Choosing a Transfer Type and Destination Options
Whether you’re viewing the Import dialog in expanded or compact mode, the top center area provides a means of deciding how you would like the transfer of your camera files to take place. You have four options: Copy as DNG, Copy, Move, and Add. As you click each of the items, a helpful description of what that item does with your photos appears directly beneath the four buttons, as seen in Figure 4.
Figure 4 Lightroom 3 Beta allows you four methods of importing, all explained in simple terms so you can work more efficiently.
Along the right edge of our expanded Import dialog, we have a series of important functions thatamong other optionsallow us to define the quality of image previews that accompany our imported files, rename files, and apply develop presets and metadata presets. When our transfer type dictates it, we can also choose a location for our newly imported files. Let’s take a look at each of these areas.
Much like the “From” drive icon and button that we spoke about earlier, at the top-right edge of our Import dialog, we have a “To” drive icon and button that allows us to check or specify (typically in the compact mode) the folder destination for our imported files. You can see this function in Figure 3, at the top-right. Note again that you can view the controls along the top of the Import dialog in both compact and expanded modes; it’s the “middle stuff” that gets hidden in compact mode.
Next on the Import hit parade are Lightroom 3’s Import File Handling controls, seen in Figure 5. These allow you to set the quality of your image previews (Minimal, Embedded & Sidecar, Standard, and 1:1). As you might expect or know from previous raw workflows, 1:1 previews give you the best quality but are much larger and take longer to process on import. But if size and time are no object, you can’t go wrong. File Handling also allows us to avoid importing files suspected as duplicates and the ability to make a second copy of your files to a secondary directory (such as a backup hard drive).
Figure 5 Lightroom 3’s expanded Import dialog offers useful File Handling options to make sure you’re bringing in only the files you need, and with previews optimized for your specific workflow.
Another important option is the ability to use File Renaming functionality when importing their files. Figure 6 shows the File Renaming options, which allow you to use presets from the standard Filename Template Editor found in Lightroom 2.
Figure 6 Lightroom 3 Beta allows you to rename your files before import.
The Apply During Import section of the dialog (see Figure 7) allows you to add Develop Settings to your images, such as Sepia or Cyanotype, as well as metadata templates. Simply highlight the options you want to use from the pop-up menus, and they will be applied on import. You can also quickly add keywords to your selected files by typing them into the Keywords field. Each of these options can help save time later, when you need to focus on evaluating and editing your photographs.
Figure 7 If you know ahead of time that you’d like to apply a specific Develop Setting to style your images, or that you need to add metadata, you can add both to your images directly from the new Import dialog.
Finally, the right panel holds a Destination function that works in the same way as our Source panel (see Figure 8). Just click the triangles to find the folder you want to target, and click it to select it. You can even choose to import files into a subfolder. Perhaps best of all, you can take all of the settings noted earlier, and turn them into a “Import Preset” using the controls at the bottom-center of the dialog. These options are seen in Figure 8.
Figure 8 Choosing a destination and setting up Import presets for later use is simple in Lightroom 3.