Book Versions in Lightroom Classic


Today’s Question: I recently created a book using the Book module in Lightroom Classic and your Mastering Lightroom Classic video tutorial. I’ve completed the first draft of the book and uploaded it to Blurb for a proof copy. Can I start a second book but still retain the existing one for future updates? I don’t want to start a second book and lose the draft of the current one.

Tim’s Quick Answer: The first step is to make sure you’ve saved the original version of the book within the Book module. When you’re ready to start working on an updated version, you can duplicate the saved book collection to use that as a new starting point, preserving both versions of the book in the process.

More Detail: When it comes to preserving a book layout in the Book module in Lightroom Classic, the first thing to know is that you can save your book layout. To do so, after at least creating the initial book, click the “Create Saved Book” button toward the top-right of the book preview area. This will create a new collection featuring the images included in the book and will preserve the layout for the book as part of that collection.

Note, by the way, that once you’ve saved a book you could also start on a new empty book. You can, for example, navigate to a new folder or collection that contains the images you want to include in the book. Then you can click the “Clear Book” button at the top-right of the image preview area, or the “Clear Layout” button in the Auto Layout section of the right panel, in order to create an empty starting point for a new book.

After saving a book you can return to the book layout to continue working on it at any time by selecting the collection from the left panel in either the Library or Book modules, and then update the book within the Book module. Changes you make will be saved automatically to the collection representing the saved book. You can also add images to the collection in the Library module to make them available on the filmstrip when working on the book.

If you want to preserve the initial draft version of the book and create a new draft that you’ll update, you can simply duplicate the existing collection representing the saved book. To do so, right-click on the collection representing the saved book and choose “Duplicate Book” from the popup menu. The default name will be the name of the original collection with the word “Copy” appended to it, but you can rename this duplicate collection by right-clicking and choosing “Rename” from the popup menu.

This will create a copy of the original collection, featuring all the same images and the same book layout. You can then work in the Book module to refine this additional version of the book, and changes will be saved to the collection for the book automatically. As long as you don’t modify the original saved version of the book you will preserve the original draft while being able to create additional drafts based on the first version.

Photo Location Mystery


Today’s Question: I keep all my photos and videos on an external drive with a “Pictures” folder, and lots of subfolders under that. Over the years about 300 of my 90,000+ photos are not located in my pictures folder – indicated by selecting my Pictures folder [in Lightroom Classic], doing a Select All, and seeing it is about 300 photos short of the total number of photos in the catalog. How do I find all photos/videos NOT in my pictures folder?

Tim’s Quick Answer: My expectation is that the photos that seem to be unaccounted for are indeed in the folder structure you’re expecting them in, but there are a few things you can do to confirm this.

More Detail: Using the “Select All” command isn’t a very reliable way of determining how many photos are contained within a given folder structure. There are several ways you can get a more accurate view of the situation.

To begin with, you can make sure that no filters are applied that might reduce the number of photos displayed, which in turn would impact the number of photos selected. On the Library Filter bar above the grid view display in the Library module make sure the “None” option is selected so no filter is set.

In this case I suspect the reason you’re seeing a mismatch is that some of your photos are grouped into stacks with other photos. For example, if you create an HDR or Panoramic image in Lightroom Classic you can have the resulting image grouped into a stack with the source images. If some of the stacks are collapsed, the count for the selected photos will only count the stack as a single image, even though it contains multiple images. In this case you could go to the menu and choose Photo > Stacking > Expand All Stacks so that all stacks are expanded and thus all images within the stack would be counted if you used the Select All command.

There are some other options to consider, however. If you enable the “Show Photos in Subfolders” option found on the Library menu when in the Library module in Lightroom Classic, the parent folder will show a photo count that represents all photos within that folder as well as all subfolders, rather than only photos contained directly within the parent folder.

So, if you turn on the “Show Photos in Subfolders” option, the top-level Pictures folder would most likely show the same count as for the All Photographs collection in the Catalog section of the left panel in the Library module. Of course, if the numbers don’t match, that’s an indication that there are photos stored elsewhere. They might be on a different hard drive, in which case they could be found in folders contained in the other hard drive, which would have a heading in the Folders list.

If there is only a single hard drive, it is possible you have photos stored in a parent folder above the top-level folder. If you suspect that might be the case, you can right-click on the top-level folder and choose “Show Parent Folder” from the popup menu. This will reveal the parent of the selected folder, so you can move up the folder structure to look for other photos.

Processing a JPEG with Camera Raw


Today’s Question: What different effect if any on the quality of a JPEG image processed in Photoshop might result from either A) just opening the JPEG with Command+R in Bridge on my Mac to use Adobe Camera Raw processing first and then opening in Photoshop versus B) opening a JPEG in Photoshop and then using the Camera Raw Filter? Does one or the other method give the user an advantage in processing steps?

Tim’s Quick Answer: There’s no difference in terms of image quality with either approach. I recommend either opening the image as a Smart Object from Camera Raw or using Camera Raw as a filter in Photoshop to maximize flexibility in your workflow.

More Detail: Camera Raw was originally created for processing raw captures, as indicated by the name itself. However, it can also be used to process other supported image formats, such as JPEG and TIFF. From Adobe Bridge you can select the photos(s) you want to open in Camera Raw and then choose File > Open in Camera Raw from the menu. You can also press Ctrl+R on Windows or Command+R on Macintosh to open the selected photos in Camera Raw via Bridge.

Opening a non-raw image via Camera Raw obviously adds an additional step in your workflow when it comes to processing the image. It also limits your flexibility unless you make use of the Smart Filter feature from Camera Raw.

I don’t like the limitations of using a Smart Object in the context of a layer-based workflow that might include other layers, such as for image cleanup. I therefore prefer to use Camera Raw as a filter, working on a duplicate layer.

If you want to open the image as a Smart Object from Camera Raw, you can open the image via Camera Raw and apply any desired adjustments. Then click the workflow summary at the bottom-center of the screen and turn on the “Open in Photoshop as Smart Object” checkbox. Click OK to close the Preferences dialog and click Open when you’re ready to open the image in Photoshop.

If you’re using Camera Raw as a filter in general I recommend making a copy of the image layer you want to work on, and apply the Camera Raw filter to that duplicate layer. You can also convert an image layer to a Smart Object first by choosing Filter > Convert for Smart Filters from the menu before applying the Camera Raw filter.
If you have converted an image layer to a Smart Object you can access the Camera Raw settings again to refine them by double-clicking on the Smart Object layer. However, as noted above this creates the risk that there will be mismatched pixels if you have combined the Smart Filter layer with other image layers containing pixels.

Migrating Photos to a Larger Hard Drive


Today’s Question: All my photos are on a 3TB external hard drive, which is becoming full. I want to move all those to a new, larger 5TB external hard drive. What are my options?

Tim’s Quick Answer: My recommendation is to copy the photos exactly as they are to the new hard drive, and then use that new drive in place of the original. You can use software such as GoodSync ( to streamline this process.

More Detail: If you’re not using software such as Lightroom Classic, which uses a catalog to manage the information about your photos, you can copy your photos from the smaller drive to the larger drive in any way you find convenient. For example, if you’re using Adobe Bridge to manage your photos it isn’t important that the photos are copied with the same folder structure to the new hard drive, because there’s no catalog that would get out of sync from such an action.

If you’re using Lightroom Classic to manage your photos, it is very important that you use an appropriate approach to migrating to a new hard drive. There are two basic options available in this case.

The first option is to move the photos from the smaller drive to the larger drive from within Lightroom Classic. In order to be able to see the new drive within Lightroom Classic you’ll need to add a folder to that drive. To do so, click the plus (+) button to the right of the Folders heading on the left panel in the Library module and choose “Add Folder” (not “Add Subfolder”) from the popup menu. Navigate to the new hard drive and click the “New Folder” button. Give the folder a meaningful name such as “My Photos” and click the Choose button.

Once you’ve created a new folder on the new hard drive, that folder will appear under a heading for the hard drive in the Folders list. You can then select folders from the old drive and drag-and-drop them to the new drive. I recommend working in small batches rather than moving all folders at once, to make it easier to deal with any issues that arise during the process.

The second option is to copy the photos to the new drive outside of Lightroom Classic, making sure that the new drive will be an exact match to the existing drive. You can copy the entire contents from the smaller drive to the larger drive through the operating system, but I prefer to use synchronization software such as GoodSync ( to streamline the process and ensure an exact match between the two drives.

Once you’ve duplicated the folder structure precisely between the old and new drive, make sure that the new drive has the same drive letter (Windows) or volume label (Macintosh). Disconnect the old drive, and then use the Disk Management feature to change the drive letter on Windows, or simply rename the new drive to have the same name as the old drive on Macintosh.

After making sure the new drive is an exact match to the old drive, you can launch Lightroom Classic and continue working as usual because even though the photos are on a new hard drive, the storage structure will still be exactly what Lightroom Classic is expecting.

Sorting Photos by Capture Time


Today’s Question: When I download images from a media card the latest images are all mixed with the older images. Can Lightroom Classic be formatted so last images are at the end?

Tim’s Quick Answer: Yes, you can sort photos in Lightroom Classic (including within the import dialog) by setting the sort order to Capture Time.

More Detail: In Lightroom Classic you can sort photos by a variety of different attributes. The sort order can obviously be helpful, and in general I find it most helpful to sort by capture time so that the photos are displayed in the order I captured them. In other cases, I might sort by star rating or a different metadata attribute.

You can select your desired sort order by choosing an option from the Sort popup, which can be found on the toolbar below the grid view display in both the Library module and the Import dialog. In the Library module if the toolbar is not displayed below the grid view you can press the letter “T” on the keyboard to bring it back.

In the Import dialog there is an “Off” setting for the Sort popup, in which case the images will appear in what may seem like a random order based on the order they were read from the source you’ve selected to import from.

Simply select the option you prefer for the sort order in the Import dialog or in the Library module, and the photos will be sorted accordingly. Note that there is also a button to the left of the Sort popup that allows you to switch between ascending order versus descending order depending on your preference.

Denoise Compatibility


Today’s Question: Sometimes I can use Denoise [in Lightroom Classic or Camera Raw] and other times it says: “Denoise is not currently compatible with this photo format”. Please explain.

Tim’s Quick Answer: The Denoise feature available in Lightroom Classic and Camera Raw currently supports only raw capture formats, with some additional limitations. Support for other file types may be added with a future update.

More Detail: The relatively new Denoise feature supports Bayer and X-Trans mosaic raw files. In general, that means it only supports raw captures that have not been rendered into a normal image format (a process referred to as “demosaicing”).

Image formats such as JPEG, TIFF, HEIC, and others are not supported currently. In addition, some raw capture formats are not supported. If the image sensor is not a Bayer or X-Trans format, even though the photo was captured in a raw format, it will not be supported by Denoise.

In addition, certain camera options that result in a variation on a raw format are not supported. For example, some Canon cameras offer reduced resolution mRaw and sRaw options. These capture options result in a file that is not a mosaic raw image and are therefore not supported by Denoise.

I imagine Denoise will be updated by Adobe to include support for a wider range of image formats in the future, but for now it is limited to images in specific raw capture formats.

Resetting Image Cleanup


Today’s Question: After cloning some twigs and branches with Lightroom Classic doing a so-so job, I decided to just take the image into Photoshop to use their tools instead. When I do that, I like to remove all the Lightroom Classic spot removals and start fresh in Photoshop. Is there a way to delete ALL spot removal “spots” (for lack of a better word) rather than having to do them one by one?

Tim’s Quick Answer: Yes, you can remove all the image cleanup work from an image in Lightroom Classic by clicking the Reset button at the bottom of the controls for the Healing tool.

More Detail: When you clean up a blemish with the Healing tool in Lightroom Classic, a marquee will be added to the image indicating the area you selected for cleanup. You can remove individual cleanup areas by holding the Alt key on Windows or the Option key on Macintosh while clicking on the cleanup spot within the image.

You can also remove all cleanup areas created with the Healing tool by clicking on the Reset button. With the Healing tool active you’ll see a panel above the Basic section of adjustments, which will include the controls for the Healing tool. At the bottom-right of that panel is the Reset button. Simply click that button and all cleanup areas will be removed from the image.

In general, by the way, if you decide that Lightroom Classic isn’t doing a great job of cleaning up the blemishes in an image, I do recommend resetting the Healing tool before sending the image to Photoshop. That will ensure there aren’t any problematic artifacts in the image that may have been created by the Healing tool. You can then start over with the cleanup work in Photoshop, using the superior and more flexible tools there to clean the blemishes from the image.

Corrupted Raw Captures


Today’s Question: Until recently I had no problems at all when opening raw files in Camera Raw and the videos in Final Cut Pro X. Unfortunately, since a few days ago, here is what I get [random colored pixels in a mostly linear pattern] when opening the raw files in Camera Raw.

Tim’s Quick Answer: The sample images provided along with today’s question demonstrate clear signs of a corrupted raw capture. The key is to determine the component that is causing that corruption.

More Detail: When a raw capture file is corrupted the pixel data can’t be rendered properly. This will generally cause the image to have random patterns of colored pixels in a somewhat linear pattern. The colors will often be highly saturated, and the patterns may cover a portion of the image or the entire image.

Here is a sample of what this corruption can look like:

If a raw capture is corrupted in this way, there isn’t a way to recover the original photo. Instead, you’ll need to try to determine the source of the corruption.

The corruption can be caused anywhere from the camera to the computer, and all applicable devices in between. In other words, the corruption might be caused by the camera, by a faulty memory card, by a damaged card reader or cable used to connect the card reader to the computer, a faulty port on your computer, a faulty hard drive on your computer, or the computer itself.

In most cases I have found that a damaged memory card is the culprit, so I would start by capturing test photos on all cards you suspect may be the source of the problem. After capturing a relatively large number of photos on each card, if you find that photos are corrupted on only one of the cards than there is a very good chance that the card with the corrupted photos is to blame. In this case I would discard the problematic memory card, or see if it is eligible for a refund if it was purchased relatively recently.

If all the memory cards you test end up with corrupted photos, then the camera could be the source of corruption. However, it could also be the card reader or another component on your computer. The corrupted images won’t show any signs of corruption on the camera, because an embedded JPEG is used to show you the preview on the camera.

I would start by testing the captures on a completely different computer with entirely different components. Then gradually introduce the other components, such as your card reader and cable, to determine where the source of corruption is.

As noted above, in most cases the memory card is the source of corruption. Other likely candidates are the card reader and the camera. But it is also possible that any other component involved in writing the file to a new location could be causing the files to become corrupted.

Finding the Dehaze Adjustment


Today’s Question: There’s one filter in Photoshop Elements that I haven’t been able to reproduce in Photoshop. It’s called “Dehaze”, and it really clears up the shot. Is there really nothing in Photoshop that does this?

Tim’s Quick Answer: There is indeed a Dehaze adjustment in Photoshop. It is just “hidden” in Camera Raw, which means it is also available in the Camera Raw Filter.

More Detail: The Dehaze adjustment can produce very impressive results, greatly reducing the appearance of haze in a photo. The adjustment is available in Photoshop via Camera Raw, as well as Lightroom Classic and Photoshop Elements.

If you’re processing a raw capture in Camera Raw you can find the Dehaze adjustment in the Basic section of the right panel, grouped with the Texture and Clarity adjustments.

If you’re working directly in Photoshop rather than Camera Raw, such as if you’ve opened a non-raw capture, you can use the Camera Raw filter to access the Dehaze adjustment. If you want to maintain greater flexibility in your workflow you can create a copy of the image layer you want to apply the effect to. With the layer you want to adjust selected on the Layers panel, select Filter > Camera Raw Filter from the menu. When using Camera Raw as a filter you’ll find the same Dehaze adjustment in the Basic section of the right panel.

Regardless of how you’re accessing the Dehaze feature, you can increase the value for the slider to reduce the appearance of haze in the photo. In some cases you may find that this causes the image to look a little too blue, which you can compensate for by shifting the Temperature slider to a higher value toward yellow. You may also find that the shadows get to be a bit too dark, which you can compensate for by increasing the value for the Shadows slider.

Metadata Not Visible Outside Lightroom Classic


Today’s Question: The original files and folders I imported into Lightroom Classic are all still visible in Bridge, but many lack metadata entered in Lightroom Classic? Can you help with this?

Tim’s Quick Answer: To be able to see metadata updates outside of Lightroom Classic you need to enable the option to automatically write metadata updates to the source images within Lightroom Classic.

More Detail: By default, Lightroom Classic only saves metadata updates within the catalog, not to the source image files on your hard drive. Therefore, other applications such as Adobe Bridge will not display the updated metadata by default.

However, you can enable an option to automatically save metadata updates to the source images, which will both provide a backup of the key metadata you update in Lightroom Classic and enable you to view the updated metadata in other applications.

To enable the option to automatically save metadata updates to the source images, first bring up the Catalog Settings dialog by choosing Edit > Catalog Settings on Windows or Lightroom Classic > Catalog Settings on Macintosh. In the Catalog Settings dialog go to the Metadata tab and turn on the “Automatically write changes into XMP” checkbox.

It is important to understand that enabling this option will not save all metadata from Lightroom Classic to the source images. Metadata fields that are part of established standards, such as keywords and star ratings, will be written to the source files when this option is turned on. Features that are specific to Lightroom Classic such as pick and reject flags, virtual copies, collections, and the history in the Develop module, will not be included in these updates.