10 Replies Latest reply on Apr 19, 2017 3:55 PM by SeanMcCormack

    Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow

    richardr1002939

      I'm trying to understand the best workflow to edit photos in Lightroom and then open them in Photoshop when working offline. My raw photos are stored on an external drive and my catalog is on my laptop. I would like to take several photos with me to edit in Lightroom and Photoshop while I'm away and disconnected from my external drive. I think I understand the concept of Smart Previews in LR, but it doesn't seem like that will work for my situation. Do I need to make a copy of the raw file on my local drive and import it into LR again? I'm relatively new to LR and PS, but this is something I think I will do often.

        • 1. Re: Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow
          SeanMcCormack Adobe Community Professional

          To edit in Photoshop you do need the Raw file to be available. You've a few options, but moving the files you want to edit onto the local drive inside the Lightroom Folders panel is probably the best way. Move them back again (and the new edited files) to the external drive when you reconnect. Make sure to do it inside Lightroom to prevent the files becoming disconnected.

          • 2. Re: Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow
            JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

            You cannot choose edit in Photoshop if just using smart previews. You must have access to the master image.

            • 3. Re: Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow
              richardr1002939 Level 1

              Thanks for the quick response. This situation appears that it would be fairly common. Is this the actual workflow that most people use, or is this relatively unique? I was also wondering if I edit an image in PS and save it as a .psd or .tif, whether or not I need the original image to continue working on the image in PS at a later date.

              • 4. Re: Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow
                JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                If you expect to continue working on the image in Photoshop, what other alternative do you foresee? Is there another workflow that you have considered? As I indicated previously, smart previews is not the solution. If you are trying to work with smart previews that "Edit in Photoshop" option is not available because Photoshop has to apply the work to an actual image file and then type of synchronization will not work with smart previews.

                • 5. Re: Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow
                  richardr1002939 Level 1

                  Right, I understand about the limitation of Smart Previews. I was just wondering if the original image file needs to be retained once you save a PS file as a .psd? Basically, just wanted to know if the files need to be kept together.

                  • 6. Re: Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow
                    JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    Personally, I think it's always a good idea to retain original master images. You never know when you might decide that you want to go into completely different direction and would want to completely start over. In such a case, it's always best (in my opinion) to be able to go back to the original source.

                    • 7. Re: Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow
                      SeanMcCormack Adobe Community Professional

                      I'd agree with Jim. If I've edited a file, I definitely want to keep the original. We've already had 3 Process Versions, who knows what the future will bring to both our editing tools and our experience using them.

                      • 8. Re: Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow
                        richardr1002939 Level 1

                        Thanks once again for the reply. Not trying to belabor this, but can you clarify one last point. Let's say I have an image in my LR catalog that I open in PS. Now I do some editing in PS and save as a .psd. If I want to go back and edit the .psd again, does the original image need to be present. In other words, if I double-click the .psd to open, will PS need to know where the original raw file is, or is everything contained in the PS document?

                        • 9. Re: Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow
                          JimHess Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                          That PSD file is a separate and independent image. Everything in the PSD file is a product that was generated from Photoshop. Assuming that the original image was a raw file, that is why I would suggest retaining that file because of the added editing capabilities Lightroom has when working on raw image data.

                           

                          Of course, you can work on the PSD file in Lightroom. But then if you decide to go back to Photoshop with that image you will be presented with the choice of opening the original or a copy with Lightroom adjustments. In that instance you would probably want to open a copy that included the adjustments that you have done in Lightroom.

                          • 10. Re: Offline Lightroom to Photoshop Workflow
                            SeanMcCormack Adobe Community Professional

                            Just to add to Jim's suggestion. If you want to work with the files as a layered file, you need to use the Edit Original option. You will lose the edits from Lightroom, but these can be reapplied in Lightroom after saving by stepping back one step in the history panel.

                             

                            You can also begin editing by choosing the 'Open as a Smart Object' option when beginning to edit in Photoshop. This allows you to re-edit the base image at any time in the future without the original present. It does make the PSD file larger.