After I am finished developing my images in Lightroom, how do I view them?

by George Mann

I ran across this question today from someone who says that he does not print that many of his images or do anything specific with them, but he would like to just simply be able to view them at maximum size, on a plain black background with no formatting or overlays of any sort.

The question is really quite valid because the emphasis in Lightroom is on doing something with the individual modules not doing nothing. Default settings in Lightroom tend to add a fair number of adjustments that are not always wanted.


There may be other ways of getting to this minimalist end but here is my version.

1. In the Library module I select what images I want to view, I click on the images and type B to make a Quick Collection of those images.

2. I click on the Quick Collection button in the Library panel, which makes only Quick Collection visible.

3. I click on the Slideshow module selector and bring the Quick Collection into the Slideshow module.

4. In the Slideshow module, I turn off and deselect almost all the options. Stroke Border, Cast Shadow, Show Guides (set all to 0 px), Identity Plate, Rating Stars, Text Overlays, Color Wash, turn off Background Color (or set to black), no Soundtrack and turn off Slide Duration.

5. Individual settings can be applied to the images if you wish, but it is best to start with a clean plate.

6. Add a template to the Template Browser (the Add button is below the Template Browser) - I call this zero settings template "Black Out".

7. Press on Play and press your right arrow key for advancing the individual images at maximum size, on a pure black background.

8. To fill your entire screen you can select Zoom to Fill Frame in the Options but that will crop into images, unless they are already cropped for your screen.

That is it, once you have set up the parameters in the Slideshow module, it is a simple matter of selecting as many images as you like, opening the Slideshow module, selecting the "Black Out" preset and pressing the Play button.


2007-05-18 09:37:23
sheesh! seems like a lot of trouble. so glad i stuck with Aperture: hit the F key to go into full-screen mode. use arrow keys to go from image to image.
2007-05-18 12:27:50
From Grid View you can select a group of photos and use the keyboard shortcut cmd-return to start an Impromptu Slideshow. This option is also availiable under the Window menu item.
tom armitage
2007-05-18 15:36:12
Once I've got my selection set up, I tend to go to develop mode (D) which I always use at practically fullscreen. Then, two taps of L to put the lights completely out, and the cursor keys will flick me through my pictures. And it's basically a slideshow. Seriously, it takes, like five seconds.
George Mann
2007-05-18 20:38:34
Thanks for the comments and alternate methods.

Unfortunately the Impromtu Slideshow method gives you your last slideshow template choice, not a black background (unless it was your last template choice).

Impromptu also does not let you add other (last minute) elements to your slide show - like overlays, strokes, etc.

Mark Sirota
2007-05-23 19:36:44
I agree with Scott -- that all sounds like a lot of work.

In Library, select the images you want, then:

E (loupe view),
Shift-Tab (hide all panels),
left and right arrows to move through your photos.

T (turn off the toolbar too, if desired and needed). But it's handy to leave it there; you can have it include things like star ratings, flags, color labels, and filename.

F (once or twice) to enter full-screen mode, though I'm almost always there already

L (once or twice) to change the background from grey with no border to dark grey with white border, or black with white border. Or you can change your default background in Preferences.

I (capital letter i) to include an overlay including whatever other metadata you wish (configure it in preferences).

2007-05-26 19:35:57
yes - this is far from easy. i like to fit to screen in a smart way so that cropping is minimal.