I use Lightroom 5.3 desktop on windows. When I have edited a picture and added a mask, I cannit work out how to exporte it with the mask. It seems to reset to the original and I cannit download the edited picture. What am I doing worng?
Whatever is applied in the mask is an attribute that becomes part of the exported image. But the mask itself does not export. The attributes of the mask become part of the image but the mask is gone. The mask only exists in the master image.
This is a common misunderstanding. A mask is not an edit. It is a way to visualise where certain edits (that you make with the sliders) will be applied and where they won't be applied. On export only those edits will show in the exported image, not the mask itself. That means that if you create a mask but do not apply any edits, your exported image will be the original non-masked image.
As a practical example: suppose you use the AI Select Sky mask. If you turn on the mask overlay, then the sky will be red. That does not mean you have now made the sky red, it means that Lightroom is telling you "what is shown in red is what I consider to be the sky". If you now lower the exposure slider of the mask, then that area will be darkened. The exported image will show the darkened sky, not a dark red sky,