I've been using Lightroom to tweak my renderings. The process is:
1. Render an image and import to Lightroom
2. Make adjustments to image, send to client
3. Client changes image. Image is re-rendered, overwriting the previous one. Goto step 2, over and over until the image is done
So my problem is: how do I update a photo in Lightroom but keep the adjustments made to the previous version of it? Currently the only thing i've found to do is overwrite metadata, which updates the photo, but loses all the adjustments.
Thanks for any help!
-----Pretty important step i missed out on mentioning: this is all while looking in the Develop section. The Library section does automatically update a photo. But Develop seems to retain the image used when you first opened Develop.
One way to do this would be to create virtual copies and modify each virtual copy until the client is satisfied. Once the client is satisfied you can go to the Library module and under the Photo menu there is an option to make the virtual copy the master image. Then you should delete all the other virtual copies.
Another method would be to create snapshots in the master image. I can't give you a lot of instruction on doing that because I haven't used that method.
Can you explain why the virtual copy thing is relevant here? Wouldn't virtual copy just copy the original photo?
I don't need to make different adjustments to the source photo, I need to replace the source photo with another but retain the adjustments that were made.
(sorry, i'm probably missing something fundamental about virtual copies here?)
Quote "virtual copy"?
Is not an image file or a copy of an image file. A virtual copy is just info in the Lightroom Catalog file.
I gave this a go. Oddly enough, creating a virtual copy sort of works. It nudges LR to update its reference photo, and the virtual copy has the same adjustments. So yes this works, but isn't ideal. The ideal thing would just be a button to "replace/update linked contents" or whatever (same as Photoshop, After Effects, etc etc).
You can create as many different virtual copies as you need to. And each virtual copy can be modified as needed, can have different settings, different interpretations, completely different looks, all from the same master image. They are not files on disk but simply stored within the catalog. It's possible to export copies of virtual copies to create files that could be sent to the client for approval. And an approved virtual copy can be tagged as the master image in the library. That was the basis for my suggestion. There are other ways to do it, but that was one method that I thought of. If it doesn't work for you then I see that other suggestions have been made.
2. Make adjustments to image, send to client
How do you do that? Do you export the photo? If so, what file format do you use?
After adjustments i just use Export to create/overwrite a "post" file in a subfolder. Usually just a jpg
Bad choice. That means your edits will be 'baked into the pixels'. There is no way to go back. What you need to do is learn how to use 'Export as catalog' and 'Import from Another Catalog'. That is the way to exchange images and retain all the edits as still adjustable Lightroom edits.
It seems i haven't been clear, as this seems unrelated to my issue. I'm not trying to share editable files. I'm trying to replace/update a photo in a catalog but retain the adjustments that had been made to it.
If you do not see the adjustments, then you may have to clear the ACR cache. Lightroom would not realise that the image has changed, and so it still uses the old cached image in the develop module.
Pretty important step i missed out on mentioning: this is all while looking in the Develop section. The Library section does automatically update a photo. But Develop seems to retain the image used when you first opened Develop.
For what you are trying to do and how you are doing it, I encourage you to try using Bridge & Adobe Camera Raw workflow rather than Lightroom. ACR and Lightroom Classic have the exact same engine (albeit with some minor differences). In fact, it's often stated that Lightroom is ACR with a database. With that in mind, Bridge is NOT a DAM while Lightroom Classic is. But for your purposes, it might be something to look at.
Bridge is simply a viewer of images (& media) that show what you have with your image. When you copy the image and xmp from Bridge you do not have to worry about virtual copies and missing data (from copying the image and xmp).
One thing, to access ACR you will also need to have installed Adobe Photoshop. ACR does not install by itself when you install Bridge but does when you install Photoshop (even if you never use PS).
What you are trying to do is very difficult in LR because it works against how LR is designed.
Your edits are stored in the LR catalog as steps to apply to the original image.
You export your edits to a new file (TIF/JGP) so that they can be seen outside of LR.
If the client edits that exported file, he has created a new original image from Lightroom's perspective, similar to how "edit in Photoshop" does.
If you replace the old original file with the exported file, which has your edits baked into it, when LR goes to show you the image, it will apply the old edits again because the saved edits are never writen to the original image file.
Just a thought out of the box, one fundamental issue that the original poster appears to ignore or is not aware of.
While you are working in Lightroom the application is functioning with the info in the Lightroom Catalog file while ACR works with the information in the file. The fact that Lightroom can write info to the file it does not read from the file automatically.
Lightroom writing info to the files allows ACR to access your Lightroom work because it does not have the ability to read or write to/ from the Catalog file. Just a thought!!!
Yeah but when he opens that image up in LR-C, it will give him a message that the original image has changed, which version does he want to use, the original or the new image? Not fully sure how this works for him or against him, but it's something that he needs to be aware of and know what to do (use the LR version).
Exactly, so if he chooses to read from the file he would potentially overwrite edits done in Lightroom and further if that original file is connected to several Collections, Publish service etc.in Lightroom??
These thoughts are the reason I decided not to turn on "Auto write to XMP", I know there are many uses and benefits which I use occasionally but the cons are what I cannot follow.