Using Lightroom with Photos app


Using Lightroom with Photos app

I’m a photographer.

Not one of these people that works Monday to Friday in an office, then grabs a camera at weekends.

I eat, sleep and breathe it. It pays my bills. Says what I do on my tax return. It even says it on my son’s birth certificate.

As a result, I am hooked on Adobe. Not so much Photoshop as my photos are more of a natural finish, with no intensive edits. But certainly Lightroom.


However, I am just as addicted to Apple as I am to Lightroom. As a result, I am fully integrated into the Photos App they provide.

In the old days, it was iPhoto and Aperture. Aperture was used for personal and holiday photos and I have to say it did the job, but only just. I couldn’t  justify the added workflow in using Lightroom and iPhoto/Aperture. That was then and this is now, and Aperture is no longer supported (Bad Apple)

The Photos by Apple just doesn’t cut it. Not compared to Lightroom. As a result, I have found myself saving everything in Photos, but editing in Lightroom.

The below is how I do it. It’s very simplistic. Very easy, and for anyone that uses Lightroom, you probably won’t read much further than this…but just in goes.

When we have a holiday, or a day out, I try and implement this procedure immediately. It may seem longwinded. It may seem pointless and it may even seem unnecessary. To me however, its important.

Read on….

The workflow of  Using Lightroom with Photos app

I have two folders on my Mac. One is Lightroom before Photos. One is Lightroom Edited for Photos. Pretty self explanatory, but just in case.


Using Lightroom with Photos App5
Spot the mistake!!


Lightroom before Photos is where I copy the photos from the latest shoot/holiday/day out etc

Lightroom Edited for Photos is where the photos go after they have been through Lightroom

So, the first stage of Using Lightroom with Photos app is to import the photos from the memory card, to the Photos folder in the Lightroom catalogue.

Click import, chose the memory card on the left, follows by the destination folder on the right. Most of the time, I do rename the files too.

Using Lightroom with Photos App4


Click import, and this will copy the photos from the memory card, to the relevant folder on the hard drive, Lightroom before Photos in my case.


Using Lightroom with Photos App7Once all the photos have  finished importing, so you have all the shots from your shoot included.

The next stage is to ‘Pick’ the ones you like. Predictably, the letter P does this for you. My Lightroom is set up so when you hit P, it moves onto the next image.


Using Lightroom with Photos App8


Picked and Edit

When you have finished Picking the ones you like, you can hit the Flag, on the filters, and this will leave the photos you have just picked. You can be sure of this, as it won’t show all the photos in the shoot, just the picked ones. In this example, I liked 28 of the 91 I took.


Using Lightroom with Photos App10


I then go about editing the 28 I like. Once this is done, I hit Cmd A (Ctrl A if your a Windows fan) and then hit File, Export. I want to export full size files, so the only thing I want to change is the File Name, note the LR Edit at the end.


Using Lightroom with Photos App11


Using Lightroom with Photos app, almost there…

Once done, I then have the following:

  1. 90 or so unedited, original files in the folder Lightroom before Photos
  2. 28 Edited files in the folder Lightroom Edited for Photos

It is then over to Photos, when it is a simple import x 2, one from the Before folder, and one from the Edited folder. The only thing I then do in Photos, is set up 2 Albums, one for originals, and one for LR Edits, both being added to a Folder for that event. Simples.

Reason for this is it means I have my edited snaps, but I also have my originals. Check out the 7th Photo in the top row on the right screen shot? Black and White. The original image is the first image on the 2nd row of the first screenshot. I now have the original, and the edited. Just in case.


And that’s it.

Let’s be honest, you would do the ‘Picking’ and the ‘Editing’ not matter what software you used.

The only extra process here is adding to and exporting from Lightroom, and having a few extra snaps in Photos.

The benefits? A better Picking process, a better editing tool, a better end result.

What’s not to like!!



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *