Another Useful Lightroom Feature You Probably Did Not Know Existed

I feel like I'm constantly hearing about new shortcuts in Lightroom that make my workflow increasingly painless. This is one that's been around for a while, but you have probably never used it. This short video is an easy to follow tutorial from photographer Matt Kosklowski about an exposure feature that will surely speed up your editing process.

When shooting with the bracket function on your camera you'll end up with three, five, or seven photos of varying exposures that you can then process into HDR. While in the "Develop" mode in Lightroom, you will be able to match the exposure using the Match Total Exposures tool (Shift+Ctrl+⌘+M for Mac). This is useful for toning down that overly HDR look while still utilizing the shadow relieving benefits.

I've also found this useful when batch editing a lifestyle or portrait shoot. It's great to focus on the tonal quality and color grading of an image first, then match exposures of a photo group from a single image using this tool. It's also amazing to find these helpful devices in Lightroom that speed up the editing process; technical hacks that lead to a better product. If you have some Lightroom shortcuts that help your work flow, please share them in the comments below!

[via onOne]

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12 Comments

Lee Christiansen's picture

Very useful...

So is LR making the adjustments based on the camera settings (ie. is it reading the EXIF data and calculating from that), or is it being very clever by analysing the actual image (ie would this work if camera settings stayed the same and the light levels changed a bit?)

Jason Hudson's picture

Lee, that's a really good question. I messed around with it and tried to adjust a broad group of photos and it seemed to sync them pretty well. I'd also be curious of the limitations of the function. Please Let us know what you find!

Will Pursell's picture

Will be using this feature soon for weddings!

hah! Did not know that! That's the down side of only using shortcuts. You never go into the menu's :)

Andrew Yianne's picture

Very useful in shoots that get progressively darker as the shoot goes on!

Limor Garfinkle's picture

What an awesome article! This feature is going to save me so many hours! Who knew there's more to learn in LR?

Scott Mosley's picture

Thank you Jason! Will work this in to some of my workflow for sure... I wonder how it calculates 'total exposure' and if it will comp. for a speedlight caught mid-cycle from a pw across the room or if it is just based on exif data

Jason Hudson's picture

No problem, glad you find it useful! Im thinking exif data. but I'd be curious to hear what you find in working with speedlights. I've found it useful working with similar lighting conditions, but I haven't pushed it much past that.

I'd love a feature like this in Capture One (if there is one, I haven't found it).

John Longmire's picture

Great tutorial!

Jason Dream's picture

You, you are my Hero ! You just saved me a loooooooot of time for my brenizer and panorama shoot. A really big Thank you !

Nice one, used to use the sync settings which can be cumbersome, this is much easier. Thanks...