Please check the following articles, it should be helpful : Sharing Lightroom Catalog with Multiple Computers
Let me know if it helps.
LR stores a path to the photo inside the LR catalog. The issue you’re having is that the designation of your external HD is different between Windows and the Mac so each time you switch from one to the other you’ll need to right-click on the top-level folder(s) and choose Locate Missing Folder (or whatever the verbiage is, nowadays) and click over to the location of the folder on the external drive.
Is there any way that doesn't involve putting the images on an external harddrive?
I thought the aim of the creative cloud would be to access files without having to ship hardware from computer to computer
I am sorry, however storing the Catalog on Creative Cloud is not recommended as of now.
This best way to do the same is with the External Drive.
CC is for licensing and installing software and storing smallish shared resources or syncing desktop files to mobile devices, not syncing two desktop devices. There isn’t enough space in the cloud to hold terabytes of data in a cost-effective manner.
Just to clarify.
I have original files on my work computer, I have imported them into lightroom.
I go home and open up the catalogue on my home computer and I can see the images but am not able to edit them because the file cannot be found.
I don't have an external hard drive yet (on it's way).
I want to be able to edit on my home computer as well as work.
So I should have my files and catalogue saved on my external hard drive and then take it with me to work and then home again?
That is right
Try reading those articles Tanuj suggested.
The Lr catalog (and I'm guessing you have two: one at home, one at work) references or points to images. It remembers where they last were. But it appears that you are moving the images about or otherwise making it impossible for Lr to find them. You see a preview in Lr, cuz Lr stores one (and that's how smart previews work) but Lr still needs to eventually hookup with the original to apply its changes.
Creative Cloud has some storage (not much). You can open the folder on your computers, and then import the images within on each of your computers. Like you could with Dropbox. Then both Lr catalogs would be referencing the same image. Some folks use a system like that to work on images, but since they are stored up in the cloud it can present problems. In the same way though you could access files on say a thumbdrive or spare SD card.
Another option is to try Mylio. It can sync images over two computers (and mobile devices and NAS, etc) and pass Lr edits back and forth. It would essentially keep a folder of images on the desktop in the same state as the "same" images in the same folder on the laptop.