Video – Printing to a File

This week’s video topic comes solely from your comments and questions here on the Lightroom Killer Tips site. For a few weeks, many of you have been asking how to save a custom print template in a format that would let you send it to a printer or some one else to print. Technically, there really is no way but in this week’s video I’ve got a workaround for you. Thanks for all of the ideas! Enjoy the video.

Click here to watch the video. (11Mb)

Author: Matt K

Matt is a full time Education Director for the NAPP and Kelby Training. He's a best-selling author of various books on Photoshop and Photography co-hosts the live weekly photography talk show "The Grid" and is co-host of "Photoshop User TV". In his spare time he practices as a 1st degree black belt in Taekwondo and enjoys spending time with his family in Tampa, FL.

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26 Comments

  1. Good Morning Matt:
    Great killer video on custom print template! Just a general question on printing from Lightroom. As I am sure you are aware, there is a raging controversy on Mac OS 10.5.1, print drivers, and Lightroom. Just wanting an idea from you when you think all issues will be resolved and we can ALL print from Lightroom again without problems. Quite frankly, to not have printing directly from Lightroom drastically neuters this wonderful application, at least IMHO! I’m not pointing fingers or blaming anyone, just wanting to know.
    Thank you, Dale

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  2. Thanks Matt for another killer tip!

    I love this site.

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  3. I have a question not related to this video. Sorry for being off topic. When I import my raw files into lightroom I always save a backup to a separate hard drive. I save these as the original raw format but would like to automatically save them as .dng files. Is this possible? Right now it is necessary to convert the backup raw files to .dng which is time consuming and would be unnecessary if I could directly save the back up as a .dng at the time the images are imported.

    Thanks

    Gene

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  4. hey,

    I am trying to view this video and when I download it to my desktop I get an internet explorer icon that opens up a site with a bunch of foreign lettering and numbers. Any suggestions as to why it is not working?

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  5. Great tip! I’m still having trouble, however, finding a work around for not actually having a printer attached to my computer. Lightroom won’t allow me to edit page sizes and such without a printer attached. Consequently, I can’t even import Matt’s Pano Preset without getting an error. Anyone know how I can work around this?

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  6. Thats so cool, didnt know it would work that way,

    YOUR AWSOME!

    Ron

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  7. That was a nice try for a workaround but spending $300 on acrobat is not going to happen, and then still have to go into ps as well doesn’t cut it.

    I am though thinking that for printing square crops without having to destroy my crop decision by recropping back to 2×3 to get a print – perhaps I could setup some presets using borders with the new LR/Morgify commands.

    Haven’t tried this stuff yet though. anyone used this stuff yet?

    cheers
    Ron

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  8. This is a great tip!
    I really enjoy your site. I read it everyday!
    Thank you! And congratulations on finishing your marathon.
    Barbara

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  9. Thank you for tip.

    I’ve tried it with free PDFCreator and GIMP and it works with them as well.

    Great idea, thanks for sharing.

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  10. Matt, If you already have Acrobat why not open the pdf from lightroom in Acrobat and do a SAVE AS – Jpeg. Now you have a folder of jpegs ready to go.
    Is there a big quality loss thru this?

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  11. I run Lightroom on a PC, but can’t seem to make this work at all, because the export to PDF function does not appear anywhere in the steps outlined in the video – any suggestions guys?

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  12. Hi Anndra, to create PDF this way you need to install some kind of PDF printer like PDF creator (http://sourceforge.net/projects/pdfcreator/) for example (there’re few other free solutions)
    After installing such “printer” you’d be able to printo to PDF document and continue in Photoshop o? other editing program of your choice.

    I hope this helps.

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  13. Yet another comment from me. Using PDFCreator you can save one step – you may set up PDFCreator to save right to JPEG or other graphic format and set JPEG settings (resolution, quality, etc)

    Seems it is easier solution. With PDFCreator you can print from Lightroom right to JPEG. Nice.

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  14. hmm I’ll have to look into pdfcreator on the weekend.

    looks like I’ll have to cue up for a download though.

    thanks for bringing up the alternatives guys.

    Ron

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  15. Two more questions I did have:

    First, does the pdf get created at the DPI setting setup by the print module panel?

    Second, does the DPI setting affect the result for output sharpening? ie do you need more sharpenning applied if the setting is set at 300dpi vs 200dpi or does LR keep the “width” of the sharpening effect on an edge the same for a particular setting.

    Guess I’ll just have to make a bunch of test prints, now that I have a potentially viable workaround.

    thanks guys
    Ron

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  16. What Color Management profle are you using for printing? I have tried using “Managed by Printer”, but the prints come out horrible looking (just if I print them). If I print in Draft Mode, the colors appear fine. LR really has some serious profiling issues!

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  17. Great tip, works like a charm, keep up the good work!

    Dave, eh!

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  18. I watched your video and it seems as though you saved the file as a PDF using Apple’s built in PDF generator not Acrobat. I don’t believe you need Acrobat to do this. I tried it on my machine and since Acrobat isn’t working on my machine even though it is installed, I was still able to generate a PDF that was rendered by the Mac operating system. This should encourage others who don’t have Acrobat that it’s still possible to print to PDF.

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  19. I don’t understand the reasen why you need Acrobat and Photoshop on the Mac to do this. Why not do just this:

    – In the print dialog, choose “Preview”
    (the Preview application of Mac OS X opens)
    – Then select “Save As” and here you can save the preview as JPG.

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  20. Really great tip.
    I am trying to create some extra MyPublisher photobook presets with it. I have one question though:

    What are the results of this procedure, concerning color management. Isn’t profile information (and thus color management) lost during the pdf-generation process?

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  21. On a Mac, why not import the photo into iPhoto and let iPhoto render as a jpeg for e-mailing?

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  22. COMMENT PRINTING TO FILE

    THANKS MATT NICE TIP.

    AT THE END OF THE VIDEO YOU CONVERTED THE PHOTO TO A JPEG FILE AND SAVED IT ON YOUR COMPUTER. HOW DOES LIGHTROOM KNOW? I’M HAVING TROUBLE USING CS3 AND LIGHTROOM TOGETHER. I’M SAVING THE PHOTOS THEN GOING TO LIGHTROOM. I THEN HAVE TO DELETE THE FILE BECAUSE THE PHOTO IS TO BIG IN THE THUMBNAIL. I FINNALY IMPORT THE PHOTO INTO LIGHTROOM AGAIN. YOUR INPUT WOULD BE APPRECIATED.

    JOHN L CAPE COD MASSACHUSETTS

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  23. At first: thanks to Matt and the other people who made some comments. I was struggling with the same question: how to rpint to a file (preferably JPG and/or TIFF).
    After trying various settings in LR and browsing the Internet I found out that LR 1.4 didn’t have this feature. Looking for a solution I came across this video and this set me on the right track. I DL-ed CutePDF and PDFCreator (both free – the latter beeing Open Source) and began installing. I choose PDFCreator first to start with. It was simple enough to set up PDFCreator and soon I was able to print from LR to PDFCreator and ended up with some nice PDF’s. However that’s not what I wanted – I was still looking for JPG and/or TIFF.
    Browsing again for some info I found that PDFCreator not only lets you create a PDF; it can also save your printfiles in various other formats including JPG and TIFF.
    The procedure is quit simple:
    – install PDFCreator;
    – tune the various settings of PDFCreator to your likings (via PDFCreator->Printer->Options)
    – when asked for the filename of the created file change the filetype to TIFF
    The only thing I have to do after that is “synchronize” the folder within LR and there it finds the newly created TIFF-file.

    Thanks again and hope this helps,
    Melis
    – select the correct printer in LR (PDFCreator);

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  24. Now in LR 2.1 under Print Job you get the choice Print to: Printer or JPEG File

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  25. Yeah, it would be nice to update this video based on the LR’s ability to print to jpeg. I’m a little confused with some of the options. Should I use print sharpening? What about scaling and resolution? How do you create borders?

    Post a Reply

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