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Learn Photography

Lightroom > Importing Depiction

Here's a depiction of what happens when you import a raw photograph into Lightroom.

Let's say you're photographing the Flatiron Building.

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You import the photograph into Lightroom.

It sure looks like the photograph is located in Lightroom.

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But it's not.

The depiction below shows that your photographs are NOT imported into Lightroom—even though:

• We say we're importing them into the program.

• We see them in Lightroom.

Your photographs go to Pictures or My Pictures.*

Huh?

Have a look below.

* If you're taking my class at ICP, your photographs go into your ICP Photos folder on your flash drive or external hard drive.

Camera   Memory Card   DSC_1234   Import into Lightroom

You photograph the Flatiron Building.

 

When you look at the contents of the memory card, you see:

 

DSC_1234 contains three items:

 

The three items are imported to two locations:

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Early Digital Camera

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DSC_1234

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1 - Raw information

for DSC_1234

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Pictures or My Pictures

On Your Hard Drive*

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1 - Raw information

for DSC_1234

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2 - Thumbnail

for DSC_1234

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Lightroom Catalog

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2 - Thumbnail

for DSC_1234

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3 - Metadata

for DSC_1234

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Lightroom Catalog

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3 - Metadata

for DSC_1234

* If you're taking my class, the raw information for DSC_1234 goes into your Photographs folder on your flash drive or external hard drive.

Reminder

After importing a folder or photographs into Lightroom, only use Lightroom to change the folder or photographs.

Use Lightroom to:

• Move photographs to a different folder.

• Rename the folder or photographs.

• Delete the folder or photographs.

Don't do the above by going to Pictures or My Pictures.

Do the above only with Lightroom.

Why?

If you don't use Lightroom to make the change—then Lightroom won't know that you made the change.

Lightroom will get confused.

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Confused Lightroom

Visual Summary

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When you're in Pictures or My Pictures: When you're in Lightroom:
Look at the folders and photographs—but don't touch. It's okay to change the folders and photographs.

Credits

The view camera was photographed by Janez Novak.

The raw information depiction was created by jehurey.

The volcano is from the National Parks Service.

The swimming hole is from the Library of Congress.