Lightroom 5 can seem very complicated the first time you look at it because there are so many confusing buttons, view options, panels, and sliders. Even with all the interface clutter, Lightroom 5 is designed to be very straight forward, and when you understand what all the components are, it becomes very user-friendly.



  • F5: Identity Plate/Module Picker

The top bar of Lightroom is called the Identity Plate, and it’s separated into 2 parts. On the left side we have the default Lightroom 5 logo, and this can be customized so we can put in our own brand or “identity”, hence the name Identity Plate.

identity plate



  • F5: Identity Plate/Module Picker
  • Alt + Ctrl + 1 (pc) | Opt + Cmd + 1 (Mac): Access Library Module
  • Alt + Ctrl + 2 (pc) | Opt + Cmd + 2 (Mac): Access Develop Module
  • Alt + Ctrl + 3 (pc) | Opt + Cmd + 3 (Mac): Access Map Module
  • Alt + Ctrl + 4 (pc) | Opt + Cmd + 4 (Mac): Access Book Module
  • Alt + Ctrl + 5 (pc) | Opt + Cmd + 5 (Mac): Access Slideshow Module
  • Alt + Ctrl + 6 (pc) | Opt + Cmd + 6 (Mac): Access Print Module
  • Alt + Ctrl + 7 (pc) | Opt + Cmd + 7 (Mac): Access Web Module

On the left side of the Identity Plate we have the Module Picker where we can select the different modules we want to use in Lightroom 5. These modules focus on different aspects of a photographer’s workflow.




  • F7: Toggle Source Panel

The Source Panel will differ depending on what module you’re in. If you’re in the Library Module then the Source Panel will be where you control organization and importing, but if you’re the in the Develop Module then this is where all your workflow functionality and presets will be. In every module the Source Panel is different, but in general it deals with workflow and file management.

lightroom 5 source panel



  • Shift + Tab: Close all Panels To Enlarge Image Display Area
  • : Toggle Filter Menu in Library Module

This is your main working area in Lightroom 5 in all of the modules. There are many great tools within the Image Display area that makes culling and searching for images very easy. For instance you can press “” to access the Library Filter on the top of the Image Display Area in the Library Module, and this filter makes searching for images very easy.

lightroom 5 library filter menu
Library Filter in Library Module



  • T: Toggle Toolbar

An the bottom of the Image Display Area you can pull up a toolbar, and in each module the Toolbar will have different functions. In the Library Module the Toolbar gives us access to different view modes and organization tools, but in the Develop Module it gives us quick access to developing functions. Every Module has a unique Toolbar to make the module more efficient.

Toolbar in Library Module
Toolbar in Library Module



  • F8: Toggle Working Panel (or right panel)

In all the modules, the Working Panel is a place where you are processing or making changes to your images. The Working Panel in the Develop Module is where you can fine tune your images to get them looking exactly how you want them.

Lightroom 5 Working Panels



  • F6: Toggle Film Strip

The Film Strip is our navigational constant throughout all the modules. If we switch from the Library Module to the Develop Module, the Film Strip will stay the same. It’s great because no matter which module we’re in we can choose what image we want to select, without having to go back to the Library Module.

Film Strip
Film Strip