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Optimise your Lightroom catalogue

Lightroom has a tendency to make your catalogue file size increase over time. If you're using a catalogue time and time again to manage a whole shoot for example, it can start to affect performance. The simplest way to manage this is to use the optimise catalogue feature in Lightroom.

If you no longer need your 1:1 previews you can save some space by deleting these too. Go Library > Previews > Discard 1:1 Previews…

Both of these changes should help performance improve and are worth doing from time to time.

Essential Software

To get going you're going to need a licence to some basic software, this list currently includes…

  • Adobe Photoshop Lightroom
  • LR/TreeExporter [Lightroom Plugin]
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • PTGui Pro

All our video tutorials and workflow are based on using the above software and we can offer support, should you have any issues. If you wish to use other software such as third party photoshop plugins or an alternative HDR stitching program you may do so however, we cannot offer any support. Please also note, you cannot use Capture One as it does not fully support the DNG file format.

Non essential software although recommended includes…

  • Name Mangler [Mac only - various PC alternatives are available] 

Tree Exporter

You are unlikely to find what on the face of it seems like a more mundane plugin out there. Yet, this little power house is one of those fundamental tools you can't understand why the guys at Adobe don't build into Lightroom.

What it does. Quite simply, it replicates the original folder structure on export [Lightroom can only export into one folder at a time without it].

The plugin is made by Photographers Toolbox and like several of their plugins they ask for a donation amount of your choice.

This plugin is essential and works with our export presets you have been provided.

> Get LR/TreeExporter 


Filezilla is a free, open source FTP client that works on both Mac and PC. You will need to deliver your imagery to us by uploading your locations to our FTP.

Although there are many FTP clients out there and you may already have a licence to another, we highly recommend using FileZilla as we have found it the most compatible with our FTP server. If you have any issues using a different FTP client our recommendation will be to use FileZilla, we can then offer support if you have any further issues.

You should have been given an FTP account, if you have lost your details please get in touch.

> Download FileZilla

Lightroom shortcuts

If you use Adobe Photoshop Lightroom a lot then you can speed up your workflow significantly by becoming familiar with the shortcuts for commonly used actions. Bookmark this page for reference.

If you want to take things to the next level you can create your own shortcuts. Some commonly used actions do not have a shortcut assigned by default such as 'Build 1:1 previews'. To do this the Photographers Toolbox have created a plugin called Keyboard Tamer. In return they ask for a donation amount of your choice. If you are a committed shortcut user then we highly recommend this plugin.

The plugin allows you to create your own shortcuts, as shown here with Option+Shift+D being used to convert photos to DNG.

The plugin allows you to create your own shortcuts, as shown here with Option+Shift+D being used to convert photos to DNG.