Tips for using the before and after view in Lightroom

One feature of Lightroom that can always come in handy is the before and after view in the develop module. This gives you a nice view of the photo as it first started and lets you compare it with the current version. You can access the before and after view anytime by clicking on the Y button on your keyboard or the icon on the bottom of the develop module.

You can also click the before and after icon to bring up 4 different views:

– Left/Right, will show the entire before image on the left and the after image on the right.
– Left/Right Split, this will split the image in half showing the left half with the before image and the right half with the after image.
– Top/Bottom, will show the entire before image on the top and the after image on the bottom.
– Top Bottom Split, will split the image in half showing the top half with the before image and the bottom half with the after image.

before and after lightroom tips split

Using the left/right split



Using points in the history panel as your before image. A cool tip!

Many times thought you work on an image for awhile and it goes through many, many different stages. If you look at the history pane on the left of the develop module you will see the entire history of changes that you did to the image. What if you wanted to compare one of the revisions mid way through your history with the final image? It’s actually super easy. From the history pane just drag and drop one of your history settings over to the before and it will show you that image now as the before.

before and after lightroom tips2

You can also do something similar with a snapshot. While you can’t simply drag and drop a snapshot into the before you can just right click on the snapshot and from the menu pop up select “Copy snapshot settings to before”. It’s a easy tip and a nice way to compare your photo in the different stages of its creation!

Have a Lightroom Question? Leave a comment at the bottom of the page and lets chat. I love to hear from you.

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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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