Lightroom: Grid View in Develop Mode

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  • (Edited)
I realize pressing G takes you to the Grid View, but it also takes you to the Library. It would be nice to go to Grid View without leaving Develop mode.
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Photographe

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Posted 7 years ago

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Rob Cole

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I am also a fan of integrating the Develop & Library modes.

However, even now, if you have a secondary monitor, you can use the secondary monitor in grid mode without leaving develop mode on the other monitor.
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Ian Lyons, Champion

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Unfortunately, there is no "I don't like this idea", but if there was I would press it.

IMO, no place for Grid in Develop. You need it - use secondary monitor or secondary window mode.
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TK

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I find LR to be too modal at times but I don't see the point of having a grid mode in the Develop module.

I guess the filmstrip is not sufficient for your needs?
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Lee Jay

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I'd prefer the film strip to be multi-row, with a short cut that "G" in Develop would automatically pull it to the top. The film strip holds so few photos as it is now that I just don't use it.
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Matt Jones

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I need a Grid view that maintains Develop mode. I use Grid to navigate to a photo, the film strip is too small to accurately choose among similar shots. So I keep hitting "G" for Grid to move to next photo for Developing, and constantly need to hit "D" again upon choosing the next pic. Plus, I Copy-Paste settings alot, which is only possible in Develop, so I need to "G" then "D" again and again and again. Sounds like a lame complaint but it does take up time and adds frustration to my processing.
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john beardsworth

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Why shouldn't the film strip be multi-row? However, not a priority for me.
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Geoff Walker, Champion

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Not for me though having the filmstrip multi row as John suggests has merit but not a priority for me.
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Photographe

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Rob and TK, this is only a subset of my idea for the interface. In general I find that unless I follow the strict workflow that LR has in mind, I end up switching constantly between Library and Develop. Scott Kelby has said that that the Quick Develop Panel in Library Mode needs to be improved. I think this does not go nearly far. I don't see why I shouldn't have access to any develop tool that I want to use while browsing my photos. Keywording and metada entroes are specialized functions used only on import, in my workflow, and I don't need them to be so prominent. On the otherhand, while browsing files I often want to know what effect Lens Corrections or Camera Calibration or Fill Light would have.

Conversely, while "Developing" photos I also like to browse from folder to folder, but I only have access to Collections and not Folders. That works fine for some workflows, but it's not customizable enough for me. Not everyone is a machine that does everything in the same order all the time.

John, a multi-row film strip would partially address this.
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TK

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"I don't see why I shouldn't have access to any develop tool that I want to use while browsing my photos.": Because thumbnail sized images are too small to edit them? I really don't think the Quick Develop panel has any justification except that it allows relative adjustments (as opposed to absolute ones as the Develop module does) but I understand that other people's mileage varies.

"Conversely, while "Developing" photos I also like to browse from folder to folder, but I only have access to Collections and not Folders.": With only one image visible (as is the case in the Develop module and -- see above -- I think that makes sense), which image to you expect to be displayed when you change to another folder and how useful would it be to see just one?

Yes, sometimes it would be nice to make some develop adjustment while an image is part of a survey view, for example, but in general I don't have a lot of issues anymore with the modal nature of the modules.

I persuaded myself to view the modules as a quick way to exchange panels. I think the integration could be smoother (e.g., the Develop module should update library previews as well and some transitions could be quicker) but on the whole I don't think there is a big problem.

I would certainly welcome and use ways of customising panel compositions but I'd rather see better retouching support (cloning, healing, patching) before such GUI fine-tuning.
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Lee Jay

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I agree - I tend to switch back and forth between Develop and Library hundreds of times per session. It's needless modality and it restricts my workflow quite a lot. I'd love to use HSL in survey mode (the hack is to use second monitor in window mode temporarily), and do many other such things. The solution of using second monitor works okay, but it just points out that this functionality would be useful.
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Rob Cole

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Photographe - You're preaching to the choir... - R

PS - I have developed solutions for some of these problems, and am in the process of developing solutions for others. PM me or contact me via my website if interested in present and up-n-coming plugin solutions.
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Photographe

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TK, basically what I am saying is that there is no reason to have a separate Library and Develop module. No, I don't necessarily want to apply adjustments to a thumbnail (although that wouldn't be useless, as when applying one adjustment to many photos), but I want to be able to double click on a thumbnail to work on it, and right now I can't. This is what the filmstrip at the bottom tries to do, it just doesn't do it very well and wastes space, IMO. I want to hit G, click on the photo I want and start "devloping" wihout the artificial constraint of moving between Modules. That's basically it, one module with whatever panels I want, not the panels that someone else chose. Folders is a major omission from Develop, which they try to fix by giving you access to ~some~ folders at the bottom through the filmstrip.

As far as which files do you see when you click on a folder--it would work the exact same way as when you click on a collection which is available in Develop! Plus Grid view and anything else that's available in Library.
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TK

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In principle I agree that interfaces should be non-modal. However, it is not as simple as simply stating there is no need to have separate Library and Develop modules. One cannot cram all Library and Develop panels into one screen so how do you enable the user to get to the panel they need at the moment? I regard switching between the Library Loupe mode and the Develop module as simply swapping out one set of panels for another. The grouping makes sense for me and there has to be some way to bring certain panels into focus while hiding others. The more a module swap can be made to appear like a simple "panel swap" operation, the better it would be for me (i.e., no image re-renderings inbetween, if possible, etc.).

If you think the filmstrip wastes space, just hide it (F6). I think having the filmstrip open is the only way changing to a new folder/collection makes sense; so that one gets a feel for what set of photos is available for developing.

I'm not entirely arguing against your case, but if you want to be heard by more users and the LR team, I think you should describe concrete scenarios in which the "module concept" hurts your workflow. If you could describe a typical workflow scenario which forces you to switch a lot between modules and what integration of modules could address your problems, this would potentially give your feature request a lot more weight.
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john beardsworth

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Agreeing with TK's comments, in the early days I didn't care for swapping back and forth, I've come to see the "problem" as much overstated. Adobe did make a bit of a mistake by calling Library, Develop etc "modules" and making the modularity so obvious. Think of them as "workspaces", but compulsory, and you don't get so uptight. Like workspaces in other Adobe apps, they have their own task-oriented panels and keyboard shortcuts - needed for a program that's trying to cram in a number of previously-separate activities.
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Lee Jay

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"One cannot cram all Library and Develop panels into one screen so how do you enable the user to get to the panel they need at the moment?"

Actually, you can with tabs at the tops of the panels. Regardless, I don't think this is required. Develop is slowly acquiring Library's features (the last one added was collections) and it's had quite a few of them from the beginning (i.e. filmstrip). Now some of the shortcuts are starting to merge (Survey was the last one changed). So, they just need to keep moving in this direction - add relative adjustments and folders to Develop, add a multi-view mode (with zoom) and make filmstrip multi-row and you pretty much don't need library anymore except for metadata. Then make Library much more dedicated to metadata with things like a full-screen keyword view and other such things to help heavy metadata users and everyone will be happy.
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Photographe

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If I may summarize, it looks like John and some others have beaten themselves into submission and accepted the modularity, although they would not be against an improvement, while another group thinks something should be done (Rob Cole has taken the admirable route of trying to create a fix, which I have not looked into).

My question to everyone is: what's the best way to present this to LR?
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Rob Cole

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I would think a feature request "idea" right here would do it, perhaps a title like: "Integrate Library & Develop Modules"
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john beardsworth

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"....it looks like John and some others have beaten themselves into submission and accepted the modularity, although they would not be against an improvement,"
Speak for yourself. I have somewhat changed my mind. Lightroom's modularity is merely a cheap punching bag because it's a particularly obvious aspect of the UI. There are higher priorities than squashing the 5 workspaces into one, and the need isn't "an improvement" but individual and focussed ones such as letting the filmstrip be multi-row.
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TK

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I have not "beaten myself into submission". While one of my first posts to the U2U forums was about the modal nature of LR that I didn't like, I've come to appreciate LR's design and once I realised that you need workspaces one way or the other and learned all the keyboard shortcuts, it stopped to be an issue for me.

You asked "what's the best way to present this to LR?": I already gave the answer: Describe a scenario (concrete step of actions with concrete photos) where LR's current interface gets in your way.

It would be great if a module change could really just be a workplace swap (and it currently isn't quite like that, but pretty close) and I guess I'd be making use of customisable workspaces, but there are so many more important issues for me that this comes pretty far down the list.

Perhaps your scenario can remind me why I once created a "Don't mode me in" thread at the U2U forums. I would have to make a conciousness effort to come up with an example for how the "modules" get in the way of my workflow.

I fully agree with John, tabs are just a sticking plaster and I personally dislike them. I prefer to switch "tabs" with keyboard shortcuts without seeing all the other tabs all the time.
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Photographe

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"Like workspaces in other Adobe apps, they have their own task-oriented panels and keyboard shortcuts - needed for a program that's trying to cram in a number of previously-separate activities. "

Workspaces in other apps such as Premiere Pro are fully customizable. So the Modes in Lightroom are light years away from workspaces, don't you agree?

"There are higher priorities than squashing the 5 workspaces into one." They can stuff Slideshow and Web anywhere they want. It's just browsing and developing that need to be in the same Mode or Workspace. This is a big UI deficiency. Lee Jay's idea is a great one: combine Library (minus key wording) and Develop and create a new Tab/Mode for key wording.

"I have somewhat changed my mind." Me too. I did not see it as a problem until I started using it more and more. What made you change your mind?

Btw, I did not realize anyone was using Modularity as punching bag. This is the first time I had read anything about it, but obviouly it touches a raw nerve with some people, and I will try to be more sensitive.
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john beardsworth

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Don't worry about sensitivity! Ever since Lightroom was first released, "modality" has been a criticism partly thanks to Adobe's poor choice of the word "modules" which sounds too like "modal", which Mac users are told is a bad thing. It's come from folks advocating its Mac-limited competitor Aperture, but it's pretty widespread. Lightroom's modules are so in your face that they're a lazy target.

In this thread I've also described Lightroom's workspaces as "workspaces, but compulsory". Yes, they are also more rigid than in other Adobe apps. The advantage is that people actively use LR's workspaces and - with certain pain points - benefit from doing so. In other apps people just don't make use of the workspaces all that much.

Tabs really are just a sticking plaster. You should try playing with Aperture a little! You end up swapping and changing between tabs in just the same way, and all you really get is the illusion of not working in a modular app. Maybe Adobe should have just styled the top panel as tabs?

Why should Library alone be combined with Develop? Why shouldn't Print be combined with Develop too? For many, printing and adjustment belong together while keywording and organisation belong separately. It's got to be a unified UI, or separation as now - Library/Develop and three titchy workspaces would just beg the question of why the output modules weren't included.

What made me "somewhat" change my mind? Probably as the CS workspaces became more obvious, so I started seeing the modules as analogous to them rather than as nasty un-Maclike (FWIW) modality. I'd also add that when I show people how to use the program the left-to-right, top-to-bottom just works. On balance, a lot of people benefit from Lightroom's normative style!
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Lee Jay

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"You should try playing with Aperture a little! You end up swapping and changing between tabs in just the same way, and all you really get is the illusion of not working in a modular app."

The difference is, the tabs will stay where they are without a forced flip-back (i.e. you can't leave the metadata tab open while you have the presets up on the left), and that all functionality is available in all modes (i.e. HSL while in survey mode).

If the module switching penalty were exactly zero, the current Library/Develop modality (not the other modules, just those two) would still be a hassle due to lack of functionality available in the various modes.
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Photographe

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Rob--I'm not sure I'm the best one to write about it. My writing ability is limited to the big picture. I can't get concrete examples together.

I just know that every time I start LR I cringe and my eyes go to the upper right corner to see if "Library" or "Develop" is lit up, so this can't be a good UI for me.

I find it pretty telling that there are so many shortcuts that take you from one Mode directly into a function of the other mode:

G - from Develop straight to the Library Grid View.

R - from Library to Develop>Crop
Q - from Library to Develop>Spot Removal
K - from Library to Develop>Adjustment Brush
M - from Library to Develop>Graduated Filter
W - from Library to Develop>Adjust White Balance

This is pretty hilarious if you think about, and a clear indication that LR recognizes that users want to develop while browsing. The ability to jump from photo to photo is really the thing that most distinguishes LR from Photoshop.
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TK

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"I just know that every time I start LR I cringe and my eyes go to the upper right corner to see if "Library" or "Develop" is lit up, so this can't be a good UI for me.": I have switched off the top panel permanently (F5). I never need it. I switch modules with keyboard shortcuts only.

"I find it pretty telling that there are so many shortcuts that take you from one Mode directly into a function of the other mode:": Your examples are testimony to me that the "modules" are much more "workspace"-like than "module"-like. The keyboard shortcut "K" takes you to the adjustment brush no matter whether you are in the Library module or in the Develop module. Exactly what I expect from a "workspaces" metaphor.

Of course one needs to swap panels, switch workspaces, change modules (pick your terminology). What you need to do to convince anyone is to suggest a better scheme than we already have.

Tabs, AFAIC, are not a solution.
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Rob Cole

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One simple option for panel consolidation:

Leave everything how it is now:

Library or Develop selectors (upper right) or keys can be used to swap panels sets, just like now. That way its nice and familiar. Maybe add the ability to swap just the left, or just the right. Personally, I'd like to see multi-monitor support with both sets open on secondary monitor (full-screen image on primary monitor). Maybe alt-click for the alternate panel...

I mean, the point of integrating lib+dev is:

1. eliminate context differences.
2. eliminate switching lag.

Its not that hard of a problem to come up with some nice options for invoking a desired panel... - for TK it would be a keystroke.
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TK

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Your points 1. & 2. hit the nail on the head.
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Lee Jay

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The point of integrating Library and Develop for me are:

- Get all the additional functionality of the Develop sliders in any viewing mode, get the speed of using the Library previews when switching images in Develop, get the Library's relative adjustments in Develop, and so on. Basically to get all the functionality that's currently available in one place but not the other. There's a ton of this sort of thing.
- Free up the Library module for doing its primary job - metadata handling.

Even if the switching lag were zero I'd still support integrating more of Library's functionality into Develop. They've been doing that already, they just need to keep going.
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Rob Cole

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Right. So not just context differences, and switching lag, but also to have the full complement of functionality ever-ready. - Check...
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TK

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Having all functionality available all the time may not be compatible with optimising modules for their particular purpose. See the comments I made in the other feature request. Yes, it would be nice to have your cake and eat it too but it may not always be possible. I'm not opposing an integration, just alerting to the fact that it may not be as easy as asking for any panel combination to be avaialbe at any time. Therfore, this "Check" is more contentious for me than the other two.
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Photographe

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TK--I admit that the phrase "beating oneself into submission" was too provocative (and I'm not sure it was intended for you frankly). However, I thought it at least somewhat reflects the sentiment "I don't think it's the greatest thing, but I've gotten used it" which I thought I detected, or better still "the problem is overstated". I expect a lot more from LR's GUI, when its sole existence is to make my workflow easier, but more on that later.

To address your specific later points: "I have switched off the top panel permanently (F5)." My problem isn't the panel, it's that I'm COMPELLED to know which module I'm in to proceed further. Unless I know, I can't do anything, and that crimps my style. For me it's not an overstatement. I hate starting LR, simple as that. No other program I know of gives me this reaction.

"Your examples are testimony to me that the "modules" are much more "workspace"-like than "module"-like." Ok, but the worspaces in LR are either (i) not well thought out or (ii) too inflexible. I'm a photo/video guy. If you're not a video guy, check out a demo of Premiere Pro. It's a busy interface with billions, ok only millions, of panels--unavoidable because video is so much more complicated. I can set up workspaces--real workspaces, with ANY combination of panels wherever I want them, and in some pretty creative ways that I never thought of. That's a workspace. The shortcuts in LR are a bandaid. After clicking K, I'm stuck in Develop mode again and have lost access to my folders.

I have no idea how much time or money Adobe has to devote to any particular issue. Personally, if they did only one thing in LR 4, for me it should be adding AVCHD support. All of th GUI sins would be forgiven if they did that. If they did it in LR 3.5, I would be filled with incalculable joys.

However, recall that I did not start this request asking for a rewrite of the program. I just want Grid View in Develop Mode. That way I can hit G, select a different photo, and go back to editing. That's a bandaid. A double-row filmstrip is a different bandaid suggested by John, which might work. I don't know which is better as I'm not a professiona; GUI designer. Here are a few more possible bandainds:

(1) Collections were added to Develop Mode in LR 3 I think, Folders should be added too.
(2) I'd like to see the filter bar in Develop mode.
(3) I'd like Quick Develop panel to include Recovery, Fill Light, Blacks, WB, Crop, Black and White, and Camera Profile so that I have a better idea of what my photo will look like once developed.
(4) OR, just allow the user to choose any panel in the two modes.

These are all bandaids, but the real problem is Laurels. Anyone or anything that sits for long on their laurels in this day and age gets passed up. The LR GUI has been sitting on its laurels for a long time. Adobe acts like they've discovered (or copied) the perfect GUI. They haven't. It was good was when it was new and when editing thousands of files was new and the only alternative was Photoshop. IMHO, it's time for a deep re-think of the GUI, and the desire to impose a one-size-fits-all workflow on everyone who chooses to use LR.
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Rob Cole

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"I'd like Quick Develop panel to include Recovery, Fill Light, Blacks, WB, Crop, Black and White, and Camera Profile so that I have a better idea of what my photo will look like once developed."

It does include "Recovery, Fill Light, Blacks, WB, + B&W" - you sure you got everything expanded?
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Rob Cole

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You make some compelling arguments Photographe. As you say, Adobe will probably need to address UI at some point. But to quote/paraphrase Jeff Schewe (cant believe I'm doing this) - "what would you be willing to give up for it"? For you: not AVCHD. For me: not Develop module improvements nor SDK improvements.
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Photographe

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Rob--you're right, that stuff is in the Quick Develop panel. I stopped using that panel long ago because of the way it's desgined. But the weird thing, they've already built so much development stuff into the library...we don't need to beat this one any more because the other thread is more productive. But it is really odd.
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Photographe

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"Having all functionality available all the time may not be compatible with optimising modules for their particular purpose." All I can say is what I'd like the program to do; I prefer to leave it to the programmers to determine what can be done. When RAW editing software came out, many people were surprised that it could be done. In the video world, some people were surprised at Adobe's Mercury engine, which enables editing compressed video without encoding it first to pixel-based codec. It's astonishing what clever programmers can come up with.
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TK

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My comment was not about what is technically possible and what isn't. It was about making one's mind up what one wishes for since having one's cake and eating it too is sometimes not possible, magic programming or not. For instance, you cannot determine sharpening parameters on a thumbnail-sized image. AFAIC, it makes sense to couple some controls to appropriate views. In any event, I think we all want more or less the same but mainly differ in the level of urgency we attribute to the issue.
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Sean Phillips

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Wow, this conversation has gone crazy! I'm all for having Grid available in Develop (as the FR asked for), but I'm very happy with the modules we have now. I love that advancing through images is very fast in Library and that all of the "Edit" tools are available and easily accessible there. I don't love how slow the Develop modules is, but I appreciate that all of the "Processing" tools are there.

For the most part I have no need to Edit and Process at the same time, and when I do it's a simple keystroke to get to the tool I need. I think you guys are way overthinking this...
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Dorin Nicolaescu-Musteață, Champion

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I'm working on a 700 picture wedding, and it would be so nice to be able to glance through the pictures in Grid view to find what needs touching up and click straight into the Develop module. It's an unnecessary step to have to switch from Develop to Library back to Develop.