Pick Your Best Photos in Lightroom | Helen Bradley | Skillshare

Pick Your Best Photos in Lightroom

Helen Bradley, Graphic Design for Lunch™

Pick Your Best Photos in Lightroom

Helen Bradley, Graphic Design for Lunch™

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5 Lessons (18m)
    • 1. Why you need this course!

    • 2. Step 1 - Pick your better images

    • 3. Step 2 -Make a collection of your good shots

    • 4. Step 3 - Rate your best shots

    • 5. Step 4 - Find the best of the best

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About This Class


Kickstart your Lightroom workflow by choosing your best shots before you start processing them. Instead of wasting time developing all your shots, this video shows a foolproof way you can use to pick your best photos. When you work on the best of the best you'll save time and work more efficiently. Oh! and you'll have a lot more fun.

More in this series:

Lightroom for Lunch™ - Pick Your Best Shots

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Hand Tint Image Effect - Adjustment Brush, B&W 

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Create Mood & Light in Early Evening Photos

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Silhouette Image Processing - Master Image Adjustments

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Enhance Color in an Image - HSL, Vibrance, Clarity

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Process Underexposed Images - Shadows Highlights Filters

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - High Key Image Processing

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Enhance Red when Processing Your Photos

Adobe Camera Raw & Lightroom for Lunch™ - Craft Great Black and White Photos

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Creatively Relight an Image

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Get Creative with Clarity

ACR and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Remove Blemishes, Sensor Dust and More - Master the Spot Removal Tool

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Day to Night Processing

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Sharpen and Spot Sharpen Photos

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Create and Use Presets - Save Presets, LR to ACR, Bridge

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Find, Download and Install Presets

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Roundtrip to Photoshop and Back

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Create a 2017 Calendar in Lightroom & ACR/Photoshop

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Batch Process a Shoot

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Keywording Images in Bridge and Lightroom

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Fix Perspective and Lens Distortion

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Isolated Color Effect

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Lightroom Overview - Is Lightroom for you?

Lightroom for Lunch™ - Frame Photos on Export - Presets, Identity Plate, Print Module 

Adobe Camera Raw and Lightroom for Lunch™ - Create a Triptych - 3 photo layout 

Meet Your Teacher

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Helen Bradley

Graphic Design for Lunch™

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Helen teaches the popular Graphic Design for Lunch™ courses which focus on teaching Adobe® Photoshop®, Adobe® Illustrator®, Procreate®, and other graphic design and photo editing applications. Each course is short enough to take over a lunch break and is packed with useful and fun techniques. Class projects reinforce what is taught so they too can be easily completed over a lunch hour or two.

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1. Why you need this course!: Hello. I'm Helen Bradley. I'd like to welcome you to this Skillshare course on Picking Your Best Shots In Lightroom. What I'm going to show you in this video is a really simple way of speeding up your Lightroom workflow. What I often say with my students is that they have a what I call click and fix approach. They'll see an image that they like and a shoot that they've just done as they're going through the images and they'll go, "Let's go and see what this looks like when we go to the develop module," and then they'll start working on this particular image. After a few minutes of paddling around with that, they'll look again here and go, "Wait a minute. Maybe this one's cute or maybe this one's cuter, so let's go and fix that." They're clicking and then fixing. What I want to do is I want to show you a better way of working in Lightroom and I call this my pick and fix. What we're going to do first is to pick the images that we actually want to spend the time on. In this particular folder, it's two shoots and I have over 1,200 images of this rescue kitten called Fergus. If I want to be able to process the best of these images, the first thing I've got to do is go and find the best of the images, because if I'm just doing my click and fix approach, I'm going to be here for weeks fixing these images and I really don't know yet which are my favorite images. So we're going to look through this entire folder. We're going through 1,200 images. We're going to pick the best of them, and you've got to find a really easy to follow workflow that's going to work for you every single time you come home with a shoot. Now, this might be a shoot like this where I'm shooting Fergus or it might be you're a travel photographer and you're bringing home a series of images from a trip. You might be a wedding photographer, an event photographer, you might be shooting for e-commerce, you might be doing head shot, blog shot, it doesn't matter. This workflow is applicable to any one of those situations, and it's super fast. I promise you that you're going to have a lot more fun with your images if you use a workflow like this, because you're only going to be fixing the best of the best images. You're going to have more time to spend in the Develop module because you're going to have less images that are going to need fixing. Let's get started with picking our best images in Lightroom. 2. Step 1 - Pick your better images: Let's have a look and see what's going to happen when you come home from a big shoot. As I said earlier, I've got over 1,200 images in this folder. So I'm going to the very first of these images. They've been imported into Lightroom already, and I'll generally make smart previews and standard previews from these images during the import process. So this is the beginning of my workflow. What I'm going to do is double-click on the first of the images to open it in loop view. I'm also going to press Shift and Tab because what that does is it puts the image at full size on the screen so I can see what's happening. Now I have three keys that I can use. I have the P key for pick. That means that this is one of my good images. I have the right arrow key for, I don't particularly like this image, but it's not bad. Then I have the X key for rejects. These are images that are not in focus and really I just don't want them on my disk at all. I plan to delete them later on. So what I'm going to do, and what you're going to do is work through a whole series of images pressing P for pick, arrow key for just going past the image because it's not one that you want, and X total reject. So for this first one I'm going to press X because I'm going to reject it. I'm just going to delete it later on. This one's okay, but it's not a pick. So I'm going to arrow past it. Again, I'm just going to press P for pick anytime I see something that I think is a pretty good shot. I want to move through these pretty quickly. You can see I'm just going pick, pick, pick. No this is an arrow, no arrow, no arrow. I'm just going past these with an arrow and then pressing P for pick when I see something that I want to select as one of the better shots. I'm not doing any filtering at this stage beyond this P and arrow, and the X for rejects. You can see that you can work pretty fast through these images once you get this workflow because it's just very simple to do. Now, one of the things that you might notice is every time I press the P flag to pick an image, I'm going on to the next image in the sequence. Now, if that doesn't happen in your version of Lightroom, what you need to do is to turn your setting on. So I'm going to the photo menu here and I'm making sure that auto advance is selected. When it is selected, anytime you press the P for pick flag, Lightroom automatically picks the image and goes on to the next one. So it's just a faster way of operating. The same thing is going to happen if you press the X key, you're going to reject that image and move straight on to the next image. So I'm really not making a lot of critical decisions about these images except yes, this is a pick or no, it's not. There's some images in here. As I go on, I'm finding better images as I go, I mean that all right. That's exactly what we're supposed to be doing at this point. Now, I'm going to continue to go through these images. I'm going to pick the best of them and I'm going to move past those that I don't want to flag as being the best, and I'm going to press X for the rejects. I'm going to suggest that you do that right now, that you go to a folder of images that you have in Lightroom, and then you go through those images doing just as I'm doing now, picking the best with the P flag, arrowing past those that you don't think are the very best of your shots and pressing X for the rejects. Then we'll come back in the next video and we'll see what we're going to do with the images that we have flagged and picked. 3. Step 2 -Make a collection of your good shots: Now, I've just gone ahead and gone through all 1,200 plus images in this particular folder and it took me about 15 minutes to pick those images that I wanted, to move past those that I didn't want, and to press X for Reject on those that I wanted to reject. As you're going through, if you make a mistake, for example, I'm just going to make sure I'm back here at Lightroom and press "P" for pick. If I think that that was not a pick, I can just arrow backwards and just press the letter "U" for unpick. But really as you're working through, you just want to go through pretty fast because you want to be picking the best of your images, and just moving past those that are not the very best. Now that we've done just that, I'm going to go back into Grid View, so I'm going to press "G" for grid. What I need to do now is to find these picked images, so I'm going to re-display my film strip by clicking here. Now, there's a Filter option here which may or may not be visible. Go across here if it's not visible and just click the word "Filter," and then there are some Flags, and it's this first Flag that you want, and you're going to click it twice, and what that's going to do is show you all your flagged photos. All of these are the photos that I flagged as I went through. Now, I want to make a collection of them, so I'm going to press "Control" or "Command A," and that selects all the flagged images. Then I'm going to Collections, and I'm going to click the "Plus Sign" here, and I'm going to create just a regular collection. I'm going to call this "Best of Fergus". I don't want to create virtual copies, but I could click here if I did want to. But I am going to Choose "Include Selected Photos" because that means all the images that I have flagged as picks are going to be in this collection "Best to Fergus". Of course, a collection in Lightroom is just like an album. It's just a pointer to these images. We're not actually making duplicates. All we're doing is collecting pointers to these images and saying these are going to be our best-ofs. I'm just going to click and here is the "Best of Fergus". Here are the images all isolated from everything else. I can go back into that Fergus folder, and we can go and get the rejects. Let's just go here, and this time, let's go and get the rejects. I'm going to turn my "Filter" off, so I've got no filter on right now, then I'm going to click here to Select the rejected photos. This is the third of these flagged icons, and that just selects the rejects. We can see them here, so we can see them in a grayed-out view, which allows us to double check and make sure that those were in actual fact the ones that we wanted to reject. At that stage, we can go to Photo and choose Delete Rejected Photos, and we get two choices at this point. We can Delete them From Disk, and of course from Lightroom, or we could just Remove them from Lightroom. You get a choice and you need to determine for your workflow, which of those is the better option. For today, I'm just going to "Remove" them from Lightroom, so they'll no longer appear inside my Lightroom catalog. Now, of course, we're not seeing any images because we have a filter on here that is the Rejected Photos. I'm going to click here on "Custom Filter" and "Filters Off," and that will take us back into the Fergus folder. What's left in the folder here in the original folder are my picks and my just moved past images, the ones that I didn't pick. The rejects are gone from Lightroom. Our next focus is going to be down here on our Collection, the Best of Fergus collection. I'm going to press "Shift Tab" again to hide all the panels. I'm going to "Double-click" on the very first image in my collection. Now, we're ready to pick the best of the best. 4. Step 3 - Rate your best shots: This time we're going to work through what we've already identified as being the best of our images and we're going to allocate a star rating to them. There are stars available along here, but I'm going to suggest that you actually use the keyboard. What you'll do is you'll press the number 1 for one star, 2 for two stars, and 3 for three stars. Now you might think, "Well, to hell on these five stars here that I can use," and I'm going to suggest that you just use three because I find it a little bit easier to determine whether this image is a 1, 2, or 3 star than I do if it's a 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 star. Because at the moment I'm going around the one mark. But maybe if I were allowed to use up to five stars, I'd be thinking, well, maybe this is a two. But if I only have a choice of 1, 2, or 3 stars, then this is a one. Clear decision. Now, I'm working on the basis that one is okay, two is much better, and three is the best. If you work the other way round, that's just fine. I'm going to show you a way that you can work exactly the same way. If you think one is the best, and two is okay, and three is not quite so good, work to that. But just use 1, 2, or 3 stars and be sure in your own mind as to whether one is the very best or a three is the very best. Now I'm working to three is the very best, so I'm going to click two for this and two for that. I think it's very handy if you do this process pretty soon after you've made your picks because you have a fair idea as you've worked through those images as to what's in this collection. You can actually make a little bit better decision because you know what's coming up. I'm going to do two for this and I'm going to keep going, well, I think that there possibly was a three in there. But for now, I'm just going to go still back with my ones and twos. I'm going to work through this again pretty quickly determining whether something is a 1, 2, or 3. I'm going to suggest that you do exactly the same thing. That you go away now to the collection that you'll have made of the pics of your images and go through and allocate 1, 2, or 3 stars to them. Now, if you make a mistake, I'm just going to arrow back to this one. I gave it two stars and I'm rethinking. I think it's really a one star. Well, all I need to do is to press the number 1 and then it becomes a one star. Again, we're progressing forward automatically. Lightroom has that auto advanced feature turned on. So we're making sure that we're always going forward after we select a 1, 2, or 3 star. It just speeds things up. You may want to step through this process a little more slowly perhaps than you did with your pics and rejects. But I honestly think that you're going to be able to work pretty fast through these images as you go. Let's go and do that. Let's go and number our images, 1, 2, or 3 stars, and come back when we've done that and see how we can filter them to get the very best of the best of our images. 5. Step 4 - Find the best of the best: Now I've finished writing those photos and it didn't take me very long at all. Probably about four or five minutes to do that. I'm not exactly sure how many we have in this collection. So let's just go to the collection, where there's a 140 images there. So I was a little bit more careful to progress through, there's other slide, let's slower pace. Now as you're working through these images, if you see something that clearly shouldn't be in the collection, let's say for example, that we had a look at this and said, "Well, really, that was a mistake to make it a pick." Then we would just right-click and choose Remove from Collection. It will go away from the collection and we won't have it in there any longer. Our collections are going to report that we have one less image in it. So I'm going to go back to seeing my grid view. So I'm going to press the letter "G" to go into grid view. These are the images that I had picked. Now we're going to filter them out. We filter them this time using these three stars. So what we want to see is the best of the best. I've chosen three stars as being my best images. So I'm going to click here on three stars, and that's going to give me three stars or higher. So these are the best of my images. These are the ones that I want to do something with. Now as I'm looking at them, if I'm thinking that I've got some repeats here, perhaps I don't need quite so many, then I can get rid of them. I could just make this one, for example, a two-star. Then it's going to drop out of this filtered group and it's going to be in the two stars and however not in the three stars. So you can filter back just a little bit here if you want to, by just changing the star rating of your images. But essentially what we've done is, we've percolated to the top the best of our photos. We've taken a collection of over 1,200 images and what we've done is, we've filtered them down to 31. We've done that in maybe 20, 25 minutes. That's an awful lot of filtering to do in a really short time. It allows us to focus now on the best of these images. I'm saying to myself, "So which of these images are the ones that I want to process to then give to the owner of this young kitten?" So I'm looking through the images very clear that there's some images here that I really love and here's one I really adore. So I'm going to go now and take it to the develop module because I know I'm really confident that this is one of the best of the images. Now, if you were one of those people who decided that one was best and three was least best, then this is how you're going to work. I'm going to re-display the film strip because this is where my filters are. I'm going to go here and I'm going to choose writing is less than or equal to. Now I'll do one. So these are my one star images. I'm able to isolate my one star images and then I can do twos and one stars. So one in this situation, if these were your best images, then one is going to be your best and one and two are going to be the cream of the crop. Three would be your least favorite of these picked images. So it doesn't really matter whether you work on one being the best or three being the best. You just need to know how to work the filter so that you can filter out the best of the best. So that's a really nice workflow if you are working in Lightroom. I find that it speeds things up enormously and allows you to focus very clearly on what really are the best of your images. Those that you want to go through now and actually spend the time developing. Now if you were a wedding photographer, for example, you'd be looking at these picks with your shortlist in front of you. So you've need to determine that you've got the bride and groom, the bride and the bridesmaids, the bride and the bride's parents. If you don't have all of those shots in your three stars, then you can go back and perhaps pick up your two stars and just make sure that you've got the images that you need to then process for the wedding album. However, you work, you might actually say at that point, "Well, I'm going to move some of my two stars up into three stars because they're the images that I need to complete my shortlist." I wish you the very best of luck in picking the best of your images in Lightroom. I think that if you stick to a workflow, something similar to this, you're going to find that you fall in love with your photos again because you're looking at just the cream of the crop. You're spending the time in the developed module working with just those images that are crackerjack images. The images that you love the most. I'm Helen Bradley. Thank you for joining me for this skill share video course. Look out for more of my video courses here at skillshare.com.