from the popup menu. This will bring up a dialog that after a little processing will indicate how many photos were found in that folder structure that are not currently in Lightroom Classic. Then, with the “Import new photos” checkbox turned on you can click the Synchronize button and the photos from the selected folder and any subfolders will be imported, and therefore the subfolder that had been missing will display on the Folders list.

Highlights Adjustment for Vignetting


Today’s Question: In the Post-Crop Vignetting controls for Lightroom Classic [and Adobe Camera Raw] there is a Highlights slider. When I adjust this slider nothing seems to happen. What is it supposed to do?

Tim’s Quick Answer: The Highlights slider for Post-Crop Vignetting in Lightroom Classic or Adobe Camera Raw enables you to have very bright areas such as the sun in the sky overpower the vignette effect for a more realistic result.

More Detail: The Post-Crop Vignetting effect is obviously intended to provide the ability to simulate a lens vignetting effect where the edges of the frame are a bit darkened. This is a rather common behavior for wide-angle lenses, for example. In addition, you can add a more creative border effect by using stronger adjustments for the vignette controls.

As long as you’ve selected either “Highlight Priority” or “Color Priority” from the Style popup, and you have used a negative value for the Amount slider to darken the edges of the photo, the Highlights slider will be available.

If the edges of the photo don’t have any very bright areas such as lights, reflections, or the sun in the frame, then you might not see any effect when increasing the value for Highlights. However, if there is a bright area near the edge, you can create a more realistic vignette effect by increasing the value for Highlights.

For example, let’s assume you’re working on a photo with the sun in the corner of the frame. When you darken the edges of the image with the Post-Crop Vignetting controls the sun would also be dimmed down a little bit. As you increase the value for the Highlights slider, you’ll notice that the sun is “burning through” the vignette effect, overpowering the darkening in that area of the image.

By increasing the brightness for bright areas that had been darkened by the vignette, the result will look like a more natural effect. For example, when photographing a scene with a wide-angle lens that tends to produce a relatively strong vignetting effect, if you position the sun in the corner of the frame that very bright light source will overpower the vignette in that area of the frame.

Browsing Multiple Folders in Lightroom Classic


Today’s Question: Is there a way to browse all the photos in more than one folder in Lightroom Classic, such as when I want to review photos from multiple trips to the same location?

Tim’s Quick Answer: Yes, you can select multiple folders (or collections) in Lightroom Classic to browse all photos within all selected sources.

More Detail: Lightroom Classic enables you to select multiple folders (or collections) so you can browse the contents of all the selected sources at the same time. This functions the same way as selecting multiple files or folders within the operating system.

If you want to select a sequence of folders all in a row you can click on the first folder you want to select within the Folders list on the left panel in the Library module, and then hold the Shift key on the keyboard while clicking on the last folder in the range. This will cause all folders in between to also be selected.

If you want to select folders that are not all in a row you can toggle the selection of folders on or off as needed. Hold the Ctrl key on Windows or the Command key on Macintosh while clicking on a folder to toggle the folder as being selected or not selected.

These commands work the same for both folders and collections, and in fact you can even select folders and collections at the same time. For example, if you select a folder on the Folders list and then hold the Ctrl/Command key while clicking on a collection in the Collections list, both the folder and the collection will be selected so that you’re browsing all photos from both.

These options give you considerable flexibility in terms of which photos are currently being browsed. While you’re browsing multiple folders or collections you can of course use the Library Filter bar to apply filter criteria so you’re only seeing photos that match specific settings, such as those with a particular star rating.

Also keep in mind that you can perform a very broad search within Lightroom Classic by selecting the “All Photographs” collection in the Catalog section of the left panel in the Library module. This will cause you to browse your entire catalog of photos, which you can of course then apply filters to so you can track down specific photos.