While programs like Adobe Lightroom offer robust tools for organizing and performing basic edits, Adobe Photoshop takes image manipulation to the next level with its advanced features. Understanding how to seamlessly transition between Lightroom and Photoshop can greatly enhance your editing workflow and the quality of your final images. In this article, we’ll teach you how to edit in photoshop from Lightroom.

How to Edit in Photoshop From Lightroom Video Tutorial

In this video we will be showing you guys different options and methods to bring your images from Lightroom into Photoshop for editing. Whenever you export from Lightroom into Photoshop you will see different options as to how you want Photoshop to treat the images. Do you want to edit the original image, a copy, etc. We will also show you additional Photoshop features that have now been integrated into Lightroom’s options, ie. stitching panorama’s, blending HDR’s, and opening multiple photos as different layers.

While the video below uses Lightroom 4, and process has remained unchanged over the subsequent versions of the software.

Understanding the Workflow

The synergy between Lightroom and Photoshop is a powerful asset for photographers. Lightroom serves as the hub for image management, providing a non-destructive environment for organizing, culling, and performing initial edits. Photoshop, on the other hand, offers a vast array of tools for more intricate retouching, compositing, and creative effects. By seamlessly transitioning between these two programs, photographers can leverage the strengths of each to achieve their desired results.

Sending Images to Photoshop from Lightroom

Lightroom offers several methods for sending images to Photoshop, depending on your editing requirements and preferences. You can seamlessly transfer files as Smart Objects, layers, or even merge multiple images into a single document. By understanding these options, you can choose the most appropriate method for your workflow and maintain flexibility throughout the editing process.

3 Ways to Open an Image in Photoshop

Here are the three ways to open up your image in Photoshop from Lightroom:

  1. Menu – Take your images to Photoshop from Lightroom by navigating to File > Edit in Photoshop.
  2. Right Click – You can also go there by right-clicking on the image and choosing “Edit In Photoshop” from the context menu.
  3. Shortcut – Utilize the Shift+Command+E keyboard shortcut to transfer a Lightroom-edited photo to Photoshop.

How Lightroom and Photoshop Interact

Upon selection, your image will seamlessly open in the latest version of Photoshop installed on your system. If no further adjustments were made in Lightroom, the original image will appear in Photoshop. However, if modifications were applied in Lightroom, a flattened copy of the image will be transferred to Photoshop. When you opt to edit in Photoshop, the image opens in a TIF format, utilizing a 16-bit Pro Photo color space for optimal editing capabilities.

Returning Edited Images to Lightroom

Once you’ve completed your edits in Photoshop, it’s time to return your image to Lightroom for further organization and cataloging. Save your edited file in Photoshop and it seamlessly syncs back to Lightroom, ensuring consistency across your entire workflow. By maintaining a cohesive editing environment, you can easily track your revisions and make adjustments as needed.


Mastering the art of editing in Photoshop from Lightroom is a journey that requires patience, practice, and a willingness to experiment. By understanding the workflow, leveraging advanced techniques, and optimizing your process, you can elevate your photography to new heights. Embrace the creative possibilities that Lightroom and Photoshop offer, and let your imagination soar as you bring your visions to life through post-processing.