Secrets of Lightroom Print Module

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As the versatile tool that everybody knows Lightroom can be, it is quite often neglected the Print Module inside Lightroom since users tend to use other Adobe applications like Photoshop or Illustrator for compositing and printing images. Through this tutorial, we are going to learn how to get the most of Lightroom Print Module.

One of the main advantages that Lightroom offers to users is the possibility of designing our print sheets at the same application we even imported and developed our pictures. This is not an often feature on much digital postproduction software, so Lightroom earns a thumbs up with this.

Switch your interface to the Print Module in order to access all the features Lightroom offers us when it comes the time for printing.

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As you can see, I still have my preview area, which can be really helpful if you plan to print more than one picture on a layout; then below the Preview area, we have the Template area.

It is quite common for users to import templates designed by other users, or you can even design your own if you feel creative enough.

At the Collections panel, we can access the Print collections that we can create inside Adobe Lightroom that will help users to classify your images folders in a quick way for later on printing them.

Depending on what we have at our Print Template is the way the Layout panel at the upper right corner is going to behave. Not only matters the way you set parameters for your image but also margins area, how many pictures are you grouping on the same layout, etc.

Under this Print Module, we can also add Watermarks, which as we saw in this article, are an essential part of the workflow of every digital photographer nowadays; but also in this very area, we have the printing options available via using the Print Job panel.

Notice that in my case I won’t switch or tweak any option regarding the Color Management options inside Lightroom. Not only because my printer perhaps lacks of a known color management profile inside Lightroom (it is a Brother multifunction, for printers like high-end Canon and HP models, Color Management changes are a must if you want the image to match the output provided by the printer itself.

Drag and Drop inside Lightroom’s Print Module

As surprising as it can be, you can drag and drop pictures onto a print template inside Lightroom in some circumstances but not in others. Why this? Well, there is actually a bit of logical thinking behind it.

Each time you select a Lightroom template from the Template Browser, make sure to open the Layout Style panel on the right at the same time. Depending on the template file, you will understand Lightroom’s behavior regarding the Drag&Drop system.

If it is a Single Image template then you must select images on the filmstrip to add them to the sheet, and they appear in the layout in the order they appear in the filmstrip. You can’t drag and drop images from the filmstrip into a Single Image layout. In case we are talking about a Custom Package template then you can drag and drop an image into any part of the layout displayed on the screen.

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Finally, if the template is a Picture Package, then you can fill it by clicking the images at the filmstrip. This picture package prints multiple images on a single sheet of paper. If you select two images in the filmstrip, you’ll then have two pages in your picture package – one for each of the selected images. You can drag and drop an image into a Picture Package but when you do, you’ll create a lot of issues on this. It’s generally best not to drag and drop images if the designed picture package layout seems to be tight.

Borders Behavior

When you enable the border feature on your layout, the width of the border will make the image smaller. The color assigned to the border is the same color of the page background if you have a page background selected. If not, it will be white. When you set an Inner Stroke it will also reduce the size of the image but accordingly to your choice of color.

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JPEG Output

This can become a pretty simple issue to handle. Image layout can be printed to a JPG file that you can then upload to the web or send out for printing.

In order to do this, go to the Print Job panel, then click the ‘Print To’ drop-down list and choose JPEG File.

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File Resolution should be between 150-300 dpi for optimal results, and also set the File Dimensions for the page.

Printer output options are quite reduced in comparison to JPEG mode, so unless you actually need to handle the file in a quick way, always work with the JPEG mode.

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