Overview of Lightroom 4 Map Feature

One of the totally new features of Lightroom 4 is a Maps module. This is a great new way of organizing your images based on location. If you have a camera that tracks GPS coordinates these will automatically appear on the map showing pins where they were taken. There are different icons on the map that will appear and here is a key on what those will represent:

lightroom 4 maps

Most of the time though when you are shooting with a DSLR you aren’t able to capture the GPS info in the camera. There are a few different ways to still use the maps though. First you can search the map by tying in a location at the top right corner of the map. This will bring up your location on the map and you can simply drag and drop your images from the filmstrip below onto the map. Here I did a quick search for “Villa Montalvo”, which found the location even though the name is slightly different. Then I dragged the wedding images from there onto the map and all done!

lightroom 4 maps2

Now when you go to the map I see there are 3 images taken at this location. If you hover over the 3 icon you will see a preview and be able to cycle through those images in this preview pane.

lightroom 4 maps3

I am never a fan of doing manual sorting so going through lots of images to manually tag them on the map could take forever. Thats where a little handy app I came across awhile ago comes in real useful!
gps4cam iPhone app is a nice way to geotag your images. What this app does is create a running log of places you have been on your iPhone. When you are done tracking the app creates a QR code that you take a photo of. Then through a desktop software it takes that QR code and all of the info on the code and syncs all of your photos with the locations they were photographed at. When you import into Lightroom all of your images will have the GPS coordinates on them. For a full review of the app check it out here: gps4cam iPhone app for photographers.

You can also change the type of map by opening up the drop down menu at the bottom left of the map.

lightroom 4 maps

Another useful feature is you can save your favorite locations. Once you are in a map view click on the + next to saved locations.

lightroom 4 maps6

Then you will be able to name the location and create a radius that you want it to cover.

lightroom 4 map

That’s it, a pretty quick and easy new tool that we can use for even more ways to search our images in Lightroom!

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Author: Mark

Mark is a fine art wedding and portrait photographer from Northern California. He has been passionate about photography since childhood and started his studio 12 years ago to bring a fresh style of photography to the wedding and portrait world.

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