Many Different Versions -- No More Hard Drive Space

by Ken Milburn

Suppose you could do an entirely different processing interpretation of the same photo for different end uses, keep them all in you Library where you could reference them easily, and even create a slide show, printed portfolio, contact sheet, or web gallery of the whole collection without ever using up a spec (well, ok, maybe a spec) of extra space on your hard drive.

I'm surprised I don't hear about more people talking about this feature more often. I mean, what a great way to give more confidence to your art director? If you haven't already done this, you won't believe how simple it is: All you have to do to create a visible different version of a given photo is right click on its thumbnail in the Library module and choose Make Virtual Copy from the menu. An exact copy of the selected thumbnail appears alongside it. You can make as many of these of the same images as you like, process each one in an entirely different way, and then be able to show your client (or friend) all those variations on that image. Just use any of the Lightroom commands to process each one differently.



Sean McCormack
2007-10-18 10:57:09
Ken, This has been discussed many times in many places. Your theory on negligible disk space is not strictly true. If you are running 1:1 previews for your Virtual copies (which you need if you are working with sharpening or noise reduction), then these are over 1 Mb in size. Now it is small compared to a 10mb RAW file, but not so small compared to a 2-3 Mb Jpeg from the same camera. If you have a lot of virtual copies, this preview size adds up quickly. My Preview file on a Library size of 65,000 files is 21Gb. If I had 1:1 for most of these then it would be much larger.
Of course this fact doesn't prevent me from using different Virtual copies in different collections and for different looks. It's a fantastic tool.