Can I save Lightroom photos with radial, color range etc. filters in place

Discussion in 'Digital Darkroom' started by bob_estremera, Dec 5, 2021.

  1. Just discovering the capabilities of Lightroom filters and masking. Wow.
    Quick question, can I save the file I'm working on with all the masks and filters in place, sort of like saving a Photoshop file with all the adjustment layers? I would like to go back in and change things around without having to start from scratch from a new file.

  2. digitaldog

    digitaldog Andrew Rodney

    Everything you do in LR is 'saved'. It can be metadata saved in the catalog (or in supported documents). ACR is similar (no catalog) but in terms of the new masks and LR, LrC creates a dedicated 'supplementary' document (.lrcat-data) in lieu of the individual .ACR' sidecar files to store the sky and/or subject mask data.
  3. I just did a test on a file and closed it Lightroom without clicking 'Done'. When I reopened the file and clicked on the Filters/Masks icon, the previous mask was active and able to be further manipulated. I guess that answered my question.
  4. I also like the fact that you can reset an image (if you so wish) by going back to the original imported version
  5. Or by making a Virtual Copy you can have both the original version and the version you have modified. You can have many different virtual copies and they just take up room in the catalog for the various edit actions you have taken. The original remains unchanged on your disk. Virtual copies do not take much room.
  6. digitaldog

    digitaldog Andrew Rodney

    VC's don't take up much room but they are somewhat fragile in that they only live in the catalog. If I end up with a VC that's edited as a 'hero' image, I export it as a DNG and re-import it. Now it is a raw, with all the edits, in an actual document outside the catalog that I can backup to the multiple backup's I have. Belt and suspenders but I don't like having 'hero, final' images virtual just in a catalog.
  7. Any image that you have edited lives only in the catalog (or the sidecar file if that is where you are storing your edits). If I understand the concept of Virtual Images, Lightroom simply stores another set of edits in the catalog for the Virtual image. Both the original exits and the virtual edits exist only as a series of instruction for the same unaltered image that exists on your disk.

    I backup my catalog regularly every time I use Lightroom - a copy via SyncToy to and external disk drive, a backup to an internal drive via File History (I am using Windows), and every now and again a Lightroom backup to an internal drive, just to verify the catalog. When I back up the catalog, I have all the images - unedited, edited, and Virtual.

    BTW what is a 'hero' image; I am not familiar with the term.
  8. digitaldog

    digitaldog Andrew Rodney

    There are no images in a the catalog; it simply references the location of such documents. The edits are metadata (parametric). Those edits must be rendered into a new document at some point, from raw or JPEG or TIFF. That data can be stored in the catalog or, depending on the documents, within the container and the catalog. When you edit a JPEG for example, the metadata can be stored in that JPEG. Open that JPEG outside ACR or LR, you don't see the edits; they have not been rendered. VCs are 100% proprietary inside the catalog. If the catalog gets hosed, so does the VC.
    A "hero" image is one you've worked on and intend to print, continue working on after parametric editing in say Photoshop, etc. IOW, images you can't afford to lose. For that reason, a VC isn't safe enough for me, I want an actual document (DNG) with the edits applied in the DNG, with a rendered JPEG inside that DNG that can be extracted. The DNG of course can be rendered to a TIFF in high bit, wide gamut in another Adobe raw converter that understands those edits.
  9. Yes, and no. It is a matter of the definition of "Image"

    I consider the image to be what I see on the screen or in a print. For edited images it consists of the file with the bits from the camera plus the edits made in post processing. For a RAW file edited in Lightroom the RAW file in storage and cataloged in Lightroom and the edits (the edit commands), at least for me, are in the Lightroom catalog. It takes both parts to make "The Image".

    If you do your final editing in Photoshop, you have to Edit in Photoshop which passes the RAW file and the parametric edits you made in Lightroom to Camera RAW in Photoshop. You may made further parametric edits in Camera RAW, but if you have Lightroom I cannot understand why, and finally convert it (the RAW file and the parametric edits) to pixels and pass them off to Photoshop where you make pixel level edits and finally save the output in a pixel level form - TIFF, JPEG, PSD, etc.

    Or at least so I understand the process. Since I have Lightroom 6 and Photoshop CS5 and shoot a Nikon D750 which is not supported in CS5's Camera RAW, I simply export the Lightroom edited image as a PSD file to be opened in Photoshop, and then continue in Photoshop. When I finish my Photoshop edits, I save the pixel edited file in an appropriate format, and import it in Lightroom.

    So, for me, the Lightroom catalog is much more than just a reference to the location of the file produced by the camera. Of course, I back it up - several different ways and in several different places.
  10. digitaldog

    digitaldog Andrew Rodney

    I'm sorry but no. There are no images in the catalog. It is a database, nothing more. An SQLite database. There are separate documents that contain previews of images but they are not the catalog. That is what you see onscreen and the previews differ depending on the modules (Develop is unique from all others). What you see, what you think are images are previews that are contained in Lightrooms Previews.lrdata file.

    The facts, directly from Adobe:

    What is a catalog?
    A catalog is a database that tracks the location of your photos and information about them. When you edit photos, rate them, add keywords to them, or do anything to photos in Lightroom Classic - all those changes are stored in the catalog. The files themselves are not touched.

    A catalog is a database that stores a record for each of your photos. This record contains three key pieces of information about each photo:

    1. A reference to where the photo is on your system
    2. Instructions for how you want to process the photo
    3. Metadata, such as ratings and keywords that you apply to photos to help you find or organize them
    NOWHERE does Adobe state that the catalog contains images; because it doesn't.
    You can consider this anyway you wish but that doesn't make it so.
  11. Andrew is correct. To test it, try making a test catalog with some images, and import them into it. Then move the image folder you imported from, or to as I believe when importing images, you can move them to a location as well, but they are not in the catalogue, only linked to it. Move the folder of photos and see the result.
    digitaldog likes this.
  12. digitaldog

    digitaldog Andrew Rodney

    Fruther (not to beat a dead horse ;) ), ACR has no catalog. And yet, one can see previews (what is being called 'an image') just fine. One can easily bounce back and forth between ACR and LR (if on version parity), without a catalog affecting ACR or what is shown there.

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