There are a few things about making books in Lightroom that aren’t really obvious, so I thought I’d put them all together here so you don’t have to go digging for them. It’s all easy stuff, but since Adobe likes to sneak some features in “under the radar,” or give them names that only Stephen Hawking can figure out, I thought this might keep you from reaching for a pistol. Ya know, metaphorically speaking.
One: The Advantage of Match Long Edges (and How to Do It Manually)
If you create an Auto Layout preset and choose Zoom Photos to Fit, there’s a checkbox for Match Long Edges. With that turned off, if you put a wide photo and a tall photo on the same page, the tall photo will be much larger than the wide photo (as shown below, left). If you turn on Match Long Edges, then it balances the size, even though the two photos have different orientations (as shown below, right). If you didn’t use Auto Layout, and you still want that balanced look, just hover your cursor over the corner of the tall image and it changes into a two-headed arrow. Click-and-drag inward to visually shrink the photo until it balances the size.
Two: Saving Your Favorite Layouts
If you see a layout you like and want to use again (without having to remember where to find it), you can save it to your Favorites at the top of the Modify Page pop-up menu by hovering your cursor over it, then clicking on the little circle that looks like a Quick Collection marker (as shown below). If you change your mind, go to your Favorites, and click on the now-gray circle to turn it off. Also, once you’ve set up some favorites, if you create an Auto Layout preset, one of the page choices in the Editor will be Random from Favorites—it pulls the layout from ones you like. You even get to choose how many photos per page it includes (that way, if you only want 1- or 2-photo favorites, it’ll only use those). Cool!
Three: Sorting Pages
You sort pages in Multi-Page View by clicking on the page you want to move to select it, then you click directly on the yellow bar at the bottom where the page number is (as shown below, where I’ve clicked on page 17), and then you just drag-and-drop that page where you want it in your book. If you want to move a two-page spread, click on the first page to select it, Shift-click on the second page to select it, and then click on either page number area to drag-and-drop the spread to a new location. You can even move groups of pages at once (like pages 10 through 15) by Shift-clicking on those pages to select them, then clicking on any one of the selected pages’ yellow bar at the bottom, and dragging them where you want them. By the way, you can swap photos from page to page when you’re in the Multi-Page View by just clicking-and-dragging them.
Four: The Front & Back Covers Change If You Choose Dust Jacket
If you choose the Hardcover Dust Jacket cover option for your book, you get to add two extra images on the flaps that fold inside the covers to keep your dust jacket in place (as seen below). You’ll only see these side flaps appear if you choose the dust jacket option.
Five: I Know, I Said There Were Only Four, But…
There’s one more page you might want to consider in your book: Blurb’s logo page, which is the last page in the book. If you let them put their logo at the bottom of the last page, they give you a discount on the price of your book. How much? Well, on this book, the regular price was $40.26 without the logo page. If you turn on the option to allow a logo page (in the Book Settings panel), then the price comes down to $33.14 (that’s around a 20% discount for giving them a logo on a page that was going to be blank anyway. Definitely worth considering).
Learn more about working with Lightroom’s Adjustment Brush in The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC Book for Digital Photographers. Also, be sure to check out all the great online Lightroom classes offered by KelbyOne.