How To Import Into Lightroom Classic

By | 26/10/2022

In a previous tutorial, we covered how to create a catalog in Lightroom CC Classic. At present, we are going to give a quick breakdown of the Import Dialog box and prove you how to import photos into Lightroom CC Classic. We volition also show y’all how to create a standard import preset to further maximize your post product workflow.

This tutorial is part of our Lightroom Tips Series, where we give y’all uncomplicated guidance on how to utilise Lightroom more efficiently and effectively.

Understanding the Import Process

Backslash to show import process 1
The backslash button will bring up a helpful graphic that shows fewer options and simplifies the import process

After y’all’ve opened a new Lightroom catalog, click on the backslash button in the lower left corner of Lightroom to show fewer options for importing images; an easy-to-understand version of the Import Dialogue box will appear that simplifies the import process and breaks it down into three parts (encounter the paradigm below).

Closeup of Backslash to show import process
Closeup of Backslash to show import procedure

Basically, the import dialogue includes iii sections from left to right:

On the left, you’ll notice the import source (where the images are coming from).

In the eye, you tin can choose one of four options for importing the images (copy as DNG, re-create, add together, move). We’ll describe each of these options in more than detail below.

On the Right, you lot’ll determine where to identify the images (which depends in office on your choice for the heart section)

Importing Images into Lightroom Classic CC

Using the Left Side of the Import Dialog Box

Y’all can import images into Lightroom using one of at least 4 methods, including the post-obit:

1. Press the “Import” button in the lower left corner (while Lightroom is in Library mode)
2. Press File > Import Photos and Videos
three. Press CTRL+Shift+I (Windows) or CMD+Shift+I (Mac)
4. Drag images from a folder (on your Desktop, for example) straight into the view area of the Library Module in Lightroom (this doesn’t work in the Develop Module).
The do good of this last method is that Lightroom automatically defines the source of the images since they were dropped into Lightroom from their original location.

Select your image source using the left panel in Lightroom
Select your image source using the left panel in Lightroom

For the first three methods above, yous’ll demand to locate your images through the Source panel on the left so that you lot tin can import them into Lightroom (see image in a higher place). Your photos can come into Lightroom from a number of different sources, including retentiveness cards, the local disk on your reckoner, network fastened drives, or other external sources.

Import Shortcut

An import shortcut is available in the dropdown menu in the top left corner 2
An import shortcut is available in the dropdown menu in the top left corner ii

An import shortcut is bachelor in the dropdown menu in the top left corner of the Import Dialogue box (see the image to a higher place). This can testify specially helpful if you regularly import images from the same location, such as your desktop.

Include Subfolders

I option to be aware of in the Source panel on the left is the “Include Subfolders” box. Basically, if you’ve selected “Desktop” under the “Local Deejay” dropdown, for example, only images that are actually stored on the desktop will appear.

Be aware of the Include Subfolders checkbox in the Source Panel in Lightroom
Be aware of the Include Subfolders checkbox in the Source Console in Lightroom

If you want to access images that are stored in a folder on your desktop, you lot can select the “Include Subfolders” checkbox and all of the images that are kept in folders on your desktop volition populate the library viewing area in the center of the Import Dialog box.

This pick works slap-up in some instances, such equally when you’re importing from a memory card and there are multiple folders to cull from.

Using the Center Section of the Import Dialog Box

Middle section of the Import Dialog box 1
The middle department of the Import Dialog box contains 4 singled-out import options: Re-create as DNG, Copy, Motility, and Add

Once y’all’ve located your file source for importing images, y’all’ll need to make up one’s mind how you desire them imported into your Lightroom catalog. Here are the four import options as noted higher up about the “heart” section of Adobe’due south Import Dialogue box:

Copy equally DNG: This option copies files from the import source and converts the files into the DNG file format as they’re imported. This is a more time-consuming import option and tin can run twice equally long as the “copy” option, which is outlined below.

Re-create: This option imports the original raw file as it was captured in your photographic camera and stores the files in whichever location/folder you lot designate for import. This option is all-time used if you demand to copy files from a memory carte du jour; otherwise, you may be creating duplicates.

Motion: This option works well for importing images from existing folders on your computer, but information technology should be used with caution. The “move” option copies files to a designated folder and and then
the files from the source folder. It takes longer to “move” files than it does to “add together” them, which nosotros discuss below.

Add together: Adding files from an existing folder is a quick and user-friendly way to populate your LR itemize with your images. The files are but “referenced” rather than copied.

“Checking” Your Images for Import

When importing photos, yous’ll demand to “check” the images you want imported. Any prototype that’due south checked will be imported, and whatever paradigm that isn’t checked will not exist imported. Yous can check images in a number of ways, as illustrated in the images beneath:

Option 1: Select “All Photos”

You can select the All Photos option near the top
You lot tin select the “All Photos” selection near the top

Choice 2: Select “Check All” or “Uncheck All”

You can select Check All or Uncheck All
Y’all tin select “Check All” or “Uncheck All”

Pick 3: Select Private Images or Hold Shift and Select a Group of Images

You can hold shift before selecting images and then check one of the images to select the group
You tin concur shift before selecting images and so bank check ane of the images to select the group

Loupe View Vs. Filigree View

loupe vs grid view in lightroom
Loupe view vs Grid view in Lightroom

When previewing your images for import, you lot can choose between Loupe View (by pressing “Eastward”) and Grid View (by pressing “Chiliad”). Filigree view volition brandish a full grid of your images while Loupe view volition display them one at a fourth dimension (as shown in the epitome in a higher place). In lodge to become out of the import dialogue every bit presently every bit possible, nosotros recommend only using Grid view.

Yous can press “-” or “+” to subtract or increase the size of your image thumbnails in Grid view in Lightroom.

Using the Filter to View Your Images

A filter dropdown menu will allow you to sort images
A filter dropdown carte will let yous to sort images

Nearly the lesser center of the Lightroom Import Dialog box, you’ll discover a dropdown menu for sorting your images. Equally you can see in the image to a higher place, in that location are several options for sorting your photos, including capture time, checked state, file name, and more.

Using the Right Side of the Import Dialog Box in Lightroom

The File Handling panel can be found on the right side of the Import Dialog box in Lightroom
Get to know the right side of the Import Dialog box in Lightroom

At present that we’ve decided what to do with our images, we need to determine how to handle and rename (or non) our files, as well as cull where to send them.

Handle Your Files

Build Smart Previews:
The File Handling dropdown carte du jour allows you to cull whether or not you want to “Build Smart Previews,” which is an selection that tin can help speed upwards your workflow while editing in the Develop Module every bit it but loads previews when processing images instead of the original image files.

Build Smart Previews selected in Lightroom
Build Smart Previews selected in Lightroom

If you intend to sit and develop immediately upon import, we recommend selecting Smart Previews and setting the Build Previews ratio to i:i. Let your machine finish importing and rendering your previews, and and then begin working on your catalog.

Build Previews set to Minimal in Lightroom
Build Previews set to Minimal in Lightroom

If y’all intend to sort through and cull the images start, rather than begin editing, then we suggest turning your previews off and switching your “Build Previews” besides minimal (see the image above). If y’all choose this route, nosotros advise you render your images at a later time earlier editing them.

When using Smart Previews, you’ll probably come across a decline in overall quality when you are viewing the images in the Develop module, only the image quality will look bully when you export the files.

Don’t Import Suspected Duplicates:
We recommend leaving the “Don’t Import Suspected Duplicates” option checked for obvious reasons.

Make a Second Copy To:
If you desire to back up the images when Copying them to a new folder, you lot can choose a destination under the “Brand a Second Re-create To:” dropdown menu.

Add to Collection:
You lot can besides add your images to a drove, which can come in handy organizing your files into specific categories, such as “Trucks” nether an “Automobiles” folder, for example. Nosotros don’t generally apply this choice, but it does come in handy.

Rename Your Files…or Don’t

Nosotros usually avoid renaming files during import considering the file names won’t match upwards to the location from which y’all imported the images, but your preference may vary depending on your workflow.

Employ During Import

Preset options under the Apply During Import dropdown menu
Preset options under the Utilise During Import dropdown carte

This is a very useful department in the import process because you can utilize presets under the “Develop Settings” dropdown menu to minimize repetitive tasks for editing your photos (see example above). You tin can also add Metadata presets if yous have them every bit well as keywords.

Select a Destination for Importing Your Images

Go to the Destination dropdown menu, located on the right side of the Import Dialogue Box. Hither, we are going to select the destination for our images.

If you’ve selected the “Add” option in a previous pace for importing your photos, you’ll observe in that location is NO destination choice for you to choose where to go on your images. This is because, with that option, Lightroom volition merely reference images from their original source, which may be in a folder on your desktop, for example. If yous are moving or copying images, withal, you’ll demand to select a destination.

Click “Import”

Finally, after you’ve chosen a destination for your images, simply hit “Import,” which is located at the bottom, to import your images.

How to Create a Standard Import Preset

Now that you’ve set up upwardly your import preferences, you tin can easily create a standard import preset (if the options you selected are those you’d regularly choose). A standard import preset tin exist applied to all of your images in just a few clicks. Here’s how you salve everything you’ve only done as a standard import preset.

Become to the very bottom of the Import Dialogue Box, where information technology says “Import Preset.” Equally shown below, click on the dropdown menu and select “Salvage Current Settings as New Preset.”

Save as a Preset
Salve Current Settings as a Preset

A dialogue box volition appear where you will name the preset. In the example beneath, we have named it “Fundamentals Demo,” but you can proper noun information technology however you like. Now, hit “Create.”

Give your preset a name
Give your preset a name

At present, when y’all import your images into Lightroom, yous can go down to “Import Preset” at the bottom of the Import Dialogue Box and only select “Fundamentals Demo.” It volition also automatically include your metadata and develop settings into the images besides.

The Import Dialogue Box volition at present just evidence where your images are existence imported from and where they are being imported to. Click on the “Import” button if y’all are prepare to import your images.

Conclusion & Learn More!

Once yous understand the import procedure and how to create a standard import preset in Lightroom, exist certain to check out our other articles on how to create a standard import metadata preset to farther maximize your Lightroom editing workflow. You tin can also check out our article on how to use tethered capture to import photos direct into Lightroom from your camera in 5 simple steps!

Always make sure to support your images to a second source to avoid losing your work.

Boosted Learning Resource: Adobe’s “In a Lightroom Infinitesimal Series”

Episode: How to Import Photos into Lightroom Mobile